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PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2011 7:29 am 
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Chokoloskee to Flamingo, Feb 8-14, 2011

If you go to the previous page and scroll down to the title Flamingo to Chokoloskee, Jan 10-16, 2011, you will see that we aborted our first Flamingo to Chokoloskee trip after 4 days of adverse winds & weather. On this trip, conditions were shaping up similarly to our first trip, so we decided to reverse the direction—leave from Chokoloskee. To make sure the trip would not be aborted again, we felt we needed a mantra or slogan or motto. Something we could chant at the beginning of every day...so,
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Those are also my sailing partners, René Potvin, Rick Parks, and Jon New.

These trips are always relaxing—70 mi in 7 days—no real pressure. If necessary, we could take an extra day. We planned 2 layover days for fishing or relaxation. This Google image shows the places we intended to camp (red underline) and the places we camped (red dots.)
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Getting out of Chokoloskee Bay is never relaxing because of the myriad oyster bars and shallow water. Getting out at low tide is worse, but at least you can see many of the oyster bars.
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White pelicans in the distance on their favorite, low-tide oyster bar.
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We made our way across Chokoloskee Bay and out the pass to the Gulf of Mexico. Once we reached the Gulf, the winds picked up. They were probably about 18 mph on a very broad reach—great sailing, low stress…aahh, until I broke a rudder pin. Rick Parks responded to my radio distress call, retrieved a spare pin from my rear hatch cover, and replaced the broken pin in very rough waters. As usual, I was very impressed with Rick’s work. Rick replacing my rudder pin.
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Everyone takes off as I get under sail. I literally go 200 yds and, THUNK! Another broken pin. This was potentially a real problem. For some reason, Rick does not respond to my VHF radio calls—my radio had been a bit flaky the last trip we did—it is toast now. My problem is serious, because, without thinking, I asked Rick to carry one of my bags at launch—the bag: my Hobie parts/tools bag. Dumb! Fortunately, René looked back, noticed I had again furled my sail and was not moving. He came back. After generously giving me 2 pins, he stuck with me until I paddle-ruddered to an island, and then he took off for Pavilion a few miles distant. I did have my Leatherman tool and was able to replace the pin w/o problem. This pin held the remainder of the trip. I was also carrying a backup radio and used that the rest of the trip.

Rick, Jon, and René relax on the lee side of Pavilion Key.

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As usual, the Pavilion Beach Manager is hard at work. He really likes a Hobie mast so he can get a bird’s eye view of the beach. Rumor has it that he has requested a permanent flagpole for his beach management duties, but with the Federal Government’s fiscal problems, a Hobie mast is probably the best he can hope for. You have to admire his work ethic.
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The next day was supposed to be a layover day. Pavilion is a guaranteed “catch fish” location. However, sitting around the dinner table listening to the weather channel changed our plans. The forecast indicated winds were switching to the south overnight—that would put them on our nose for the next 2 days. So, we cancelled our layover day and instead sailed to Hog Key—13 mi south. It was not an easy sail, but it would make our 3rd day destination, Highland Beach, an easy 7 mi.

The mosquitoes were absolutely horrendous on Hog Key and very unexpected. Usually, this time of the year, the Everglades have dried out and the mosquito population drops to near zero. Personally, I was embarrassed by my own lack of preparation for this pest. We all suffered to varying degrees. Our discomfort was not aided by the fact that the Hog Key beach had been badly eroded this past year—we had to set up camp amongst the mangroves.

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Setting our table on the beach near the water did little to alleviate the problem—the mosquitoes were thick after dark. I put it all down to an Everglades experience.

René, our French Canadian friend, had both a hammock and a tent. I believe he slept in the hammock here on Hog Key, but that was it. After that, he used the hammock to read and keep the mosquitoes at bay, but he slept in his tent.
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View from Hog Key to Wood Key through light fog—there are a lot of fish near Wood Key, but we did not take time harvest them.
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Leaving Hog Key
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As usual, I was 15 minutes or so late leaving Hog Key, so I was behind my sailing partners by a half mile or more. The wind was on our nose for the second day in a row. The previous day I had made a number of small tacks but still fell behind Rick. For whatever reason, he sailed closer to the wind than the rest of us. He hardly did any tacks—he attributed it to his new dagger board. But, I had a new dagger board, and it did nothing for me.

