WE arrived at Rebel Marina, Hampton Roads VA, a very friendly place, Tuesday late afternoon, the 16th. The ride through the ICW to Norfolk was beautiful again but vegetation changes definitely noticed…thicker foliage. We made the bridges schedules with faster speed and clock watching! The closer we got to Portsmouth VA below Norfolk, we saw more pleasure craft trying to meet their schedules as well. We went through our last lock , this time handing our lines instead of taking theirs.
Norfolk was an amazing array of cargo ships, naval ships and huge tugs. I filled my camera allotment twice, but will show more of them during this blog. We had to remain from the 16-18 th at Rebel in order to fix an alternator issue and then hunt down an O ring using the complimentary marina car WITH NO AIR CONDITIONING! We were in 92plus through highways with windows wide open! A real culture shock after three weeks of laid back heat or not but on water!
Hopefully we can begin our Chesapeake journey tomorrow and aim towards the Solomans.
We have met different boaters from other times checking radio calls together so it was fun to meet face to face here! Australians and Scottish alike make for great dinner or 5:00 mates! Hope we meet again in our home waters!
We arrived at Coinjock NC by 4:00 this afternoon. No storms which was amazing because we are in the heat wave of 98 degrees right now! We are almost in Virginia! Will be at Norfolk tomorrow. We passed through CALM waters again into canal type driving. Then crossed over the largest body of water Albermele Sound. I liken it all to Block Islan…wink wink… But the trip today was like a perfect day heading to Block for sure. The heat is oppressive so we drink lots of water and change off piloting to break each other! While in the sound, off in the distance, we spotted a coast guard helicopter hovering over a boat. We saw them rescue what we thought was two people from the water…wish we could find out the story. It was a distance away but could see the activity with our trusty binoculars. Off to a cool restaurant now … Everyone on the dock is there! The owners must pray for heat waves!
We left Oriental Marina at noon today, a later start than desired as Duncan had to clean the strainers. Last night at 2AM the air conditioning stopped in the aft cabin. He came back to bed at 4AM after removing and cleaning the strainer, but he got the air back on! He decided that all needed attention for preventative care which was a great idea.
The sky was beautiful and the water was flat which made for 2/3rds of a totally enjoyable day. When we got to Pamlico Sound , a body of water similar in size to Block Island Sound, the winds picked up and a ferocious thunder storm hit us. Now we know what the red in radar is! The winds were 50+ and seas total white caps and rough! We have never experienced such a strong storm on the water!
Fortunately the marina was close enough to make it before the second storm passed and the black skies making our tie up scary never hit us directly again! This time the storm went around us.
Needing a good break, we walked a block to the only restaurant opened in town! The couple at the table next to us happened to be on the boat docked behind us at the marina! Having weathered these storms together, we joined tables and had great conversations! Looks like they have much knowledge of the Chesapeake coming up…so we will call for local knowledge as needed!
Bucket List proved to be very dependable during our time passing through today. Gives us much confidence that she is seaworthy and safe!
As we pulled out of Oriental at noon a large sailboat pulled in. They had spent the winter in the Bahamas and needed to be in Maine for a fathers’ Memorial Service in July. We will make it back a week before them…guess 6 degrees of separation follows us all the days! My dad would have loved this trip and we remark a lot how much fun it would have been to call him along the way. Sometimes I wonder if he is peaking through those holes in the clouds giving us a needed thumbs up!
This was not a great photographed day, but do have a few for a better word picture!
We made it to Oriental, NC…a lovely day after a frustrating mechanical delay in Morehead City. After a long stretch on canal type cruising, we had the longest stretch in what seemed like Long Island Sound to us, but 12 ft debth max! Pamlico Sound is a sailers haven most likely as it is large and deep enough. We passed the most number of sail boaters today than previously. The harbor is quaint , with a pool and great people running it. The story is that a lot of folks came in their boats and decided to stay permanently! We dare say we did not “do town” but mainly because there wasn’t time to ready the boat and ourselves for the evening after arriving and settling by 6:00ish. It was beastly hot and had to swim to chill a bit. The Marina had a wonderful band on the grounds so we thoroughly enjoyed their lifestyle for the evening!
From Georgetown, we successfully made it to Myrtle Beach Yacht Club. We discovered the Myrtle Beach gnats…those pesty wave runners who jump your waves and add tension to your ride! Most do not understand boating etiquette let alone safety, as a larger boat is not as quickly maneuvered as their little craft! But if we ignore them, we do outrun them! The gnats tend to run in packs…young and old. The scariest are those with 7-8 year olds flopping around in their joy ride!
