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Awesome Trip to the Lower Keys.....

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Old 10-08-2011, 10:38 AM
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Default Awesome Trip to the Lower Keys.....

Spent last week down south popping the cherry on my 24' Sonic relic after a 2 yr restoration.
Probably the best part of the trip was finding a new place to stay.
Bay View Inn (http://www.bayviewinn.com/index.html) @ mile marker 63 was the bomb!
Small motel on a tiny island. Approx. 10 rooms on the water plus at least one duplex down the street. (walking distance)
The place has it's own ramp, docks at your door step, gas, a store w/everything you need for your stay (w/o raping you on price), pool, beach, tiki bar (w/cable TV!), protected harbor etc. Rooms also had full kitchen which saves a ton on a trip like this. They also provided 4 grills (gas, charcoal, smoker and one w/bricks) for your use. Is a Lobster fishing business about 50 yds away that runs out of same harbor and sell live catch out the front door.

Also allows dogs which the deal breaker on most places for us since we had them w/us this trip.
The Mrs (and I) can't wait to go back.
Only issue I see is that the ramp and docks probably limit you to about 30'. My rig is about that over all and I had to drop both trailer wheels off the end of the ramp (as most there did w/fair sized boats), but it only drops about 4" and drops quick from there to get you into deep water.
Once I figured this out I had zero issue in/out.
The first few days we were there, the weather was the nicest I've ever seen it in the Keys! The harbor is at least 10' deep and you could see a dime to the bottom.
Ever day we were there, two giant sea turtles swam through the harbor.
We stumbled on the place after spending the first night in the cuddy, on the trailer. Suckered the Mrs into getting polluted at one of our favorite stops and then sleeping in the parking lot to save a $100. (did this all the time at Lake Erie if the weather was bad)
Bad part was that there was no breeze through the bow hatches and it never cooled off. We woke up in a pool of sweat (after the alcohol wore off) @ 3:00 A.M.!
We climbed in the truck and headed south w/the A.C. cranked.
Ended up in a Publix parking lot in Marathon @ 4:30 where I let Cheryl sleep in the truck/A.C. while I sat in a lawn chair waiting on my 12 volt coffee pot to brew a pot of black gold while plugged into the boat
Killed a bottle of Quervo and emptied my cooler at the tiki bar w/new friends the 1st night there. One guys wife wouldn't talk to me the rest of the time there

Watched the Gators get their butts kicked at our tiki bar Saturday night.

We did one day trip down to a place called Boondocks just bellow Big Pine. The coolest putt putt course I've ever seen (w/a bar!) and a killer tiki bar/restaurant w/killer food/drinks, live music etc.(http://boondocksus.com/)

Anyhow, thought some of you guys/gals might be interested for future trips south. An easy day trip to Key West from their also. Is bayside but right beside a bridge to get to the Atlantic.



Quervo boy swimming w/one of the giant sea turtles.


View from our room.


Tiki bar.


Mandatory first stop/shot of any Keys trip.


We watched this cloud formation put on an amazing lighning show for nearly an hour one night.


Boondocks.

Last edited by Twin O/B Sonic; 10-08-2011 at 10:47 AM.
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Old 10-08-2011, 10:54 AM
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Cool place. Sounds like a fun trip!
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Old 10-08-2011, 11:14 AM
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Nice trip and the pictures look great. I love boating in the Key's. Always cool to find a "new" old spot.

Bob
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Old 10-08-2011, 11:21 AM
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you guys are really giving me the push to go there...

I have to go there one day...
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Old 10-08-2011, 11:43 AM
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Nice trip and the pictures look great. I love boating in the Key's. Always cool to find a "new" old spot.

Bob
Planned on spending the entire time playing w/the boat but had so much fun doing day trips that we probably did more of that.
First stop was of course Gilberts and then the Caribbean Club.

We also love Hog Heaven in Islamoroda and drove their Saturday to watch the Mrs's OSU game.
Ocean View is another favorite and where we spent the night on the trailer.

One issue w/a lot of the places was dockage and ramp access especially with some of the bigger boats you guys have. I pulled in one place at 5:30 A.M. (before they were open) looking for a room and didn't think I would get out.
Checked another that looked promising but their ramp was through the trailer park behind their hotel. All 1 lane roads.
I walked it and thought I "might" be able to make it....but elected to pass.
Another issue was finding a place w/deep water. A lot of them on the Atlantic side are almost dry docks at low tide.
Our harbor was perfect but navigating through the area was a bit intimidating. Between sand bars every where, crab trap floats every 10', trying to focus on the tiny print on my GPS in direct sun light and on my chart meant taking off my sun glasses and installing reading glasses. This was next to impossible to do at speed w/the floats everywhere.
I'm getting a more detailed chip for my GPS and better charts and planning the trip better before nest time down.

Next trip I want to do more exploring and find a small, secluded Key where we can have our own private Idaho. Thousands of them down there. Just need one w/a beach and deep enough water to get to it.

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Old 10-08-2011, 01:15 PM
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Looks like tremendous fun!!
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Old 10-08-2011, 02:47 PM
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Looks like you guys had a great time!!! Boat looks Great
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Old 10-08-2011, 06:21 PM
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Thanks Gary, we may have to go there too
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Old 10-08-2011, 06:36 PM
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Great info, always like to find new places. I always wanted to travel around with a bass boat, something simple to pop in and out. Is the water there friendly towards boats like that? I know some people have them in places like Tampa and Clearwater.
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Old 10-08-2011, 08:13 PM
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Thanks Gary, we may have to go there too
killer. You guys would love it.

Vsteve, absolutely. The lobster boats running out of the same harbor were all in the 30' range. A matter of knowing the water.
I screwed up when one of their guys came over to admire our boat. Should have leaned on him for local navigation info.
Next trip there will be way different.
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