Many of our readers have asked about details of our plans, departure dates, etc. I am always surprised at the amount of people who lead or are looking to lead the cruising or liveaboard lifestyle. We leave in two weeks and we are so excited!
Move The Boat!
I made arrangements with a boat transporter to pick up our boat at the marina ship yard where it is being repaired. I must have a lot of faith in God that he will see our boat through its last repairs. I am lucky to have met up with a lot of nice people who seem to understand that we have tight time constraints and must leave on a certain date! The boat will be placed on a lift and set it into the trailer. It will travel from Austin to Seabrook Boat Yard at the mouth of Galveston Bay. We had to contract separately with the yard to off load and launch our boat. We will stay a night and pick up our tender from a few harbors over. Our plan is to leave the next day towards Louisiana.
Cost: $2000 to transport and $410 to offload and launch in the water
Day 1,2– Galveston Bay to somewhere in Louisiana. Assuming the boat checks out mechanically we will cruise under full-power along the Gulf into Louisiana. Our boat loves to go 30 mph (and is most fuel-efficient) so we have a luxury most cruisers don’t have. We will try to make it to Houma, LA. I’m sure we can get there in a couple of days and it is 180 miles away but I think it is doable, depending on the vessel traffic once we enter the ICW. We have 150 miles of open water and I know we will make good time. 30 miles in the ICW with no bridges to open or locks to go through.
Aubrey really wants to check out Louisiana and I hear that Houma is a nice place so we might stay an extra day to check it out. Fuel will be a top priority. We can anchor in a few places or use a nice dock for about $9 per day.
Day 3– Houma to New Orleans. This leg of the trip is about 85 miles on the ICW. I don’t know what kind of time we will be able to make and there will be a lot to see so I am open to the possibility we make good time or not. There is a lock we must pass through below the city. Our boat doesn’t need a lot of clearance and it looks like we don’t have any low bridges to contend. Happy me.
We really want to spend some time in New Orleans and if anyone has any suggestions of marina options that are close to attractions please send me a message. We want to do some painting of the street scenes and old buildings. The city is so rich in history and we want to take it all in. We will likely spend a few days exploring.
Day 4– New Orleans to Dauphin Island, AL- This leg of our journey is about 90 miles and should be a nice ride. I’ve been to Gulf Shores and I remember the water was still brownish. I am looking for that blue water!
Day 5– Dauphin Island, AL- Destin, FL- This is about 70 miles and should be an easy shot with Miss Lone Star. I like Destin and we will see what the family thinks of it. We may stay ah or move out the next day. The nice thing about the way we cruise is that we get plenty of time without traveling in a day, but still make a lot of miles.
Day 6– Destin, FL- Port St. Joe, FL- I am really interested to see this area of Florida. They call it the “forgotten coast.” I hear the architecture is very old. We plan to stay in this area for a few days and will likely make it to Apalachicola. The trip is about 60 miles.
Day 7– Apalachicola, FL- Cedar Keys, FL- We plan to make some good time and set off to open water to cut off some miles, weather depending. It is about 85 miles.
Day 8– Cedar Keys, FL- Tampa Bay, FL- Another 75 miles puts us into Tampa. I think we may want to stay awhile and check things out. I secretly want to catch a baseball game if possible.
Day 9– Tampa Bay, FL- Naples, FL- 80 miles or so will get us into the Naples or Marco Island area.
Day 10– Naples, FL to Key Largo, FL- 80 miles gets us into our temporary destination at a Marina in Key Largo.
This is my first-draft, basic outline. Life (and the Army) has taught me that hell is paved with well laid plans so we will keep it wide open for all of life’s events that may come into play. Weather is and will be our primary concern and we are at its mercy. We don’t plan to take any unnecessary chances and will always play it safe. The fact is, we have 20 days to get from Galveston, TX to Key Largo, FL so I can start my scuba instructor development class (IDC).
If anyone has tips about our route and or ideas for unique and fun thing sot do, please reach out to us. Aubrey wants to wrestle an alligator and do the air boat experience. I only want to indulge her if we can do it redneck style and get crazy with it. I don’t see any reason to go half-redneck on an air boat in a swamp.
Aubrey has been hard at work editing and making videos for our YouTube Channel and I love them. Make sure to check them out! Once we are underway, I fully expect for them to be completely epic. She has a lot of interesting gear and she just purchased a super cool drone for filming. I am stoked! Don’t worry, I have a legit pilot’s license.