We try to get back to Anacortes a couple of times during the winter to check our dock lines, make sure everything else is okay, and run the engine, genset, and other systems. Since it had been almost two months since we left the boat in early October, we were starting to look for an opportunity to head back to Anacortes before winter weather sets in and travel becomes more difficult. So, when we had some settled weather recently, we decided it was a good time for a trip north.
Even though we have friends who are around the marina, it’s always better to be there ourselves to see first hand what’s going on. This time Jim made the trip by himself, as it’s so much easier when I stay home and we don’t have to close up the house and haul along our kitties. Travel for Jim’s drive—weather, road conditions, and traffic—was good both on the way up and back. Which is good, since the drive takes 8 to 9 hours each way.
We were happy to find that things on the boat are looking good, and nothing else broke while Jim was running the various systems. Our Webasto heater worked great and kept the boat warm…important this time of the year! The weather was sunny and clear, but the clear skies resulted in cold nights and icy docks in the mornings. Construction of the roundabout at 22nd and R Avenue was still in progress, and some of the digging disrupted our BBX Wi-Fi connection, so Jim didn’t have any Internet service over Wi-Fi while he was there. Cell service filled in the gap.
In addition to checking up on the boat, Jim had a couple of small projects he wanted to take care of while he was there.
The first project was to finish the installation of the new house batteries. For those of you who have been following our blog, you may remember that Jim made a trip to the boat last August to install new house batteries and re-wire the battery cables. We published this post on August 11 with that story. At that time, Jim came up short two red cables for the positive distribution system, and had to use black cables in order to finish the work. Since then, we have acquired the two red cables, and on this trip he installed the red cables in place of the temporary black ones. We feel better knowing the cables are the proper color for safety.
The second project had to do with Jim’s ham radio. He’s been trying off and on for the last three years to get his high frequency ham radio installed and working on Phoenix. Armed with a new antenna analyzer, Jim was able to get the antennas tuned. On the day he was testing, there was a lot of electronic noise on the radio. This may be local to the marina. We’ll have to wait to find out until we are able to get away from the dock.
Jim spent only a couple of days on the boat, but it was long enough to verify that everything is okay. Fortunately, he made it back to Bend before this recent extreme cold snap.