Wednesday, June 27, 2007

Release Date 6/26/2007

I released this message off Assateague Island in Maryland.

The only dissapointment was that I didn't see any of the wild ponies. I had been the neighboring island, Chinqoteague when I was a kid, and I always wanted to go back.

I was on my way back from a trip to Florida, and I did a day of paddling and camping here. I stayed on the beach, and I had the entire campsite to myself. My original plan was to launch on the bay side, paddle around the end of the Island, and to the site, but it was too late by the time I got there. I did paddle for a few hours on the bayside, then re-launched to go down the beach to the campsite. I'm really glad I took the beach side camp area, because the bugs were just terrible whenever I went anywhere near land, and wasn't in the wind.

Even though it was overcast, I got to see a great sunset and sunrise. I amused myself with a campfire down by the water's edge at night.

Truth: If you think about doing something long enough, you can't tell if it's a good idea or not anymore, and you just have to do it.

Saturday, June 23, 2007

Release Date 6/22/2007

I went diving and spearfishing in the Gulf. We went about 15 miles and dove in 30-40 ft of water.
We found some limestone ledges, one section of which was very nice, and had a lot of fish and other life. The visibility was typical for Florida, at this depth and time of year, only about 15 ft, with a lot of particulate in the water. We got one keeper Gag Grouper, and had a fish fry later that night.

One of the most amazing things was a giant turtle who was 4 or 5 feet long resting under one of
the overhangs on the bottom. He was so old he had barnacles on his shell. Our friend who was watching the boat had seen him surface a number of times while we were down, but it was really cool to see one underwater.

Truth: It's easy to tell when you feel bad.

Wednesday, June 20, 2007

Relese Date 6/19/2007

Warning, extreme cute kitten pictures are included....

I paddled from about 1 mile up the Cotee River up through the
Boyce Warner park, then 6 or 7 miles North to Hudson Beach for dinner and back.

It was an amazing day when I reached the Gulf, perfectly perfectly still. I remember still days when I used to live down here early in the morning, but I can't ever remember one this totally totally still. You could have waterskied all the way to Texas, just like a millpond. You can see in the picture how erie it was there is absolutely no difference between the horizon, you can't tell sky from sea.

little house is a waterhouse these are old camps that are grandfathered in by the government on 99 year leases, there used to be a lot more when I was a kid. I poked around in the State Park along the coast, and tried a little fishing, then paddled on to Hudson the next town to the North.

I saw a few fish in the water, some neat birds, and watched an osprey hunting, and making a dive into the water, I don't think I have ever seen that before. Apparently he missed.

I had dinner at the little place at the beach, where I saw 4 of the world's cutest kittens. They were strays, and it was kind of sad, but they are so cute somebody will probably adopt them, at least I hope so. I shared my chicken sandwich with them. One had little bullseye stripes, and reminded me of my old cat Eddie when he was the world's cutest kitten.

Truth: Isomnia Sucks.

Release Date 6/16/2007

Chief to Brody and Quint: "Wer'e gonna need a bigger boat...." That's kind
of what we were thinking on this trip. The plan was to go 100 miles due West from New Port Richey where I used to live, and was visiting to an area called the Florida Middle grounds. It's an area of limestone ledges in the Gulf of Mexico. The sea floor goes up from over 120 feet to 80 or 90 feet, before falling away to much deeper depths.

My friends and I had always wanted to go there, and we picked this day
to give it a try. Our other friends had left the day before and were going fishing all night, and the next day. We would meet them, do some scuba diving, then both go home together. Our boat got less than 2 miles to the gallon, and had a 110 gallon fuel tank, so we had to bring over 50 gallons of reserve fuel in extra tanks stashed around the boat.

I was awake at 4:30, and we left the dock at 6:00AM, we were out in the Gulf and up to speed by 6:30. We saw a great sunrise; almost all of them are great, I'm usually just too busy sleeping to enjoy them. We made it to the rendevous spot with our other friends at 10:15, about 95 miles from shore.

We did 3 dives total, but couldn't stay down very long. There were lots of fish, grouper, angelfish, grunts, and hogfish. Since we were spearfishing we focused on the grouper. It was pretty deep, 80 to 90 feet, and the visibility was not great, only about 30 feet, and because of the depth we had to hover around 60 feet most of the time, to make the dive last long enough, as it was we turned each dive on time, not air. The bottom, life, and visibility was not much different than other places in the gulf, but there were many more fish because there is so little fishing pressure.

It was a really long trip, we left the dock at 6:00AM, and met-up with our
friends at 10:15, the trip back was even a little longer because the waves were against us. We saw a sunrise, and a sunset, both from the entrance to the river.

Truth: Things look bigger underwater.

Sunday, June 10, 2007

Release Date 6/10/2007

I released this message while kayaking in the Santa Fe River in High Springs Florida. I put in at Rum Island county park, and wanted to paddle to the convergence of the Suwanee River, but I didn't get that far. It was blisteringly hot, and I was afraid to go too far because I was paddling down with the current, and would have to paddle against it when I came back. I was still about 5NM from the convergence point when I turned around.

The river was full of tubers and others drinking and lazily floating along. I came down to go diving during the week, but since I got here a day early I went for a paddle.

I found this scarry baby doll and tied it to the bottle. You can't tell as well from the picture, but it looks like the baby is drinking from the bottle, it is clenched in it's cold dead hand.

This actually looks pretty fucked-up, and it might scare the poor bastard who finds it, lets just hope they have their mental state in shape, and that they don't come across it when tripping or at night!!!!

Truth: Always make reservations if you can.