Leaving Hog Key I decided to do a long port tack. In fact, it took me about 2 miles off shore—this marker became my goal. I even wasted a little time getting this buoy picture. You can imagine my satisfaction when, upon changing my tack and sailing back to my companions, I had actually made up the 0.5 mi they had on me and was in the lead—about the only time on this trip.
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Two miles off shore, I was sailing with the big boys.
On my left
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On my right
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Arriving at Highland Beach, Jon and René, remembering the mosquitoes at Hog, set up on the beach.
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Rick and I set up a little higher.
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The mosquitoes were serious here too, but in the evening we had a fire. Most of my sailing and kayaking companions consider me to be the beach-fire Police. I insist that if we are going to have a fire (and some people MUST have a camp fire) that we (1) dig a fire pit below the high tide line, (2) burn all wood to ashes, and (3) fill in the pit to avoid all signs of a beach fire. Respect our wilderness beaches—that’s my motto. The boys did very well and kept the mosquitoes at bay while they were at it.

Day 4 at Highland Beach was another fish/relaxation day—our first actually. It is great to have a beginner along. René is definitely not a beginner to fishing—he is a world class, spear fishing champion. But this type of fishing was new to him. Beginners are great because they sometimes catch the biggest fish, and, occasionally the most fish. Well, this was one of those days. René caught the only 2 keeper sea trout.
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It was enough for an excellent fish fry.
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When we arrived at Highland Beach, 2 Everglades Park volunteers had been dropped off 2 hrs earlier at my favorite camp site. The male volunteer made it clear that he did not want us camping anywhere near them, so we moved about 150’ down the beach—not far, but far enough. Volunteer Becky was much friendlier (and apologized for her friend’s behavior.) Becky visiting us on Highland.
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The 2 volunteers were there for 4 days on a mission to destroy an invasive, non-native plant—the Brazilian Pepper. Frankly, that amazed me. Not only did they have the best camp site on Highland Beach, but they also had an impossible task. Brazilian Pepper has been in South Florida for 150 yrs and is established in every city and village, and, of course, in every square acre of wild land. René got this picture of Becky in her Darth Vader outfit searching out and destroying Brazilian Pepper.
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René also took this shot of the friendly deer at Highland Beach.
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Day 5: My friends left an hour earlier. They are supposed to fish the mouth of Harney River for our dinner. I was still chatting amicably with Becky at the breakfast table. At normal low tide, a flat stretches out in front of Highland Beach for at least 400 yds (400 m) and is bone dry. As I leave Highland, it is just minutes from low tide. This is a +1 foot (+25 cm) low tide.
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I tried to get into Harney River, but it was too shallow. My friends were nowhere in sight. As I near Shark Point and Ponce de Leon bay, I’m hoping they are camped at Scorpion Beach around the point. Did they catch fish?
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We have all made it to Scorpion Beach, but it is a bit low on water.
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Scorpion Beach camp
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The boys caught no fish at Harney—they, too, were unable to approach the river mouth because of low tide. I made one of the soups I had promised. It was Bear Creek Cheddar Broccoli Soup with “real” broccoli and “real” chicken chunks—I mean real: prepared at home and brought in my cooler. They were happy. Noseeums/mosquitoes were minimal, which was a welcome surprise.
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Late afternoon on Scorpion Beach
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Sundown
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A safe place to rest for the night
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Morning, Day 6
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And my friends have left, but the tide is coming in.
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We have a good broad reach today as we make our way to Middle Cape Sable, 17 miles away. My bow is doing a little bit of diving in practice for the World AI Diving Championships this summer.
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Is this great or what? I find 2 large chunks of ice upon reaching Middle Cape.
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Camp on Middle Cape
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René camped further out on the point, mindful of the mosquitoes at Hog Key.
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A Florida Vulture—why is he hanging around camp?
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René did a lot of photography during our trip.
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My friends have left me again. This is the last day of the trip. We had a terrific beam reach crossing this bay—reached speeds of 8-8.5 mph. Rick suggested you could control your boat better at these high speeds and strong wind conditions by pedaling—I tried it, and it worked. My GPS indicated I maxed out at 9 mph, which is pretty good considering my boat was heavily loaded.
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We made it on schedule.
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We even had a welcoming committee at Flamingo—Janet Lineback paddles in.
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All in all, a great trip. I could not ask for better sailing and camping companions—Jon, René, and Rick were the best. Jon had sailed an AI once before. I loaned him my wife's AI, and he did a great job handling it. Other than the 2 broken rudder pins, the boats performed fine.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


Last edited by Chekika on Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:42 am, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Sun Feb 20, 2011 8:21 pm 
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Great trip report! :D

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 10:17 am 
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Keith,your trip reports never disappoint. I always look forward to reading them. Great photos and discription. Glad Mother Nature behaved herself this time.

