6 December 2014
Today is a short day, only about 40 miles from Sanibel to Marcos Island.
It started off very well, the marina delivered a bag with warm blueberry muffins in it at 7:30 Very nice.
I had done a check on the fuel filters the night before and both were on the line of needing to be changed. Since we will do 150 miles across the open Gulf in the next three days I decided to change them out. Only took about 15 minutes to do both sides. After getting rid of the filters and fuel we were all set to go.
It was another pretty day as we motored out in the Gulf. We had a great view of all the condos and hotels that run along the beach.
Not very many crab traps or dolphins today. I’m not sure if it’s because I’m running about 2 miles off shore in the 30′ water. In any case the auto-pilot did most of the work today.
About 1PM we turned into the Marcos channel and threaded our way around to the marina. There is lots of shoaling and I was given the instructions to “hug the greens” on the way in and out. Marcos is an island that is made up of 100′s of little canals. A lot like you see in North Ocean City MD on the bay side, but really ramped up. I’m going to guess that less than 25% of the houses don’t have waterfront. The largest area without canals is the country club, but there are two 18 hole courses there.
We were on a floating dock, so we didn’t need to worry about the tidal shifts. We would need to pay attention Sunday morning when we go out, with the almost full moon the low tide will be about a foot lower than normal.
Lunch was at “The Snook Inn”, named after the Snook Fish. It’s on the point of Big Marco Pass and has a great waterfront view. It’s one of the locals dock-n-dine favorites with two dozen slips for boats. We had fried shrimp, fried scallops wrapped in bacon, conch fritters and french fries. Susan was super pleased they had Infamous Goose Sauvignon Blanc wine. She had it for our anniversary dinner three years ago and has been searching for it since.
After lunch we split up, Susan went back to the marina to look at shorts and new boat shoes. I headed down to the “Marco Island Brewery”. They have about 50 beers on tap and I did 10 of the 2.5 oz tasters. Some new favorites like “Breckenridge Brewery Vanilla Porter” and “Goose Island Muddy Imperial Stout”. Sadly their featured stout the “Goose Island Bourbon County Stout” fell in my ugg category. They condition it in used bourbon barrels. And I think they also dump bourbon into it. In any case it tastes like a beer flavored bourbon. With a 14.2% alcohol by volume (ABV) it also has a strong alcohol burn.
I went back to the boat to find Susan in full nap mode. While she slept I got caught up on the blog posts and other internet stuff that I had not had a chance to do with the long travel days and busy evenings out.
At 5:30 PM we pulled our folding recliners out and got ready for the Marcos Island Christmas Boat Parade. The Rose Marina is perfectly located, all of the boats would cruise by our dock.
About two dozen boats were in the parade. Our favorites was a catamaran that had the mast and all the rigging wrapped with lines. It looked like a giant tree from a distance. There was a small boat with Santa, a tree and a nativity scene on it, something for everyone. One of those 8′ blowup snowman was featured on one bowrider. Santa driving his sleigh was on the roof of a pilothouse boat with the raindeer making a big sweeping turn down to the deck and then up to the sky on the bow pulpit.
Our boat neighbor was part of the parade, they had icicle lights around the boat on the handrails. They had packages aboard that were lit up and the two young girls had antlers. Very festive.
After the last boat went by, Susan made us pulled pork tacos for dinner. It was nice to eat in on the boat and not be getting back late. We both read for a little while and then it was off to bed.
Sunday and Monday’s trip are around the south end of Florida, no cell connections for two days…