We hadn't gone very far down the ICW when we felt a sluggishness with the boat. We both thought that something might have gotten caught in the propeller so we tied up at at a dock at one of the beautiful homes under construction along the ICW in Fort Lauderdale. Jonny dove down on the prop and discovered the world's largest palm frond tightly wrapped around the prop like a very thick piece of rope! After about half a dozen dives, he was able to release it. Before we took off, one of the crazy boaters in this part of the world came barreling down the ICW at full speed. The wake from the boat reverberated back and forth across the width of the ICW causing us to bang hard against the dock repeatedly. We had placed several fenders out but the repeated knocking caused one of the fenders to slide. At the time, we were annoyed but once the water calmed down we proceeded on our way.
A short time later we arrived at the Hollywood Beach Marina and after several attempts to dock against a very strong current we finally tied up and took on fuel. It was then that Jonny noticed that our rub rail had been damaged and knocked off its groove which had obviously occurred when that boat waked us. We were very annoyed because it is not an insignificant job to get it fixed.
Traveling on the ICW on a weekend in South Florida is not a lot of fun. There is so much boat traffic and so many inconsiderate boaters that one must be constantly wary.
We passed through Haulover Cut where there are literally hundreds of boaters anchored in the shallow waters of the ICW relaxing and enjoying the day.
Buzzing amidst everyone, including those of us underway, were scores of jet skis who take great joy in jumping the wakes of the fast moving boats. One has to be hyper-vigilant to deal with the inconsiderate wakers and the mosquito-like jet skis zipping back and forth.
We were doing a pretty good job of it when all of a sudden a jet ski headed in our direction and we heard a giant boom! At the time we were hovering and waiting for a bridge opening. Lynn rushed below and saw that the rider had fallen off of his jet ski and was in the water. The jet ski was floating upside down and other jet skiers were rushing up to help. For a moment we thought he might have hit our boat, but fortunately he was unharmed. The boom was caused by his flipping after jumping a wake. After Lynn was sure he was OK, she admonished him to be more careful and his friends helped him on his way. Oh, for the tranquility of Bahamian waters!
We made it the rest of the way to our marina without incident passing the City of Miami with the Freedom Tower, American Airlines Marina and many high rises dominating the skyline.
Ken helped us to tie up and the sharing of cruising tales began! What a wonderful month of relaxation, adventure and friendship! Can't wait until the next journey!