Day 104 was a big day for the RioMarLago crew as we travelled about 90 miles from Goodland, Florida to Bahia Honda State Park which is southwest of Marathon en route to Key West. We’d waited an extra day at Marco Island and then staged ourselves at Calusa Marina in the expectation of calming weather (and calming seas) and set out with winds under 10 knots.
Unfortunately, the Gulf is a pretty big body of water and apparently takes some time to settle as we ended up with larger waves than we expected. Not to sound melodramatic, but this was a big leg for us insofar as we were alone (we had our buddy boat on our earlier off shore adventure), were still a bit apprehensive about leaks, water pumps, blah, blah blah….and were on a route that had us 15 to 20 miles off-shore for several hours.
But we made it! Two crew members blew chow and it was a welcome relief to bark out “land ho”. The boat performed well although there were times N would have really liked to have the 2,500hp on that boat show boat when dealing with some of the water. Note to self…..you simply cannot have too much horsepower. BTW, we arrived with no water in the bilge!
Not to belabor the experience, but it is really weird to navigate when you have no frame of reference. You can swear you’re going in a straight line and if not watching the course setting get WAY off. I have NO idea how people got around without at least a compass….we need GPS to have a prayer of getting to our destination.
OK, enough of that. We arrived at Bahia Honda State Park where we found we were the BIG DOGS at the marina. That’s right, we’re the biggest boat at this little place so it was easy to relax and not pine away for something bigger….for now!
This is finally the Florida we’ve been waiting for; warm, crystal clear turquoise waters (really freaky to go 25mph over water where you can easily see bottom…gotta trust the 10’ reading on the depth sounder), white sandy beaches and sunshine. Yeah baby…Tacomans in the Keys!
We’re off to Key West and the southernmost point of the continental USA tomorrow!