On Thursday Feb 22nd, we left Islamorada & The Plantation Yacht Harbor.
It was a bitter-sweet departure saying goodbye to our Looper God-Parents Dave & Michele Sylver.
Michele left early in the day to go shopping.
We did not remember to put on our “Just Us” T-shirts, and take a goodbye photo until after Michele had departed. Just Us is the name of the Sylver’s old boat (which is now our current boat) & also the name of their current 50ft Viking. Michele gave us the shirts 3 years ago when we traveled with them for 1 day on the Tennessee river.
None the less, we did get a farewell photo with Dave.
We again took the inside Bay route due to high winds in the Atlantic.
The trip from Islamorada to Tavernier was again accompanied with sections of very shallow 4-5ft water IN THE ICW.
Feb 22 – Thu
The trip from Islamorada to Tavernier was very short, only 7 miles.
We delayed departure until noon, to wait on an extra foot of water at high tide.
It was good , we kicked up sand entering Mangrove.
The initial/arrival impressions at Mangrove were so-so because it was not the most beautiful place we have seen. We also had a little predicament determining how to get off of the boat, due to very short finger docks. The docks did not reach the exit stairs on the sides of our boat, so we had to get the boat very close to the main pier and get on/off from the aft swim platform stairs.
After a few days we have warmed up to Mangrove Marina , it’s laid back, the people are all friendly, and there is enough going on within walking distance to keep us entertained. The marina has several tired boats in need of love, but they also have some very nice boats.
The views of the bay are also pretty nice.
We ended the arrival day with dinner at Dillon’s Pub & Grill, an Irish place which was about a 15 minute walk from the Marina. All the food was very good, I had great Meatloaf & Mashed Potatoes, Rick had very good Bangers & Mash, don’t remember what the girls had.
Feb 23 – Fri
Friday was “Beach Day & Movie Night”, we took a taxi to Harry Harris Beach, about 3 miles away from the marina. The beach is part of a state park which just recently re-opened after repairs from IRMA. The Atlantic Ocean waves in the beach area are controlled by a large breakwall covering the entire cove shaped beach with ducts for water to flow in/out of the protected cove.
Friday night we walked to the local movie theatre and watched the new movie Black Panther.
Murphree gives 3 stars out of 5, not highly recommended, but the theatre did have beer.
Feb 24 – Sat
On Saturday, Nellie & I went to a once per year event in the Keys called “The Islamorada Nautical Flea Market”. It is supposedly the largest flea market in the Keys, and the traffic & crowd supported that statement. We went early in the morning (9am) to avoid the traffic on the way in, took the bikes in the taxi, and rode the bikes back 5 of 6 miles before calling the taxi for the last mile (give Nellie credit for the 5 mile trip).
The Nautical Flea Market had everything; apparel, parts, art, furniture, stuffed sea life, motors, docking equipment, nautical signs, etc.
The photos below show the wide variety of stuff at the nautical market.
We did not buy much because we arrived on bikes, but I did snag a nice $5 swim suit. Jonell bought some jars of sea-salt hand wash.
While Jonell & I went to the Flea Market, Rick & Linda enjoyed some bonding time away from the Murph’s at the Mangrove Pool. Don’t worry blog readers, there is no friction between the Murphs & the Spraggs, Rick & Linda just wanted a more low key day vs the crowd. The Spraggs had the pool all to themselves for about 4 hours from 10am-2pm. They were entertained by a medium sized lizard. Sounds like they had a very enjoyable day.
Saturday night we went back to Dillon’s Restaurant/Bar, and had some very good Baby Back Ribs & Bread Pudding !
The night ended with some TV watching of the Olympics & some Netflicks.
Feb 25 – Sun
Sunday was a combined day of Beach, Bar, & Lunch.
We went to a place called Mile Marker 88. It is a bay side restaurant/bar which also has a nice little cove beach with lounge chairs. We spent the afternoon there having lunch, some libation, and a lot of relaxing & solving world problems under the shade trees.
We also had the opportunity to see another Sea Plane (saw one from afar in Michigan).
We watched as the plane landed, idled up to the restaurant, and dropped 4 elderly people off for lunch.
I spoke to the pilot who waited for the folks having lunch, he was a nice young guy.
He said, it was just a quick “lunch in the keys” day trip for some folks from Marco Island !
Watch the video, it’s cool.
Seaplane Video = https://youtu.be/p1SALitI87Q
During the afternoon we had a late lunch at the MM88 restaurant, right net to the beach.
We were treated to some awesome seats – a rocker/glider right on the bay, right next to the musician and the boat dock.
It was a great afternoon.
Sunday night we were all whipped, and Monday was a travel day, so we resorted again to Dominos Pizza for dinner and watched the Olympic Closing Ceremonies.
Overall, it was a very nice 4 day stay at Mangrove Marina, on the island of Tavernier.
Next Stop = The Florida Keys Island of Key Largo.