Wednesday, March 11, 2009

Wednesday March 11

Cellphone service is almost nonexistant in the Park, but the SPOT should continue to communicate with the satellites so that you can follow SandyBottom's minute-to-minute progress almost instantaneously via her SPOT "share with friends" webpage. These very same data are bounced to the 'Challenge Mapper' section of the WaterTribe website.

Darwin's Place (7:30 AM) to Broad River Campsite (5:50 PM)

SandyBottom is paddling through the Wilderness Waterway in the Everglades National Park. Now roughly halfway through the EC'09, she began the day by breaking camp at Darwin's Place and was on water underway by 7:30 AM --as revealed by the SPOT satellite messenger system. By 5:50 PM she had reached Broad River Campsite roughly 30 miles away.

As of 2:30 PM today:
----- KB and KW had taken some different channels than SB and they were about 5.3 miles ahead of SB.
----- Trader and TroutHeart in their 2-person custom Bell canoe were also in the area but roughly a mile or two ahead of KB and KW.
----- SB is following the same Wilderness Waterway route that the fast team of NiteNavegator and NiteSong took in their 2-person Kruger. They were the fourth boat to reach CP1 (including Class4 sailboats) and are very fast. At 2:30 PM today SB was 21 hours behind NiteNavegator and NiteSong.

As of mid-day the SPOT track of SB's progress is closely following the waypoints she had chosen to store in her Garmin 76CS GPS....

SB is also carrying a second backup GPS, a Garmin 76CSx, and she has a complete set of charts.

In addition to the SPOT messenger mounted on her sprayskirt, she is carrying an emergency personal locator beacon (PLB) on her PFD, and has a VHF radio in a pocket of her PFD --the very same VHF radio that she hit with her rib back at Ft. DeSoto. Hope her rib is feeling better, but we won't know until she emerges at CP3 in Flamingo, FL.

SB reached the Broad River campsite at about 5:50 PM today. KB and KW had been resting at that campsite since about 3:40 PM.

It also appears that SB, KB, and KW turned off their SPOT devices when they reached this point.

The dock at Broad River campsite

Here is a description of the campsite from the Everglades Diary...

"The Broad River campsite is located about 2 miles east of the Gulf coast river entrance, and is one of the nicer backcountry ground sites in the Park. The site is spacious and sports a dock with a cleated wooden boat ramp. The river at this spot is subject to tidal influences that can lower the water level to more than 6 feet below the dock, and the ramp facillitates the loading and unloading of paddlecraft at low tide. Be careful, though, as the ramp is submerged at high tide and can be very slippery with silt and algae at low water. Once you've unloaded your boat, you'll find that the campsite is divided into several semi-private areas by natural walls of trees and brush. For southbound trekkers, Broad River campsite is the staging point for a journey through the Nightmare, the long, skinny mangrove tunnel that is passable only on a high or a rising tide. I've left the Broad River site as early as 2 AM to catch the high tide, and I can say that paddling the Nightmare by night under a full moon is an experience not to be missed."


1 comment:

greg knipe said...

thank you for your thoughtful work here treating the EC experience. i delight in the experience when i get the rare chance to read here. greg knipe, redeyepaddler