Saturday, June 12, 2010
Bridge and glass smooth water above Georgetown SC
One of the few remaining pontoon bridges in the US - this one held everyone up for two hours on Friday!
Eagle in the nest
If there's a Golden in the area, I'll find him.
Today Saturday, rest day. Yesterday traveled 130 miles from Isle of Palms, SC outside Charleston to Southport, NC at the Cape Fear River Inlet. Left at 6:30 AM so should have been in Southport by early afternoon but not to be. One of the few pontoon bridges left on any major waterway could not open for another two-and-a-half hours due to unusually low tide. The heat index was about 98. An assortment of mostly recreational boats, cruisers and sailboats were waiting on both sides. Meanwhile I watched a thunderstorm build in my path. After the bridge opened, and about 10 miles from my destination, I waited for the storm to pass in front of me and finally made Southport by 4:00 - 10 hrs on the water. Taxied to Hampton Inn and ate at a nice Italian restaurant next door.
Tomorrow I'll depart across the Cape Fear River for Oriental, NC on the Neuse River 20 miles north of Beaufort, NC. Hope there are few delays as the heat index will be up again tomorrow - it is 98 here this afternoon. Beaufort is the place on the coastline of the U.S. where you stop going northeast and turn more to the north towards Norfolk, VA and the Chesapeake. At Oriental I will have a room near the marina so no taxi necessary - small pleasures on a trip like this.
Sure is a tragedy in Langely, Arkansas concerning the canyon that flooded overnight killing 18 and many still missing. Reminds me of the Big Thompson flood west of Boulder in 75 or 76 due to a thunderstorm that stayed in place for hours upstream. Mother nature never exactly repeats herself but we should be able to learn some things for future reference. Glad to hear that Abby Sunderland was found safe after her sailboat was found without its mast - hard to imagine 20-40 ft seas.
Speaking of waves, I will cross some pretty big water in the next week or two where the intercoastal links with larger rivers/lakes such as Pamlico Sound, Albermarle Sound, Neuse River, Chesapeake Bay, Delaware River and outside the New Jersey coast for a short distance to New York Harbor. Another reason to start early - wind forecasts for next few days remain light - dog days of summer I hope. An advantage of my boat in these cases is that when conditions are good I can take advantage of its 30-35 mph cruising speed. The big boats are exposed for much longer, often cruising at top speeds of 10 to 20. Not to worry - I have banked a lot of weather days due to good weather up to now so can sit out any unfavorable conditions. My phone is loaded with each day’s route weather and the Weather Channel is my nighttime favorite. So long for now - alarm at 4:30 and taxi to marina at 5:30.