Gorgen's ODYSSEE

Friday, January 6, 2017

Escape to Florida, 2017

As mid January approaches coastal South Carolina, so do a few freezing nights.  Time to think about moving south until early March.  ODYSSEE is being readied to cast off on Saturday, January 14.  We're hoping for a good weather window so we can run outside for the first two days, spending one night at anchor midway down the Georgia coast, and coming back inside at the St. Johns River at the end of the second day.

The plan worked!  Sea conditions on Saturday,  January 14 were just  what we ordered.  We ran outside at hull speed, 9 MPH, 8 Kts., and came in at Doboy Sound, just south of Sapelo Island, and snuck up South River about ¼ mile and dropped the hook, a 90 mile day.

                                    Sea conditions as we pass Ossabaw Sound, 9 miles out.


Sapelo Island old light house                                    Sunset from our anchorage in the South River

Sunday we woke up to fog so delayed our departure to 8:00 as the fog at sea lifted.  Looked like the fog was still pretty thick inland from us.  Another day of calm seas allowed us to get to the Saint Mary River entrance and come inside to the ICW at Fernandina and run the rest of the way to Jacksonville where there is a free dock where we spent the night.


On Monday we had a good ride to Marineland.  At about 11:50, as we came into St. Augustine, the phone rang and it was Annette.  "Where are you", we'll be going under the Lions Gate Bridge in 10-15 minutes, "Oh my God, I'm about to drive over that bridge, I'll park and take your picture".  And we'll take yours! 

We did the 57 mile run in 6 hrs., 40 min.,  good time on the ICW.  SILVER BOOTS was there, the crew from LAST DANCE lives there, and new to be neighbors on Claire's Point, Greg and Annette all got together for dinner.


We leave Lions Gate Bridge in our wake and pass to the west of the St. Augustine Light House located where the original channel was from the Atlantic into the Tolomato and Matanzas Rivers.

On Tuesday we moved south through Daytona 
Beach and on to New Smyrna Beach.  The Ponce
Inlet Light House at Ponce Inlet is between
Daytona and New Smyrna Beach.  We will be at
the municipal marina for two nights.  

Thursday we continued south down the northern end of Indian River, through Misquito Bay, through Haulover Canal, to an anchorage along side NASA Causeway which goes out to Cape Canaveral.  As we went through Misquito Bay dolphins hopped into our wake for a free ride. 

As we came out of Haulover Canal the VAB at complex
39 came into view at the Kennedy Space center.  We hoped
to see the Atlas 5 launch from our anchorage, but it was
scrubbed when a private plane flew into the prohibited air
space.  Send that guy a BIG fine!

Friday we went through the Barge Canal and through the locks over to Port Canaveral to meet a potential boat lift customer, and then went back into the Barge Canal to Harbortown Marina for the night.  We did see the Atlas 5 launch

Saturday we fueled up the boat, first fuel stop since leaving home, and then headed west though the Barge Canal to the ICW, and then turned south for Cocoa.  Cocoa is one of our favorite stops, they have a free town dock where they welcome boats going up and down the ICW to spend a night.  I intended to pick up a part a Travis Hardware, the largest hardware store I've ever been in with more stuff than you can imagine, one whole block pf store!  BUT, they are closed Saturday and Sunday, so no go.  We did go to Ossorio's for some lunch goodies.  As the day went on the wind was building from the south, and the town dock faces south,  The forecast was for the wind to continue to build, so it wasn't going to be a good night to be tied up to their dock.  We went further swouth and anchore behind the 518 causeway in Melbourne.

There is a strong front forecast to cross this part of the state by tonight, and the southwest wind ahead of  the front is blowing 25-35.  North of Vero Beach we snuck into an anchorage we've been in many times to ride out the storm.  At about mid-night the front came through, it was a non event.  Once passed we felt comfortable going to bed.

On Monday we moved a little further south and have a reservation at the Vero Beach Municipal Marina for a week.

Plans are to leave Vero Beach and head further south on Monday, 1/30.  We've had a second cold front come through this morning and it is chilly.  Our southern most point will be up the Loxahatchee River, the river that feeds the Jupiter opening to the Atlantic.  On our way down we are going to anchor in Pecks Lake for a couple of days, walk on the Atlantic beach and do some kayaking in St. Lucie Park, just south of the Stuart entrance to the Atlantic.  We plan to be back at Ft. Pierce on Friday night for the week end.  So, for this week we will not have internet service, but the cell phone will work. 

