Friday, January 22, 2016

Propane Follow Up, Western Florida Trip

Marathon, FL

Blog fan Pam & Dave informed me about something I hadn't known about. He said, "I did everything you recommended plus I added a propane sniffer down in the bilge"  I didn't even know that such things existed.  But after a quick Google search, I found many of them.  Yes, I agree Dave,  good advice.  Thank you.   I just updated the previous blog post.

Libby and I just returned from a 3 day trip to Florida's West Coast.   We visited with Pat & Ray formerly from MV Reflection.  We really like Ray and Pat.  The four of us have shared some great adventures, and their company is a pleasure.  But now, they are CLODs (Cruisers Living on Dirt).

They took us to Apollo Beach to see the amazing manatee herd in the cooling water canal.   That was fantastic.  Of course as a power engineer, I was distracted the whole time by the massive coal=fired Big Bend Power Plant right in front of us.  There was an awful lot of old-fashioned engineering needed to make a plant like that work.

On the return trip, we stopped at Charlotte Harbor Boat Storage to see Dick & Kathy from SV Endeavor.  We haven't seen those dear friends for two years.   That was fun.   We also discovered that the other boaters in the yard form a cruiser's enclave, so we fit right in.  Indeed a number of those cruisers already know Libby, and they know of me as "Mister Libby"   

That boat yard seemed very well run.  It is a definite candidate for us as a place to store Tarwathie next summer, and to do our painting work.  It is not as hurricane safe as Green Cove springs, but it is way up a canal and behind a lock, so it should be pretty safe.   I'll start investigating that.

Ray & Pat also educated us about Clyde Butcher and his marvelous photographs, and more about things that can be done in The Everglades and in Big Cyprus Swamp.  We stopped at the Butcher gallery in Venice, and the one along Alligator Alley.  We also checked out the federal camp grounds there.   We have camping gear in the car, and we would have camped except that today, Saturday, and Sunday there is very nasty weather expected.   

In the following weeks, I think it is highly likely that Libby and I will return to Alligator Alley for a 2-3 day trip.  If possible, we would also like to arrange that Katelyn gets a "swamp walk" when she is here in February.

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