St Augustine…watching the weather

5/6/15
St Augustine FL, ICW
Position: 29 53.136N, 081 19.345W
Posted by Bill


(Map courtesy of The Weather Channel)

You may have heard that there is a tropical system brewing in the Atlantic off the coast of Florida. It has been bringing stronger winds and some rain showers, but not much rain. Yesterday we pulled in to River’s Edge Marina in St Augustine and took a slip to wait out the high winds that are forecasted for a few days. Some models have been showing winds over 30 knots and others have just been showing mid teens to mid twenties. It is now mid afternoon and we are seing 15-20 knots. Most of the activity from the system is off shore and it looks like it will be headed for the Carolinas this weekend before moving ashore. We don’t want to get ahead of it, and will stay here in St Augustine in our protected river anchorage for a few more days until we see where it is heading. We have some friends that are still in the Bahamas waiting for a weather window to cross over, and we are glad we crossed when we did. It was looking like we would be stuck in the Bahamas for up to 2 weeks if we didn’t cross, and I think we were pretty close in that prediction.

This marina is in a good spot in St Augustine. There is a West Marine, Publix, ABC Liquor Store, Sailors consignment shop, and auto parts store all within a 15 minute walk. Downtown is also about a 20 minute walk. To get here, we needed to time the tide to have enough water depth to get out of Marineland and then arrive at the marina during slack high tide to avoid the strong current while docking. We got out of Marineland without a hitch, and made it to the marina just before high tide. The current was only about 1/2 knot at the slip which was good because the slips are very narrow. It was tricky getting the boat in there, but we made it with the help of our friends and the marina staff. We did a mini pub crawl downtown, hitting Mi Casa with a great solo guitar player, Pizza Alley for great pizza and 2 for 1 happy hour, and Hurricane Patty’s at our marina. Today we went to the sailors consignment shop and the ABC Liquor store and started working on boat maintenance.

We have been having some weird intermittent problems over the last week. One day the AIS system is working, and the next day it isn’t. Same with the radar. The auto pilot stopped holding a course and is showing the boat going different directions than it is. In addition, the larger air conditioning unit is not working, and the rivets on several of the cabin hatches have failed (leaving us to prop open the hatches with sticks or bungee chords). Such is life on a boat. Today we are trouble shooting some of these problems and defrosting the freezer.

If the weather doesn’t change for the worse, we’ll make a 2 day run to Fernandina Beach, stay there a couple of days and then day hop across Georgia to Charleston, SC.

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