At 0735 we hauled anchor and were on our way through Miami Harbor and up the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. There are many bridges crossing from the mainland to the barrier islands. Some are fixed and some will open. We had checked before to find that the fixed bridges along this stretch were all 21 feet or more in vertical height and those that were not had schedules for opening. Today we went under eleven bridges and had to open two. As the two we had to open had scheduled opening times we adjusted our speed in order to arrive just in time. It all worked well.
At one point we rounded a turn and it looked like the water was very shallow just ahead even though we were in the middle of the marked channel. I wanted to go to port but there was another boat coming through that section. I crowded the boat as comfortably as I could but still felt the keel touch bottom. As I could see the water got deeper just a few feet further ahead I opened the throttle just enough to power through the sandy bottom and get back into deep enough water. Close call.
Miami harbor was loaded with very large private yachts. Far more than I would have imagined and certainly more than we have ever seen in one place before – perhaps even more than on the French Riviera. They were everywhere! Between them and the incredible mansions along the AICW it became difficult to take in the degree of wealth represented in this small area. Sometimes the yachts and mansions went hand in hand.
We arrived at Las Olas Marina by 1230 and pulled into slip E42. After registering and settling in we decided to walk across the barrier island to the ocean beach. Las Olas Marina is in Fort Lauderdale. We had no idea we had arrived during “Spring Break”. Yup! College kids everywhere, traffic jams and crowded sidewalks. Vicki thought perhaps there was more flesh on display than was necessary but there certainly was a lot of posing and posturing going on.
After walking the beachfront in two directions we decided to eat at Bubba Gumps as their menu had items we both liked. It turns out our choices were excellent and we had a memorable meal.
We returned to the boat, doing a little shopping along the way and then went to the marina boaters lounge to watch TV for the first time in awhile. We decided we had not missed much as what was available to watch was mostly the same as in the past. We soon got tired of watching the interminable commercials and returned to the boat.