Wednesday, March 08, 2006

Day5: From CP2 toward CP3 with Friends

... as reported by "DancesWithSandyBottom"

The 65-mile trip going south/southeast from CP2 to CP3 through Everglades National Park began early this morning, perhaps as early as 3 am, more likely at 5 am. (Paddlers using the 'inside' route along the Wilderness Waterway travel close to 100 miles from CP2 to CP3.)

Launching form CP2, SandyBottom, ThereAndBackAgain and AlaskanSeahorse are paddling together today.

According to the WaterTribe discussion forum postings, ThereAndBackAgain called in at about 9:40 am to say that they had reached Pavillion Key in the Gulf. That's about 12 miles of progress from CP2 toward CP3.

There is very little if any cellphone coverage in the area, so it is to be expected that there may be no phone calls until CP3 is reached. I am hoping there is just enough signal to allow cell phone text messages to slip through. There is a land-line phone at CP3/Flamingo.

Forecasts indicate that SandyBottom, ThereAndBackAgain and AlaskanSeahorse will be paddling into the wind. The marine forecast from www. says...

Wednesday Afternoon (Day5)
East winds 10 to 15 knots. Seas 2 feet or less near shoer and up to 4 feet well offshore. Bay and inland waters a light chop.
Wednesday Night

Southeast winds 15 to 20 knots. Seas 2 to 3 feet near shore and up to 4 to 6 feet well offshore. Bay and inland waters a moderate chop.
Southeast winds 15 to 20 knots. Near shore...seas 2 to 3 feet. Well offshore...seas 4 to 6 feet. Bay and inland waters a moderate chop.
Thursday Night

Southeast winds 15 to 20 knots. Seas 2 to 3 feet near shore and up to 4 to 6 feet well offshore. Bay and inland waters a moderate chop.

Here are two views of the expected route, as provided by the free version of Google Earth software.

The 65-mile route from CP2 to CP3 looking southeast toward Key Largo.

The 100-mile route looking Northwest from Key Largo.

And here is another point of view, that of ThereAndBackAgain:
(as reported by the Bonita News)

And one more point of view, that of AlaskanSeahorse:
(as posted in the WaterTribe discussion forum by his girl friend whose posts are great reading --in case you missed it).

“Day 4 [was] kinder than the previous day to AlaskanSeahorse. While he did paddle solo on and off - and did get in the apparently mandatory daily ride on the wake of a sailboat's dinghy, to be a shared with a bottlenose - he rejoined ThereAndBackAgain and SandyBottom to pass Goodland together and reach CP2 at approximately 1530. Sandybottom expressed concern to AlaskanSeahorse about his mental state, "You just don't care, do you? I can see it in your face." Alaskanseahorse replied that he in fact did not care, which is an improvement from yesterday's readiness to throw in the towel. He also added that he was concerned for SandyBottom as she obviously does care, it shows on her face, and her blisters are worse than his, her face is partially swollen from bug bites, and she has to deal with the aftermath of a midnight urine spill. Much of the day was spent with a following wind of 15-20 knots and three foot seas. The spicier conditions improved AlaskanSeahorse's demeanor a bit and he appears to have passed from the pre-race denial and yesterday's anger, to bargaining for more exciting conditions. Conditions were building in the afternoon and AlaskanSeahorse wanted to push on. However, it was decided to recharge rather than take on a night paddle. AlaskanSeahorse, ThereAndBackAgain, and SandyBottom all grabbed a much welcomed shower, presumably separately. AlaskanSeahorse also took the opportunity to rinse the caked sweat salt from his Mysterioso top. Suitably scrubbed and polished, the three paddlers headed into town for a dinner that does not include foil-sealed fish or electrolyte drinks. The plan is to be back on the water at around 0300, then stay in the protected inside waters for approximately 20 miles, before heading for open waters probably around sunrise. From there they will try to beat arrival of SE winds when they cross Florida Bay.”

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