We executed the plan, again!  Pecks Lake is one of our favorite spots to relax for a couple of days.  Sunset the first night.

We did walk on the beach both days we were there and I went kayaking in the mangrove channels amongst the birds and sea life at he north end of the lake.  There were as many as 14 boats in the lake, most of them sailboats waiting for a weather window  to cross to the Bahamas.

Last Thursday we headed down the ICW towards Jupiter, past famous homes belonging to the like of Tiger Woods.  As we
approached Jupiter inlet the Jupiter Light House appears to the
inside of the ICW as the ICW dog legs to starboard and the back south.  Where the ICW turns back south there is a highway and railroad bridge straight ahead, and the Loxahatchee River.  Our destination is three miles up the river and we have arrived one hour before high tide, which today is 1.9'.  There is some charted water at 3' that appears to be in the buoyed channel, the reason we wanted to go through that area at near high tide, but yet with a little more water coming behind us if we get stuck.  It appeared we had about 5' of water at the shallowest part of the channel past a sand bar.  We anchored in 6.5' of water, with a low over night predicted to be -0.4', we should float through the with about 6" of water under us, and we did.  I met with a new boat lift client first thing in the morning, with our scheduled departure to be at 12:00 when we would have about 1' of water over "0".  But at about 10:00 we decided to leave and follow our crumb line out, we should have enough water to get across that shallow area.  When we came through inbound we were to the north of center of the channel.  As we approached that area, the san bar as exposed, I held to the center of the channel, about 30' south of the crumb line.  Well, it wasn't quite as deep in the center and we put the keel on the bottom at dead slow speed.  OK, not too surprising.  We put the
anchor down and attached it to the starboard quarter cleat,  In about
15 minutes we started to float again, and as the tide came in against
our bow the boat twisted to port, because of where I had tied off the
anchor line.  I let out a little more anchor line and the boat moved
over to the left about 30', right over our crumb line.  There was only
about 4" more water so we waited another 30 minutes to give us a
little more water before we tried to proceed through the shallow
water.    When the water was just starting to cover the sand bar, we
let out a little more anchor line and drove up perpendicular to the
anchor, we didn't want to have to the south and back into the shallow water to retrieve it, our hope was to twist it loose and then pull it across the bottom towards the boat, then back down some and pull the anchor up to the bow davit.  It all worked and we were on our way again.

There have been several days with very light wind.  The forecast
outside was for 1-2' waves on a period of 4 seconds, so we decided
to go outside and run north to Ft. Pierce.  Well, as those who listen
to wave forecasts, they aren't always what we expect, and they
weren't.  They were more like 2-3's and it was choppy, and on the
side, not comfortable at trawler speed.  But, if we get up on plane,
the ride would stabilize, we did, it did, and we ran up to St. Luci 
inlet at 15 kts.   Along the way we ran along the beach we had
earlier accessed from Pecks Lake. 

On Sunday, February 5, our new neighbors on Distant Island will come into Ft. Pierce in their boat as they enjoy the Florida sunshine while it is a little chilly at home.  We had breakfast with Jim and Ginny on Monday morning before we departed for Vero Beach,  Monday night we anchored out and were able to grill a steak for dinner without concerns of bothering any neighbors.  Tuesday we were back at Vero Beach Marina and enjoyed dinner with Dino and Elaine.

On Wednesday we moved up to Sabastian and met long time boating friends Phil and Alice at Herams Resort for linner.  Herams has an open, beach front restraunt with an atmosphere of the Bahamas.

From Herams we moved up to Cocoa Beach to an
anchorage that was created back in the late 50's
when the Cape Canaveral space center was being
being developed and the city of Cocoa Beach was
going to become a housing area for many of the
workers.  A community center needed to be
developed with a sewage treatment facility,
natural gas storage area, high school, and
recreation space.  How do you make land in
Florida?  You dig up the mangrove marsh, make
land from the dredgings and navigable
recreational water ways where marsh once
was.  And so it is that there is now a great
anchorage adjacent to this town facility, right
in the middle of the Thousand Islands area of the
Banana River, a delightful spot.  To get there you exit the ICW and go north up behind Merritt
Island.  The Banana River is skinny water with some low swing bridges to go through.  But once there, it is delightful.
Going through the mangrove tunnels
 Monday morning, 2/13, we moved over to the free dock at Cocoa for the day and night.  Tuesday we motored up to New Smyrna Beach where will be until Friday. 

