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Old 12-07-2015, 04:47 AM   #101
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Thanks Steve, that's pretty cool. I am getting ready to depart but will only be going to Panama today so have no idea why I am up already! I guess I am eager to be going again. Destin has been great. The bars are actually still open (they close at 4:00) and the music and drunks can be clearly heard lol.
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Old 12-09-2015, 06:54 PM   #102
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Hmm. No word today from Blue. I forgot to mention those offshore bombing exercises from Eglin Air Force Base. Oh well. That which does not kill you just makes you stronger.

And by the way. It is either Panama City or P.C., but never just Panama. :-)
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Old 12-11-2015, 06:27 AM   #103
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Quick update so ya'll don't think I am in Panama

We ended up leaving from Destin, heading to Panama City, on the outside. The weather was almost perfect and we were enjoying the ride so much....I ended up going straight to St Joes. We then went up the canal, straight past Apalachicola to Crab Island. We will be back through in the spring and will be sure to stop for several days on the way back. We did not feel an overnight stop would do it justice.

So...Had a great stay anchored out in the bay and the dinghy got a lot of use. Only one other boat in the whole bay. Wednesday we were talking to the owners of 'the other boat' (a KK Manatee) and decided to join a flotilla of Loopers who were leaving that afternoon headed for Tarpon Springs. Followed them about half way across, veering a little more East around midnight and arrived off the mouth of Crystal River at dawn. Followed the tide up at 13:00 and anchored in the little lake in front of the town. Ray, from the Rhino went ashore and secured us 2 berths at Pete's Marina for $180/week including electric. He has been promoted to Master Marina Negotiator!

So, we are in Crystal River for a week!!
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Old 12-11-2015, 07:13 AM   #104
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Great to see Ray advancing. Living the dream
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Old 12-11-2015, 08:10 AM   #105
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We spent 4-5 days at Pete's Pier a few years ago it was a nice stop lots of places in walking distance. including a couple of active watering holes just up the road.
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Old 12-11-2015, 09:40 AM   #106
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Great trip! Watch out for the manatees. Are you going to swim with them? We did it last weekend (drove down) and it was amazing. And very easy.

How was the entrance into Crystal River? We drove out to Fort Island to take a look and it looked very "shoaly." The description of the entrance in Active Captain makes it seem kind of challenging, too.
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Old 12-11-2015, 10:02 AM   #107
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Great trip! Watch out for the manatees. Are you going to swim with them? We did it last weekend (drove down) and it was amazing. And very easy.

How was the entrance into Crystal River? We drove out to Fort Island to take a look and it looked very "shoaly." The description of the entrance in Active Captain makes it seem kind of challenging, too.
I have been in and out of the Crystal River entrance a few times. Stay in the center of the channel. There is a turn that you don't won't to miss. Other than that an easy entrance. Took the small boat out fishing. Speckled trout was good in the Homassa River, and grouper fishing was good around Gomez rock.
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Old 12-11-2015, 10:09 AM   #108
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Mr Jim, the entry and river was a piece of cake to a seasoned captain like me! Here's my secret.... Have a friend, who has lived there 30 years, meet you at the entrance an hour before high tide and follow him all the way to the bay at the top. Drop your anchor at the spot he is pointing to while on the radio giving you instructions like "drop the anchor here" Then tie him to your stern and give him a beer. I have found this technique works well in a lot of strange anchorages Yes, I swam with the manatees on the last trip and will probably do it again today. The sun is shining and life is good!
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Old 12-11-2015, 11:02 AM   #109
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Glad you got across safe and sound, Blue. Good decision -- grab those weather windows when they are available!

Crystal River is a beautiful place. Never have been in there by boat, but used to go there to dive in my younger days. This was back in about 1965, and it was very different then from what it is now.
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Old 12-11-2015, 11:06 AM   #110
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Your own personal harbor pilot. And cheap, too! Life is good for you.
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Old 12-11-2015, 01:48 PM   #111
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WooooHooooo!!!!! Y'all hve fun. I do know some folks that went from Kemah to Orange Beach this last week...offshore....and I don't think they spilled a drop out of their coffee cup...or beer mug!!! It was perfectly calm and sunny and warm their entire trip. Look for "Lone Palm" out there. It is a 65 foot custom Aluminum(oh excuse me....Al-uh-minium if that is the way you South Africans pronounce it... ) Sportfish. They generally do not run on plane to keep fuel costs down. They are right behind you.
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:45 PM   #112
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Didn't you buy your Bayliner at Crystal River?
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:49 PM   #113
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Crystal River is a beautiful place. Never have been in there by boat, but used to go there to dive in my younger days. This was back in about 1965, and it was very different then from what it is now.
My parents trailered our 16' Regal Line Lancer over to Crystal River from Cocoa about 1960. Yep, very different from now and the water was much clearer. I loved the place.
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Old 12-11-2015, 03:54 PM   #114
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Donsan, I sure did. He came down and inspected the boat yesterday and we are going out to dinner tonight. Great guy, who incidentally, bought a smaller Bayliner. Man knows his boats
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Old 12-11-2015, 05:00 PM   #115
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Also be on the lookout for "Our Time"...a Carver 440...Steve and Kathleen.

"Adventure US" is another boat...Morgan 45 center cockpit. Michael and Janet. You may have met them at my house....Drag racer's mother!

It is Jeff and Belinda on the previously mentioned Lone Palm.

All these folks should be in and around you right now and headed in the same direction. All really good folks.
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Old 12-11-2015, 09:35 PM   #116
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Thanks for the heads up John. This place is good for at least a week! I have heard that them dang South Africans say alumijum but am not sure


They have an Ale House here, within dinghy range...YAY!
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Old 12-11-2015, 09:44 PM   #117
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Blue you are doing it right by spending plenty of time at each nice spot. I rushed through all those good spots on my trip. Want to do it your way next time!
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Old 12-12-2015, 06:23 AM   #118
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Blue
Put "Relenti" on the hard-Doing bottom job, compound and wax, changing some seacocks and tuning prop. Two of the blades on the prop where dinged. Launching next Tuesday or Wednesday. I might have to install a larger wind screen with all the speed I'm going to pick up with the slick bottom and redone prop. Tell all hello for me and I sure wish I was joining ya'll on your voyage. Living the dream
P.S. Your average daily milage is getting longer.lol
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Old 12-12-2015, 07:15 AM   #119
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Doug, Relenti is going to be awesome when you get her done! Quit wishing and start doing lol, we will wait for you if you hurry
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Old 12-13-2015, 06:22 AM   #120
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Trying to catch up on the promised pictures while I have decent internet....
Destin Harbor and the canal from St Joe to Apalachicola.
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