FROM: The Captain –
Conditions: Clouds to start, then mostly sunny, winds from the north/northwest 5-7 mph, 78 degrees, seas calm.
Distance traveled: 37.7 nautical miles
Time underway: 3 hours 45 minutes
Average Speed: 10 knots
Max Speed: 18.5 knots
Fuel used: 50 gallons
Even though our stay at Marathon Marina was short, we had such a good feeling about discovering a new spot that we really liked. It has a decidedly “Keys” vibe and we could see spending some real time there. We enjoyed a great dinner at the on-site restaurant, Lazy Days South. In our opinion, it’s exactly what a waterside marina restaurant should be. A casual and inviting vibe that takes advantage of its location and serves great seafood. Lazy Days does all of that with its own unique twist. We were so pleased to see cracked conch on the menu and had to give it a try. While we’re typically traditionalists when it comes to conch, we went for the Lazy Conch on the recommendation of our excellent server and loved it. It’s tenderized Bahamian Queen Conch encrusted with Panko bread crumbs, sautéed, topped with fresh, diced tomatoes, scallions, fresh grated parmesan cheese, and their homemade key lime butter. Mouth watering yet? It was as good as it sounds. And the very dirty martini – something we love to order but are often disappointed – was spot on. Thanks for a great meal and experience Lazy Days!
If you read the entry about our last leg – from Miami to Marathon – you know quite a bit of it was a less than pleasant day on the water. As we have experienced and documented before, good boating karma says that for every bad day on the water you’ll get a really good one. And that’s what we had for the last leg of this part of our journey on the run to our winter home port of Stock Island/Key West. Overcast skies greeted us in the morning but it was mild and calm with barely a breeze blowing as the very friendly Jerry from Marathon Marina helped us slip the lines and send us on our way back out to the Atlantic. The water was glassy smooth as we passed the Seven Mile Bridge and continued on our southwesterly course to the southernmost city in the contiguous United States.
Really the only drag of this part of the journey was the seemingly endless strings of lobster and crab pots that are scattered right along much of our route in the Hawk Channel. It is nearly impossible to remain on autopilot for much of this leg of the trip until you close in on Key West and while we ran the boat’s speed up a couple of times in the interest of engine health, it’s hard to imagine going faster than ten knots for very long. The pots come up on us much too quickly at eighteen knots and OLOH doesn’t exactly turn on a dime.
Once we were within around seven miles of Stock Island Marina Village we started to hear familiar voices amidst the radio chatter and it felt like we were home. As we pulled into the harbor there was that certain familiar sense of accomplishment and anticipation of reconnecting with our SIMV family. What made it even more special was being greeted dockside by the Miss Norma crew, simply some of our favorite humans. We feel so fortunate that their fine vessel will be a sea shell’s throw from OLOH while we’re here and Jasper is particularly thrilled to reunite with their furry crew member, Ringo. It was also fun to arrive just behind our friends on Red Head and just ahead of Alzero, a beautiful Hatteras owned by readers of this blog who we look forward to meeting.
Jasper was much more concerned with his arrival treat and ran right to the Ship’s Store where he got perhaps the warmest reception of all.
Special thanks to Jordan, Brittany, Hannah, Mel, Melanie, Dan, Mitch, Taylor, Kyle, Joe and everyone on the Stock Island Marina Village team for welcoming us back so warmly. And to Angie, Heidi and Zach at the Salty Oyster – great to be back with you all (with a very enthusiastic woof from Jasper). Now that the lines are tied we are working away to get settled in and ready to spend the holidays here with family and friends, old and new.
See you out there… or here!
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And that concludes your OLOH instructions. M/Y OLOH back to 1-6.