3-15-2014: Anchored out in the beautiful, clear blue water by Manjack Cay, Abaco, Bahamas

Saturday, April 2, 2011

Tuesday, Wednesday,and Thursday March 29, 30 & 31, 2011

Tuesday - Jekyll Island to Anchorage-New Teakettle Creek:  We were traveling with Debrief and left at 10:30 in order to reach Mile 655 on the Mud River (which is supposed to be the worst shoaling on the ICW) at mid to high tide.  We went through St. Simons Sound and Buttermilk Sound; both a little rough, before we reached our anchorage at Mile 647.0 on New Teakettle Creek.  So far what we have seen of Georgia has not impressed us; a lot of swamps or marsh lands is what the chart says.  Our anchor held good in about 18' of water with a 7' tide but there wasn't a tree in sight for miles.  It was a windy day but no rain.  The wind died down after dark.


Wednesday - Anchorage Mile 647.0, New Teakettle Creek to Isle of Hope, GA:  We got going at 08:15 to try and beat the thunderstorms predicted for about 12:00.  We went through Sapelo Sound and went up Johnson Creek to North Newport River and into St. Catherine's Sound.  Both sounds were relatively smooth for a change.  The thunderstorms started at noon as predicted and we kept on going.  We broke one of our rules-Never travel in a thunderstorm.  We skipped our planned anchorage and kept going to Isle of Hope Marina, just south of Savannah, GA.  A very long day; 57 miles and 7 1/2 hours; we all were tired of traveling in the winds, rains, thunder and lightning.  The marina had a loaner car so we went to dinner at a local pub.  It was very good.

Thursday - We stayed another day and got the night for half price because of weather delay-good deal.  It was a rainy day so we got together with 2 other boaters and drove into Savannah and took a tour of the city.  It was one of the nicest things we have seen so far in Georgia.  It is a beautiful downtown area and worth seeing.  After getting back Sue and I took the car to a Super Walmart to stock up.

N31 58.835
W81 03.352

Debrief-43' North Pacific
Pilot House Trawler
John and Sue on our tour

Bob-has a Mainship 390 Trawler
and is doing the Loop by himself

Cathedral of St John the Baptist formed
in the late 18th century - Beautiful church

Downtown Savannah has all kinds
of horse drawn carriages
One of the many park statues in
downtown Savannah

CO's comments:  Rain, thunderstorms, poor visibility, narrow channels, shoaling, low water, lightning, and no windshield wipers.  We had to rely on the chart plotter, paper charts, and Debrief, who was in front of us.  It was a long hard day.  There was one bright spot.  A 50' Sea Ray Sundance asked to do a slow pass and then pulled along side and asked me to go to Channel 68.  He identified himself as Rusty Higgins working for Sea Ray.  He recognized our boat and said he put the gel coat on our hull back in 1989.  He gave me his address and said if we needed any information on our boat to contact him. After he did another slow pass by Debrief, he was out of sight in seconds-hate to pay that fuel bill!

Monday, March 28, 2011

March 23 thru 28, 2011

Wednesday-Titusville to Daytona Beach:  Had to wait for the fog to lift before leaving this AM.  Not much happening today.  Had one narrow opening for a bridge and a lot of no wake areas.  In the New Smyrna area there was real bad shoaling and the channel was very narrow and shallow both in and out of the channel at times.  We anchored at Mile 832.0 by Daytona Beach.  We had very, very, strong winds.  Ran the generator for dinner as it was too windy for the grill to start.  Went over charts and guidebooks looking for anchorages for the next few days-they are few and far between.

N29 11.751
W81 00.152

Thursday-Daytona Beach to St. Augustine:  Had a little trouble getting the anchor up this AM; at first we thought it was the wind but after checking it Keith said the tension was loose on the windless, probably did not get tighten enough after repairs were done.  This is a different part of Florida from that we have seen in the past.  Some areas there were houses real close together and very close to the water with no yard to speak of and others had great big houses and very plush yards; the nicest houses we have seen so far on the east coast.  We anchored out just north east of Bridge of the Lions, Mile 777.8, on the Matanzas River outside of St. Augustine, FL.  It was still very strong winds when we went to bed.

