The Continuing
of the Sterling Lady
Finally, after too many weeks a shore, we are south bound from Key Largo for a  weekend in Marathon at boot Key.
ON the trip down , large flocks of Cormorants and laughing gulls where just sitting on the water, not feeding , just sitting?

Sorry about the lack of pictures from this trip , but the ol I phone photos just don't cut it.
$200 Harbor Freight inverter---->
<--1800 watt coffe maker
AFter pricing inverters at west marine, and harbor freight,  I installed the 2000 watt 4000 watt surge inverter for the coffee machine. Works great, and save me about 50% over West Marine.
The coffe machine doesn't know the dif.
Full Moon over Boot Key
Headed back to Key Largo, a long but pretty day but chilly and windy, arrived in time for.....
The  Best Ever Key Largo Blackwater Sound

We  were only a few hundred feet from the fireworks barge!
Ipad on the Aft deck.Got a drink in my hand, butt on the boat and my feet  on a deck .. life is good to me!

Sunrise on the mooring field.
Living and working in Key Largo, Fl ,
In the winter months, our $ea$on,
What does one do?

One makes his own Brunello Wine, that's what.

Costs about $5 a bottle, and tastes much better than over the counter wines, as it has less sulphate's for preservatives, and more importantly,

Helps me stock the boat for the next years trips!

Next time you see the Sterling Lady, stop on by for a taste!
Ran by this very unusual, and probably very fuel efficient boat up in Stuart, Fl.  on the St. Lucie River
So here's another "helful Hint," from the ever frugal Capt. Sterling.
<<------These "marine" faucet from West Marine, $129 each !
These faucets from Home Depo, $19 ----->>>>
Twas a No Brainer,,
the water does not know the diff, but I do $$$$$!
  <------    And for the Only in the Keys dept...
There is a cut, down in Tavernier, called "Toilet Seat"
The chanel is lined with it's namsake. Well worth a side trip if you in the area of Tavernier Creek.
I downloaded the Garmin Bluechart app for my Ipad, and for $49 got ALL the charts in the USA ! Even the inland water ways, PLUS, with this program you can upload all the Active Captain points (
This is a magnificent program!
The charts are better than on my GPS, includes ties, currents, and plotting.
<a href="">Quicktime Required</a>
Quicktime Required
One of the GREAT things about living in the Keys, we don't have winter.
Here we are in February,
Watching outside movies at the Caribean Club, on Blackwater sound, while the dinner paddle wheel boat Island Time cruises by.
This is the Lady's new Winter home,

Marcy's house in Key Largo, mile marker 106.
And in the "Only in the Keys" department,
8:20 am, Key Largo, Walgreens Pharmacy dept, CLOSED,
Liquor Store OPEN!!
Got our priority's in the right place!
I had to go out and buy one of these, because I went out and bought...
One of these!!!
A 2008 Bayliner Discovery 246!!!

25 ft. long, 8 ft. 6 inches wide, with a trailer, and has most everything one could want on a trailerable cruiser.
Lots of room, dinette,galley, head, hot and cold running water, ac, stereo,microwave, shower, and the bow and dinette make a large sleeping area.
We did a sea trial, found some fixable problems, negotiated a lower price, and
bought a boat.

On our maiden voyage, we launched at the St. Lucie Lock boat ramp.

With my Senior card, Dockage, with boat ramp, and truck and trailer storage is $12 a day, can't beat that.

The boat handles quite well for only 25 ft.
cruises at 20 knots at nearly 3 miles per gallon hour, witch is , compared to my other trawler, incredible.!

No, I am not getting rid of the 38 trawler , just want to go back to the Erie, and points north, and not take 2 months to get there.

This is a viable solution.

If you haven't seen a 246 discovery, take a look at one,
Pretty impressive, even though it is a Bayliner.

As with all boats, it's  a learning process.

Putting the boat , which weight in at about 7,000 lbs, can be a bit tricky.

Good news is my truck, a Nissan Titan, will pull the boat .
It pulled the boat up the ramp and out.
On the roads, it kept up with traffic, abiet slower to get up to speed.

