Total Miles Traveled 846
We left Dog River Thanksgiving morning and entered Mobile Bay at daybreak, taking advantage of the flat water for our crossing.
As we headed south to the Intracoastal Waterway the water was unbelievably calm and the cloud cover provided an awesome reflection on the water.
We have seen more dolphins this year; we had six or eight around the boat at one point.
I found why the dolphins swim to the front of the boat. I leaned over the bow and watched this dolphin for several minutes. Its tail was inches from the bow and motionless, we were pushing it through the water at 8 mph with our bow wave.
We entered the ICW and turned east toward Gulf Shores, AL.
We passed LuLu’s , Jimmy Buffet’s sisters restaurant along the ICW, we stopped here last year but it was closed today.
This is the approach to the Roberts Bayou anchorage, it is very narrow going in and you have to favor the sandy beach on the port side but there is about 9 feet of water all the way in. This is a protected anchorage with good holding and room for 3 or 4 boats; we had the place to ourselves this year. The Pirates Cove bar and grill is a unique dog friendly place located next to the narrow entrance of the bayou. It was hard to find a seat last year when the songwriter’s festival was in full swing. We listened to several songwriters perform their music that they had written for famous artist.
Sometimes you see a boat name that just makes you grin.
Our next stop was the Bluewater Bay Marina, close to Niceville, FL. We have a friend and his wife that relocated here last year after retirement. We both retired in 2015 after working together for several years, we had a great visit and plan to stop again on our return next spring.
We have been very lucky with the weather, except for a few chilly nights we have had perfect cruising weather. A cold front was moving through as we worked our way toward Niceville, we didn’t have one drop of rain, but did see this rainbow north of us.
We had one good weather window to make it to Panama City before another weather pattern moved through. As we left the Bluewater Marina, be had 2 foot waves on the 25 mile long Choctawhatchee Bay. The wind was blowing from the northeast so we had the waves hitting on the port bow making the ride comfortable. As we came to the end of the Bay, we entered a man made canal connecting to West Bay. The canal is known as the Grand Canyon of the ICW as huge sand dunes line the shore.
We will be staying at Panama City for a few days as high winds and thunderstorms are predicted through Wednesday November 30th. This will give us an opportunity to perform a few maintenance tasks and to plan our route to the west coast of Florida.