Looking north at the outer dinghy dock, Marathon City Marina from the water.

We've settled into our new winter home pretty quickly. The Marathon City Marina is a big place as far as mooring fields go. There are more than 200 moorings in Boot Key Harbor. The map below is courtesy of the city of Marathon. The picture above, is looking from the middle of the black dots, north to the circle with the Boot Key logo. The mooring field isn't full yet, but more and more boats are arriving daily. The cold weather up north is chasing the cruisers our way. We're on mooring K-1.


We picked Marathon for the winter because of it's facilities and the ease of getting around and getting supplies for all the projects we have on the list for the next 4 months. The marina has large project rooms where cruisers can spread out and do work that none of us have room to do on our boats. You want to fix a sail? There's a floor for that. You need to work on the dinghy motor? There are motor stands and workbench space for that. Fibreglass repair? Ditto. Free wifi? Yep. Laundry, yes. (But it makes me cringe to pay $6 for one load. When I think of all the washers and dryers I could have bought with just the money I've spent  in laundromats in the last 5 years. Definitely cringe-worthy.)

The view from above the tiki hut, looking south. Celebration is just right of center.

The inner dinghy dock, with the shower/laundry building and project rooms on the right.


After our very fun, event filled summer, getting back to the boat yard and going to work on Celebration was a definite let down! It's a good thing we met some really fun, party loving fellow sailors, who were also in the midst of boat repairs or overhauls. You know who you are Billy, Bill, Lori, Edgar, Hela, Wendy... the list is long. Thanks for making our yard time go by so quickly.
We splashed Celebration on a very rainy day, in the middle of a very rainy week, that unfortunately  happened to be in the middle of a very rainy month. We didn't see the sun for the next 3 weeks.
We headed south on Chesapeake Bay to Norfolk and then into the ICW system of rivers and canals that takes boaters inside of Cape Hatteras. It's beautiful back country of swamp grass and marsh but it was still raining.

                                        Norfolk Navy Yard, grey ships on a grey day.

Air craft carrier in dry dock, they're so big on top, it's a surprise to see how little is under water.

                                 A kettle of anhingas, wondering where the sun went.

As is usual on our way south, we ended up in Oriental, NC, for a visit with Beth and Jim on Wild Haggis. We lucked out and got onto the free town dock for two nights and we even managed to be there for a pig-pickin at Dick and Jackies. The weather was improving as we made our way south and we were very ready to be back in shorts and flip-flops.

          Carolina Beach, NC, even the geese were heading south, they passed  us daily.
We left Carolina Beach and did a 5 day sail all the way to Marathon. It was a great trip, pretty good wind, pretty calm seas and we managed to average more than 5knots an hour.

                                               Our new morning-coffee view, over Boot Key.
We've settled into our home for the winter, the mooring field at Boot Key Harbor in Marathon FL. We've spent s lot of time in Florida, but haven't really explored any of it and I'm excited to get to check out all of the Keys.

Just a shot of the inside of the boat after our 5 days off shore to Marathon, the sea berth on the left with lots of pillows to keep us from rolling and our piles of cold weather clothing we shed as we got south.