It's been awhile since my last entry. We are in Daytona Beach and I will attempt to cover this past week in small doses as we continue to our goal of reaching Vero Beach. Lots of good things have happened to Fiu and us. I'll start back on Tuesday, November 5 when Fiu was fixed. Ray installed the vent loop valve which breaks the siphon of sea water entering the engine. We started the engine and decided to leave the dock and travel as far south on the ICW as possible the rest of the day. Believe me when I say we motored as far as we had originally traveled on October 30th when the engine failed to start. The anchorage in the South Edisto River near Watts Cut became a familiar place. The engine ran like new with good oil pressure, temp gauge in green and no idling or power issues! We were able to travel so far due to catching the tidal currents just right. We were running with the current most of the way and when 5.5 to 7 kts is normal for Fiu, this day we ran between 6.2 and 8.9 kts! The 28 miles were fun and our adventure was finally underway with abundant sunshine and a warm breeze.
We lack a firm schedule when sailing since I believe it creates a climate of "poor decision making." We were a week behind our original broad plan to head to warmer climates. We decided to travel a long day and get as far south as possible with the good weather which included many clouds but warm temps. Even the Coosaw River was fairly flat (a first time ever) and a tidal current in our favor. Beaufort, SC was our next stop with a generous bridge tender at the Ladys Island Bridge who held it open extra long for Fiu to slide through comfortably with only a slight increase in throttle speed. The Downtown City Marina was our noon time stop for diesel and pump out. We spend much less on diesel fuel for Fiu all winter than gas for our hybrid car in just a short summer of driving.