You never really get used to the “click, click” you hear at anchor when trying to start a boat with a dead battery. Of course, it’s a little bit different when it’s expected as it was this time after we’d stayed at anchor for two nights. We’re pretty confident in our power management having run that battery life experiment at the dock a few weeks ago, and we still have our Costco miniature jump starter thing. In this case, all we had to do was switch to the other battery and we were good to go. One major shortfall of our boat is we need to motor at least every other day to stay comfortable with our power supply. N concedes having a solar panel would set us free, but we’re not sure where we can mount one while maintaining our fantastic boat lines. Might get a generator.
It’s sunny, but still windy around the Keys so on travel days we check the wind forecast to decide whether to travel on the Atlantic or Gulf side. It makes a HUGE difference on a 29’ boat and it’s easy to jump back and forth under various bridges.
When it’s windy it’s windy though and there’s only so much shore-hugging you can do with the Florida shallows all over the place. Absent an option, it’s into the offshore waves with N at the helm and B and Z down below on the floor which is the crew’s new preferred stomach stabilization technique.
We made it down to White Marlin Marina at Marathon without too much difficulty except we couldn’t seem to get on plane after filling with gas halfway there.
We’re at the limits of what this boat can do given sea conditions and weight so any little issue makes a difference. In this case, it was a bit too much water in the bilge (AGAIN!!). Not enough to trip the pump, but enough to make a difference in these conditions. We pumped it out with some trepidation and were delighted to see it remain dry.
Uhmm…except…for this constant drip from the water distribution unit where N had previously sealed a crack with sealer, but now was leaking steadily. Trouble loomed, but lo…. aware of the temporary nature of his earlier fix N had ordered a replacement unit which was one of the packages we’d picked up at Kendall and Laura’s last week! If you want a career as a marine mechanic you best be about 5’6”, 145 pounds and really wiry. There is no part of that last sentence you could use in describing N! Regardless, he somehow wound himself around the engine and successfully swapped out the part after bonking his head and carrying on an expletive laced conversation with the boat.
After a two-night stay at the White Marlin we’re slowly heading back toward Miami. Today we find ourselves back on Islamorada at a place called the Postcard Inn and Marina. This is a NICE place and the most “resort-like” spot we’ve been so we’ll probably stay here a few days and let stomachs settle!
Oh, and yes, draining the bilge and replacing that part had us back on plane and ripping along at 25+mph so we’re good there…for now. After all, it is a boat!