I can't figure out how Rick got so close your your boat when he was replacing the pin? :? Did he remove an aka and ama?

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PostPosted: Wed Feb 23, 2011 12:01 pm 
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Thanks, Cows & Fly'n.

Fly'n, regarding Rick's AI to AI close approach--he simply pulled up, ran his bow under my left rear aka at a slight angle to my hull. His right ama was next to my right ama, his left ama was outside my left ama. I held his bow in place to keep him close. Taking that picture, though, I had to hold his bow with my legs as I squirmed my upper torso off my boat the opposite direction. It worked.

We did the same thing when the second pin broke and Rene came back to give me 2 pins--he came up from behind, I took his bow and pulled it under my rear aka. But, I pulled it close to my hull and the aka brace screw put a serious scratch in the top of his bow. OUCH! Rick came in at an angle to my hull so he could get at the rudder, and we did not have that problem. Live and learn.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Sun Mar 13, 2011 2:19 pm 
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Ft De Soto Park to Flamingo to East Cape Sable and back with winds to 40 mph (34 kts). WaterTribe Everglades Challenge, 2011.

This “adventure” started on Mar 5 in Ft. De Soto State Park near St. Petersburg, FL. At 7:00 AM I watched the launch of the 70 competitors in the WaterTribe Everglades Challenge. There were 5 Tandem Islands and 2 AIs. All 5 Tandem and 1 AI were equipped with the new Hobie rudder (See viewtopic.php?f=71&t=34266). The AI/TI are be becoming one of the boats of choice for this event.

New model AI with the new prototype rudder installed
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Ed Engel (Paddlecarver) works on original, fiberglass TI which was piloted by PenquinMan & OceanDiva (aka Jim Czarnowski & Elena Barnett) in the EC2009. Tyro (aka Joseph Mullen) & Paddlecarver will pilot the boat this year. More about their experience later.
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Charlie Fast’s Dune TI—he did our first attempt at Flamingo to Chokoloskee this year, where he destroyed his rudder (see viewtopic.php?f=70&t=7276&start=135)
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Some other boats in this year’s EC2011.
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Scamp, 11’11” sailboat—more about Scamp later.
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The smallest boat, Matt Layden’s self-designed and built kayak. Matt’s boats are the essence of “less is more.” Matt takes pleasure in building small, simple boats which out-perform more conventional and expensive boats. He was one of the last to leave the beach, but he finished the 67 mile “Ultra Marathon” in 4th place out of 10. His time: 20 hrs, 42 minutes.
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Minutes before the launch, 7:00 AM, Saturday, Mar 5, 2011. Randy Smyth’s Sizzor will be one of the first off the beach. Winds are 15 mph out of east.
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The launch
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AhMaChamee (aka Bryan Tindell) with his yellow AI in foreground. Over his bow is DogsLife (aka Paul Kral) in red tandem Adventure Island.
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Vivian captures the spirit of this adventure race:
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I must comment on one of the more popular boats in the Everglades Challenge. It is the Kruger Canoe shown here outfitted with Balogh Sail and outriggers. The Kruger boats have a well-deserved reputation for being the ideal boat for the EC—they are practically indestructible, can be sailed, and you can lie down in the cockpit to sleep. The system is expensive—upwards of $7000-9000, and those outriggers are inflatable. Whoa! Given that price point, one can understand why the Hobie AI/TI are becoming popular boats in this race.
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FAST FORWARD FOUR DAYS…

Flamingo is the 3rd and last checkpoint for the Everglades Challenge race. It is roughly 270 mi from the launch at Ft. De Soto and 30-35 miles from the finish in Key Largo, Florida. All competitors must stop here. Kayakers will usually cut in at Ponce De Leon Bay near Graveyard campsite to reach Flamingo. Sailors, including many using the Kruger with Balogh sails, will round Cape Sable, the southwestern tip of Florida. My plan was to go out of Flamingo on the 4th day of the race and watch the competitors go by in their sail boats. If they stopped in, I would offer them an ice cold beer.

