Saturday, March 31, 2018

Marathon - At a mooring

The dinghy docks off the Tiki Hut are no more
It took about an hour to remove all our attachments to Key West Bight Marina. I had two lines on either side to prevent barging forward into the dock, two lines off the bow to center the boat, two lines off the aft section to keep from banging into the side pilings, the electrical line, the two dinghy lines, the overboard zinc, the front step platform, and side fenders that had to be brought aboard so they wouldn't stop the boat by catching between the boat and piling when backing out (it has happened before...)

However, there's plenty of room for dinghies in the fairway by the dockhouse
Finally, we had everything ready and backed out without a problem, a major accomplishment in itself. The trip to Marathon was only about 45 Nm and the wind was only 10 kts but it was directly on the nose. Still, it wasn't bad, a nice ride. We really need two good days in a row to make Marine Stadium in Miami and that now looks like a Wednesday departure.

The famous "Tree of Knowledge" lost a few leaves and perhaps even more
Marathon has taken some damage. We haven't been outside of the marina yet but things have changed here. The mooring field looks the same but there are empty moorings, about a dozen or so. The large dinghy dock that was situated by the Tiki Hut is gone. They've moved the dinghy docks to the alleyway by the dockhouse and there are no longer any boats tied up on the eastern part of the fairway, it's all for dinghies. So with those changes, there's plenty of dock space for dinghies.  It's still $22/night plus tax for a mooring and it's the same charge if you anchor out and want to come ashore and use their dinghy dock. We heard that all was fine during the storm until a boat broke loose on the east side of the anchorage where the wind was coming from. That boat hit another boat, broke it loose and as it was pushed by the wind, more and more boats joined the "flotilla" headed for land. I can imagine that once several boats were enmeshed together, they became an unstoppable force in hurricane winds. The "flotilla" swept through the mooring area, taking all the boats it touched with it.

We'll probably be here until Wednesday morning according to the weather reports and overnight at Rodriguez Key and reach Marine Stadium by Thursday.