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Saturday, March 20, 2021

Getting hauled in Tarpon Springs (Monday)

Since we painted the bottom about 6 months ago we haven't checked how our running gear is doing or how the paint is holding up. Moreover, while we sat in LBK all that time we never had the bottom cleaned. So. We're curious.

The plan was to haul us out at 8 am. Russ went to the office around 7:30 to verify we were still a go, and they wanted to get us in sooner if possible. The tide was going out, and the haul-out dock is shallow. Even with our small draft, they wanted to do it ASAP.

We're up really early, as we usually are. It's too bad no one looked at the tide charts last night since we could have gotten it done around 7 if they were up to it. But we made the attempt around 7:45. Gotta say, it was a challenge, as the outgoing tide was stronger than anticipated, and we were trying to enter the chamber with it on our starboard beam. But I set her up for a second try and got her in without much fret. They had us shut off engines with the idea they'd pull the boat forward into the slings. But she didn't move. They pulled and pulled. No joy.

Turns out the tide was low enough that we bottomed out in the chamber. They mostly haul out mono-hulls, so the mud divot is deepest in the center of the chamber. Our double hulls stuck firmly in the mud around that. Nothing to do but wait for a higher tide. They asked us to park inQuest on the floating platform nearby and wait until noon.

Hauled again
Backing out was another challenge, and almost a disaster. Immediately we were pushed to the port where there were lots of boats. Realizing we were being pushed into them I jammed the engine back hard. We missed, but not by much!

Knowing the strength of the current this time I was able to set up for a first-try against the platform. That went well... so then we waited until the second try. When the current will be running the other way.

See all the worms?
Around 12:30 they were ready to try again. Wind gusts joined the party, blowing with the current on our port side. We planned on nearly hitting one of the boats on the pier with the expectation that the current and wind would push us off and line us up perfectly for the chamber. From the helm it looked like I was going to run into it which freaked me out, all the while my husband (on the bow) is saying it's great. I backed and twisted a bit, and tried a second time. And we nailed it -- got right in. I love it when that happens.

Also, see the blue paint? 
That all results in us staying in a hotel for a couple of nights while Russ washes, polishes, and chisels off the worms from the bottom of the boat. Yeah. Shoulda had that puppy dived while in LBK. Also, he wanted to touch up the paint. If you recall, when they reblocked the boat so we could paint the bald spots it was raining. Pouring, in fact. So the paint patches didn't cure right, and have washed away. Good thing we did the base coat in blue, to that was obvious to see.

One of 2 depth gauges. Totally explains why it's so off!

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