We woke this morning to cool temperatures (although not as cool as Saturday morning), and looked at the weather forcast. Our original plan was to head out this morning for Goose Pond Colony Marina, about 52 miles downstream near Scottsboro, AL, but the forcast for thunderstorms on Monday made me question that plan. After the ordeal we went through in the storm on Mobile Bay in March, I wasn't ready to tackle any more "scattered" thunderstorms! I made the decision to explore the area close to Hales Bar, and to be at the boat ramp at Nickajack Dam where our truck and trailer were, by lunchtime.
I had been wanting to give Abby some lessons on docking the boat, and the free time we had this morning was the perfect opportunity. After we all got dressed and had a bite for breakfast, Glenda took the camera and walked past the floating cabins to the end of that dock. I motored to an adjacent dock that was empty, and showed Abby and Dakota how to approach the dock slowly at about a 30 degree angle, then just before the bow hits the dock, put the engine in reverse and turn the wheel all the way to starboard, pulling the stern around and the boat parallel to the dock.
Abby tried it first, and performed like a salty old sea captain, putting the boat parallel with the dock and about a foot away - in a near perfect position for the first mate to step onto the dock and tie up! Dakota was a little nervous, but also did a great job, needing very little assistance from me. She put the little tug right up to the dock, making the fenders lightly kiss the dock bumper. Then Abby took another turn and made another near perfect docking. I couldn't help but think of how many times I had found myself either too far from the dock for Glenda to step out, or rammed the dock because I misjudged my speed or the wind. The girls showed me up with their perfect 3 for 3 score.
|Abby docked the boat like she'd been doing it all her life!!|
|One of the eagles we saw on three different days!|
I am posting this a week after our trip ended and apologize for the delay, which can be blamed on a combination of factors. First, the internet connection at Hales Bar Marina was down for some reason, and we could not post from there. When we arrived home Sunday night, we were greeted by 3 more grandchildren, who stayed with us through Monday (that was a total of 5). Then early Tuesday morning we went to Gulf Shores with 4 grandchildren and a dog, in two seperate vehicles! During the circus that resulted from trying get all the kids, suitcases, food and such in the car and truck, I left my packed up computer and camera sitting in the floor of my office. Without the computer, of course, I had no way to make the final posts to the blog. Thankfully we did not forget any of the kids, and they had a great time shrimping, boat riding, visiting the zoo and going to the beach.