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Monday, October 28, 2013

Test run in the Gulf of Mexico



Our test run of the boat got off to a bad start. We couldn't even leave the parking lot. A brake switch that I'd replaced turned out to be defective. Nothing worse than new parts that don't work. Once that was sorted out, we finally hit the road and drove to the boat ramp.

The first launch after a long trip always takes longer. The boat gets stripped down more than normal when hauled long distances. The rig takes time to set up and tune. There's lots of fiddling around with boaty bits.

We finally got out on the water. The outboard started on the third pull and ran great. The new plugs made a big difference. The new fuel tank worked the way it was supposed to. My storage box for the tank worked out fine too. It's not in the way, which was a possible concern.

My fancy cell phone with all the navigation bells and whistles? Due to a miscommunication, it was left back in the van. We continued on with our Garmin GPS, compass, paper charts, tracfone, and two VHS radios. The relevant waypoints were still in the GPS from last year, so navigation was easy.

We also discovered the mast light wasn't working. We travel at night and often anchor out, so it's mission critical. I'd thought I'd fixed it back in New Hampshire as I'd found some bad wire connections. However, I didn't get a chance to test it before hitting the road. Apparently, there are more issues to be resolved.

Another thing we need on the boat is more AA batteries. We had plenty of AAA, but not that many AA -the size the GPS takes. Usually I keep a good supply of both on board.

The main thing is that we got out on the water. Motoring out is pleasant enough, but I really start to smile when the sails go up. The wind picked up, the dolphins came to play and all was right with my world.

While out in the Gulf this little fellow landed on our boat. The poor thing was exhausted. It rode with us all the way back to the boat landing. Once we got near shore it flew up into the trees.



As soon as we loaded the boat on the trailer, the dog wanted to head out on the water again. She really loves boats. The dolphins were very exciting.

There's nothing like time on the water to lift my mood.

-Sixbears

14 comments:

  1. Glad you had a good time. Boaty bits - must be a technical new term.

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  2. It's important to use the correct nautical terms. :)

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  3. Welcome back, ya damn Yankee !
    Sooner or later , like your father...you'll come to stay.

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    1. You don't even know what a real Yankee is. :)

      Thanks Spud. You might be right.

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  4. A Yankee is just a Yankee if he goes back up north, but if he stays, he's a damn Yankee!! I guess I am a Damn Yankee since I stayed down here doe over 33 years.

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    1. That's one good explanation.

      Anyone from the US who goes to Europe is a Yankee. If you are from the south, it's everyone from the north. If you are from the north, it's only those of English/Protestant background with a "Yankee Accent."

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  5. It's good to go out on a great test trip to make sure you have everything set and working fine before going on to a long haul.

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    1. Since we found a few things that needed attention, I'm glad we had a test run. Got just about everything squared away today.

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  6. Great to have you traveling in the Gulf. Trawl some spoons and rattle traps to catch those big fish.Get that knife ready.Tell us what type of fish you catch.

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  7. Had a few hitchhikers like that before. The best one was a hummingbird that perched on the tip of my fishing rod right before I was going to make a cast. I let him take a breather :)

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