Date: 18 Jan 97
From: Gene Gruender
Subject: Rainbow Chaser's departure

After months of waiting for broken ankles, Christmas and bad weather to pass, we're out of here! We had planned to take a series of short hops around the Gulf, traveling a day or two, then waiting for a weather window, then do it again, probably mostly in the intercoastal Waterway. In watching the weather, it just opened up with a good window of 5 or 6 days, or at least as far out as we can see. We're going to just go for it, sail North from Rockport, Texas to Port O'Conner, turn right to the Gulf, then hang a left to Biloxi, Mississippi. If the weather turns against us, we'll take a left to the closest port and wait it out, but it looks like a go for the whole shot, probably 6 days.

As Nellie says in her letter, we are loaded. We look like "The Beverly Hillbillies go to Sea"! I never would have guessed all the junk we carried on this tub would have gotten stowed.

We'll be out of touch for nearly a week (if we're lucky and don't have to pull in anywhere) and will most likely have some tales to tell when we arrive. We plan to go the small craft harbor in Biloxi for a couple days, then head on around.

Gene Gruender
aboard Rainbow Chaser