We ended up staying in Ft. Pierce just shy of 2 months to complete our projects. While we loved the city, we were itching to move on the moment the carpenter turned his last screw.
Continuing to wait for that moment however was becoming a bit of a struggle, as we had other logistics to juggle – such as getting our vehicle up into storage in Melbourne and bringing my mom back aboard for a cruise.
It all worked out, and on the morning of June 5 – with our crew aboard – we were ready to leave Causeway Cove Marina and continue our journey north.
First, our video recap of our cruise:
First Stop: Vero Beach, FL
My mom has joined us aboard Y-Not several times before, usually while at dock or for some short excursions. This would be her first joining us for a few days of cruising with stops at multiple locations.
We wanted her to experience pulling into a new city, and a night at anchor – so we made some selections.
First stop would be the Vero Beach City Marina. It would be a quick cruise of just over 13 nm – but we had an invitation to an ice cream party at our friend’s Captain Chris & Alyse’s place.
And you don’t mess with ice cream.
It was a pleasant, albeit short, cruise and we got ourselves squeezed tightly into our assigned slip.
Vero Beach has a cruiser’s reputation of becoming like ‘Velcro’. Many arrive and never leave. During seasonal winter months the mooring balls may even be rafted up to accommodate the demand. We can see why.
The marina is nicely protected and conveniently located with an hourly free shuttle bus to scoot you around town. The property is nicely shaded with lovely trees and picnic areas.
We ended up staying only 2 nights – at a $105/night it gets pricey quick. Which was plenty of time to explore the beachside, and spend an afternoon with friends and ice cream.
Second Stop: Hole in the Wall Anchorage
You think our last cruise was short? How about 4.8 nm for our next – not even enough time for the engines to get warm really.
We wanted a beautiful anchorage for my mom’s first – which can be hard to come by in this area of the ICW. So many are just pulling off the channel and enduring constant wake.
However Chris & Alyse had told us about a favorite – technically in Vero Beach. While still in civilization, Hole in the Wall is between a couple islands and you can almost pretend you’re on your own. It sounded perfect to us!
Since the fuel dock at the marina was super easy to get to and the prices quite reasonable for the area – we decided to top up our tanks before departing. We were at about half and near due anyway, plus we’d like to start off time with our newly installed generator with fresh numbers.
It was a lovely anchorage and perfect for getting our new paddleboards out!
We also convinced mom to try her first dinghy ride aboard Just Because – we found a little beach on a nearby island to land on for a walk in what felt like an overgrown jungle.
And as is typical in Florida this time of year, an afternoon storm opened up leaving the skies a beautiful painting:
I think we were able to give mom a good taste of the anchoring lifestyle!
Third Stop: Melbourne, FL
While we likely could have found another stop or two to make on our way into Melbourne – we all decided we really wanted to get in on Friday for Melbourne’s very last ‘Friday Fest’.
It’s a downtown monthly event started a bit before I moved away with live music, food vendors and artists. It was originally intended to help bring traffic to the historic downtown – and it’s been so successful it’s apparently become a crowding issue.
We’d be staying at Melbourne Harbor Marina right downtown – so it seemed like something we shouldn’t miss. I was really looking forward to this visit, returning to the very town I set my nomadic journey off from – returning in my own boat.
So we all settled in for a comparatively long cruise of 27.4 nm to get there.
We arrived in plenty of time for the fest – but it was pretty much a bust. Just as soon as things got kicked off and we had Thai food in hand – the skies opened up pretty much shutting things down.
We ended up staying in Melbourne for the weekend – but we were honestly pretty beat and distracted.
The exhaustion and stress of the past few weeks dealing with contractors constantly in our space completely caught up to us. But no rest for the weary – we got hit with two huge issues in our work life (ugh… PayPal and Verizon legacy unlimited plan terminations) needing our full attention.
Let’s just say Melbourne wasn’t the nice return to ‘home’ stay we had hoped. And at $96/night for a slip and no weekly rate offered – we weren’t keen to extend our stay.
Crew on Board?
This little repositioning was our first experimentation with have visitors/crew onboard for multiple stops.
The timing probably wasn’t the most ideal with our exhaustion levels – but the segment was absolutely right to share with my Mom. She lives in Melbourne and this would be dropping her back off. In a perfect world we would have had some downtime first.
But even so, we pushed aside the exhaustion as best we could and really enjoyed having someone along for the ride with us – and we loved sharing a bit of the adventure in person.
Plus, it’s pretty cool to have someone who does dishes, vacuums and keeps Kiki entertained for us.
- Distance: 521.2 nm
- Stops: 36
- Marina Nights: 300
- Anchored Nights: 26
- Bridges : 97
- Locks: 0
Other Travel Posts in this Great Loop Travel Series:
- Florida ICW:
- Two Months in Ft. Pierce, Florida – Causeway Cove Marina, Tackling Boat Projects & Enjoying ‘City Life’
- Continuing North up the ICW – Boca Raton to Ft. Pierce & the MTOA Southern Rendezvous
- Leaving Miami in the Rear View – Heading North up the ICW!
- Leaving Miami and Resuming our Great Loop Cruising Season for 2018!
- Miami the Hard Way – Boat Haul Out, Repairs & Living On the Hard
- The Keys:
- South to the Keys:
- The Great Loop: South to the Keys (Part 1) – Ft. Myers to Naples
- The Great Loop: South to the Keys (Part 2) – Naples to Marco Island
- The Great Loop: South to the Keys (Part 3) – Cruising Ten Thousand Islands
- The Great Loop: South to the Keys (Part 4) – Everglades National Park – Little Shark River & Cape Sable
- Sometimes Nomads Need to Grow Some Barnacles (Two Months in Fort Myers)
- Starting the Great Loop – First Adventure: Punta Gorda, FL to Fort Myers, FL
View all our Great Loop Posts
on our new Interactive Map!
We’re still in New Smyrna Beach – a little coastal town we have grown quite smitten with. This being the off season, we were able to secure a monthly slip in walking distance to just about everything – which is exactly what we’ve needed to re-charge.
We’re getting into *gasp* routines. We even joined a gym.
Life is feeling more balanced.
We have a few videos we’ve put out in the past few weeks that haven’t made the blog yet if you haven’t caught them yet:
- Boat Cabinetry Remodeling Tour: TV Lift, Corner Desk, Kitchen | Bayliner 4788
- Finding Your Pace of RV or Cruising Travels
- What Training Does a Boating Newbie Need? – Hanging out with Ask Captain Chris
- So You Want to Buy a Boat? – Where to Start Looking & What is a Buyer’s Broker?
We have almost two weeks left on our time here, and then we’ll likely be continuing northward. How far north? We really don’t know yet.
Keep your eyes out – later this week we’ll be launching our brand new T-shirts! We’ll have a post out.