We passed under Sunset Beach bridge leading to the beaches of several dear snow birds we have visited! The day was beautiful and we completed an 80+ mile run to Wrightsville beach,NC! We stayed at Seapath Yacht Club where our great friends, Kathy and Sandy live. I added their condo at the docks in photos. Unfortunately, they were on a trip…but thanks for the goody bag left with the dock master! Yum! With a courtesy car there, we could provision up and drive to restaurants. A GREAT stopping place!
June 12, yesterday, was another great ride day. The skies were black when we left at 7:35am but only a slight shower ensued. We caught the 8AM WB bridge opening! A large storm stayed off shore the entire day so we were blessed again to be able to push forward. We are OK with pushing this trip, because we have seen so many places we want to explore another time and need to keep our deadline. Everyday is like sitting under a big beach umbrella watching the beautiful scenery pass by! The ICW is one of our national wonders! Dredging is needed to keep it open especially in Georgia…but this could get political, so I will move on!
We arrived in Morehead City Friday evening in time to catch the parade of large craft finishing The Big Rock Marlin Tournament! It is one of the largest tournaments and is held yearly according to our friends! The dock was rowdy but we were too tired to care! Happy Saturday! Weekends are full of pleasure craft, traffic increases and we will post later about those gnats! Hopefully,they will not show up today…of course, I didn’t mention the kid dragging another kid on a tube fast who wanted to circle us to wave jump approaching Wrightsville Beach! I am talking in no wake areas too!!!! I got a high five wave though!
After a fight with the tide to leave Georgetown, we won! And wonderful dock mate from Holland came to help us. He had just sailed the Atlantic by sailboat with his wife and is headed to Boston. Very impressive! We left Georgetown after being on the boat all day yesterday because of rain, lightning and thunder. There’s always a lot to do anyway on the boat! I must admit I was disappointed because friends kept writing me about shops that were so cool there. Duncan was thrilled that I was on the boat helping him!
The ICW today was very flat beautiful scenery and wonderful cypress trees. We both felt like we were in a forest of nothing but Cyprus and it was beautiful. As we approached Myrtle Beach the homes became more impressive, much larger and there was more boating traffic. We made it to Myrtle Beach yacht club by 330, fueled up, Added water, pumped out and decided to have a very early dinner as we had skipped lunch. The sky looked a little threatening after we arrived however the any thunderstorm skirted around us and we had an afternoon without rain. The Tranquality of the ICW leaves us without any desire to party in town. What!?Edit
We are presently in Georgetown, South Carolina. Our intention was to leave this morning for Myrtle Beach; however, after Duncan checked the engine room he found a belt that needed to be replaced. We were blessed that nothing happened while we were underway. There is a great mechanic at this Marina and he has found any problems and is in the process of fixing them. The guidebook actually states “A visit to Georgetown certainly calls for at least a days layover, longer if you want to explore some of the outlying plantations.” Well it looks like we will be here today!
We walked into town last night and ate at a charming restaurant called Riverhouse. The Southern style of cooking is absolutely wonderful as you all know.The town reminds me of Bristol Rhode Island. The Main Street is full of adorable shopping with museums and a lot of great looking historical places to explore. We may have to do that this afternoon as most of the day is gone right now it looks like we’ll be spending another night here in
Georgetown. This is giving me a little time to catch up on the blog as after we left Beaufort South Carolina, I have not had a chance to post. When we left Beaufort for Charleston on Sunday we had a beautiful calm day and very calm seas.The ICW is usually very calm which is proving to be very nice. There were some fun looking picnics along the way by boaters -take note in the picture of the picnickers standing in the water waste high! As we approached Charleston the wind picked up blowing 15 to 20 knots and the traffic seem to pick up also. Most boaters were going very fast, I guess trying to get to their ports. Charleston Harbor was full of Sunday afternoon traffic. Fortunately there were no huge tankers or commercial traffic.
We made it to Charleston maritime marina around 6pm. We were quite far from downtown but we walked into town and ate at a recommended place.One of their specialties was stuffed hush puppies. Of course they were stuffed with crab and shrimp!
We left Charleston by 9AM with the destination of Georgetown South Carolina. I’m trying to learn how to caption the photos so will try to do that with the next ones. I guess we are off to explore Georgetown this afternoon! We are also back in the weather pattern of thunderstorms in the afternoon therefore even a late leaving of Georgetown might not make sense as we would most likely encounter thunder lightning etc. before we would make Myrtle Beach.We could possibly have to stop along the way anyway. With this being our first and only mechanical stop so far, I guess you would say this is good! We are having a great time still and plan to be back on the ICW tomorrow! EditEditEditEdit