Sunday, April 27, 2008

Sea Trial

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Home in Port Charlotte. Weather is now live at the bottom of every blog page.
Today, our boat sellers Carolyn and Larry arranged for their neighbor, friend and boat mechanic, Woody, to take us out for a sea trial in our newly purchased Seamaster 2600. It felt so good to be behind the helm again. We sold our last boat in November and six months is way too long for us to be landlocked.

The vessel handled very nicely. We cruised the intercoastal waterway for about 5 miles and we learned about navigation markers. Keep the green to port and the red to starboard. We learned how to read nav charts. There are some Gulf waters not far out where the sea floor drops to over 3,000 feet deep. HOLY S#^T.

We also learned we are going to have to modify our boat lift. The last photo shows our next door neighbor's boat lift with 2x8 bunk boards to support the boats chines. Above that is our lift with inadequate chock boards. We will leave the boat at Carolyn and Larry's house until we can modify our lift.
Below we are pleased to introduce our local weather for you to enjoy.

Saturday, April 26, 2008

Boatless No More

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Condo in Port Charlotte; high of 88 today
We are now the owners of this 2002 Seamaster 2600 Walkaround Offshore Fishing Cuddy
The couple we bought her from, Carolyn and Larry, bought her new in Port Charlotte. It was a bittersweet sale for them, as Larry is ill and can no longer handle the boat. It was a blessing for both families. They relieve themselves of a payment and maintenance and we get a like new boat.
She has 319 hours, Volva 5.7 IO motor with Penta drive. There's just enough room for 2 to sleep below decks. She's set up for fishing and cruising. There's a portapotie with pumpout, a small sink downstairs, 2 bait wells with aerators, 2 fishboxes to store the big catch (or beer/ice), a Garmin 182 GPS, a Humminbird 400 fishfinder, fridge, windlass with Danforth anchor, marine radio, full beam swim step with ladder, cockpit seating for 6 and a user friendly walk around bow. There is a hard top over the helm and a bimimi top for the cockpit.
Low book value is $28,860. High book value is $32,780.
Oh, I almost forgot. Our price? $20,000.
I love it when a plan comes together.
Now we need to figure out her new name. Any suggestions?
See our blog entry from December 29, 2007. Read the last three paragraphs. We are considering recommissioning the vessel as "Messing About".

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Don't Let The Sun Go Down On Me


65 degrees at wake up in Boyton Beach
High of 87, 80 at sundown on Key Largo

Key Largo Resort at Manatee Bay
Imagine my surprise when I arrived back at this property. I walked in to hear the manager telling a telephone caller there was a 3 night minimum and the rates were 269 per night. 3 weeks ago I was here and paid 99 bucks. He got done on the phone and welcomed me back and said, I can put you in the king suite for 139. DONE!
This is by far one of my favorite secrets in Florida. The tiki bar, pictured above, serves four dollar beer and makes great margaritas that look like ice cream floats. I spent quite a bit of time talking to an elderly couple from Indiana. They have a winter home in DeBary, where my brother in law Jim lives. These people were celebrating their 45th anniversary and they describe themselves as incurable Parrot Heads! They have seen Jimmy Buffett in person 4 times. Nice people. The man, Max, has been everywhere in Florida (just ask him) and he says next time you go there (where ever) tell the bartender Max sent you and you'll get a drink on him. Right.
Tonight's sundown was one for the ages, as you can tell by the twenty some pictures I loaded via time lapse. The water became completely flat, 20 minutes before sunset and it was a glory to God moment.
My brother Mike recently moved his boat from Lake Pleasant, AZ to San Diego, CA. We are both obsessed with catching the same fish. On this coast we call it a dolphin, in the Pacific they call it a Dorado. It is also known as a Mahi Tuna. The colors are un-freaking-believeable. Look one up. The head on that fish is like no other. Anyway, Mike and I have staged a little bet (just for bragging rights) on who can catch a Dolfin/Dorado/Mahi first. Mike says I have an unfair advantage because I only have to venture out 5 miles to find the schools of Dolfin, where he thinks he will have to go out 100 miles off shore. We are evening the odds by having side bets of catching a yellowfin tuna and a marlin. I guess my bride and I better find a boat.
We have plans to go to St. James City, near Pine Island, this weekend to look at a prospect.