Friday, June 14, 2019

Port Canaveral

We arrived at Port Canaveral this morning and Intermezzo is on an end-tie at Cape Marina.

The second half of our passage was uneventful, save for one brief squall where the wind shifted to the north and blew close to 30 knots, creating choppy seas and with some heavy rain. We sailed through the squall with just a double-reefed jib, making over 11 knots boat speed. After the squall, the wind continued to blow from the north, on our nose and the Gulf Stream moved further offshore, bringing our motoring speed down to a normal 6 knots, perfect for an early morning arrival at the Port Canaveral channel.

Port Canaveral is industrial and utilitarian, with accents of tourism and recreation. There are three large cruise ship terminals, a small cargo port, a big silo for cement, a coast guard and a navy installation. The marinas/boatyards are older, practical, well-kept and cater mostly to sport fishing boats, small and large. There are a few seafood restaurants/bars along the waterfront. There is a sparse look about the place, a quietness, a feeling of being out of the mainstream. To continue inland along the channel, a boat has to pass through a bascule (draw) bridge and then through a lock, installed to eliminate storm surge from entering inland waters during hurricanes.

Today, after resting from our overnight passage, we are going to explore the immediate area. Kathy will arrive later this afternoon. Tomorrow we are going to tour the Cape Canaveral Space Center. I originally planned to depart from here around midnight tomorrow to arrive in Charleston around noon. However, that was based on my 5 knot passage planning speed. Given my recent experiences with the Gulf Stream and actual average boat speeds closer to 7 high knots, we might leave early Sunday morning instead. I'll discuss with the crew.