Wednesday, April 11, 2007

January 24

January 24. Today at 0700 we left the wall in the New River in the heart of Fort Lauderdale. Christy called the bridge tender and had her start an opening for us before we even untied the boat. We wanted to leave at 0700 and by dumb luck slack tide was at ten minutes of seven so leaving the wall was uneventful.

It was a fairly overcast morning but they were calling for 10 to 15 knots from the east so it should be a pleasant sail south to Miami. What we actually got was 10 to 12 from the southeast so it made for a close reach for about 4 hours. Only an hour into our trip the skies cleared and it turned out to be a beautiful trip south.

We arrived at the Miami inlet during the last hour of the incoming tide and flew through the inlet at over 8 and a half knots. The police presence here is incredible, there were 5 coast guard boats and more than 10 Miami patrol boats milling about the cruise ship piers. We also got passed by 2 big coast guard patrols coming in from sea.

To get to the spot we anchored in was like a trip to grandma’s house, you know, over the river and through the woods. We came in the main channel, turned north and went under a fixed bridge and went through an unmarked channel across a shoal and into an area of wonderful anchorages just south of the Venetian Causeway. We went past the mooring field for the Miami Yacht Club and all the way to a spot due south of Bell Isle 200 yards from South Beach.

Every time we drop the anchor we have a safe arrival cocktail which gives us time to survey our surroundings, watch the other boats come in and fill around us and sit on our own anchor for a while just to make sure everything’s alright. After we’re comfortable with our home for the night we usually set out for shore to get the lay of the land and let the dogs go look for that perfect spot.

Tonight as we were taking the dogs ashore the sky grew very dark and threatening so after the dogs were done we headed back to the boat. It ended up blowing over with nary a drop of rain. We’ll see what South Beach has to offer tomorrow.

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