This morning we decided to leave Cabbage Key and head to Marco Island. We reserved a slip for a few days at Marco Island Marina, but we would not arrive until well after dark. Normally, you would not want to approach an unknown marina in the dark, but it looked fairly simple and I was given exact directions. We decided to risk it.
It looked like a nice but overcast morning until we reached the main channel to exit the islands. Then we were socked in with fog. I took out the horn and took my watch on the front deck, but the new electronics were working great. The radar alerted Dave of every boat, buoy, and even bird on the water. This was so wonderful compared to our sail in Vancouver when we had no instrumentation to aid us visually in the fog!
We reached the Gulf of Mexico without incident and the fog cleared up. There was very little wind (6-7 knots) and we need 9-10 knots to get this boat moving. We tried to raise the gennaker (large light wind foresail), but the last time it was used it did not get furled properly because we waited too long and there was too much wind. We will need to lay the whole sail out on the ground and furl it by hand before we can use it. Therefore, we had to motor sail much of the day. We did have wonderful spurts of quiet sailing without the engines. These moments remind us why we love sailing so much.
Oh and the good news: since it is much calmer, the moon is nearly full, and we can see lights along the coast Dave has not gotten sick and has really enjoyed the night sail so far.
At the time I am writing this, we have not yet made it to Marco Island. We are sailing by wind only and if the wind stayed put, we could sail all the way to Key West. It is tempting and we have not totally decided against it. We’ll see…