Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas Everyone




We left Morehead City and headed out for somewhere near Camp LeJeune. The boat seemed to be working quite well. Jon kept going downstairs to see if everything was okay, he admits that he thinks it is working and sounding better than it ever did before. As we approached Camp LeJeune we decided to pull into Dudley’s marina in anticipation, again, for another storm that looked like it was going to be pretty bad. It was suppose to bring snow to the northern states and heavy gusty winds to us.

The marina was only 75 cents a foot so we decided that even if we had to stay for a couple nights to wait out the storm, it was plausible and affordable. In accordance with the outlook the weather was pretty terrible with winds gusting over 50 mph the first day. Later that day Jim and Erin on S/V Got to Go, called and Jim offered to rent a car and drive up to meet with Jon and help motor Kasidah down to the Osprey Marina, where we wanted to stay. We figured that this was a good plan since with the dogs it would probably take at least 4 days, which would cause us to not make Christmas. So we told Jim and Erin to drive up and meet us. Erin, the dogs, and I returned to their boat which was already down in Osprey while Jim and Jon planned their journey south.

The first day of Jon and Jim’s travel they made it to Wrightsville beach, and besides skimming the bottom a couple times they had no major issues. The second day they woke up before dawn and headed out with the assumption that they would never make it to the marina in one day; they had 80 miles to travel and only 9 hours of daylight. While I was at Osprey marina the dock master assured me that if they made it 55 miles down to the Sunset Beach Pontoon Bridge before dark and not at low tide that they would be capable of traveling the ICW after night fall to get to the marina. So they pushed on through the day as fast as the engine would let them and reached the bridge a half hour before low tide. The bridge tender told them they made it at a good time, however as they were preparing to open the bridge, lights and sirens (fire trucks and police cars) crossed and parked on the bridge. With this new development they ended up having to wait another half hour for everything to clear out. Since it was now low tide they feared that they would not be able to pass, however the bridge tender was kind enough to still allow them to pass. For the next 30 miles they were cleared for all bridges. As night fell it was very dark with no moon to light their way. So Jon stayed at the helm and Jim went to the bow with a spot light and a communicator sitting on a bean bag. Jim directed Jon the rest of the way down the canal to the marina and they ended up docking at 22:50 with no other problems or issues.

During this time Erin, the dogs, Zack (from another boat at the marina) and I went around the area and visited some popular spots like Myrtle Beach and Webster’s Ice cream. We just happened to meet the owner, John, who gave us free ice cream. So if you end up being in the area you should visit them and have some of their delightful homemade ice cream.
The first night after having a few glasses of wine on another boat at the Marina I was on the dock getting onto “Got to Go” and I heard this unbelievable loud and long roar coming from the woods, when Erin returned from the boat she just laughed and when I told Zack he wanted to go in the woods to see what it might be. My thought of course was it had to be Big foot, we convinced Zack it was not a good idea to go trampling into the wood after dark. The next day I told the Dockmaster (Miles) about it and he said “Oh that’s probably a lion” I said “what a lion is in the woods” he said “no the zoo is right beyond those woods there”. This made me feel much better. They should tell everyone about the zoo and loud sounds coming from there at night. Very Very Funny.

Kasidah will be staying at Osprey Marina for at least two or three weeks while we are up visiting family and friends. The marina is a very well kept and nice place to leave your boat if you happen to be in the area. http://www.ospreymarina.com/

We would like wish everyone a Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays and thank everyone who have been reading the blog, commenting or emailing us. It has kept our spirits up and we can’t wait to see and hear from you all again.

Friday, December 18, 2009

YES......we are on the water again.

So we are back in the water headed south with a stronger Kasidah. Here is the latest with the prop shaft.

We were waiting to be pulled from the water again, (they had to turn us around because of our new radar and their hoist style, Plus launch another boat after the owner showed up to move it). There was an engine guy there and I invited him on the boat to look at the alternator. I had always wanted to put a 2nd one on the engine. He started looking at the alternator and said “Hey the bracket on the alternator is broken.” “No it’s not” I said. But it was. Come to find out it had been hitting a cabinet and broke. Well it never did before this. So we are looking around and see a front motor mount loose. The lags had been ripped out of the motor bunks. The front of the engine had lifted up, throwing the alignment out. But why did the front starboard mount rip out? Well on the opposite rear engine adjuster screw, the jacking bolt or bottom adjuster nut had backed down all the way, allowing the engine back to drop. This drove the prop-shaft onto the fiberglass tube where it finally burned up, let loose, started to leak and, the rest is history.

So I’m glad we found out the real cause of the failure. Now the fix was a lot easier than I thought. But the tank had to come out, the aft cabin torn apart. A new fiberglass tube installed, new drip-less fitting. We checked the shaft to make sure it was straight. The engine bunks were a concern to me now. But we were able to bore them out, fill with epoxy and filler, Got a couple of longer ones and they all are good now. The insurance company is being great and might cover a large part of the bill. This would be fantastic.

We left on Thursday for Swansboro NC but as the day went on a front we had been watching looked as it was going to be heading our way so we decided to head once again for a marina(this one is cheap really cheap). The wind has been steady 30 to 40 and lots of cold and rain. This pattern of weather is really started to get the best of me.
We are trying to get to a marina in South Carolina called Osprey Marina near Myrtle Beach where we would leave the boat and head north for a few weeks. We are trying to plan it now and may have found a way to get it there in the next few days.
One thing about living on the boat is that everything is written in sand at low tide............


video

Saturday, December 12, 2009

"On land again"

We are stuck in Moorhead NC. On our way down the ICW we started taking on water, We called on 16 for the nearest boat yard that could haul out Kasidah. Boat US responed ASAP with a place and number which was right where we were. They were great. We did get her out of the water quickly to look for the problem. The shaft was leaking water in and lots of fiberglass material all over the place like a birds nest. The yard thinks something made its way in from the outside of the boat, they said they never saw anything like this before. We had to take the fuel tank out and they will be doing some major repair work to get her floating again.
It is cold here but I guess if I were in New York it would be colder. I don't think Christmas will be under a palm tree but maybe we can find a pine tree instead!

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Oriental,NC

We have had an interesting week of traveling. We left Elizabeth City and crossed the Albermarle Sound, the wind was a little on the light side but that was fine, we then entered the Alligator River and went into South lake which is part of the Alligator reserve. One of the anchorage books we use said that there would be places to land the dogs in the grasses, all we could find was landings that looked like something out of “The Jungle book”. I found one spot and got out first to make sure there were no snakes or gators, trashed around a little then when I thought it was clear aloud the pups ashore. Sara wanted nothing to do with this over grown place so it did take a bit to get them to go. Jon was on the lookout and I was the block just incase…..
This place was so quiet and beautiful, and in the morning there was one of the most breathtaking sunrises, but we all know the old saying about that. We started the journey down Alligator river knowing a storm was coming and had to reach Pungo River or Pantego Creek before it showed it’s face. When we reached the mouth of Pantego creek the winds began to increase to around 20-25 and it was just down pouring. We decided to go to our second choice which was past Belhaven and up a small creek but by now it was down right miserable out. I decided that from the start of our trip we had not stayed at any dock which we had to pay so this seemed like a good one to do. It was quite a site. We were behind three other sailboats that did the same thing and a large trawler behind us. The sailboats went in a few minutes ahead of us and then Jon started in their channel with the wind on our beam. As soon as he could see how narrow it was and the problems the boats in front were having he looked at me and said “this is going to get ugly”, The boats in front of us were getting blown into the pilings and other boats and when Jon started to turn to make an exit he noticed the trawler was right on our ass. I said to Jon we can dock this girl ourselves just pick a spot and we will manage, as Jon started to enter a slip the dock master came over and said “no not that slip over here in this slip”, so Jon backed out and went into the slip with out any issues. About five minutes later another sailboat came in and once again the piling smashing and boat smacking began. I had all our fenders blown up and ready to deploy if necessary. That night I saw 54 a few times on our wind indicator and after midnight it was crazy around there. A few of the boat anchored up stream pulled anchor because it was bad in the creek and came in with us.
Belhaven was a nice little town and we got to use the marinas golf cart to go cruising into town. Everyone you met ask if everything was OK and if we needed anything, we were even invited into someone’s home to see their Christmas trees.
We left there and headed down some creeks and canals past the RE Mayo Co.(shrimp and fish) and notice a buck crossing a creek just in front of us so we slowed down to watch it, all of a sudden this small very fast boat pulled up between us and the buck and put two bullets into his head…..man oh man, you want to talk about sudden these guy’s killed the deer and had it in the boat and gone in about 30 seconds. Jon and I just looked at each other and said holy shit.
We made it to Oriental NC and anchored in front of the village in a very small field with a few other boats. We really like this place, everyone is very friendly and they like cruisers.










Schyler called some friends that we had met years ago on our old boat Agapee who live here now. They came by and lent us a car for the day so we could go shopping and stuff. They are such nice people they even let Jim and Erin use their washer and dryer(thanks Art and Lynn that was so nice of you to do for us)). We were telling Art and Lynn about some of the other cruisers we have met and the couple from Australia came up, come to find out the boat they bought is their good friends old boat(very small world out here). We were going to leave in the morning but decided to pull up to the free dock for one more night. Jim needs to repair his roller furl and we have a few things to do so we are taking our time.
If you are reading this today the 12/06 look at www.towndock.net and you can seeus at the free town dock

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Elizabeth City, NC

Well we made it out of the Deltaville boat yard on Thanksgiving morning bright and early. Those guys were wonderful to us and they rushed our work so we could be out quick. They were going to be off for several days so we would have been stuck if they decided not to bring Kasidah in and stay a little later that first night (thank you Chuck and all of the guys in the yard).
When we left in the morning it was like pea soup out so we were really glad for the radar, it worked awesome. We spotted a few 900ft cargo ships heading for us and lots of fishing boats. When the fog lifted we had to motor most of the way into Norfolk because there was nothing for wind. On our way into the bay we had a sub in front of us which was really cool to see. The battleships and other large vessels were also very impressive as we made our way to the anchorage. That night at about 3 am the wind picked up to about 30 gusting over 50 and the boat that was in front of us ended up in back of us, at that point it was lightning, hailing and down right freezing. We prepared ourselves for the weather just in case we dragged. The wind now was about 40 knots with gust up to 50. Then it started to come from one direction and then another, and then the anchor alarm went off we would drag a little then it would set, drag a little then set. The marina was right behind us and we decided we would pick up and reanchor out and away from the marina. The boat that dragged behind us picked up and left altogether. It was amazing how well we managed to reposition ourselves and how quick we had the anchor back down and twice as much out (that’s why we dragged in the first place, I should have put more out knowing there would be a storm). Jon ended up sleeping in the cockpit for the rest of the night. When we woke in the morning the other boat was gone however two other boats were next to us. Later that day we talked to several other cruisers who had broke bow lines at a dock and others who had also dragged where they were.

Friday we headed for the Dismal Swamp which is 22 miles long and at least 6 foot deep in center. We had many things come up to kiss Kasidahs bottom the whole way down the swamp. When you enter the Dismal swamp there is a lock which opens only a few times a day so you have to time everything as to get there on time and to exit it also. Robert is the Lock Master and he has been doing it for 16 years, he is very knowledgeable about the Dismal and he enjoys entertaining cruisers. We videostayed that night on the swamp at the North Carolina visitor’s center. It can only hold a few boats so you raft up to each other. That night there was 7 boats. We rafted up with a couple who comes down the canal from Norfolk for Thanksgiving each year. Later just before dark another 27ft sailboat showed up so we helped them raft to us. Turns out they are from Senica Lake in NY. One of the finger lakes. Small world and it's getting smaller.



We ended up on Pam and Dan’s boat (36ft Albin Trawler) for dinner with Jim and Erin from the 27ft Catalina. Pam is a great hostess and Dan had a lot of info for Jon about cruising. I hope we meet up with them again some time or another.
We left Saturday to get to the lock by 11 which ended up just right. We will be traveling for a few nights with Jim and Erin so this will make things a little nicer having other cruisers around.
We arrived at the Town docks in Elizabeth City, NC around 15:00 and tied up with plenty of time to walk around town. Not much happening here but the people are so friendly and the docks are free of charge. There are two other boats here waiting to cross Albermarle Sound.. We are staying till Monday morning then crossing the sound.

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Out on the Chesapeake again

My new boots, nice












Well we are out of Cambridge today and it took only 40 days of wait to re-build Kasidah. It was a real thrill to get out back out and moving today. I (Jon) was a bit worried about the boat being slower because of the added weight, and once out and moving I did notice our boat speed was down a bit, But our s.o.g. was good. Thinking that we were getting a good push from the tide we moved on. The AIS was working great, the radar was easy to read. The solar panels were pumping 6 to 7 amps into the boat. We were using more than that but that's OK. The dinghy was riding nicely after a small adjustment on the tie downs. Then the knot meter stopped working. WTF. (I get that from Bill) Well we made Solomon Islands, and set the hook by 3 PM. The dinghy was dropped into the water in 3 minutes, and Sara and Blue said thanks. Back at the boat I pulled the through hull for the tri-data and just laughed. You know this is the 2ND tri-data in the boat. the 1st one lost it's temp sensor and we had to scream and yell to get a new one before we left Cambridge. They were nice enough to give us (no charge) some RAYMARINE paint designed just for transducers. Well the crap had slid of the bottom of the transducer and wrapped itself around the paddle wheel. I can hardly wait till tomorrow to see what it does to my real boat speed.

Tomorrow we head for Miller Creek just south of the Potomac River. It's night and I can now hear the wind generator singing to my batteries. We'll see how it does over night. A night cap and it out like a light.

Thanks to all for watching and caring. We'll get some pictures on tomorrow.Well we found our boat speed up and all was well.
Monday we were having some problems with dirty filters on the engine and we found our way to Reedville Va. on the Cockrellville Creek. We anchored in front of the Seafood Co. restaurant and walked the dogs there in the morning. The owner came by and was nice enough to bring Jon to a place to get some filters, come to found out he is the town supervisor and the town fire chief and…. The alarms went off while they were out so Jon arrived back at the boat with his wife...Ya right.




We left shortly after and headed south in some heavy fog and not so nice weather but nice wind 20 25 on our stern to the Piankatank River, the radar works great…had a few 800 plus foot cargo ships coming at us and picked them up, plus could find out all about them with the AIS.






We were still having problems with the fuel and decided to call ahead to the Deltaville Marina, so here we are in Jackson creek (a little tricky to get into).

Saturday, November 21, 2009

We're Off

Well, finally the day has arrived. We will be heading out to new lands and adventures first thing in the morning with our mightier Kasidah. The work that has been done to her is unbelievable. Andy’s Stainless steel work is much more than what we had hoped for. This guy is very talented and we will take our hats off and give him a bow. Mid-Shore Electronics was wonderful and helped us in every way. They are some of the nicest people we have met and worked with thus far. They also always made us feel right at home during the work on Kasidah (thank you very much for this). Here are a few photos of
the work.

Jill will be going to Amy and Jeremy’s house for the holidays.

We, on the other hand, have no idea where we will be for Thanksgiving,…but it will most definitely be further SOUTH. We’re sure there has to be a few more cruisers heading the same way as us.

Edited by Jill

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Wind, Rain and Lots of it

The stainless steel work has started to take shape on the back of Kasidah. It looks huge but hopefully when finished with all the goodies and Dink will fit right in.
Jon has been busy today going over all the new items and how they should be wired, the different parts and locations of item that will be attached to the davits and of course finishing up the watermaker. He ended up using the booster pump that was bought for it to also circulate the cool water for our fridge. This was an option that we had purchased a few years ago when we replace the whole unit. Knowing that we would be in warmer climates it seemed like a good idea.
The wind has been blowing a good 20-30 all day and lots of rain. They say the next two days will be very wet and winds gusting well over 50. I will have to find things to do. Please email me or even better Skype me…..

Craig and Trish the other sailboat that has been here with us for the past few weeks, left yesterday to go to Annapolis to have other work done on their boat. They are from Australia and plan on sailing back at their leisure. We went to their boat to wish them well and have some wine. We gave them some crabs since we had so many, later Jon went over to see how she was doing with them and she said she couldn’t put them in the pot because they were holding each others claws(that’s cute). Trish made us a pan of Lasagna which was delicious, there was so much we had two meals from it.




This is my catch











This is from the Crab market












Once again Jon received a crap load of oysters, he will either be really sick of them when we leave or have a few good recipes so I will eat them (Sorry Laure). We have been fortunate to receiving fresh veggies from the owner here Frank, he has a garden and every few days brings us goodies, one new veggie we tried was “Bock chew” this is really good fried up with some onions, it taste like celery and spinach all in one.
I have noticed that one thing I really miss is have a washer and dryer. Not only is it expensive but you have to watch out for things that other people leave in the washers and dryers, like pens and chewing gum. yuk

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Getting Colder

This week has been filled with all different types of projects. We added a few solar vents to help with condensation and bought a renewable water absorber doohickey to replace some of the ones that just fill with water (condensation) and then you throw them out.


We had the door made behind the head for the watermaker, this cost way more than we expected to have been. Jon will be doing more of this type of work if we want to stay out here.
We are working on the installation of it today so we should be able to make water before long. I sent the doggie’s paper work to the Bahamas on Monday because of course they are on “Island Time” and could take a month to get back to us.
Andy the Stainless Steel guy came on Wednesday and took all the measurements for the Davit system and will be back to do a fit Monday. We plan on being back on the water and moving some time this coming week which is a good thing because the temp is slowly dropping.

Ray invited us over to his “Ship” Copeing on Wednesday night to go over his charts and waypoints for the Bahamas, so I made a nice dinner and it ended the day off with good company and more knowledge for us to use.







Most of the Crab man have stopped crabbing for the season and started bringing in Oysters, we ended up with a huge amount last night because one of the boats brought a large basket in for the owner of Mid-Shore and he was away for the weekend(Jon is in his glory). I bought a small crab pot and have been trying my crabbing out but every time I get a crab the little booger seems to get out as soon as I reach the surface with the pot.
Every morning we walk the dogs down by the river where there are a few marina’s, well the night before Jon had woken to a three alarm fire and was wondering where it may have been. On this walk we found what had caused the alarm. At this one marina a large boat had caught fire and burned right to the ground. This really brings chills to our bones. We have been told that this was the third fire there this year. I smell something fishy in the air…….

Thursday, October 29, 2009

Still waiting.......



We are still here in Cambridge, MD. waiting to have the work done on Kasidah. We decided on New custom davits, Radar with AIS-b, Wind, 2- 135 watt solar panels and possibly a ladder custom made by them(If you have used our ladder you know why we need this). We also are working on installing the watermaker behind the head in the storage area. I also changed the side panels of our canvas to clear panels so we can put them up during our trip down the ICW. We figure the weather will start to get a little chilly.


The owners of Mid-Shore Electronics invited us out to dinner the other night with another couple, it was a great time and we all had lots in common to talk about. The special that night was called the "Stimulus meal" it was very cheap and very good but they ran out of a few items a little early. This is Frank, Debbie, Leann and Chet (Thanks for the great night guys). Mid-Shores is suppose to be some of the best in the area to do the boat work so we are thinking the wait will be worth it(not to long if you are reading this Frank:)).


We just got back from getting info for the Bahamas from Ray and Susan. They live on "Copeing" most of the time which is hull number 1. The inside is just gorgeous and you feel like your in a house and not on the water when you are inside. The engine room is almost as big as our garage was on Ryan rd. They are having fuel delivered Friday so we will have them fill us up too, the only difference is that we are getting about 15 gallon and they are getting 1500 gallons. WOW

Saturday, October 24, 2009

Still here.....

We went to visit Jeremy and Amy for a few days since the weather was pretty crappy and we have a few weeks here. They have a really nice house at the end of a Lake in Dover, DE. It is very quiet in that area and yet seems to be close to everything. They have a new puppy so it was a crazy few days with four terriers running around the house.


