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Friday, February 25, 2011

Baker Haulover - sounds like a piece of furniture!

Sorry these pictures are so disorganized, but with my technical skills (or lack thereoff), we are lucky there is any blog at all!.

The skyline of Miami is an incredible sight. The journey from No Name Harbor at Key Biscayne to our next anchorage was only about 15 miles, but OHHHH! We passed by Government Pass, where the cruise ships were docked, as well as other large ships. Crawdad is so tiny compared to these huge vessels! Fortunately, the traffic was sparse and we traveled eyes-wide-open and jaws dropped as we traveled the ICW through the maze.

Our destination was Baker Haulover Inlet. The Baker Haulover Marina building is an art deco, new building and is located across from our destination. I had reviewed the charts and cruise books the night before, so we knew our height of almost 25 feet would cause us delay as we waited for the drawbridges to open. Some bridges open at request, but most open on the hour or half hour, or 15 minutes and 45 minutes after the hour. The schedules are not flexible and we found ourselves turning circles for 45 minutes for the 79th Street bridge. The wind at 15 knots blew us toward shore, so paying attention is a must!

The Bay across from the Baker Haulover inlet was not a disappointment. Our first attempt at entering the Bay brought our depth sounder to places no boater wants to go and we found ourselves backing up into the ICW. We have learned that at the first sight of LOW numbers on the depth sounder, the best action is to immediately back into the area "from whence we came". One of our cruise guides had advised that seeing low numbers meant "you missed the channel". We heed the advice of caution!

The Oleta River State Park borders the Bay, as does Florida International University. We looked for the "green dome on the field house". Amazing what one will use for landmarks! The Park rents kayaks and kayakers were enjoying a fine 80 degree day. We met a man kayaking who flies to Miami every 4th weekend and loved the Park. The sandy beach was a welcome sight for us as well.

The dinghy allows us flexibility in our adventures. A mangrove river with many arms travels north into the mangrove. We found an area previously named by Adrienne as "the creepies", defined as a narrow river lined with mangroves with an occasional abandoned boat. After hitting a few logs, we turned back to civilization.

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