Tuesday, April 02, 2013

Maiden Voyage


Sunshine Key Rv Resort, Florida Keys,  (high 80, low 71)


Yesterday was the first calm day in the week that we’ve been in the Keys.   It happened exactly the same way last year as well.  Once March ended, and April begun, the winds died down.

We decided it was going to be a good day to take the new boat out for it’s maiden voyage. 

Before we launched the boat, we ran into the town of Marathon to the DMV, so that we could give the state of Florida their cut.   Al renewed his fishing license while he was there, although he rarely fishes. 

We decided to launch  at Bahia Honda State Park.  Their ramp is free once you pay to get into the park.  The entrance fee for 2 people is $9.00, but with our annual parks pass, we got in for free.  Good deal.  It’s a really nice ramp.

There was a lot to remember:  put the plug in, take the strap off, bring the motor up before backing into the water, bring the motor down before trying to start the motor.

These were all things we used to know and were second nature.  This time, we had to really think about everything so that we didn’t forget anything important, like the plug!

Al hadn’t backed a boat trailer into the water in a long time, but I guess that’s one of those things you don’t forget because he did great.

I was a bit nervous and of course that made Al nervous.   I have a very bad memory of boating in the Keys, that ended up with us being towed in by the Coast Guard.   (remember what I said yesterday that they won’t tow you unless it’s a life threatening situation?)

We didn’t go far from the marina and not very far offshore.    From the marina, we went under the bridge over to the bay side.  It seemed a  bit choppier on the Atlantic side.


The boat ran strong, and handled the chop nicely.  I felt comfortable when we got some pretty good waves from passing boats.  The boat was stable and handled them nicely.   We have never had an open fisherman style boat before, and always preferred a cuddy cabin style boat.  We discovered, for these waters, we really like the open fisherman style.  You have a lot more walking around room, it’s easier to pull the anchor and easier to get in and out of the boat at the dock.   The boat was very comfy, and we found we have enough cubby holes to store all our stuff.  We both found nice places to sit and be comfortable while we read our books/napped.

We were looking for a little island to park next to, but there weren’t any close by.   We had to settle for the shallows.  Once the tide went out, this would be beach.

Al on boat trip to island

Once we anchored and the boat swung around, we realized we’d made a mistake and were in too shallow of water.   Something we never would have done before, but we’re out of practice, I guess!

Anyway, Al jumped out and  walked the anchor out to little deeper water.  The tide was going out, so we sure didn’t want to get grounded.

boat trip

Al took a walk in the shallow waters while he was out.  It was so pretty and clear.  The water temp was only 75 degrees, but he said it didn’t feel too bad.


We really didn’t go anywhere that we couldn’t have gotten to in the kayaks, but it was still fun.

Al in Proline boat

We sat offshore and read for a few hours before heading back in. 

Going back under the bridge, you get a nice view of Bahia Honda Campground.  Sure wish I could snag a site there sometime, but it’s always booked!

heading back to Bahia Honda SP campground

heading back to Bahia Honda SP campground

This is the old Bahia Honda bridge.  I thought it was interesting with the haze and the sail boat going by.


Heading back to the boat ramp at Bahia Honda.  The ramp is in a nice protected area.

channel back to Bahia Honda boat dock 

We managed to get the boat back on the trailer with no issues and back “home.”

Al rinsed the salt out of the motor when we got home, then we showered and headed to K-mart to pick up a few more things we needed for the boat.  

It was a very good day!

My cold hasn’t gotten any worse, but it hasn’t gone away either. I feel okay, but my nose is running and I have drainage in the back of my throat which makes it hard to sleep.  I told Al he is doomed!  I’m sneezing a lot and in these small quarters, he’s probably going to get my cold.    He’s hitting the Echinacea and Oil of Oregano hard now too!   

The winds are down again today, so we’ll be taking the boat out again.  More tomorrow.


  1. Al looks to be back in his element...

  2. Looks like a wonderful maiden voyage for your two. Hope you have many, many more great trips.

  3. We miss The Keys! Thank you for alerting us to the Max Pass. We loved our 2 weeks at Sunshine Key and cannot wait to go back. Many times we wished that we had a boat. On our way back to Ontario, dreaming of being back in the South next winter.

  4. Great maiden voyage. Just like Al, Jim has no problem backing the boat. But not me - I'm all over the place with it. Sure glad your weather improved enough for you to get out.

  5. Congrats on your maiden voyage, glad it turned out so well and there were no Titanic incidents, although an iceberg in the Keys would be something to see... ;c)

  6. Looks like a great day, glad all went well for the two of you!

  7. Wow! Looks like a wonderful day in the keys! Congrats on the maiden voyage. Looks like you guys have all the toys for retirement!

  8. The water looks beautiful - what a great day to be out.

  9. Always great when the maiden voyage goes smoothly!

  10. Looks like the boat is a keeper. You'll be having some fine times in it. Hope you get to use it a lot. Any scuba coming up?? I'm so with you on the impossible Bahia Honda reservations. I've given up. Glad to hear the cold is no worse. Sure hope Al doesn't get it. Use those sanitizer cloths and wipe everything off is my best advice (I know you didn't ask for it, I just can't help myself). For nearly 4 weeks, I had that crud that was going around earlier this year and because of David's immune system I was very worried but by wiping down everything constantly, he didn't get it. Boy was I glad!

  11. I was relaxing just reading until you got stuck in the shallow water.:) That campground is amazing. I can see why it is always booked. Sorry you are not feeling well. Colds are no fun whether it is cold or warm outside. Happy you have a boat so I can ride along.

  12. Looks a whole lot bigger and safer than your kayaks! Congrats.

  13. Nice to get back in the boat and on the water agin , enjoy.


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