I missed a few of the faster boats—certainly Randy Smyth who finished first at midnight the 2nd day, as well as, the Olympic-class Tornado cat, which finished 15 min after Smyth.

[Update: What I did not realize was that 3 TI's still in the race had come in Whitewater Bay via Ponce De Leon Bay. One TI actually started around Cape Sable, but backtracked to Shark River and Whitewater Bay. I'm not sure what the logic was, but perhaps they all thought that would be easier than tacking into the headwind once they rounded East Cape Sable. The Whitewater Bay route is also about 25 mi vs 35 mi around Cape Sable. The lone AI still in the race, AhMaChamee (aka Bryan Tindall) did come around Cape Sable and past my campsite, but he passed about 3 AM--in the dead of night. All this information can be gleaned from the WaterTribe site.]

I was late leaving Flamingo, but I had a nice 15 mph tailwind. Amanziafrican (aka Derick Bezuidenhout) and his son Boardrider (aka Dylan) were at the Flamingo docks loading for their final leg to Key Largo.
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Luckily, I passed Jarhead (aka Bill Fite) as he was coming into Flamingo. Bill is a strong competitor who generally finishes first in his class. As he came into Flamingo, he looked like he was out on an afternoon sail. He finished in 4 days, 13 hrs.
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East Cape Sable can be a lonely, desolate place. Sunset on my first night.
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Wednesday morning, Day 5 of the EC2011
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Not much going on. I would occasionally see a boat off Middle Cape, 4 mi to the NW. But, it would disappear. Later I realized that these boats were beyond Mid Cape tacking to the SE when I saw them, and then they would tack back to the east and disappear behind Mid Cape. View toward Mid Cape.
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I went exploring behind the beach—Everglades coastal prairie. We never do that because back there you can run into snakes: Eastern Diamondback and pigmy rattle snakes, Burmese pythons, and boa constrictors—maybe even a water moccasin. The pythons and constrictors are compliments of the exotic animal trade in South Florida. 75 yrs ago, you might run into a FL panther behind the beach, but they are, unfortunately, almost extinct in Florida. We have seen bobcats here, but they are no danger to humans. It is about 2-3 weeks before the American Crocodiles take over this beach during their nesting season. Alligators are further inland in the more swampy areas.
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A Strangler Fig tree strangling a Cabbage Palm.
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Back on the beach, a non-WaterTribe boat tacking about a mile offshore.
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The afternoon seas are rough with an 18 mph easterly breeze.
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Thursday morning sunrise, Day 6 of the EC2011. AhMaChamee in his AI had passed my camp in the dead of night.
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A cold front will pass through the area later today or tonight. Thunder showers expected, winds shifting to the south and southwest. By tomorrow the winds will be 20 mph (17 knots) out of the north and the temperatures will be in the mid-50s (13 deg C). I’m not dressed for sailing in those conditions, so I decide to return to Flamingo today. I pack up and wait for the winds to swing into the south.

It looks like a shower to the NW.
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At 11 AM, winds are light but have switched to the south, even SW, and I leave the beach. This black mangrove on the beach has line-of-sight 10 miles to Flamingo. You can receive the ATT tower signal. This view is due north—no obvious weather brewing.
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By 11:40 AM, severe weather is developing over the interior of the Everglades.
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At 11:50 AM, heavy weather is fast approaching from the north.
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In front of me, it looks great.
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The edge of the storm appears to be about 2 mi west of Flamingo. Can I make it?
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No. The storm hits about 12:05 PM.
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In a matter of 18 minutes, according to readings taken at a weather buoy 3 mi SW of my position, winds switch from SW 6-7 mph (6 kts) to NWN 33 mph with gusts to 39 mph (29 and 34 kts, respectively). Horizontal spray.
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More spray.
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Tyro and Paddlecarver, using the original fiberglass TI (sailed by PenquinMan & OceanDiva 2 yrs ago) were in Whitewater Bay about 12 mi north of me. When the squall hit they “felt like they were in a 'washing machine.'” Tyro reported winds up to 40 kts. He said it was “exciting and scary.”

