May 27, 2013



We haven't been up the Norris Dead River in several years. It leaves the St John’s River, takes a long winding path to Lake Woodruff. From there it goes past Tick Island ( where we were beached when a tornado came thru the Deland FL area and almost over our heads) the last time we were there. Larry and Diane had their Nimble Nomad “River Nomad” and we had our Adventure Craft “Lingerawhile”.


I guess I’d have to call this “Broken Dreams”.


I like this kind of travel….narrow waterways….and few boats.


You have to watch for low overhangs, stumps in the water and depth. This heron kept flying off, landing and then flying off again as we caught up.


and sections that are weed choked.


We started seeing a lot of fishing boats when we got close to Lake Woodruff so decided to turn around and take the scenic tour back.


Once back to the St Johns, we crossed it …followed the jug handle around to the N entrance and anchored for the night. Sometimes you just get lucky…and we did. Jim was tying the dingy alongside so we could take a ride later and two Manatees came over ….this is the small one and believe me…it was big. Look at the prop scars on it’s head and back and the mother was marked as bad if not worse. It was great to see them but sure hated the thought of them being out in the river this weekend.102_0302cs

Their hide is kind of prickly. This one, I believe the Mother, kept coming up alongside like it wanted it’s back scratched.102_0316cs

They hung around ..rubbing against the dingy and the boat …for at least half an hour. 102_0317cs

We couldn’t have asked for a better way to end the day. We took the dingy out for awhile but did not see them again.

At anchor and full of fuel. She sits a bit low in the water, but when you get the human “ballast” loaded in the front…it rides fairly level. That $35 bimini has sure come in handy.


Frogs same me to sleep…very loudly…don’t think Jim appreciates them as much as I do.

St Johns River, FL 5.24.13

We don’t normally head for the river on a big holiday weekend, but this is our last chance to spend time on the boat for awhile.

By the time we’d filled the fresh water tank and had everything aboard, the launch ramp was available.

Once the truck is parked and I’ve tied Meander alongside the dock we are ready to get the dingy inflated and the trolling motor mounted, the dog walked and the bird aboard…we are ready to head N.

Now this is a nice cruising houseboat. Seaworthy, low windage and lots of room, but most likely…..really big fuel tanks to fill. So guess we’ll be happy with our little Meander.


Our anchorage for the night is just past Blue Springs. We are at the mouth of the “jug handle” so we can get a good breeze and watch all the boats going by…this is a slow speed zone because of Manatees so we’ll have a nice peaceful night.


Sitting on the rear deck watching the moon come up….and Jim noticed this rocket trail. We don’t know what was being launched but it was interesting.


And then this little white wing like cloud appeared. It must have been high enough that the sun still lit it up, while the sunset colored the rocket tail.


Good day on the water….but then most of them are good.

May 14, 2013

Slow Motion is in her new home.

Some people sell a boat and then never think of it again….not us. We want to share the travels with the new owner…if he wants us to, and Joris was willing.

He left a marina on Merritt Island and traveled to Little Torch Key. Single Handed!!!!!

Jim and I really appreciate the work that goes into a trip like this…because we’ve done some traveling aboard Slow Motion…but we had each other to help. Help with dock lines leaving or docking for fuel…help with hauling up the anchor, (it can set very hard and a little nudge from the boat can help break it loose). Help with meals and getting ashore in the dingy to walk the dog. Help with studying the chart or the chart plotter and someone to take over the wheel when you start to get tired or need to go below. Help at night when the water is rough and someone needs to keep an anchor watch or at least check it. I’m only touching on a few of the things that need to be done when aboard a boat but it gives you an idea of where an extra set of hands can be of help.

Joris called whenever he could and gave me his location so I could follow along on a chart.

We did a trip around the tip of Florida in our MacGregor 26X sailboat several years ago. We cut thru Channel 5 at Long Key and then sailed up the east coast to Angel Fish Creek where we cut inside to Biscayne Bay. We didn’t get to see the inside passage from Biscayne Bay to Long Key…..Joris did and said it was beautiful.

If any of you Albin owners are considering making that trip, I am sure Joris would gladly tell you about his trip. Just send me an email and I will pass it along.

Slow Motion is now a “liveaboard” trawler. My dream!!! So glad someone like Joris is living it….cause he’s willing to share his experiences with us….good, bad and sometimes funny.

I took a few pictures of my “MapTech Chart Kit” “East Coast and The Florida Keys” to give you an idea of his passage.

The first two show the inside passage, W of the Keys. If you look close you can see the dotted lines of the channels and the route.



Once he got to Long Key…it was all outside…. then I guess you follow “Hawk Channel”, (below the key on chart) E of the Key


There are GPS waypoints to follow. That is what is in the square boxes with the line pointing to the line you follow.


There are a few pages missing…just wanted to give you an idea of the trip. He is anchored near Little Torch Key which is near Big Pine Key.


Is that a “dream” trip or what!!!!  So now we have a friend in the Keys…..and an invite to go spend a week…

Joris was going to send me a photo of Slow Motion at anchor in the beautiful Florida Keys…but his computer got hit by a squall and is down for the count. If he’s able to get some sent…I’ll do another post.

Swinging on the hook in the Keys…what more could you ask for!!!