Sunday, October 2, 2016

Return to Florida

June 28th, 2016

The days of June were wrought with brief unpredictable pop-up storms that thwarted our attempts to return to Florida. Nights on the other hand, were calm and clear, so we decided to set sail from Bimini across the Gulf Stream in the late evening, hoping to reach the Palm Beach inlet by sunrise.




Sailing through the night varies wildly depending on the phase of the moon.  When the moon is full, night sailing is magic.  The light of infinite stars dances across waves illuminating the horizon. The moon casts shadows and and your eyes easily grow accustom to the pale glow, needing no additional illumination to find lines or pace the deck. 

We were sailing on a cloudy night with a waning crescent. Which is an exercise in trusting your instruments and physical sensations.  With no visibility our vessel plowed blindly through the inky blackness.  

We were able to see the lights of the Florida Coast many hours before sunrise.  In the dead of night, you can see Miami and Lauderdale, all the way to Palm Beach.  First as a glow, and eventually full points of light breaking over the horizon.  As we had hoped, the night was both surreal and uneventful.  Around 3 am we slipped into the inlet and sunk our anchor into US sand for the first time in 4 months.

The next morning we awoke to the bustle of the West Palm inlet, and started down the ICW towards Stuart.


 After a night on anchor in Stuart we continued motoring up the Okeechobee to Indiantown.



Through the hours of the late afternoon beautiful contrasting rain clouds were all around us but somehow never upon us.




We hauled out at Indiantown Marina.  After a few days of cleaning, packing, and preparing Robin for dry storage, we returned to Arkansas to wait out the summer.


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