Started day: mile marker 1152 (No longer on the ICW)
Ended day: mile marker 1185
Friday, we woke and got on our way raising the sails and back into Hawk’s channel. It was a really nice morning.
We decided to stop at Hen and Chickens reef to do some snorkeling. That was really fun. When we arrived there was a mooring ball (which was super lucky) and it was not super choppy. This was our first time at one of these reefs so we took some time getting our dive gear in order and getting in the water. We snorkeled around for abut 30 minutes but the swell was getting worse and we didn’t want to be too tired for the journey to the next anchorage, either in the ocean off of Long Key or somewhere in Florida Bay just beyond the Channel Five bridge. Still there were miles to travel before we would reach either of these destinations.
The wind had built during the day and based on the direction we thought it might be better on the Florida Bay side of Long Key. We put the sails down and went under the Channel Five Bridge to the Florida Bay. Just south (or is it west?) of the bridge are a few anchorages that we checked out.
Florida Bay was riddled with crab pots and shallow water and our approach to these anchorages had to be very slow. We ended up hitting a crab pot (actually ran into the cage with the keel) and snapped the line which caught around the propeller. So we had to stop quickly and Stew had to dive down to get it off the propeller. Luckily water was pretty clear and it wasn’t that hard to extricate.
Once that job was taken care of we anchored in “Jewfish hole” anchorage. The water was anywhere from 5.5 -6.5 so we were a little worried we would get stuck. Since it was sand we figured that as the tide went up we would be able to get loose.
Since it was Christmas eve we had a more elaborate dinner of southwest chicken/tempeh and brussel sprouts. We were blessed with a calm night and a beautiful sunset.