Vayu Blog 03-09-24

We left Stuart on a nice sunny morning hoping to get past Jupiter and the heavy boat traffic early. The weather report was calling for some rain, so we thought that might help with boat traffic as well. There are several bridges in the Jupiter area that require opening for a sailboat like us to pass. Timing of these bridges can be a challenge as most only open at set times.    

                We had hoped any rain would be light, but this would not be the case. Just as we got past the Jupiter bridges, the bottom fell out and the rain can down hard and fast. Visibility was poor due to the heavy rain. We really had to keep a sharp lookout as we continued to wind our way down the waterway. It did not help that the small center console boats did not seem at all inclined to slow down because of the weather. This made for a stressful few miles until the rain eased some and we could better see ahead.

                The engine ran fine, so I figured the issue with lack of fuel had been solved. This would later turn out to be not true. As we got through the last bridge of the day, the weather improved and we made our way into the anchorage in North Palm Beach. We hd anchored here before and knew it was well protected and away from most of the boat wakes on the ICW.

                We had only planned to stay a couple of days before heading offshore to Fort Lauderdale. The gremlins had other ideas, though. Early Tuesday (03-05-24) we started he motor and hoisted anchor ready to head South. The engine, on the other hand, said no, and shut down just as the anchor was secured aboard. Several attempts to get it restarted and running failed, so the anchor was dropped again. This was getting frustrating, it seemed odd it would run fine for a more than a full day and then suddenly not run longer than 20 minutes.

                With much cursing, I tore apart the aft cabin bunk to get at all the fittings on the top of the fuel tank. I then swapped the location of the fuel pickup for the return and resealed all the fittings. With that complete, I was able to get the engine running again. Hopefully, this will cure the issue once and for all. I have run the engine here at anchor for a couple of hours without issue, so we will see with time.

                Of course, by this time it was too late to leave and still make Fort Lauderdale before dark so we stayed put. The next few days the weather was not our friend, so we stayed put and did some shopping and repairs. I had discovered some of our night running lights were not operational, so I took the time to fix those. I also got our water maker up and running for the first time, which was a good thing. We can produce about two and a half gallons of fresh water from salt water now, which is enough to keep up with our usage if we run it a couple of hours a day.

                The weather continues to hold us here through the weekend, so we did more shopping and relaxing before hopefully pushing south Monday or Tuesday.

The crew of the good ship Vayu