Day in the Ditch

After noticing that the temperatures south of us are consistently in the mid-80s and north of us only in the high-60s, we decided we were crazy to be headed north in February and turned south!  Unfortunately, based on the wind forecast, south meant the ICW (Intercoastal Waterway), affectionately known as “the ditch”.

A beautiful morning headed south on the ICW.

A beautiful morning headed south on the ICW.

Passing an early morning barge, we wondered if it was off to pick up trash at Useppa Island, or something more fun.

Passing an early morning barge, we wondered if it was off to pick up trash at Useppa Island, or something more fun.

The ditch has highlights … a sea turtle with a head as big as a crab pot buoy, eagle rays showing off how high they can leap and dolphins galore.  And at least to start, the wind was from the north and we could sail, always a bonus!

It's the Lady Chadwick!  Smile for the cameras!

It’s the Lady Chadwick! Smile for the cameras!

And most boaters are polite.  We were the tourist attraction for the Lady Chadwick ferry from Captiva Island, taking tourists and their cameras to enjoy cheeseburgers in paradise at Cabbage Key.  I can remember being on those boats, taking photos of sailboats & being green with envy … dreaming about where they were going & wishing we could live on a boat.

Every time we go under these power lines, I catch my breath, even though I know they're 80 ft high...

Every time we go under these power lines, I catch my breath, even though I know they’re 80 ft high…

The power lines are always a bit scary, but then there’s the infamous “Miserable Mile” … a narrow channel with an infamous cross current where big power boats try to destroy the rest of us.   I understand wake, but really?  If it’s breaking over our bow, do they think they might have  Slowed down?  And the ultimate insult is when they wave like you’re the best of friends! NOT!

Then there's these guys... Not my favorites.  I don't mind too much until their wake eith breaks over the bow or causes us to roll so bad that stuff below breaks, even tho' it's stowed.

Then there’s these guys… Not my favorites. I don’t mind too much until their wake eith breaks over the bow or causes us to roll so bad that stuff below breaks, even tho’ it’s stowed

Poor red marker …  That must have hurt!

Wonder who hit this marker?  :(

After all that, I really have to wonder about folks who trail their dinghy.  We did once, a major powerboat wake flipped it & we had to do a man overboard drill to retrieve our oars… never again!

Is it any wonder we never tow our dinghy?

Is it any wonder we never tow our dinghy?

Anchor down, life is good & even better, it’s warm!  Off to enjoy sunsetters with a friends boat (and him too). :). Cheers!

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