Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

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Jimbob
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Jimbob » Mon Dec 09, 2019 12:38 pm

What a great adventure!
I have really enjoyed following your trip and looking at the pictures you have posted. I can't wait to see what's next.
I wish we could do something like that in California.
Jim
Jim Neeley
Building a Barrelback in Sacramento, CA
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kens
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by kens » Mon Dec 09, 2019 3:16 pm

Great !! Keep the pictures coming.
It looks like you are making good time. Gosh, at this rate you might be going north back into cold weather before spring.!!
What a wonderful trip in your own boat.
Oak is over rated, everything about it takes extra time; then it warps, splits or checks !!! :roll:

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mrintense
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by mrintense » Mon Dec 09, 2019 4:18 pm

Jimbob wrote:
Mon Dec 09, 2019 12:38 pm
I wish we could do something like that in California.
Jim
And in Texas!!

Really cool Curt!
Carl
a.k.a. Clipper

Crafting a classically styled Vera Cruise

Clipper's Vera Cruise Build

mkkknox
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by mkkknox » Tue Dec 10, 2019 6:56 am

Curt
So glad you made it safely across the gulf! What a great trip! You are making it so much fun I may have to follow your lead!
Hauled the boat out for the season last week. Had 112 hours of cruising time with over 700 miles for our first year on the boat. I decided to add trim tabs this winter. Enjoy the warm Florida weather!
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Oyster
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Oyster » Tue Dec 10, 2019 9:03 am

Thanks Curt for your continued reports with photos. Enjoyable to see your progress on the boat you built yourself. You are putting some miles under her keel.

MkkKnot do you have more shots of your boat? Interior? general sleeping accomadations? and creature comforts?

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Roberta
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by Roberta » Tue Dec 10, 2019 9:17 am

I am in awe with your journey. Friends of ours are in the process of purchasing a boat and plan on doing the Loop. They are also following your progress. Keep the pictures and story going. We love it. Thank you and safe journey.

Roberta :D :D :D :D :D
Roberta "Queen of the Boat Builders"
Built Zip "Oliver IV", Super Spartan "Jimmy 70", and Torpedo "The Glen L".

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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Dec 11, 2019 5:59 pm

We have been playing tourist since we arrived in Tarpon Springs. There is a trolley bus that stops about 50 yards from where we are docked at the city marina. This trolley goes South through Dunedin and all the way to Clearwater Beach and only costs $2.50 to ride all day for seniors.
trolley bus in Tarpon Springs
trolley bus in Tarpon Springs
We rode the bus down to Clearwater Beach on Monday to walk on the white sand beach.
clearwater beach
clearwater beach
There is also a long pier at the beach.
clearwater beach pier
clearwater beach pier
con't

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Dec 11, 2019 6:18 pm

Noreen had a hard time choosing which one she liked best.
IMG_20191209_130721.jpg
Clearwater Beach is mostly tee shirt shops, bar/restaurants, and high rise condos. There were several places to access the beach as we walked along the street.
beach access
beach access
Tuesday we took the trolley again going to Dunedin. This town has a laid back charm with lots of nice gift shops and dozens of restaurants in their old downtown. The downtown was all decorated for the holidays.
light pole in dunedin
light pole in dunedin
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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Dec 11, 2019 6:42 pm

There is a bike/walking trail on an old railroad bed that runs from Tarpon Springs thru Dunedin and on to Clearwater.
bike/walking trail at Dunedin
bike/walking trail at Dunedin
At Dunedin, the old railroad depot has been turned into a museum with displays on the early years of Dunedin.
outside of Dunedin railroad depot
outside of Dunedin railroad depot
We spent the whole day shopping in the stores and then took the trolley back to the boat in the evening. Back in Tarpon Springs, we again walked along the sponge docks which are only a block from where we are docked.
sponge boat at dock
sponge boat at dock
con't

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Wed Dec 11, 2019 6:56 pm

In Tarpon Springs, we took a guided tour of Safford house. This belonged to one of the early residents of Tarpon Springs and has period furniture.
Safford house
Safford house
dining room Safford house
dining room Safford house
After leaving the Safford house, we walked a block to the Spring Bayou and then onto old downtown Tarpon Springs.
Spring Bayou in Tarpon Springs
Spring Bayou in Tarpon Springs
Even though we were only about 8 blocks from the boat, we again hopped onto the trolley for a ride back to the boat.

Curt

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kens
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by kens » Thu Dec 12, 2019 4:49 pm

Wow!!
I didnt think of the Great Loop as so much more than a boating adventure.
Your trip is more than a boating adventure, it is a vacation/adventure/cultural trip.
And yet you still have a long portion to go.
What else is ahead??
OMG!! What a trip!!
Oak is over rated, everything about it takes extra time; then it warps, splits or checks !!! :roll:

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:41 pm

After staying in Tarpon Springs for 8 nights, it was time to start moving South again. We left on Dec 15th, and headed to Caladesi Island. This land is a barrier island off shore of Dunedin. On the way to Caladesi Island, we passed by Anclote Key which has a lighthouse. The lighthouse is only open a few days each year to visitors so we didn't stop.
Anclote Key lighthouse
Anclote Key lighthouse
We were going into Caladesi Island docks at low tide and my chart plotter showed depths of only 3-4 feet. There was no marked channel so I was guessing where the water was the deepest. On my first try, my guess was off and we ran aground in soft mud and sand. I backed off and powered back to deeper water. We then tried a different route and made it into the docks where another looper boat crew helped us get into a very tight slip. They could not believe that we were able to get to the docks at low tide.
Caladesi Island docks
Caladesi Island docks
We decided not to stay overnight since the next low tide would be in the morning when we wanted to leave. The island is only accessible by boat so the were only a few people on the beach.
Caladesi Island beach
Caladesi Island beach
con't

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Thu Dec 19, 2019 2:52 pm

We walked down the beach for about a mile collecting shells. The surf was bringing in new shells with each wave and I watched as a nice shell was deposited near me.
IMG_20191215_125059.jpg
I picked up the shell and showed Noreen my new shell but before we could put it into our bag, it become evident this shell was occupied. So we put it back into the water and moved on.
animal in shell
animal in shell
We got to an area where the trees were near the water and a trail headed back across the island to the docks.
IMG_5884.JPG
con't

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kens
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by kens » Thu Dec 19, 2019 3:19 pm

Be careful of cone shells, cone snails, that are occupied.
Some of them have a stinger that can get you, out of the end !
Last edited by kens on Thu Dec 19, 2019 3:20 pm, edited 1 time in total.
Oak is over rated, everything about it takes extra time; then it warps, splits or checks !!! :roll:

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curtgard
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by curtgard » Thu Dec 19, 2019 3:19 pm

We took the trail through the palm trees, mangrove trees, and saw palmetto plants back to the boat.
Caladesi Island trail
Caladesi Island trail
We got back to the boat at near high tide so headed out without a problem. We headed a short distance to the free city dock at Dunedin which even had power. The town of Dunedin is my favorite town so far on the loop.That evening, we were treated by a decorated sail boat coming into the harbor.
IMG_5892.JPG
We only spent one night in Dunedin as the next day winds were predicted to be light and we had to cross Tampa Bay so we left early in the morning. The route getting to Tampa Bay had lots of shallow spots just out of the channel but the markers kept us out of the skinny water.
pelicans on sandbar just outside of channel
pelicans on sandbar just outside of channel
con't

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