Local Weather
MarshBunny Notes
The St. Johns River The Intracoastal and Beyond
Sailing The IntraCoastal

Leaving the Marina
Vivian and Amber assume the "babe" positions on either side of Captain Mike.

I've always wanted to learn how to sail, but never had the opportunity before. Then Mike bought a 30 foot Catalina Sloop.

Mike has always been my brother Rusty's best friend (and like a brother to the rest of us) so when he was ready to take his boat on it's shakedown cruise he called on us to be his crew.

As it turned out, "shakedown cruise" was more than just a figure of speech.

We brought steaks to grill and set off early in the morning to sail on the InterCoastal Waterway. We followed the channel markers out of the marina and headed south.

The first thing we had to do was to clear the Titusville bridge. I have been in the position of waiting on a bridge while boats passed, but this was the first time I had ever been on a boat going through the bridge. Since our mast was 48 foot and the bridge was only about 30 foot high, Capt. Mike radioed ahead for a bridge opening. It was very interesting to watch that huge thing pivot on it's center.

The Titusville Bridge
The Titusville bridge pivoting open for us.

Birds on the bridge pilings.
A variety of birds sit on the bridge pilings. They weren't disturbed in the least by the movement of the bridge or by our passing.

They didn't even pay any attention when the bridgekeeper sounded a loud airhorn to signal that the bridge was closing.

Vivian, on the other hand, nearly jumped out of her skin.

The Bridge Closing
We didn't quite lose Vivian over the side, but she did jump pretty good when the horn sounded.

Capt. Mike taught us about the boat, charts, navigation and sailing terminology as we sailed south. We learned about jib sails, and jibing and coming about and tacking and all kinds of interesting things I never knew before. The crew was totally inexperienced in sailing, but our captain was brave and bold (or just not too bright) and was willing to teach us, so off we went.

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