January 28, 2012

1.26.12 Jacksonville, FL

We didn’t start out as early as we usually do…we were waiting for slack tide or at least as little tide against us a possible before heading into Jacksonville.

The city is beautiful in the early morning sunshine.



You have to look close…but right at the waterline in the center of the photo is a row of houses. They look so tiny with all the tall buildings in the background.


We are approaching Main Street Bridge.


Just beyond it, on the R is a Mall with docking space along the wall. We have never stopped there. I’m not much of a shopper so it doesn’t  have any appeal to me.

As we cruised past….we could see two boats tied up, and it’s not yet 0830.


The railroad bridge is down so Jim gave the bridge master a call on the VHF radio, asking when his next opening was…..1130 is the reply….they are closed for repairs.

So we circled back and joined those 2 boats tied to the dock. Larry is getting rid of trash, Jim is reading the sign that says you can raft up to 5 deep if the dock is full. I can’t imagine what it would be like. The current can be pretty fast thru here, and the outside boat has to have lines from it to the dock. Guess the first one in needs to plan on spending a lot of time shopping, cause there would be no way out until everyone else left.


I walked Raisin while Larry and Diane went in search of a breakfast nook. They found one, gave us a call and waited till we got there to order.

At 0930 we were back at the boats. The sailboat at the dock called Main Street Bridge for an opening. Here it is going thru.


I had to mail a letter and was just starting up the ramp when we saw the RR bridge go up…I ran back to the boat, Jim called to see if it was just a test or if they were open….it was a test….but they would hold it for us. We tossed off our lines and headed their way, with A Dollar More right behind us.

As we were nearing NAS Jax, we watched these big planes do “touch n’ goes”.  I caught A Dollar More just as one was landing.


I have been reading a book by Christine Kling, “Wreckers key”. In it, a couple of boats have run  aground because of possible faulty GPS systems….the lead character in the book thinks people depend too much on electronics….guess what happened…..our chart plotter quit…no GPS signal. It was working as we pulled up to the Jacksonville dock and shut down. No GPS signal when Jim turned it on to leave. I am really enjoying this book, and can’t get over the coincidence of this happening as I am reading about failing GPS units. What are the chances?!

When we got to the city dock at Green Cove Springs, Jim decided to stay aboard and see if he could find the problem, while Larry, Diane and I went to the Mexican restaurant for lunch. Jim had eaten his breakfast and half of mine and was still full.

Jim didn’t find the problem. He’ll check it out again when we get the boat home. I hope it is the GPS and not the Chart Plotter itself. The GPS is the cheapest part to replace….and that isn’t cheap.

We have a chart of the river, and Navigation Lite on the computer so we can safely get to where we are going, but really do enjoy having the Chart Plotter when it works. We’ve marked the entrances of our favorite anchorages. South of Lake George, we are very familiar with the river and could probably do with nothing but daylight, and the channel is well marked.

We anchored near the dock for the night.

No comments: