Jan 222015

Yesterday I took a ride over to the harbor to scout out the dinghy dock and the approximate location of the mooring that I am thinking of going out too.  First, this is what the dinghy dock looks like:


As you can see, it is full up.  It costs $80 a month to tie up here.  It’s on a first come/first served basis.  As I was walking around and perusing the area a couple came in at a rather high speed.  There was one slip open way back in the corner in the center of the image.  They went back there, had to turn around, banged into at least three other dinghies before squeezing their boat into the slot.  From the sounds of the conversation neither person had any clue what they were doing.

This dock is not kayak friendly.  There are 2 kayaks in this image, under the dock on the upper left.  One was full of water and half submerged.  The problem is that everyone ties up bow first at this dock and gets in and out of their dinghy that way.  In a kayak, not too easy.

The other issue is the distance.  The mooring that I am looking at sits about center top past all those buildings about a mile out.  To get to and fro one must pass through the marina, past the busy Coast Guard station, dodging tour boats all the way.  In a motorized dinghy it takes only a few minutes.  In a kayak, a helluva lot longer.  And there will be times when the weather is bad or that whole dark thingy that comes around after sunset comes in.  You do have to have a light on a kayak at night, but you sit so low in the water and most of the idiots here are drunk while boating anyways, meaning it’s not very safe to paddle.  And that far out, forget about internet.  I may have phone service but that will be about it.  Although the Army Special Forces has a training facility right next door, I could always hack into their internet.  But somehow, that don’t seem like a really good idea for some reason.

There was one more thing that caught me by surprise.  I’ve been to the harbor hundreds of times, but this time, coming here and looking to move to this part of the island, I got a very distinct bad vibe about the whole set up.  It’s very busy around here, especially this week with the sailboat races.  Tourists running around all over.  I’m not so sure that this is where I want to be all the time.  Guess I have gotten used to the relative solitude of Stock Island.

So, moving out to this mooring is no longer an option.  I would need a motorized dinghy, not a kayak, and that ain’t happening anytime soon.  However, there may be a solution.

The guy who owns the mooring talked of moving said mooring over near his Free Spirit, the houseboat on the north end of Cow Key channel.  The water here is shallow but my 2.5 draft will fit perfectly.  I can kayak back and forth to Cow Key marina to get to shore, and since it’s right around the corner, I can come back to this marina for water, ice, and such.   The paddle is way more easier although sometimes the tide can rip through the channel pretty good.  Overall, it’s not a bad spot although internet will be questionable.  But then, when has the internet not been questionable around here?

I’m waiting for the guy to call me back so we can discuss if this move is doable.  If so, then we will move the mooring and I will get him to tow me over at the end of the month.

BTW, the flyers went up today, confirming that boat inspections will be coming up next month.  All boats must demonstrate that they have running engines capable of moving said boats out of the marina.  There is a huge 2 story floating house on the dock next pier over.  I’m real curious how they are going to handle that one.  No matter, I will be gone by the first, no matter what.  I want to leave on good terms because it is still overall a nice marina and I may someday be in a position to come back with this boat in more better shape or a more better boat.  I don’t blame the marina, the predicament I am in is purely of my own doing.

For now, I will give until the weekend to get the mooring situation figgered out.  If it is not resolved, the boat goes on the market and I move on.  It is not my preferred option but it’s about all I have left now.  I’m tired and the dance is over.  Go on the hook or go on land.

Capt. Fritter

  One Response to “Living Aboard: Forget This Option…”

  1. good grief.
    i come day after day and no new posts.
    and i come today and have missed two already! how did it happen!!
    the mooring thing is confusing to this land lubber.
    how do you move a mooring? if there is no dock and your anchored . . . where . . . at the bottom of the sea there?
    is the free spirit houseboat on a mooring? i followed the link. it’s very pretty.
    i can’t see the cats bobbing constantly up and down to and fro . . . actually i’d be sea sick myself inside 5 minutes!!!
    but that’s me. not you.
    for a minimalist you live a very complicated life capt. . . . and i know you hate that.
    i think though . . . you’re a big cat yourself. you always seem to land on your feet. and i think you definitely have 9 lives.
    i have always picturing ‘the mooring field’ as just out in the ocean . . . far from land. boats free of anything but the anchor.
    i must be picturing it wrong! will have to google it i guess.