Day One: Key West to Provincetown

Here’s a short video about day one.

It’s kind of embarrasing to tell you this, but the bottom of our boat was very much in need of cleaning and I didn’t feel like getting in the water to check it before we left. Our bottom paint is already two years old, which is at the end of it’s useful life, so to say. I last cleaned it about three months ago, I think. I REALLY should have checked it before we left. It was so encrusted with barnacles down there that our fancy folding propellers wouldn’t open up all the way in forward or reverse! So we were significantly slowed down today, by a knot or two, which cut about 8-16 nm off of our distance travelled. We didn’t get to our expected anchorage. We stopped early to clean the bottom, about three hours before sunset.

I quickly put on my mask and fins and started scraping the barnacles off the hull with one of the 8 inch drywall knives while Lindsay dug out the buried dive equipment for both of us. It was so thick in places it looked like brown astroturf! Once Lindsay dove in with her scuba gear on and started scraping, I realized how slowly the whole process was going, and my arms were getting so tired of scraping I was switching hands every minute or so. Underwater it sounded like both of us scraping a heavy coat of snow and ice off of a car’s windows. We were really attacking it with force.

Then Lindsay comes to the surface and asks me to get her some gloves, she had cut her fingers and knuckles on the sharp barnacles. So I take off my fins and climb on board to get her gloves and my dive gear just to notice I’ve cut my knuckles as well. My hand is dripping blood on the deck so I just keep wiping it on my board shorts to keep it from staining the fiberglass. I quickly got my gear on and jumped back in to continue the cleaning process. My arms got used to it and stopped aching. We both kept going without a break until we drained our air tanks over the course of TWO HOURS. The bottom is now clean and the propellers open fully in forward and reverse directions. Dinner is going to be well deserved today, and Neosporin will be needed just before bed.

This is surely going to make us go faster tomorrow! I wonder what else I forgot to check.