Monday, December 3, 2012

Port St. Joe to Carrabelle, FL

We spent a second day at Port St. Joe, attending the First Baptist Church's morning worship service followed by an afternoon bike ride around the town.  Port St .Joe continues to impress us.  Everyone was super friendly at the church and the sermon was outstanding.  The marina has bicycles you can use, so I didn't have to lower mine from the aft deck hardtop but Rhonda did need hers.  The city has about 6 to 7 miles of paved walking and bike trails throughout the area and they are lighted for nighttime.  Here's the beginning of the trail.

The trail winds through wooded areas along a bayou and there are several lakes and kids' playgrounds.  It then makes its way through the public school area before leading to an area dedicated to memorializing the location where the state constitution was signed.

Here's a shot of the marina in the distance from Hwy 98 along the shoreline.

We departed Port St. Joe on Monday morning and cruised through a narrow cypress-lined canal area, followed by a lake and then more narrow passages.  We passed two sailboats, "Trudy Mae" from Toronto, Canada and "Quadrille"  from Trego, Montana.  Rhonda spotted another bald eagle in this stretch.

And remember our "neighbor" from the anchorage at Ft. McRee?  We passed him once on the way to Panama City and here he is again, anchored at Appalachicola.  

Appalachicola would have been a nice stop but we decided to press on for Carrabelle.  We have a 160-mile crossing of the Gulf coming up in the Big Bend section of Florida and there's a great weather window opening up.  Good weather opportunities are infrequent in this area in December so we decided the priority was to get to Carrabelle (the departure point for the crossing) so we can be ready.  I'll cover more details on this crossing tomorrow.  As we passed Appalachicola we entered the open Gulf again in Appalachicola Bay and Saint George Sound.  There was a huge fog bank in the distance but we turned east again before reaching it.

Here's the cut where we will depart when making the crossing.  Note the white sandy beaches on each side. 

Carrabelle is about 8 miles from the cut and makes a great stop for refueling, provisioning and getting  boat/engine/mechanical checks completed before making the jump across.  Here's the arrival into Carrabelle.

It's primarily a fishing village and shrimp/fishing boats line both sides of the waterway

We docked at The Moorings, went ahead and refueled today, and we'll get more preparations done tomorrow.  While on the docking topic, I'll note that each facility is different, the wind and current is always coming and going different directions, and it really makes a proficient boat driver out of you.  Rhonda was impressed with my parallel parking today and said I should post the picture of it.  Here you are.  (Hey Rich, the 42 Grand Banks is for you)!  There's a huge Florida Fish and Wildlife boat in front of us.  We are also very conveniently located right next to the washer/dryer, restroom and lounge area in the building to the left.

I really need to get that moustache off of the boat!

No comments: