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

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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 »

The distillery had 3300 barrels stored in another building so this is not a small operation.
sample of barrels at the distillery
sample of barrels at the distillery
The San Sebastian winery located nearby also had a tour and wine tasting of their selections so we could not pass this up. After the winery tour we headed back to the boat, since Kens had a two+ hour drive back home. The St Augustine city marina, where we docked our boat while in town, is next to the Bridge of Lions that takes vehicle traffic over the ICW. The bridge opens for sailboats as the clearance under the bridge is only 25 ft.
bridge of lions open for boats
bridge of lions open for boats
There are two massive lion marble statues that guard the bridge.
marble lion
marble lion
con't

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

Post by Bill Edmundson »

St. Augustine is really a place to spend some time.

Bill
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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 »

After 3 nights and two days in St Augustine, we headed out at first light for Jacksonville. Jacksonville, located on the St Johns River has a deep water port for ocean going ships.
container ship at Jacksonville port
container ship at Jacksonville port
The marina that we were headed to is located several miles up the St Johns River past the downtown. There was a low railroad bridge that had only 5 ft clearance above the water that had to open for us.
railroad bridge open
railroad bridge open
On March 5th, we left the boat to go home for the rest of March to take care of several personal items and plan to be back to the boat to continue the Great Loop trip around the first of April. Until we get back to the boat in April, there won't be any more updates for about 3-4 weeks. In the mean time, loopy, our stuffed cat will be guarding the boat.
loopy the pillow cat
loopy the pillow cat
Curt

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

Post by rbrandenstein »

Curt,
Thanks for your travelogue of Florida and Key West. We scheduled a trip to Florida in March in our travel trailer and planned to see some Spring training baseball, experience the Miami Open tennis tournament, and visit 3 National Parks, including Dry Tortugas. However, the Corona virus killed all our plans. The baseball and tennis were cancelled before we left, but the parks were still open so we headed down to Florida, all the way to Key West. We arrived the day after all of Key West was closed as well as the national parks. No restaurants, no museums, nothing.
They even covered up and barricaded the southern most point monument. Ridiculous.
We cut our trip short and headed home. Your travelogue at least gives us a taste of what we missed.
The Southern most point in the US
The Southern most point in the US
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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 »

Hope this virus thing hasn't impacted your journey, Curt. I'm sure there are some detours at least. Stay safe and healthy.

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

Post by curtgard »

When we left the boat in Jacksonville on March 5th, we planned to head back to Florida at the end of March to continue on up the East coast. We have been forced to put our travels on a temporary hold by the corona virus. So the new plan now is to stay home for another month and go back to the boat at the end of April to continue our travels. This month delay may cause us some time problems once we get up into Canada later in the Summer but I have several different ideas in my mind to deal with a shorter summer schedule. We may even turn the trip into a two year adventure if the corona virus holds us up past May. There are marinas still open and we could anchor out more and continue on up the East coast now but most of the places we would want to see are closed. Our trip is about sightseeing in addition to boating. Since the boat is trailerable, I have more options than most people that travel the Great Loop.

Curt

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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 »

Thanks for the update. Glad you are safe.

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

Post by chugalug »

its a bummer about your trip.I've read a few blogs about the great loopers and a few take a few years to complete.some just want to get around quickly so they can brag to their friends about it.Me,I'd rather poke around and see all the attactions or see wildlife in this cove or that.
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mkkknox
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by mkkknox »

Curt,
Just when things are going great life throws a curve ball! I think you're right in this may be a two year trip. I have family in NJ and its a mess there. I wouldn't want to be docking anywhere near NYC! Having a trailer at least provides some options. So sorry about the trip. The good thing is this is just a delay! New adventures are still ahead!

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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 »

Since my last update at the end of March, we are being forced to change our plans again by the corona virus.The boat was left in Jacksonville for the better part of April while we stayed home in Iowa. While at home, I read and watched and talked to other people on the Great Loop about continuing on up the East coast and thru the Erie canal and cruising the Canadian canals this summer. It does not appear that the Canadian border or the Erie canal will be open until at least late summer and there is a strong possibility that neither will open at all this summer because of the corona virus. So with the prospect of not being able to get any further than upstate New York, I have decided to temporarily halt our travels on the Great Loop and take the trailer to Jacksonville and bring the boat home. We could of continued up the East coast and trailered the boat home from New York but most everything is still closed.
loading up at Curtis Lee Johnson boat ramp in Jacksonville
loading up at Curtis Lee Johnson boat ramp in Jacksonville
ready to pull out of the water
ready to pull out of the water
all loaded up preparing for long road trip home
all loaded up preparing for long road trip home
con't

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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 »

Very disappointing news. I'm glad you are safe and well, though. Safe travels back home.

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

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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 »

On the way home(1260 miles), I had plenty of time to think about how we would continue on the Great Loop. I came up with several options, depending on when the country gets back to normal and everything is opened back up.
1) trailer the boat back down to Ft Myers, Florida in November 2020 and spend the winter in Ft Myers and then continue the Great Loop in March 2021 retracing our route to Jacksonville and on up the East Coast.
2) trailer the boat back down to Jacksonville in April 2021 and start on the loop where we left off.
3) trailer the boat to Ottawa, Illinois in May 2021 where we had started the Great Loop back in September. Instead of heading down the Illinois River, we would head upstream to Chicago and up Lake Michigan to Canada and spend the summer of 2021 cruising the Canadian canals. Then in September 2021, head down the Hudson River to New York City and down the East Coast after hurricane season is over, completing the loop once we get to Jacksonville. Once back to Jacksonville, we could either trailer the boat back home OR continue South and spend the winter of 2021-22 somewhere in Florida.

With the ability to trailer the boat, we have lots more options than most people have with their boats that are traveling on the Loop. Several of the people that we met and traveled with have opted to just put their boats on the hard in Florida for a year. There was one small plus side bringing the boat home; cheap gas. The van only gets about 7-8 mpg but with gas prices on the way home between 1.25-1.50 a gallon, the cost was bearable.
one of many stops on the way home
one of many stops on the way home
We have traveled 2870 miles on the Loop so far. To complete the loop, most people end up traveling 6500-7000 miles so we are not half done yet. Our maximum speed was 16 mph on the Mississippi River below St Louis with our moving average speed of 7.1 mph. So until next Winter or Spring when we are able to continue our travels, I hope everyone has enjoyed following along with us.

Curt and Noreen

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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 »

I sure enjoyed your Odyssey. I have friends who are looking to do the Loop and have been following your posts. Thank you for sharing this experience. All best in your continued 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 Hercdrvr »

Thanks for the updates Curt. Throughout all your travels I’ve noticed one thing consistently missing from your posts, no problems with your True Grit. You built a great boat!
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Re: Travels and Adventures of "Curt's Dream" a True Grit design-The Great Loop

Post by DrBryanJ »

Curt, I really enjoyed your regaling us with your adventures. I look forward to following your future a endeavors.
Bryan

Building a malahini "Mona Lisa"

My wife said "If I build a boat, she's getting a divorce."
We're still happily married, but now she just wants "the dam boat out of the garage."

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