Horizontal line of spray blown off bow
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Is this man worried? (He is, just a little.)

Is he thinking about a robust, 100% reliable rudder? (Definately, and he is wondering if his AI rudder pin will hold.)

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After about 10 minutes, my 1-mile port tack got me to within 250 yds of shore—Clubhouse Beach. It is shallow here and my dagger board is in, so I’m keeping off shore.
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Wind is down to mid 20s (21-22 kts). Still messy out.
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A large contingent of kayakers come around the point.
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They were a bit nervous as they noticed that my boat was moving somewhat erratically. Gusts in the 30 mph (34 kts) range would overpower my rudder and send my boat careening towards shore. The kayakers cleared out of my path like I was some drunken sailor. Here is my track in Google Earth.
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I arrived at Flamingo at 3 pm. In the marina, Scamp was tied up to the dock on Day 6 of the EC2011.
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Scamp was only 30 miles (48 km) from the finish, but after leaving the next morning, it ran aground near Curlew Key, 6 mi SE of Flamingo. 24 hrs later it was still hard aground, and it was beginning to look like it could not get free in time to finish by the race deadline. Bad luck, but nothing to be ashamed of. About 40 competitors would quit the race—more than half including 1 AI and 3 TI's. That is why it is called an Adventure Race and deserves the respect it gets.

[Update: As of 7:32 am Sunday, Mar 13, the EC2011 is officially over. Scamp is still hard aground at Curlew Key. There have been a couple attempts at getting the crew (Krunch & Woodcarver) off the boat; but, because the area is a large, shallow, mud flat, those efforts have been unsuccessful.]

[Update: As of late Sunday evening, Mar 13, the crew of Scamp have been rescued and are safe in Flamingo. They were rescued by a combination of kayakers with a canoe, a Boston Whaler, and a Park Ranger boat. At one point the Boston Whaler was stuck, but it has been freed up. Scamp is still aground at Curlew Key.]

[Update: Saturday, Mar 19, Woodcutter retrieved Scamp and brought her into the Flamingo Marina. This has been the longest running Everglades Challenge. It has ended happily.]

Seiche & Kiwibird (aka Denny Thorley & Kristen Greenaway) were also in Flamingo. They finished the race the next day.
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And MosquitoMagnet from Miami (aka Wayne Albert) finished the race later that night.
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[Update: Wayne and friend, Ester, both from Miami would return to Flamingo late Sunday. Paddling their kayaks with a canoe in tow, they would rescue the crew of Scamp and transport them to a Park Ranger's boat, which was waiting in deeper water.]

All in all, it was an exciting trip from the launch in Ft De Soto through the storm and return to Flamingo. Sitting at home writing this, obviously, it had been rather exciting during the high winds, but, in retrospect, it had been fun, too, since the boat performed very well except for the rudder issue—I’m looking forward to getting out again into some serious winds to become better at handling my boat. Of course, having a 100% reliable rudder is absolutely crucial.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


Last edited by Chekika on Sun Mar 20, 2011 6:20 pm, edited 2 times in total.

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PostPosted: Mon Mar 14, 2011 6:31 am 
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Keith, this has been mentioned before, but what about attaching an oar lock to one of the akas and carrying flat blade canoe paddle, not not just for emergency but at a rudder assist in heavy winds?

I got caught in building wind on my CLC 17 with a small sail rig in just about the same spot you were.
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The wind wasn't near as high but the boat had a skinny little rudder on it and would not go up wind. I had a short canoe paddle with me and just braced/pried it against the side of the boat. It wasn't great but it was enough keep the boat going in the direction it needed to. I'm pretty sure it would work a lot better with a longer paddle hinged to the rear aka. That way, it could be worked more like a tradition rudder/tiller. Only issue I see is that you would not be able to control the sheet, as one hand would be on the Hobie tiller and the other on the paddle. On the CLC, I had foot steering, but still needed two hands to brace the paddle and had to leave the sheet cleated.

Ted


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 4:08 am 
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That is an interesting idea, Ted. I like to keep the AI simple, but it seems it would not be too much to add an oar lock which could be clamped/attached to the aka when needed. Add a solid canoe paddle w/ a large face to act as a rudder. Finally, you would need a rope to tie the upper part of the paddle handle somewhere solid on the AI, probably the cross bar, so that you would not need your brute strength to hold the paddle. It just might work in a pinch and not be too much of an add on.

