Saturday, July 22, 2017

New Video Added to YouTube - Cuba Race 2017

For anyone interested, I have just added a new video to our collection.  This is the first in a 3-part series about the Pensacola to Havana Rce 2017.  Part 1 shows our participation in the race - we were crew on S/V Night Sky, a beautiful Tartan 4400.  Part 2 will follow soon and shows our road trip to the south side of Cuba.  Part 3 will be the return trip home to Pensacola.

For more videos, check out YouTube or our website at:

Monday, July 17, 2017

Bringing the Cuba Adventure to a Close

Time Flies!  its mid July and time to start planning for the next trip!.  First a brief closure on the Cuba trip.

Cayo Levisa

After visiting the south side of the island, it was time to pack up, say our goodbye's and get ready for the trip home.  But first, we would sneak in a trip to Cayo Levisa by boat.  We had visited the barrier island of Cayo Levisa on our last cruise (2016), and really loved it.
Beaches - Cayo Levisa

We had talked it up to the rest of the crew - and the 6 musketeers were in!  We would have liked to clear out of Cuba (customs, immigration) from Cayo Levisa and head straight to Florida.  However, this is not possible as it is not a Port of Entry.  So we were required to return via Hemingway.  For more details on Cayo Levisa, please take a look at our posts in June 2016.  but hers are a few pics of this year's visit.
We had a wonderful return trip from Cuba - perhaps the highlight was seeing whales in the Straits of Florida.  I have some video - so look out for the posting of the 2017 Cuba Video.  Such an amazing sight. We always love to see dolphins - but talk about dolphins on steroids!

Night sky at Anchor - Cayo Levisa

Our favorite abandoned Bar - still there!

Going Yacht Clubbing!

I am going to keep this to a brief post as we have now traveled north up the west side of Florida several times and there are a number of posts on this site about the trips we have made.  our route this time was as follows:

  • Havana to Naples
  • Naples to Sarasota Yacht Club
  • Sarasota YC to St. Petersburg YC
  • St. Petersburg YC to Pensacola

Naples YC

Yes, this was a YC-crawl!  why you may ask?

Tampa Bay and the Skyway Bridge
Well that's very simple.  As members of Pensacola YC, we are members of the Florida Counsel of Yacht Clubs.  This provides the benefit of reciprocity.  And each club allows fellow members to stay one night free on thier transient dock.  So - given dock prices in south Florida, this equates to a savings of $100-200 per night.  A great benefit that not enough folks take advantage of.  And in addition, most are extremely nice places to hang out with nice pools, bars, and restaurants.  Incidentally, restaurant charges are also directly billed to your home YC account.  So it feels like you are staying for free.........well until the monthly statement comes!

So, there you go.  Here's my little ad for YC membership.  Some clubs are hurting, so support your local Yacht Club!

All of the legs on the return trip were "daysails"except Havana to Naples (one overnight) and St. Pete's to Pensacola (2-nights).

Sarasota YC

Lobby - Sarasota YC

The sailing was good - no storms.  We did motor for several stretches to keep up the speed, but it was a great trip home, and by the time we got to Pensacola we were about ready to be home. - But definitely in that nice "Home-Sweet-Home" way.  This had truly been a spectacular trip.  Looking back over everything - the race was fun and had some highs and lows (largely weather-related); the time in Cuba was amazing!  We really enjoyed visiting the south side of the island as well as once again visiting the barrier island of Cayo Levisa.  And the return legs were a great opportunity to just wind down a little.

Night Sky Arrives Home - Bray Marina!

And I have to say this - what an amazing crew.  Its quite a feat to put 6 people on a boat for close to 3 weeks and never have a ruffled feather.  I just don't think  we could have got along together any better.  as a crew, we worked together extremely well.  Ron and Julie are amazing hosts, and insist on preparing all meals.  Not just meals - spectacular meals.  Thank you guys for allowing us to join you on Night Sky.  I know that Larry and Tracy also share that same sentiment.  We became the 6-musketeers!.....and had a wonderful adventure together.

And how better to end a trip!

Oh but wait......there's more!  one more party at PYC to celebrate the winners and safe return of the race participants.

Capt. Bob Kriegel and crew of Arcadia - winning boat!