St. Augustine and Marineland

We talked about our trip from Fernadina Beach to Jacksonville in an earlier post.   When we call a marina for reservations we always ask if we could stay a few extra days if the weather goes bad.  At Palm Coast Marina in Jacksonville we had to wait 2 extra days because of weather.

Tuesday, September 13th was forecast with a 100% chance of thunderstorms so we decided to not travel this day.  Our radar app just showed a large storm but nothing unusual.    This storm became Tropical Storm Julia.   Jan saw some rotation on the radar.  We added extra fenders and tightened our dock lines.   It did not rain as much as we thought it would but it did blow.  We had gusts up to 50mph!   Fortunately we did not lose power or tv reception so we watched Americas Got Talent during the storm.   The storm picked up as the eye got closer and went right over our boat.   We knew it was the eye because the wind just shut down around 10pm.  We went to bed and slept well.  We stayed an extra day because it was windy and a little rainy as Julia cleared out of the area.

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Thursday we had a good trip from Jacksonville to St. Augustine.   No problems getting through any bridges.  We consistently did 8-9 mph with the tide pushing us.  Image your driving at 60mph and the wind pushes you to 80-90mph.   What a ride!!    That is the affect the current has on our boat.

Docking, we pulled along the fuel dock without any problem at Camchee Cove Yacht Harbour.  After fueling we were told our slip is on H dock which was 2 docks to the east.   No problem getting off the fuel dock but for the 3rd time on this trip we missed our turn into the correct fairway(alley between docks).    These fairways are very tight and turning around is stressful.   Jan was fine, I was swearing like a sailor and they heard me on the other side of the marina😆    Finally got around to our slip and calmed down.

We always try to go to lunch when we arrive in a new city.  The A1A Brewery was great and was right on the water.  Jan convinced me we needed to do a trolley ride through St. Augustine since we were leaving the next day.    As much as I hate tourist rides this one was pretty good.

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When we were leaving the next morning the dock person had heard about my docking skills so I got a lot of calming words and hand holding.

Let me say the St. Augustine inlet is very rough, even on good days.  The current was running.  We went from 4 mph approaching the inlet to 8 mph when we passed it.  We rode the current all the way to Marineland Marina and arrived an hour earlier than expected.   Docking was calm and successful.

The Marina offers moonlight kayak tours.   They were a hoot!  We went back into the marsh grass and the mangroves.

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Saturday September 17th I watched football and Jan went to the beach.

Sunday we went to the Marineland research facility across the street and saw them training the dolphins. Marineland started as a place to make underwater scenes for the movies back in the 1930’s.  Then they started training dolphins and have morphed into a research facility.

There was a farmers market in the marina parking lot with quite a few vendors.

Our focus for the rest of our travels will be watching the weather.  In Florida thunderstorms can pop up any afternoon.  We’re trying to schedule short trips so we’re safe in a marina by noon to 1pm.

So far we’ve done 617 miles and are 3/4 through our journey.   There are 212 miles to go.

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More to come,

Jan & Matt

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