Cape Canaveral- Kennedy Space Center.

A little bit of sailing with the boys.

A little bit of sailing with the boys.

Cape Canaveral, December 4 – 5, 2008

We left St. Augustine at 3pm enroute to Cape Canaveral. We decided that it would be best to do our longer distance traveling at night, while the kids sleep. Traveling at night also gives us the opportunity to arrive at our destination during daylight hours. The winds were light and the seas were calm with rolling waves. Roxane prepared pasta with meatballs for dinner. At 8:30 the kids decided they were tired and they started getting ready for bed. Alexander likes to sleep in the v-berth, which feels the most motion, but it doesn’t bother him at all. Thomas likes to read in the aft cabin before bed, he has just finished his second novel in just a few days.

Alexander and Ed fell asleep on route to Cape Canaveral, Herb the Auto pilot was on the helm.

Alexander and Ed fell asleep on route to Cape Canaveral, Herb the Auto pilot was on the helm.

 

Docked at Port Canaveral Ocean Club, Notice the Cruise Ship Monarch of the Seas in the back ground behind Alexander.

Docked the Ocean Club, Notice the Cruise Ship Monarch of the Seas in the background behind Alexander.

 

Ed helmed the first shift while Roxane slept from 9pm -1am. Roxane then helmed from 1am – 5am. At around 5am the AIS signaled that a large boat was coming at us, on a collision course. It was still dark but Roxane could not see any lights ahead, even with the use of binoculars. This was very strange. Just as we started to enter the channel into Cape Canaveral a Coast Guard Zodiac approached the stern of our boat and told Ed to stay 1000 yards back so that a U.S. Navy submarine could enter ahead of us. This was exciting for all of us to watch!

US Navy Submarine, we were within 500 meters of it.

US Navy Submarine, we were within 500 meters of it.

 

Found an alligator just on the side of the road.

Found an alligator just on the side of the road.

We stopped at a wonderful Marina called the Ocean Club at Port Canaveral. This is a brand new marina with beautiful facilities, a swimming pool and the friendliest staff. They were extremely helpful and kind to us. They said they love Canadians! We highly recommend this Marina. Their web site address is www.oceanclub-pc.com

From Ocean Club we rented a car and drove to Cape Kennedy Space Center where we spent the day. We walked through a shuttle, we visited the launch sites, and the kids enjoyed a 3D show. We saw the Apollo Rocket and we even had the chance to touch a moon rock. This was a fun and educational day for the kids.

nasafamily1

Apollo Rocket, That took Neil Armstrong to the moon!

Apollo Rocket, That took Neil Armstrong to the moon!

That evening at 6:30PM we set off to Fort Lauderdale. This journey will take a good 24 hours. Roxane prepared an amazing roast beef & mash potato dinner while underway. We motor sailed all night, again due to low winds. In the morning we were able to do a little sailing as we pasted West Palm Beach. All along the coast of Florida you will see hundreds of sports fishermen, from little power boats to 80 foot fishing yachts.

We motor right through into a head wind all day and all night again. A total of 36 hours of motoring right to Fort Lauderdale where we will meet up with Andrew McAllister from PCYC, he is joining us there for our jump off point to the Bahamas.

s/v Black Diamond

I have been boating for over 25 years, at the age of 43, this is more than half of my life time. Starting out with a number of smaller power boats, then switching to sail about 8 years ago. I have sailed various boats from wind surfers, dinghies (lasers), keel boats from 26 to 45 foot yachts. I live in the area of Toronto Canada and sail mostly on Lake Ontario. I have been racing yachts for the past 7 years. I have also entered many long distance races such as the Fort Lauderdale to Charleston, completed in 2 days 8 hours, we received 4th place in division, 8 minutes in PHRF behind a 3rd place trophy. Then 4 times finishing the Susan Hood, a 75 mile over night race, 4 times entered in the Lake Ontario 300 the worlds longest fresh water race, a 308 knotical mile race around the perimeter of Lake Ontario. My crew and I on Black Diamond finished in 2 days 12 hours in 2009. In 2009, delivering the boat back up to Canada from the Bahamas we entered in a couple of interesting races, one from Fort Lauderdale to Charleston described as a sled ride up the gulf stream, the Charleston race week regatta series and the New Year's Day Staniel Cay Regatta in the Exumas, Bahamas. This race we came in 2nd over entire fleet, only lost by 3 minutes in a 2 hour race to a 47 footer. This was a boat for boat race, no PHRF scoring. "Twenty years from now you will be more disappointed by the things that you didn't do, than by the ones you did do. So cast off the bowline, Sail away from the safe harbour. Catch the trade winds in your sails. Explore. Dream. Discover." Mark Twain Blue water experience include yacht deliveries from the Abacos, Bahamas to Charleston South Carolina 2006. This delivery was a non-stop, 3 and half days, total of 500 miles. We crossed parts of the Bermuda Triangle, and during most of the delivery were over 200 miles offshore. The delivery of Black Diamond a 40 foot Jeanneau racer/cruiser has been delivered to New York City and then offshore to Florida and the Bahamas from Toronto, Canada. This delivery from NYC to Florida was completed 100 miles offshore, for a distance of over a 1000 miles non-stop to Jacksonville, Florida. Completed in what might be a cruisers record of 5 days 3 hours non-stop offshore. This fall my family and I added another 500 miles of sailing throughout much of the Bahamas. Spending 6 weeks aboard Black Diamond sailing the Abacos, Nassau and the Exumas. I then sailed the boat back to New York, completely offshore, entered a few races along the way, and back to Toronto through the Hudson River and Erie Canal. During the 2009 season, we sailed Black Diamond off the dock 148 different days out of 365, winning the Vacant Dock award the second year in a row. Most recently, 2011, completed the delivery of friends boat Tracey & Nilson Ruiz, from Tortoal, BVI to New York. Tortola to Georgetown Bahamas in 5 days non-stop. Last leg from Charleston to New York over the momorial day long week-end non-stop Friday to Monday in 4 days. All completed safe and sound without incedent. Need any deliveries let me know. I am also an Open Water Certified diver and an active member of the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron, certifications included Power/Sail boat handling, Seamanship Sail, Piloting/charting, GPS Navigation, Extended Offshore Cruising and a VHF Radio operation license. I hope to further my education, qualifications and experience in long distance cruising and racing. One of my goals is to obtain a commercial Captains License. Feel free to contact me at [email protected]

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3 Responses

  1. This is very exciting … following your course every time the new Black Diamond Blogroll arrives on our desktop … thank you for taking us along your family adventure!

    Michael, Winnie + crew

  2. Greg Edwards says:

    Hi guys! Got into work early where I’ve got a half-decent computer and can access things quickly. I looked up your tracking device site — very spiffy! — and educationsal!! I see that you’re moving north of Freeport, but as I’ve never looked closely (or at all) at this part of the map before, I didn’t realize that the Bahamas were such a strung-out series of islands, with Nassau a lot further south than Freeport! What is your final destination point anyway? And how long do you plan on ‘parking’ the “Black Diamond” there before you head back? I’ve heard that the Turks & Caicos are beautiful too, but I suppose they’re too far for you to be travelling that far — this time around!! It looks like Cape Canaveral was great! Imagine being cooped up in one of those tiny spaces for the trip to the moon and back! You’re in luxury on your trip compared to poor ol’ Earl Armstrong — and imagine the awful dilemma that the Apollo 13 astronauts faced — no wonder I’m a landlubber! Keep the great pics coming!

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