Haven't  tried the highway yet, but I expect to cruise the turnpike at about  65 mph.
And now I will show you the interior of this 25 ft. boat.
Keep in mind 25 ft long, 8 ft 6 inches wide , trailerable
BTW,,,I stole these pictures from the Bayliner site.They are much better than I could have done anywayz.
The Dinette will fold into a bed. The galley has single burner electric and alcohol stove, sink with hot and cold water, Microwave (behind the door with the silver round knob) and 12 volt 110 frig.
The Head , is small but usable, includes head of course, sink, hot and cold H2O plus a shower, and shower sump.
The boat has dozens of features, found on much larger boats. A high water alarm, GPS, anchor wench,, stereo controls both at the helm and in the salon, full instrumentation, and a good view.
The helm seats are adjustable, and back to back with storage....
The aft deck features a fold up seat, with a removable table for dinning.
The bow has an anchor locker and windlass, small but efficient! and a remote spot lite.
I know it's not a  "Pocket" Trawler, but it does the same thing for a lot less money.
Doing some "test" running on the St. Lucie River.
This is the Admiral and her daughter at 20 knots!
Took a run UP the north fork of the St. Johns river, it kept getting narrower and smaller and lower, but still
had channel markers.

BTW, at 22 mph the boat gets right at 3 miles per gallon.
Soz when you see the Sterling Lady, either large or small, on the Highways or the waterways,  tis I.
Call on the VHF or phone for instant Happy Hourz!!
Doing the first "road trip" this weekend to Tampa.
I used reflective Lettering on the boat name and port.
Helps me sleep easier at anchor.
This picture was tacken with a flash , no lights were on.
Hook up, ready to go on our first over the road trip, Stuart to Tampa Florida.

5 and a half hours later, a tank of fuel ($80) and at 8 miles to the gallon, we have arrived at tampa.
Lessons learned,
1. The truck will do the job, but a bigger more powerful truck would be better
2.Start looking for fuel at a half tank
3.Get extentions for the side mirrors
<---The Admiral
Another only in the keys Dept.
The Last Chance bar now offers INSIDE TOILETS! Wow!!
Double click here to add text.

The Plan A was to leave Key Largo today, and start our treck up to Stuart on the Sterling Lady trawler....

as you can see the weather changed out plans.
Hoping to get out tomorrow.
Unbelieably, Key West got 4 inches of rain, and Miami got 10 inches, both records!

Taking the Trawler to Stuart for a few months , then putting her on the hard in Indian town for hurricane season.
Good news and Bad News..

Yes putting your lines in a chlothes washer will clean them up,

Bad news...
This is four lines, really really twisted together@! Took me 30 minutes to untwist these lines!
Also, we get to leave on the trawler for Stuart  today, forcast is great!
Gibers and Jewfish Creek , dead ahead.
The Tiki Bar at Gilbers, probably the worlds largest, and for sure makes the most money on Sunday of any Tiki Bar!
In the Clear Warm waters of Card Sound, a pod of 9 dolphins came to play in our wake.
Tonite we stayed at Homestead Bayfront Marina, had dinner at the La Playa Grill, on the property.
Did a long day, ran up to Hollywood City Marina, secure, fairly priced, nice. Close to lots to do.
On Hollyood Beach Boardwalk, many bars , Many shops, lots to see ad do.
Our Night View from the Hollywood Docks, Arn't I phone cameras great!
Today will be one of those Easy days, an inside 5 mile run from Hollywood to Las Olas Marina, Ft. Lauderdale.
Being May, a lot of the Mega Yachts are still here. They usually have to be outa here for hurricane season.
The aft deck View from our slip at Las Olas Marina, right by the Guy Harvey painting on the Las Olas bridge.
This marina is reletivly inexpensive, right down town, near the beach, the boardwalk, and most importanly, the Water Taxi!
Great Ft. Lauderdale stop!!!
After a day on the Water Taxi, we stoped at Las Olas, where all the "shopping" is.

When I say "shopping", I mean a place were you need $1,000 just to browse. Crazy expensive. No one on the water taxi came back with a shopping bag in hand, they bought NOTHING also!
Las Olas Marina at night.