As we wind up the ICW towards home we have now spend three days at Marineland with four sets of friends, one looper we met in 2007, one looper we met in 2009 who lives here, one looper just starting out, and one of our immediate neighbors from Distant Island who are still heading south.  On Tuesday, February 21 we are all heading out, two boats going south and two boats going north.  Our next stop will be at the free dock in Jacksonville, just north of the St. Johns River.  On Wednesday we will be in Fernandina Beach at the Amelia Island Yacht Harbor.  The city marina was damaged in Hurricane Matthew and is not open.

Thursday morning we left with HAPPY WONDERER behind us heading for Brunswick where there are going to spend a month and we would get some cheap fuel, $2.20/gal.  The wind was blowing hard from the NE, and our course would normally take us through St. Andrews Sound, but with the stiff breeze St. Andrews would be real rough, so we opted to take an optional route through Floyd Creek.  We would be doing this a dead low tide, the bad news the water would be skinny, the good news we could see the shallow areas.  On our way past Cumberland Island we picked up another new Looper who wanted to follow us through Floyd.
So here we go, the other two boats right in our wake.

The channel is narrow in some spots, maybe only 150 ' wide.  We followed the outside of the curves as the tide goes out to find the deepest water and had 8-10' for most of the passage.

But then again not everywhere!  This is an inside curve where there was only a channel about 50' wide and very shallow, to a point we were pushing through the pluff mud to get through.  See that green day marker, that marks the east edge of the channel.  Note the tide line on the piling about 4' above the grass, that's where normal mean high tide is in which case the mud would be covered with water and we might be tempted to get a little closer to that green, and probably be on the bottom.  See what looks like a tire mark near the bottom of the picture, that was cut by an outboard motor when the boat got too close to the green while running fast.  But no rough water!

Fueled up in Brunswick and now alone, we anchored for the night in the Fredrica River inside of St. Simon Island.

Friday we headed for Darien where there is a free town dock with power and water.  Again we were running the creeks at low tide, don't go where the birds are standing!

One thing we wanted to see in Darien was Fort George, the first English settlement in Georgia on the first bluff in from the Atlantic along the Altamaha River, a region rich with lumber.  Darien was a lumber town with tide driven water wheel saw mills, very ingenious.   The fort is constructed of wood and never fought a battle.  Today, the town is struggling.  Some of the cute shops that were hear three years ago are gone.  The shrimp fishing fleet is active and that appears to be the biggest industry in town.   As we left town on Sunday morning, we had one last look of the fort from the water.
You've noticed that the background in all of the recent pictures is marsh.  We understand that 70% of all salt water marsh land is along the coast of Georgia.  With an average 8' of tide twice a day cleaning all the nutrients from the marsh, no wonder the fishing and shrimping is so good along this coast.  At days end we were tucked behind Blackbeard Island in Blackbeard Creek anchored for the night.

We're now about 105 miles from home via the ICW, a little too much for one day.  So on Monday we got into South Carolina and anchored behind Daufuski Island for the night and then finished our trip Tuesday getting home about 2:00.  We came into Distant Island Creek at low tide and got a real good  look of the rock sea wall we put in this last summer, and we even found a loon in the creek on it's way north. 


This closes another chapter in our odyssey with ODYSSEE.  Another 1030 miles under her keel, now totally 27,033 miles we have put under her keel.  She continues to treat us well and deliver us where we want to go when we want to do it.

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Short Trip to Georgia Islands

We dropped the lines Wednesday morning at 7:00, April 13, 2016, with our neighbors Jim and Jan Herring, and headed south to Sunbury Georgia, for a night at the dock of Sunbury Crap Co., and dinner.  While attempting to dock in the high winds and current a stern docking line got under the boat and onto the propeller shaft.  Luckily, I travel with dive gear and was able to go under the boat and cut the dock line free.

On Thursday we visited Sapelo Island and had a guided tour of the Island and it's history.  The most significant owner of the Island was R. J. Reynolds of tobacco fame.  Today it is occupied by 37 permanent residents, primarily of Geeche heritage.  We struggled with high winds from the NE and rain.  There is no dock for private boats to visit the Island, so it is necessary to anchor and dingy in.  We spent the night at Hidden Harbor Yacht Club just north of Brunswick.