N29 53.736
W81 18.388

Friday-St. Augustine to Jacksonville:  We had a terrible night with the strong winds.  Keith was up at 03:00 to check on the anchor and all was good.  At 04:00 it was a different story.  It was so bad Keith stayed up on the bridge to keep an eye on the anchor.  The wind and current were throwing us all over the place.  He told me to sleep but I was up by 04:45 and helped him watch.  As soon as we had daylight we pulled up anchor and were on our way.  From listening to the boaters on the mooring balls, just on the north west side of the river, they did not have a good night either; at lease we didn't have to pay to be uncomfortable.  One guy's mooring ball broke and it was hitting his hull all night and he was not happy.  We got to Jacksonville, FL, Palm Cove Marina early.  No sooner did we get tied up and High Spirits came in and tied up behind us.  Keith washed the boat and Ruth, Wayne, and I walked to the grocery store.  It was a nice night and we sat on the dock for drinks til about 19:00.  We went to the marina restaurant for dinner and were back to the boat by 20:30.  We were both beat from the night before; Keith went to bed and I fell asleep watching TV and woke up at 23:00.

N30 17.423
W81 25.861

Saturday-Jacksonville to Fernandina Beach:  Got going early and only had 32 miles to go for the day.  Another quiet day.  We were prepared for a rough crossing where the ICW crossed the St. John's River but it went smooth.  But the rough crossing was at the Nassau River.  We stayed at the mooring balls at Fernandina Beach.  I had a hard time catching the pendent this time as it was very windy.  I am beginning to think it is always very windy on the east coast.  The 2nd time I finally caught it but it was so slimy and dirty and the ring weighted about 10#'s.  Our clip on our bridle was too small to go around the pendant ring.  By the time we got hooked up properly I was dirty and exhausted.  We ended up taking our clip off our line and just using the rope and making the bridle a little shorted.  It worked.

N30 40.238
W81 28.179

Sunday and Monday-Fernandina Beach to Jekyll Island, GA:  Waited for the tide to be right before leaving this AM.  Tides lately have been between 6 and 7 feet.  We traveled with John and Sue; Debrief, today.  It was a nice day with not as much wind.  We crossed the St. Mary's River (Cumberland Sound) into Georgia about 10:10.  Between Miles 711 and 708 is the Navy's Kings Bay Submarine Base, a restricted area with very confusing markers.  If it weren't for John we might have missed the turn and gone in the restricted area.  We saw wild horses on the Little Cumberland Island and we also saw a Sea Ray that went hard a ground and was waiting for BoatUS.  Glad it wasn't us.  We crossed St. Andrews Sound and it was pretty rough for a while; about 3 to 4 feet seas; we were in a rising tide.  We then went right into Jekyll Creek and to our marina; Jekyll Harbor.  Again, it was very windy going into the docks.  We made it OK but John and Sue had a little mishap.  They made him parallel park his boat in the strong winds and a small slot; he hit another boat; no damage to the other boat but they had some torn screens and a dented pole.  Had docktails and went to dinner at the little restaurant here at the marina; we were not impressed.  Had thunderstorms this afternoon, during the night, and on and off on Monday.  Decided to stay over an extra day to get caught up on things.

CO's comments:  Anchors - We have a 44 pound Shark Anchor that has held us firmly in 18 to 30 mph gusts, currents averaging 5 mph, and with overnight shifts in winds up to 90 degrees.  It must be noted that all we use is heavy chain rode which adds considerable weight in securing the anchor.  The further south that we have gone and the further east and north that we are going now, the more inconsiderate boater are and we have been told that it get worse the further north you go on the east coast.

N31 02.710
W81 25.363

A lot of houses right on the ICW
Bridge of the Lions at St. Augustine

St. Augustine sunset
Wedding party at St. Augustine, FL

Half of the day there is no water under boats
Mile 725 ICW-very long docks

Fernandina Beach Mooring Field
Fernandina Beach anchorage

Wild Horses at Little Cumberland Island
Dayton Beach anchorage

Haulover Bridge in ICW, Mile 869.2
Kim Jo III at Titusville, FL