Where could you get a detachable oar lock?

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 5:14 am 
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They don't show them on the site, but they must have the parts:
http://www.nrsweb.com/shop/product.asp?pfid=1265
You can see the oar sockets attached to the raft frame. Just about everybody has the clamp on locks, even Basspro near you.

Ted


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 7:32 am 
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http://s190.photobucket.com/albums/z211 ... ods005.jpg

I can't seem to find a clamp-on socket anywhere. The above is a very simple solution. The line threads through the eye in the bottom of the aka. The horn cleat was previously installed to catch my barber hauler line. This is not ideal, but sometimes the simplest solution is a good place to start.

The kayak paddle in the picture is an old piece of crap that had been sitting around in the garage collecting dust. It should work out pretty well - the blade is not spooned like the Hobie blade, though I think the Hobie blade might work well also - just orient the spoon to comply with the direction you want to go and it should create some rudder effect just by holding it in place.

A rigid oar socket with a clamp-on oar lock would, no doubt give much better feel and response to hand movement. It might be possible to screw on a side mount oar socket to the aka, allowing for insertion of a clamp-on oar lock. Might try that next, if nobody can locate a clamp-on socket.

Ted


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PostPosted: Tue Mar 15, 2011 7:56 am 
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Ted, I think this NRS page has everything we are talking about.
http://www.nrsweb.com/shop/product.asp?pfid=1214

Add an oar/paddle and it is definitely a possible solution for a backup rudder system for someone who wants to travel off shore or far from home base and not be stuck with a non-functioning rudder.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 8:29 am 
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I've done some paddle steering in my outrigger and it's a challenge solo. You will want a large blade face and a solid handle. It works best "poking" or immersing more or less of the blade rather than turning it like a rudder. This takes two hands though, leaving none for the sheet. Works best with crew for obvious reasons.
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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 2:19 pm 
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The auxiliary rudder is a very good idea. I'm guessing a length of good two sided velcro tied off to the Aka will accomplish the same thing as an oarlock.

THOSE ARE GREAT EC SHOTS KEITH! MAHALO.

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PostPosted: Wed Mar 16, 2011 3:06 pm 
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It might. I'll report on the trial runs when I get around to them. I need to do the tie off method to get a feel for how far out the fulcrum should be and how high it should be above the aka. I think it would be a lot easier if the socket was in place and all you had to do was drop in the oar with attached oar lock. As it is, the angle seems about right with the paddle resting on the aka. It should put your hand grip about level with your lower rib cage. Using the socket (6" high) and oar lock (a couple more inches of height) might raise the hand grip position too high for comfort. It may end up that you still need two hands to keep the blade down, in which case it would be more of an emergency rudder than a rudder assist in high winds.

Ted


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PostPosted: Mon Mar 21, 2011 10:15 am 
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Thanks again Keith for the trip report. Your thread slipped under the radar and I'm only about a month late in reading it. It's great to see you also have cute little mosquitos where you are. How long is your list of ' items to take ' on a trip like the Chokoloskee to Flamingo trip ? Just wondering if you wouldn't mind posting it so I could compare with mine. It's funny how you could plan for a year to do a trip like that and then forget to pack, or loose something small like an insect repellent, or suncream or sunglasses or headache tablets or camera etc, and the trip could be memorable for all the wrong reasons.

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PostPosted: Tue Mar 22, 2011 5:55 am 
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Joined: Tue Jun 19, 2007 6:14 pm
Posts: 1886
Location: South Florida
Slaughter,

Here is a typical gear list for a 5-day camp trip.

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On the trip where we had major mosquito problems, I did NOT forget the bug repellent/bug nets. I check my lists carefully. In the case of bug protection, I just declined to bring it (I brought an almost empty spray bottle of DEET.) That time of the year, bugs are usually minimal. The experience taught me a lesson--always bring bug protection! After doing this for years, you would think I would have that lesson burned into my forehead.

Keith

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I sail: Biscayne Bay, Everglades to Cape Romano, Ft Desoto, Cedar Key

"Any intelligent fool can make things bigger and more complex ... It takes a touch of genius and a lot of courage to move in the opposite direction." A. Einstein


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