We kinda got the message to get-going after being kicked out of our Marathon marina a day early, as anyone with a short-term rental (including boats at marinas) was given 24 hours to get out.
It seemed like just yesterday we had cruised thru Miami on our way south to then head around up to the Florida west coast – how everything has changed in only a week.
First the Keys, then Miami-Dade County somewhat shutting down behind us as we head north with various restrictions. On Sunday we saw thousands of small boats on the water. It was crazy at times with 30+ boats approaching us while 30+ boats were passing us on the somewhat narrow ICW channel. It was a beautiful, sunny day in the 80’s & was a great way for people & families to get away for a few hours.
Although the vast majority were off having fun on their own, we saw several sandbars crowded with 40 – 50 boats & people crowded together partying violating the county regulations & common sense. This was even after the county had closed down the public launching ramps were supposedly patrolling looking for large groups.
We made a quick pit stop in Vero Beach & rented a car so we could go to our storage unit to exchange winter items (like our mini Christmas tree) & pickup important stuff (like our oil change pump). We attempted to make some curbside pickups, but grocery shopping was fairly scary with almost no precautions in very crowded conditions.
Down here in the south, county governments pretty much run things so we’re running into different COVID-19 regulations as we travel north thru Florida & now in Georgia. Some marinas are shut down, some are not allowing new transient boats in & some are open with special precautions. While we mostly anchor out, we do have to stop every week or so for fuel & groceries. We had been doing 80 – 110 mile days in order to at-least get out of Florida, but will now slow down as the temps have gone from the 80’s daytime to now 50’s nighttime in Georgia.
Our next marina stop will be in Beaufort, North Carolina. That particular county is allowing us in, but won’t allow us to step off the marina property. This would usually make it difficult to obtain groceries, but being North Carolina, they have us covered. Just tell them the groceries and/or take-out food you want & they’ll go out & bring everything to your boat. Now, that’s southern hospitality!
Be safe everyone!
Good luck heading north. I talked to the Beaufort Dock Master last week and he did tell me that they were open to Transient yachts. People were supposed to remain at the marina or on the docks. Beaufort seems to be fairly hard core on the lock down. Due to that, my brother and I canceled our plans to go this weekend to launch his Com-Pac and my Parker for the first time. We are going to plan and hope to now go the 1st weekend in May, 1st to 3rd. Hopefully it will work out. If you guys are there that weekend, maybe I’ll see you? If it does work out, you guys can use my vehicle to run any errands you need to do. After I launch at the ramp across from Smith’s, I don’t use it the rest of the weekend. Be well and safe travels.