Nov 04

Saturday Offshore Racing Photos from the Destin World Championships

Light winds and cool weather combined for a great day of racing during today’s Destin World Championship Offshore races. After a 2 hour delay to replace our port engine raw water pump, we motored out to Turn 5 south of Henderson Beach State Park to watch the races and act as a volunteer Patrol Boat guarding the race course from spectator encroachment. Please click on the photo thumbnail to browse our photos from today. Besides the race boats, we captured quite a few spectator boats and of course the Angel Flight helicopters.

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Oct 17

Offshore Racing Returns to Destin on October 29th!

The Offshore Super Series returns to Destin for their 2nd annual Destin World Cup races on October 29th. The Race Village this year will be at the Destin Commons with racing to occur along the Destin waterfront east of the pass similar to last year. Official Race information can be found at DestinWorldCup.com.

Oct 16

Monster 844lb Mako Shark Caught in the Destin Fishing Rodeo on Sunday

Nothing like a 844lb Shark to make your day when fishing. This has been a banner year for large sharks along the Emerald Coast. The story has been picked up by the national media.

Quoting the Kansas City Star:

Bruner and his fishing buddies were on a 52-foot charter boat with Capt. Robert Hill, about 70 miles southwest of this beach city in the Florida Panhandle.

The fishermen first noticed the big mako because it kept eating grouper and scamp they had hooked.

“It was like ‘Jaws,’” Hill said.

Hill hooked a two-foot amberine on as bait and tossed it out. The shark eventually hit it.

After the long fight, the shark was gaffed and eventually gave up after its tail was roped. But even then, the men could not get the big shark in the boat. They tied it to the stern with three ropes and made the four-hour trip back to land.

Be sure to link through to the article for more pictures.

Sep 17

Spectacular Semptember Evenings on the Gulf Coast Intercoastal Waterway

While the traditional North American boating season runs from Memorial Day to Labor Day, September and October mark one of our favorite times on the Gulf Coast. Daytime temperatures are ‘moderating’ into the mid-80′s and nighttime lows on the water finally get to the low 70′s.

When the weather so beckons, we usually find ourselves running down to Spectre Island, a small island in Santa Rosa Sound on the Gulf Intercoastal Waterway about 5 miles west of Fort Walton Beach. Spectre offers a deep water harbor off the ICW and quiet beaches for the kids. Evening during the summer, we usually have the island to ourselves if we go out during the week. Click on the photo to see some highlight pictures from one of our trips out.

Sep 13

New Boating Maps and Guides at EarthNC.com

Our partner website EarthNC.com has been scouring the web for user-generated Google My Maps of interest to boaters. They’ve started posting their finds in their ‘Featured Maps‘ section. Even better, with EarthNC’s new TakItWithMe My Maps Embedding Tool you can paste any My Map on your own website with easy links to Google Earth, a large map, and even download to GPS in some cases (see our example below). Continue reading

Aug 30

Aerial Video of Destin Pass Boating Accident after Emerald Coast Poker Run

We missed the Emerald Coast Poker Run this year due to conflicting schedules with the Offshore Super Series powerboat races over in Orange Beach. By most accounts the poker run was a big success this year, but it was tempered by an accident in Destin Pass during aerial filming (not part of the official event). Fortunately no one was killed, but some of the passengers did receive major injuries.

The accident victims were gracious enough to release the video of the accident to help promote boating safety. Continue reading

Aug 17

Everyone Boat Safe this Weekend!

IMG_1619It’s a busy weekend for boating from Orange Beach to Destin along the Gulf Coast. We’re heading over to Big Lagoon State park for the weekend to camp and cover the Offshore Super Series Thunder on the Gulf Races. Look for race photos and coverage on DestinSharks early next week.

This weekend is also the weekend for the Emerald Coast Poker Run – one of the largest such events in the world. If history is any guide, over 400 boats will ply the waters between Destin and Pensacola to get their cards.

We wish everyone a great time on the water – boat safe, sober, and hydrated!

Jul 20

Troubleshooting Mercruiser 4.3L Fuel Pump Problems

Posting has been a bit slow on DestinSharks due to our continued development of our EarthNC Marine Charts for Google Earth project and some down time on our Regal 2760. Our Regal is powered by twin Mercruiser 4.3L engines which have the distinction of being the only engines in the Mercruiser line with electric fuel pumps.

Anyone who has owned boats can tell you that mechanical problems are a fact of life (unless your boat is a canoe or kayak) and our Regal is no different. This time, it was the starboard engine which quit and would not restart during our last outing in early July. Fortunately, we were only a 1/2 mile from our slip (rather than the 20 miles away we had been earlier in the day) so we didn’t have far to go before the troubleshooting began.

Continue reading

Jun 17

Weekend Cruising on Choctawhatchee Bay

Great weather prevailed this weekend as we explored east into Choctawhatchee Bay to Hogtown Bayou and then relaxed at Crab Island on the return to Fort Walton Beach. Besides stretching the legs on our Regal 2760, we were also collecting up a host of a new waterway photos to use with our EarthNC Marine Charts for Google Earth.