Vero Beach to St. Augustine

By aaron.axvig, 3 July, 2020
St. Augustine sunset

From Vero we motored to near Palm Shores, FL.  I changed the oil the next morning and we motored on to New Smyrna Beach.  We anchored, took the dinghy to the nice public dock, walked around the abandoned (COVID19) downtown with Louise, and got some food to go from Panheads Pizzeria.  It was VERY buggy when we got back to the boat with our food.  I think this is the place where so many of the bugs (sort of like gnats?) got into the boat before we put the screens in, that eventually we just left one light on in the v-berth to attract them all.  Periodically I would swat the cloud of bugs around the light to kill as many as possible.

The next day (April 22nd) we arrived in St. Augustine.  We pulled in to the fuel dock for diesel and water and to figure out where to rest for a few days.  A mooring ball would have been ideal but they were not available for two boats or for more than two nights.  We didn't want to anchor because it would be pretty windy and the current really runs through that area.  So we decided to spend three nights at the dock and Keelin' It would do so too.

The current was moderately flowing into the slip which makes pulling in bow-first tricky because you don't have much time to rotate the boat before getting pushed into the slip.  But it was flowing much less near shore where the slips were compared to the fuel dock.  I wouldn't do it again, but we did make it in.  I was about 15 degrees shy of getting the full 90 degrees of rotation that we needed so the port side of the boat went against a piling and Alex on the finger pier was able to push on the bow to complete the rotation.

We had a couple days of lounging and Anna made a huge grocery run with Lisa.  We decided that we would like to spend a month there but Keelin' It opted to continue on.  We had payed about $280 for three nights and it was something like $350 more for the 27 additional days.  At most marinas it is only economical to stay for one-month periods!

We had a great month in St. Augustine.  The marina is right in the historic district so there was plenty to see even with pandemic shutdowns.  Louise got a lot of great walks.  I spent a lot of time walking around making improvements to OpenStreetMap.  We ordered many maintenance and wishlist items.  Anna hosted the cruisers net a few times.  We had sun-downers with our neighbors from our own cockpits.  And eventually it was time to leave.

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