Friday brought another windy day, with a planned crossing of St. Andrews Sound between Jekyll and Cumberland Islands.  St. Andrew can be the roughest crossing along the SE coast.  Because of the high winds we elected to take the Floyd Cut alternate rout which winds through some small creeks inland from the sea.  This channel hasn't been maintained in years, and the channel has shifted so the day markers no longer represent where the channel is.  The good news is we were going through at low tide so we could see where the channel actually is.  We made it through and on to Fernandina Beach for the night.  About 8 miles from our destination, Southern Exposure experienced engine overheating and ultimately was towed in by Tow Boat US.  Once secured at the marina we met up with Perry and Nancy Dukes at Le Clos for dinner.  They are returning north from a 3 month cruise in south Florida.

On Saturday morning Jim and I tried to get Southern Exposure running.  All symptoms pointed to a problem with the battery circuit.  Inspection of the engine revealed a broken drive belt that drives both the fresh water pump and the alternator.  No pump no coolant being pumped through the engine, and no alternator no charging being done to the batteries.  Fix the belt and all should b e good.  With belt fixed, we headed out at just before 1:00 to start our trip back north.  With the wind still blowing, several boats who had been waiting for a break in the weather to cross St. Andrews had learned we were going back through Floyd Cut, and could they tag along.  Well, we soon learned we had not fixed the engine problems on Southern Exposure and they turned back to return to the marina, so Odyssee and Glory Days, looper friends from way back, proceed north, through Floyds cut, with Odyssee stopping at Jekyll Island for the night.

We enjoyed brunch Sunday morning at the Jekyll Island Club, and then continued or trip back north.  At this point the prudent thing to do seemed for us to get home so I could drive back down to Fernandina Beach to help Jim get his boat home once he had it fixed and running.  So we went into delivery mode and ran till the sun came down each day and then just dropped the hook in a convenient anchorage, and they are plentiful along the ICW as it winds through Georgia.  We pulled into our dock after dark on Tuesday, and rather than even going up to the house, spend one more night on the boat.

Wednesday, January 28, 2015

Trip back to Beaufort

I decided to start a new post for our trip home.  It seems when a post get too large it takes a long time to transfer pictures.
On Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday, January 13, 14, 15 we are at Legacy Harbour Marina in Fort Myers for the 2015 Golden Looper Reunion.  It was great to see so many Loopers we have meet since 2007 when we started our Loop trip.
Friday we moved back to Fort Myers Beach to be part of the Wannabe Looper Boat Crawl at the end of day following an AGLCA presentation to those thinking about doing the Great Loop.  We were one of three boats, all a little different, to show these attendees what kind of boats have done the Loop.
On Saturday we moved over to Cape Coral and are at the Marina at Cape Harbour for the next four to five days.  On the way we found a sand bar in lower Pine Island Sound to get into some shallow water where I could clean up the bottom of the boat.  It's easy to stand on the bottom and clean the bottom.  On Wednesday we took 9 guests out to Cabbage Key for lunch. 
It was a gorgeous day and things at Cabbage Key were busy.    
The dock master did a great job getting the boats in and out, and found a perfect spot to dock ODYSSEE. 

On the way back to Cape Coral, our guests were hanging over the bow.  Was lunch that bad!

No, we had dolphins in the bow wake, lots of them!

It's Friday night, January 23, the bikes are loaded, the kayaks are loaded, and we will shove off in the morning and get a ways up the Okeechobee Waterway, with a weather window to cross Lake Okeechobee on Sunday afternoon. 
We had made arrangements to stop at River Bend, a high end RV resort in LaBelle that has a model railroad layout on the ground with 1200 feet of track and several trains that runs on Saturday. See video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dCauErsj-sc.  Well the wind was blowing up the river at 25-30, and their docks were short, so docking was going to difficult.  After looking the situation over we decided it wasn't worth the docking risk, so we continued up the river to the city dock on the wall at Moore Haven.
Sunday morning we cast off from the dock at 8:50, went through the Moore Haven Lock and turned south along the rim route towards Clewiston.  We saw lots of birds along the rim route.   At about 11:00 we turned east at Clewiston and went out onto the open Lake in predicted "light chop going to smooth" Lake conditions.  Well, I guess "light  chop" must be 1-2' waves with white caps and "smooth" must be 1' waves, that's what we ran in. 
Out on the lake gulls flew over our wake, apparently our prop wash kicks up small fish which makes fishing easy for the gulls.  We got to the St. Lucie Lock at about 5:00 and decided to spend the night above the lock and lock through in the morning.  Here is the sunset looking back up the river.

