We left St. Augustine (STM 778) early on Friday morning, knowing that we would have 3 long traveling days ahead of us in order to reach Vero Beach (STM 952) – 174 statute miles on the ICW or 151 nautical miles. It was three long, tiring days without much to see or do; and yet somehow I did manage to take some photos.
There were curiosities along the way:
This half sunken sailboat with a structure on top was right off the ICW – ActionTeamFamily You Tube. ??? Of course I googled it to find out the story. I found two videos by a family, mostly of their children -“an introduction to the action team family our boat and our mission check it out!” Both videos end with a request for donations to support their “environmental life style.” Hmmm, still not sure about this.
Some folks are ready for Christmas even though isn’t even Thanksgiving.
We were in manatee waters now, and eagerly looked for them as moved along. They are difficult to spot, but we did see 10, but not close enough to get a good picture.
Through one stretch, if you looked east, it seemed as though you could just head out tot he ocean. But don’t dare! The waters are only 1-4 feet deep.
At the same time, if you looked west —
The residences on the ICW vary from mansions to nice homes, all with docks, to fishing camps and trailer parks —
This was a delightful surprise – a herd of deer grazing right on the ICW.
The scenery does change as you move along from day to day. The first day was a series of bridges – 4 fixed and 3 “restricted” which required an opening. These restricted bridges opened “on request”. We heard an interesting short exchange between a boat and a bridgetender. When the boat inquired if the bridge opened “on demand,” the bridgetender replied that it is never “on demand,” it opens “on request.”
Haulover Canal was a neat little stretch. The ICW literally make a sharp right turn to enter it. It felt a a little strange to make that kind of a turn with a boat.
Inside Haulover Canal, which was short and narrow, there were people fishing on the banks.
The bridge is at the end of the canal. As we passed through, the pelicans were everywhere, flying, diving, swimming.
Just past the pelicans, was a couple with a kayak fishing in the shallows. I wish I had his email to send him these pictures. Look at what he caught!
Spoil islands are a byproduct of dredging in the ICW to maintain passable depth. They vary in size and amenities. Some have picnic tables and camping sites for boaters to use. On a nice weekend day, these tiny islands became an oasis of fun for people who want to be on the water, camp, play and fish.
Over the three days, I tried to photograph the dolphins. I really tried. You have to know when and where they are going to jump or surface, and you have to have the camera focused and ready at that spot. That all requires clairvoyance and more expertise with a camera than I possess!
Finally, we arrived in Vero Beach and joined our Shennecossett friends, Marcia and Dan on the mooring!! Yeah!! We will be staying here until after Thanskgiving.