St Augustine FL, Hidden Harbor Marina
Posted by Bill
We have enjoyed being in a slip for a couple of days. Usually, I prefer to anchor out or pick up a mooring ball as marinas tend to be like RV parks on the water. Anchored or moored, you have more space between your neighbors and a 360 degree view of the water! That part is cool. The down side is that you have to generate your own power, you have to take the dinghy ashore to get off the boat (in less than comfortable weather and wave conditions some times), you don’t have a fresh water hookup, and it is a LONG way to the restrooms other than what you have on your boat. Marinas offer convenience. We have been anchoring or mooring for a week prior to arriving here, so this was a nice change. This is the first time we have stayed at this marina. It is smaller than most and has mostly clients that live aboard their boats. It is pretty far up the San Sebastian river and is a designated hurricane hole, so it is well protected from severe weather. It is also a close walk to downtown St Augustine, just a few blocks from a great farmers market, and just across the street from a huge liquor store. The people who run this marina are really nice, and the restrooms and showers are some of the cleanest we have seen…a huge plus. They only have a couple of slips for transients like us, so it is set up mostly for people that are full time clients.
It is interesting to see the boats and people here in the marina. Everyone is friendly for the most part. Many of the boats never leave the dock and are in really bad shape. There is evidence that there are some people living here with meager incomes and some health issues. For a 40 foot boat, which is quite a bit larger than what most of these people are living on, you can live for $500 a month, including all utilities. For St Augustine, FL, that is probably a major bargain. Smaller boats would cost less. Seeing the boats that some of them are living on kind of gives you a different perspective on what some people do to survive. Here are some pictures of the marina and looking down the San Sebastian River:
And here is our Island Bound at dock:
We have hit most of our favorite spots in St Augustine while here, including the liquor store and the farm market. In addition, I have checked off a few boat projects. One was to change the spark plug in the generator, and in typical boat project fashion, it took 25 minutes to get the spark plug and all of the tools out. Then 5 minutes to change the spark plug. Then 25 minutes to put everything away. Sometimes that can be downright frustrating. Another one was to troubleshoot the AIS system and the GPS, which have been a little flakey lately. I had to take all of the crap out of the cockpit locker, filling up the cockpit, and then spend some more quality time in my favorite dungeon…the cockpit locker. I did resolve both issues after a couple of hours of work, so I guess it was a good time!!
Tomorrow, we will work our way to Vero Beach, arriving on Sunday to spend Thanksgiving there with some of our friends from last year, including Kurt and Sharon on Byrd Ketcher. They are going to catch up with us there on Wednesday! Looking forward to that.