Monday, January 26 was cool with a drizzle coming down.  We pulled the anchor at 8:30 and went through the lock with another boat.  Our intention was go back into Frazer Creek and tie up to the wall like we did on out trip down.  No problem getting into the little creek, but it was low tide of negative 0.1', and we couldn't get the boat into the wall, it was too shallow.  We must have just barely been floating when we were here last!  O well, we proceeded eastwardly towards the ICW, turned south, and went down to Peck Lake and an anchorage that gave us access to the Atlantic beach.  Hobe Sound park is a National Wildlife Refuge.

Once on the beach the birds marched in formation for us!
 Day is done, another nice sunset. 
Tuesday we motored north to Vero Beach, 42 miles.  We spent Wednesday and will leave for parts further north Thursday morning.  Spent Thursday afternoon/night at our favorite anchorages berthing a dredging spoil island at MM946.  When we in there were two older 58' Hatteras's rafted up.  We went for a kayak paddle and stopped to have an "old Hat" meeting with the other boats.  In late afternoon a Canadian sail boat came in to join us, so it wasn't an exclusive Hatteras gathering for the rest of the night.

Friday we went further north to the free dock at Cocoa.  Made a stop at Travis Hardware, established in 1885, and still going strong.  If you can't get it a Travis Hardware, it doesn't exist!  I needed a small check valve for the master head toilet, and they had it, so I got two, now I have a spare.  This place does not have a computer, and when you come in a salesman takes you by the hand to find what you need.  The store occupies five building and half a city block, you'd never find what you need if you tried to find it your self!

Today is Saturday, we are moving over to Cocoa Beach and will be anchored in a bay near a launch ramp where we can dingy and walk to the beach.  Weather should be nice the next couple of days with highs in the low 70's.

To get into this area you go into Banana River, east of the ICW, either from the south, south of Cocoa or from the north through the Canaveral Barge Canal, just north of the Hwy 520 bridge that comes over from Cocoa.  The water looks a little skinny on the charts, about 6', but it's a muddy bottom, and we only draw 3.5', so as longs as we don't try to go too fast there was plenty of water, actually didn't see less than 7' except on the entrance channel into the anchorage where we saw 6' once.  There is no tide in this area, they have built a lock where the Canaveral Barge Canal enters Port Canaveral and the entrance to the Atlantic.  I expect this was done to hold the water level behind Cape Canaveral high enough to get large loads by barge to the VAB on the cape.  The Barge Canal and a Saturn Canal channel up to the VAB is charted at 8'.

WOW! What a delightful place we found in Cocoa Beach.  We stayed 3 nights!  We are now in New Smyrna Beach for 9 days, lots of people are going to see us here.

The anchorage was man made when they dredged the low areas to make some usable land, they dug this basin which is probably about one square mile and averages 20' deep.  Add to that the dredging they did to make the channel into this basin and the residentially canals, they ended up with a large peninsula of land on which they built a golf course, high school complex, a public works site with a sewage treatment plant, and a large city park with an acaqudic center, tennis complex with lights, and a kayak launch site.  A well planned community complex.  This anchorage was posted on active captain with only one review.  It will have a second rave review when I'm done posting this blog update.

The launch ramp we were able to access was part of another public park that was about three blocks from the ocean, and about a mile dingy ride up a well marked channel.  Along the channel they have established a conservation area to preserve the native plant life.

  The path that winds through the conservation area.


The Thousand Islands area is full of small mangrove islands, many with "tunnels" through them.  Most people kayak through them, we took our dingy.

 When we arrived at New Smyrna, our neighbors on SWEET SEASONS were already here.  They are south bound and we planned to meet somewhere as we crossed paths, and this became the place!
We've been in New Smyrna for over a week.  SWEET SEASONS left Friday morning.

Friday afternoon fellow Hatteras owners who live just north of Orlando came over for a late lunch and a chance to catch up.

