Thursday, September 8, 2016

Summer Break and the Tropics Heat Up!

After the Mexico/Cuba trip we did take a bit of a break at least from our longer trips.  We did continue to participate in weekend raft-ups with both PYC and Pt.YC but these were local events at Ft. McCree, Redfish Point, and Ingrham's Bayou.  Don't get me wrong - these locations are every bit as great as the places we spent days getting to.....and are right in our backyard - literally!  The dunes, beaches and anchorage at McCre just can't be beaten and I just never get tired of going there.  And "Sand Island" (actually a dredge spoil island) is one of the few places where Salty can go without fear of a fine from Florida DNR patrols.
Raft-up at Ft. McCree

Salty Enjoying the Water
We did take a couple of weekends "off the boat" where we enjoyed just being at home and taking in the local sights and sounds.  It's good to do that once in a while I guess.  

Work has also started on a re-modeling of Midnight Sun II's slip - so the house is currently looking like a building site.  While the slip was perfectly fine, I decided that it was time to do some preventative maintenance and have the timber sea wall laggings replaced with vinyl PVC sheet pile panels.  At the time of writing, I am wondering why I did that and hoping it will all turn out well.  You know how sometimes the finished result is great, but the process is really ugly?.....well that's where we are at I think, the really ugly stage that is!.   As an engineer that has done a lot of heavy duty sheet piling projects (sea defenses, Blackpool, England), I know I would not do this project the way its being done.  But I have hired an experienced Contractor and know all too well that if I dictate the process, the problems will go exponential and I will pay the price - literally  So, I have given my suggestions, but left the Contractor in charge.  Anyway, enough about that - I seem to be ranting to myself and I am sure that it will turn out fine in the end.  Meanwhile, Midnight Sun II is vacationing in my neighbor's slip.

Cape San Blas - 12 hours prior to Hermine's Landfall
And of course, immediately as we started this work, the tropics heated up and Cat 1 Hurricane Hermine took aim at Cape San Blas.  Although that is a couple hundred miles to our east, that gave rise to two concerns, namely (i) our beach rental located right on the projected path; and (ii) tidal surge which was at least evident at the house in the form of higher than typical tides.  Anyway, since I am posting this in short bursts, I am pleased to report that neither became a significant issue.  I drove over and closed up the beach house, and Hermine kindly veered a few degrees east of the projected path.....and the dock  work continues! - very slowly.

I guess my timing on the dock work was just not the best since this location is the key to my hurricane plan for Midnight Sun II in the event we do have a significant storm.  But the truth is, it has been so difficult to find a dock Contractor that would actually show up and even give an estimate, that when I found one that was qualified and recommended, I just had to commit and get things started.

Hmm  maybe I am in the wrong business.  There is certainly an opportunity here.  I must keep this in mind in the event the current plan needs a supplement.  

Sorry this post has not included a whole lot about sailing and cruising.  But I am already working on the next one and that will be about 2017 Cruising Planning.  Check back soon for that one!