Archive for the ‘winter in the south’ Category

Gates 7450

In boat repair, On the river, winter in the south on 26/02/2017 at 15:03


Great morning! Breakfast at the BucknKats cafe. Big portions served with good coffee and that touch of love you get at the ole mom and pop.

Meanwhile back on the boat the gremlins were at work. Ready to go everything tied down new dinghy harness hooked up looking 😊. I hadn’t run the generator for three days and the batteries had run low😿. So fire up generator and wait about 30 minutes. Grooving after that, engine purring. Here we go🤠 Cowboy.

What’s that whining squeal? Must be that loose belt I figured I could fix in Sanford at the dock. The belt being a Gates 7450- Dammit oye vey Gevalt.

Two and a half hours I’m on my way.

Later that day I’m dropping the hook at Hontoon Dead River.. beautiful.


Great day on the Hontoon. Sunny 75 degrees breezy the whole shebang. I went over to the state park to inquire about volunteer work in exchange for free dockage. Looking good. I will meet the volunteer coordinator tomorrow. Probably be able to get my car here with a few breaks and a good long bus ride.

Keep those 🤞 Fingers  crossed.

Dr Brad standing by on 16

Tune for the day is My Lover’s Prayer by Otis Redding. Dig it


The Day Started Like This

In On the river, st Johns River, Wandering, winter in the south on 19/02/2017 at 15:31

p1040080I left Deep Creek  about one hour after the above.

I cruised through Palatka making a mental note to return on the flip side. The river is looking more like a river than a lake. I pulled off the river into Marsh Creek that winds around to the Southwest of the main channel and it changed to gorgeous. This is a view of shore as I write this. Wish you could see the alligators.

I saw my first female Hooded Merganser. I like the birdwatching thing.


On the charts they warn you to watch out for the ferry at the second bend of the creek. Ferry? There are no roads. However;


You could do one of those wierd modeling shoots on that thing. Supposedly a local nurse lives aboard.

Osprey nest on the bridge;


So here I am;

Dr Brad standing by on 16 after a good day

Let’s Keep Day inValentine’s Day

In Moving on, On the river, winter in the south on 14/02/2017 at 14:24

I arrived yesterday at The Ortega River Marina. Great place great rates. One of my criteria for judging a marina is the quality of the restrooms and showers. A good laundry room just adds the gravy. In almost seven years this little place has hit the top three.

I stopped to get fresh veggies, do laundry and generally walk around at distances greater than 4 feet.

The trip in was about 18 miles of the St Johns with heavy current and some gusty winds. Tomorrow I’ll head out up River to check on a place to do some work on the old gal. This year I think she needs a new dress. I will paint the hull. The river has 163 miles of navigable water. I intend to do as much as I can.


Dr Brad standing by on 16

Boiled Peanuts

In boat life, winter in the south on 07/02/2017 at 15:10

Left Titusville about 8 ish. Stopped New Smyrna Beach . Just passed the 1000 mile mark from Mobile on this excursion. Nothing like walking on water for a few months to rack up the miles.

Passed through the Haulover canal about 5 miles from Titusville. The canal connects the Indian River to Mosquito Sound. The canal at one time in the early 19th century was nonexistent and boats and canoes were pulled over the bar on logs. The canal was dug and completed in 1887. History is 😎.

Plugged along and anchored south of the bridge and that’s it. Saw a bunch of derilict boats.

I ran out of boiled 🥜 about 1500 Greenwich Mean Time.

Dr Brad standing by on 16



Bobble Dog Likes Boredom

In boat life, winter in the south on 03/02/2017 at 16:33

Left wake-arama about 9:00am and headed north. Calm day few boats little wind.did about 35 miles to Faber Cove. Faber is a little cul de sac south of the causeway at Fort Pierce.






The weekend is coming on the ICW. There will be plenty of wakes and I don’t mean Irish 🍀 funerals. I may hunker down I may move. But Bobble Dog likes it 😎 cool with a shot of boredom.

Dr Brad standing by on 16






Looks like another Solstice in Mobile

In old boat, winter in the south on 22/10/2014 at 17:30

Well my last post had this old boy summering at Grand Mariner. Well here I am still. The summer was hot and I spent a month on the road cooling  down with friends and family. Barry and Denise gave me that feel at home friendship and spending time with my sister Linda was great. I haven’t eaten as well since then.

Well since I came back it hasn’t been all polo and mint juleps. Below are a few projects I have under taken.

 painted engine 2014-10-10 001

I cleaned and painted the engine room and the engine. I also decided to pull the port lights and fix whatever leaks I had been chasing for 6 months. I found some bad wood, cleaned it out and replaced it with new wood and plastic putty. Stronger than ever and a perfect dry fit. I will  cover the panel with frp and the final pictures will be on the nest post.

portlight4 2014-09-25 005

portlight3 2014-09-25 003

2014-09-28 001 2014-09-28 001

I painted the pilot house roof. Not the best job but you can always count the weather to wear down the mistakes. It really is difficult. to paint a boat by hand.

roofand walk 2014-10-18 001

I cleaned up the spaghetti mess of wiring I have had to stare at for about a year.

wire 2014-10-06 002

wire clean 2014-10-22 003

And finally I started feeling very guilty about rides for groceries, doctors, dentists and supplies. The result of this is at the end of the following clip.

Winter quarters

Well I just wanted to get something out. I also had the alternator rebuilt – it runs like a charm- and had the bottom inspected. Need a haul out in the spring for a bottom job. So saving money for that as well as a new tender and bimini top.

Well that’s it for now. Write me if you still have the strength.

Dr Brad Standing by on 16

Post Script: Since I am going to be here awhile I will attempt to hit the town and the beach in the city that held the first Mardi Gras.

The Truth Is Out There

In On the gulf, winter in the south on 23/01/2014 at 09:34

Well, here we are finally, after experiencing  some recent unpleasantness.

What happened as I was crossing Mobile Bay three weeks ago? When you feel like that little metal thing rattling around as you shake the spray paint you lose perspective.

Is it A,B,C,D or all the above.

As they say in the X Files; the truth is out there……










I have not lost my mind -yet. I have made it to Port St Joe Florida and will be here until the middle of Feb. There will be more to follow.

When I was Alive in the 19th century I wrote stuff like this about Florida:

” Adverse winds prolonged my voyage to an unpleasant extent it taking 7 days to reach St Joe. The calm bay now is a marvelously beautiful sheet of water with finely wooded embankments and a margin of white beach that seems to bind it with a belt of snow.”

Dr Brad standing by on 16.


This Weather is a Turkey

In winter in the south on 27/11/2013 at 07:32


AP Demopolis Al.

Reports have come in from river travelers near Demopolis Lock and Dam that freezing temperatures and high winds are causing travel to be unsafe. George the monkey mentioned at 6:00 AM CST.


“I ain’t leaving this heater for nothing no how.” he was quoted as saying yesterday afternoon as the winds gusted to about twenty five miles per hour and temperatures started to drop.


He recommended Foscue Creek and the Coast Guard Station to hunker down as he put until thanksgivakhah and then move on in the sun and lighter winds the next day. Many captains are taking his advice partly due to a dead cell and hotspot zone for the next 75 miles. Afternoon rain mixed with wind made only the foolish remain on the water.


As he steered Dr Brad into the safety of the station and a good anchorage. He was heard saying, “ This is safe but the average temp this time of year is 60 degrees. This sucks.”


This is Dr Brad reporting live from the Black Warrior section of the canal for the Associated Press.

Standing by on 16 and scanning all emergency weather radio traffic.


Mile Marker 270 from Nowhere but Three Locks and I’m Out

In long haul, winter in the south on 25/11/2013 at 06:58


Man… I haven’t posted for about ten days. The weather has been somewhat brutal. The barge traffic has been somewhat brutal at Fulton  Lock. The last two days have been freezing and rain is coming for two days. I , as you may guess, am at mile marker 270 on the Tenn-Tom waterway. I have had to stop at marinas for 4 days. Two days at midway and Two at Columbus both where planned for fuel and supplies. The 2nd day at midway was due to heavy barge traffic through Fulton.

I have had 10 – 15 mph winds since 11/20. After I left Columbus Marina thru Stennis lock the river is all new to me. I have  done 9 locks on this waterway and three to go until Mobile and open water. As mentioned every one has been with a 10-15 mph tail wind and it’s looks like Gainesville Lock will be no different tomorrow.

I had made a trip line as I mentioned before but gave it up after last night. The line got wrapped around the anchor over night as the boat drifted. Nothing like untangling an anchor line in twenty degree temps and 15 mph winds. Throw in wet gloves and it gives you a reason to live. As I have said before I love so!

I have been busy with the whole deal and have not taken a bunch of pictures but here are a few.


This is an eagle who kept me company at Midway Marina for two days


These guys have followed me most of the Tennessee River. You can’t ditch the ghost of Columbus. The Niña or Pinta ?


A brief three hours in the morning before the wind picks up

snag boat

Snag boat Montgomery just above Bevill Lock. I did not take this picture because I blew by on the way into the lock. You can find anything on the internet.


This is what lock water looks like with a stiff tail wind. You had to be there.


Looking’ serious


First sight of Spanish moss

And for you people that are just into the blog for the sex


This was a real ad. You can find anything on the internet.

Well that’s it for now.

Dr Brad standing by on 16

Slow Boat to Mobile

In Don't waste poverty, winter in the south on 15/11/2013 at 09:00


The lesson today kids is that if you have 250 dollars until December third you anchor out a lot. After I left Florence I took three days to go 50 miles. I had a doctors appointment in Corinth which meant two days in a marina and a few gallons of fuel.

I stopped and spent a night at Bear Creek.


Sunrise at Bear Creek

I spent two night at Wetstone


I left Grand harbor for the last look at the Ohio River watershed on 11/12. I hit Bay Springs Lake 38 miles down the Tennessee-Tombigbee Waterway. I am 412 miles from Mobile Alabama.

I am still here at Bay Springs and it is a beautiful place to spend a few days. This a pretty place but alas no cell service in most of the anchorages. What a great opportunity to learn some important things about yourself.

My anchor got hung up when I had to reset it and as usual there was 30 minutes of  @#$%#@%&% and then relief. After three years on the water I decided to make a trip line. This is a line tied to the front of the anchor and attached to a float so that if the anchor gets hung up you can grab it with a boat hook pull it up and use the line to pull the anchor out backwards.

The last few days have also been record low temperatures. Got the long handles out known up north as long under wear or long johns. Ran the the old Honda and the electric heater but it has to go off at night so carbon monoxide doesn’t get you. Temps went down to 22 degrees and the cabin to 38 degrees. This was like old times coming down the river. The condensation freezes on the inside of the windows. God I love it so. The challenge, the risk, the chance to look at yourself face to face under crappy conditions.

I decided to spend yesterday looking for a Wi-Fi Hot Spot. I found one at an anchorage I used two years ago. The lake and the anchorage have that Michigan look with sand and hardwood.

I spotted a Common Loon probably migrating from the Great Lakes to the coast. They will get there a few days ahead of me.




Not bad huh….

Front comes in tomorrow and rain is following. Midway Marina with great hot showers is 20 miles and three locks down. Winds will come up 15 mph out of the south so a decision will be made early in the A.M.

That’s the skinny. Now for a late breakfast.

This is Dr Brad standing by on 16.

This blog is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.

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