Saturday, Canadian friends from Richibucto, New Brunswick joined us for lunch.  They spend the winters in an RV park in Port Orange.  We first met Jeanne and Alyre when we were on the Down East Loop in 2009.  If you've been following this blog you'll remember my post when we first met these fine folks.

Sunday was suppose to be a day to relax.  I decided to take a bike ride south along Riverside Dr.  I rode on the sidewalk most of the way, but when I got off the sidewalk and onto blacktop I noticed the bike was still thumping as it did on the sidewalk.  I discovered the rear tire had a bulge indicating the tire was about ready to blow.  I turned the bike back north in hopes that I could get back to the boat before it did.  I made it!  I called a bike shop and asked if they could fix it on Sunday and told them it was a 20" tire.  They said get it here and we'll take care of you.  I had a quick lunch, and while eating there was a loud "bang", we all thought somebody had shot off a gun.  Lunch done, I got the tools I needed to take the wheel off the bike, and when I got to the bike I found the rear tire had blown, aha, that's what the loud "bang" was.  With wheel off I headed out on Claria's bike to the shop, about 1.5 miles away.  When I got there they said they didn't have a 20" tire in stock, and therefore they couldn't get the tire fixed until Wednesday.  I stated that wouldn't work, I would go to Wal Mart and get a tire, and I asked where the local Wal Mart was.  About half a mile further out on Canal Street was the answer.  So off I went, well, the half mile was there miles.  Bought the only 20" tire they had and came back to the shop.  Their next excuse was it was now too late to get it done today, so it would be ready Monday afternoon and they would call when it was ready.  The weather was deteriorating on Monday and it was suppose to rain in the afternoon.  I called the shop at about 11:00, the tire was fixed and had been since about 9:00, but of course no body had called.  Took Claria's bike back to the shop and returned with the tire, put it back on my bike, and we headed out to Publix to get some groceries before the rain started.  Well, we didn't quite make it back to the boat before the rain started.

On Tuesday, another Canadian couple came and took us back to their trailer in the same RV park where Jeanne and Alyre have their trailer.  Marcel and Genevieve are from Rimouski, Quebec, and we first met them when we were rebuilding our Starboard engine in 2008/2009.  So again if you have been following this blog, you'll remember these fine folks.  After a wonderful noon dinner they took us to Dunlawton Sugar Mill Gardens where Marcel volunteers a couple of days a week.  At one time this park was going to be a tourist attraction in 1940 with cast concrete dinosaurs, a train ride, and a baboon named Bongo.  The park was bequeathed to Volusia County in 1963 and turned into a botanical garden.

Today, Wednesday my sister and brother in law stopped for lunch on their way south to the Miami Boat Show.  They will stop to visit us in Beaufort on their way back north later in the month.  We topped off the evening with a view of a Falcon 9 rocket blasting off from Cape Canaveral.

Thursday, February 12 we heading north to Marineland to visit with some more boating friends.  Friday we moved North to the free dock in Jacksonville. 

Saturday, Valentines Day, we stopped at Fernandina Beach for a visit to the needle point shop.  Before getting to the city Marina dock a juvenile pelican landed on the boat for a ride.  Two other stitches drove down from Bluffton to meet Claria at the shop and join us for lunch.  As we approached St. Andrews Sound just south of Jekyll Island the   wind was blowing hard from the NE and was predicted to continue to do so  through the night and tomorrow.  St. Andrews Sound is one of the roughest to cross when the wind is blowing, at one side or the other the tidal current and the wind will be apposing each other and it will be rough.  There is an inside alternate route called the Floyd Cut that bypasses the Sound, but is slightly longer.  We elected to take the bypass, and anchored under the shelter of a high bank that night.  The weather prediction was for night time temperatures near freezing.  They were wrong, it only got down to 52 degrees.

Sunday morning we finished  the bypass and stopped at St. Simons for fuel, at $2.69 a gallon.  That night we anchored in Crescent River.  Again the forecast was for a cool evening, but again it only got down to 49 degrees.

Monday we ended up at Delegal Creek Marina, at the south end of Skidaway Island where we meet some more looper friends for dinner.  The wind is blowing hard from the SW, and rain is predicted before morning.

It's 60 miles from here to home.  We will make that run on Tuesday, rain, wind or shine!

The "Old Hat" has again performed flawlessly.  Yes, we had some breakdown of equipment along the way, but the original equipment, now 44 years old, ran flawlessly.