Sunday, May 18, 2008

05/09/08 Goodbye to Florida

making her way under the temporary Bridge of Lions
headed North

under her own power and making a little power with the wind generator too!

Our last look at Castillo de San Marcos and
the 208' Stainless Steel Cross at Nombre de Dios Mission and Shrine as we make our way up the Intra Costal Waterway. This is a very emotional time for us as we are leaving many fond memories behind and an anxious time as Hakuna Matata begins her journey home to Stonington, CT .

We anchor again at Pine Island, our last anchorage before being towed to St. Augustine. Fate is kind and we leave bright and early next day into familiar territory with one side of ICW developed and the other side in her natural state.
This morning however it is low tide and things look a little different.

Birds are wading in the exposed mud flats.

They're looking for dinner.

Not sure what this gentleman is looking for?

Maybe he's looking for this crab pot that has gone ashore at low tide.

We kept looking at these round white stones that were now visible at low tide. Then it finally occurred to us what they were.
Remember the other shore is developed.

They've been hitting golf balls across the ICW!

Something else is different...Look - No sleeves. Very Warm.

This boater is very cautious...3's the charm -or maybe just very fast.
Three motors waiting to run down the waterway.

Three kids waiting for their next boat trip down the waterway...

Waiting on their dock for the fish to bite...

Waiting in his canoe for those same fish to bite...

Just waiting for the next FISH???

Not Waiting at All.

Slowly....passing an old trawler.

Q-u-i-c-k-l-y===being passed by new skidos

The warm weather has brought out many more boaters
than we saw on our winter trip down.

We never had so much company!!

We make our way through a couple of familiar bridges.

1/2 the new bridge is up and they are now taking down the old drawbridge.
Soon they will be working on the 2nd section.
Perhaps our next trip we'll see the completed
McCormick Bridge.

The trip has gotten pretty warm for our kitties.
They've all searched out their own cool spot.
Callie likes a breeze to cool her
Sneakers prefers to be next to the cool boat hull.
While Zach and Sas are just lazily stretched out.
We passed the Amelia River anchorage where we spent several pleasant days when we first entered Florida in February. Soon we could see the colorful buildings of Fernandina Beach. This time we picked up a mooring close to the town landing as we intend to go ashore.
We had lots of friends joining us at Fernandina Beach.
Leon & Kim on Gypsy
Bill and Twyla aboard Gleam
and to Bob's surprise we met 2 Morgan sailboat owners:

Jim & Sandy Golding aboard Morgan Glory (Morgan 323)

Ron & Sharon Reynolds aboard Possessor
(Morgan Out Island 51)

We did some dining and didn't even have to go ashore yet.
Dinner aboard Gypsy-
Breakfast aboard Possessor the next morning to get acquainted
and swap Morgan stories with our new Morgan friends.

The weather turned rough & windy.
Boats trying to pick up a mooring needed assistance.
Racing to give assistance

In the distance we saw what has to be one of the scariest cloud/weather formations we've seen. Notice the V shape of the white clouds and the nasty looking stuff that is in the center of the blue. Have never watched anything like it before and don't care to again. Tornados did touch down to the North of us.

The lightning was from cloud to cloud for us, but you could hear thunder like a distant battle. Fortunately for us it was just wind and rain through the night.
The next couple of days were beautiful so we went ashore.
Not too far from the port we find the busy train tracks.
And since we are still in Florida waters there's pirates.
around most corners
We aren't the only shopper that came in from the waters.
There's usually a beautiful fountain somewhere in town
and a place to sit and enjoy your time in town.

Once more we have rented a car.
Bob's phone broke and we have to drive to a shopping mall to buy a new one.
On our way we cross a bridge and look out on the ICW.
Hey that's where we were. Pretty cool to see how it looks.
To the left is our previous anchorage in theAmelia River.

Bob's happy to once more have his cell phone close to his heart!

I'm happy we have found the local Post Office to mail packages off to grandchildren.
Now that we have a car we're off to further attractions.

Going South we photographed Fort Clinch as we crossed Cumberland Sound and entered the Amelia River headed South to Florida. This time we get to visit the fort.

Fort Clinch construction began in 1847 on the northern end of Amelia Island,
at the Florida-Georgia border to defend the port of Fernandina, Florida. The work was slow and was not completed even by 1861 when Confederate batteries were established during the Civil War. With the advent of rifled barrel cannons ended the stone and brick fortification era. The fort was used briefly in WWI and as part of a surveillance & communications system in WWII. The gov't sold the fort in 1926 to private interests. Lucky for us and all other visitors, in 1935 the State of Florida bought both the fort and surrounding property for preservation and recreation.

Entering the parade grounds.

barracks - cannons

Looking out you can see why this was an important location.
Also you can see beaches...

There are some very persistant plants that grow in the sandy soil.
Remember the movie "The Man Who Shot Liberty Valance" and the yellow cactus?

They say once you have Florida Sand in Your Shoes you'll return.
I'm sure that's true for us, but for now we're off to visit some of the Georgia barrier islands.

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