One night we went to the seafood market and picked up a ½ bushel of crabs. They were awesome and we managed to eat all of them.
We ended up staying till Tuesday morning, this is when the weather started to warm back up and the sun has been shining since.


We have been sitting around for the last few days not doing much at all. About the only things we have done is, order some parts for the davits, put in some foot buttons for the windlass and replace the Kasidah name on our stern(Thanks Rob for the new one).
We do a lot of walking in the mornings with the dogs, the temp has been in the low 70s and if we need a car there is a company vehicle here that we can use anytime. This will make it much easier just before we leave to shop and do laundry.







Wednesday, October 14, 2009

Cambridge,MD

We left Annapolis and headed about 40 miles south east on the bay to Choptank River. We headed east up the river about two hours to Cambridge,MD. It was very cold on the water so Jon stayed at the helm most of the trip. The first night we stayed at a free wall in front of the Cambridge County office buildings. When we first pulled up Jon went very slow just in case it was to shallow.At that point on the wall at low tide we did touch ever so lightly so Jon backed off and went all the way to the other side of the wall, which was in 8 ft of water. The next morning we scouted out the area and found the shop we were looking for to have some work done on the stern. The shop was just inside of a draw bridge and we would be backing Kasidah up between pilings. This would be the first time this trip we would call for the opening of a draw bridge and tieing to pilings(been there, done it) . These guys are so nice here. The shop is Mid-Shore Electronics and they can arrange for all kinds of work. We are waiting for the Stainless Steel guy to see if he can get the type of stainless for the stern to custom fab our davits...ect for us in a short time. If he can, we figure we will be here till the first part of November. If he can't get it in a reasonable time than we will be leaving this friday for warmer weather. This has been our plan all along so hopefully it all works out.





In the next slip over is a crab boat, So I went over to talk to Scott the owner about crabbing and all that stuff. he said that the bait of the week is cow lips ...Yum Yum. He was telling us that with the weather getting cold the females start to head south to about Virgina or so till spring and then it will pick back up here. He will stop crabbing and start to fish and drag for oysters over the winter months. Scott has been doing this since he graduated from school and said he loves his work and could'nt see doing anything else.

Saturday, October 10, 2009

Fun at the Boat Show

Wednesday our friends Schyler and Laurie from Skaneateles,NY came to work the boat show and to stay with us for a couple days. We had a great time walking the boat show with them. They had a truck for us to use so we went shopping and picked up some gas and water. They also brought us all kinds of goodies which we could really use(wine,beer).
Thursday we went to the boat show and meet a few people that we know from New York and from the Blogs that we watch.
We were able to get into the show thanks to Andy and Carole owners of KTI which make the Filter Boss, we installed one on the boat when we first bought her. The filter boss is an awesome part of Kasidah and we would recommend it to anyone with a diesel engine (Thanks guys for the tickets).
Laurie and I just had to go see Bob Bitchin of Lats & Atts Magazine. This is the only sailing magazine we ever subscribed to. If you have never read a copy you should really pick one up and read it you will be hooked like us.
It’s amazing how small the world really is when you start seeing people you know from different places or even from the internet. We were checking a boat out that Skyler and Laurie would like to purchase and while boarding I heard a mans voice that I just knew was Jim from Kismit and sure enough it was him, then we went into a boat store to try on some shoes and I was talking to a lady who I said to Jon “This is really weird but I think that’s Christy from Veranda” and sure enough when she came back I was right on the nose. They are a couple that are cruising just like us but have been out there for a few years. We only knew them through the blogs till now.


After Fridays show we meet up with Dick and Ann and they invited us to a locals pub to have drinks and dinner with a whole crowd of people that once lived in New York. This was a great time and the food was fantastic.
Saturday Skyler and Laurie departed for home and we took care of a few things on the boat before heading in to the Bash at the Eastport Yacht
club.
Jon and I purchased a Honda 2000 generator, an Engel Frig-Freezer and Headsets that we can wear hands free to communicate on deck.