Conditions as we cruised East on the Caloosahatchee River/Canal
were so pleasant that Nancy actually came topside - with her Kindle.
February 2010 - Page 8
Completing the Florida Loop
02-28-10 - 10:30 AM - Dep Sanibel - 56°, wind N 15-20
12:45 PM - passing Ft Myers, Caloosahatchee R.
3:00 PM - Arr: Alva, FL - Rialto Hrbr Docks
Today: 26.9 n mi. - 5.7 eng hrs
Even a rainy day on Sanibel Island is pretty. Here, Nancy is surveying the beach on the Gulf side of Sanibel Island -
famous for its many sea-shells. Mouse-over for another image - complete with seagull at dusk.
After a couple of days in Sanibel, we decided the time
had come to head back across Florida to our winter home
in Jensen Beach. With a strong, cold, north wind still
blowing, it was very pleasant to cruise the peaceful and
scenic Caloosahatchee River. We discovered Rialto Harbor
Docks a couple miles East of the Franklin Lock in Alva.
At the Rialto Harbor Docks, a very pretty spot in Alva - about
10 miles East of Ft. Myers on the Caloosahatchee River.
Walking the scenic back roads along the river near Alva.
We loved this secluded cottage near the Rialto Hrbr. Docks.
This certainly is a pretty place; several horse farms here.
Mouse-over to see seagull on same beach.
Mouse-over for another image.
Mouse-over for another image.
03-01-10 - 11:00 AM - Dep Alva - up to 65° (45° overnite)
1:00 PM - passing La Belle - 72°, wind E 10
2:00 PM - Arr: Ortona Lock
3:45 PM - Arr: Moore Haven, Town Dock
Scenic & peaceful day - Nancy weather!
Today: 31.2 n mi. - 4.7 eng hrs
Morning mist on the Caloosahatchee R. - from our dock at Rialto Harbor.
Early AM temps were in the 40's, but it warmed up quickly.
A very friendly horse!
Not all waterfront houses are grand! I liked this one.
Docked in downtown Moore Haven. $34.00 included
water and elec. Grocery store here is a 10-min walk.
03-02-10 - 8:45 AM - Dep Moore Haven - 60°, wind S 20
10:15 AM - passing Clewiston - wind SW 25, Rain
Lake Wind Advisory for Lk. Okeechobee
12:15 PM - Mayaca Lock - not too bad crossing
2:00 PM - St. Lucie Lock - wind SW 25, gusts 30
3:30 PM - St. Lucie Crossroads, Loop completed
4:15 PM - Arr: Nettles I. Marina, Jensen Beach
Wind NW 30, gusts to 40 - wild!
Today: 71.3 n mi. - 7.2 eng hrs
|. We're now back at our (winter) home base in Jensen
. Beach, FL. We didn't make it to the Bahamas, but we
. had a fun cruise nonetheless. The Florida Loop
. certainly offers an excellent alternative with much less
. likelyhood of rough weather. There are plenty of
. places to hang out while the weather passes, and many
. fewer open water passages required to complete the
. trip. This winter has been unsually windy with a
. seemingly non-stop chain of cold fronts hitting Florida.
Passing through the Moore Haven Lock in the rain.
By the time we got to Clewiston, it was pouring. We stopped
briefly at Roland (and Mary Ann) Martin's Marina, then we
decided to head out across Lake Okeechobee - despite a Lake
Wind Advisory calling for 40-mph gusts.
Crossing Lake Okeechobee was a bit bleak, but the rain let
up about half way across. The wind was strong and the
waves were large, but fortunately both from behind, so the
crossing wasn't bad at all. (No other boats out there today!)
Click on the photo to see water droplets.
Back on the Indian River near Stuart the winds really started
picking up - and the kite surfers were flying!
Sno' Dog nestled back in her "slip" at Nettles Island Marina. To
get in here, we must squeeze by that PDQ 36 sail-cat, then make a
right angle turn. It's a bit challenging, but we've learned to do it.
The roughest part of the trip was the last 30 minutes heading
North on the ICW from Stuart to Nettles Island. With the
passing of the front, winds were gusting over 40 mph.
|. Another great cruise! In just over a month, we cruised
. 508 nautical miles and we added 64.1 engine hours.
. Our average speed works out to a very leisurely 7.9 kts.
. Our fuel tanks are still more than half full since our one,
. and only, fill-up in Naples last week. No mechanical
. problems - except for that ruptured aft deck shower hose,
. which was really our fault for leaving it turned on! There
. was also our Raymarine DSM 300 depthsounder which
. quit. We've sent it back to New Hampshire for repair.