Day 36 - N. Myrtle Beach, SC
06 May 2012 | Docked at Barefoot Landing, N. Myrtle Beach, SC
Sun 6 May 2012
Docked at Barefoot Landing, N. Myrtle Beach, SC
[photo: Diane finally at the beach for the second time.]
The thunderstorms came close but not too close last night; we did get very little bit of beneficial rain. Owing to our situation and looking at the tides, it was a very early start today - 0600. Diane was not happy, but she had been forewarned. As it was, I readied the boat in all respects except that she was needed to tend the bow line when we finally cast off near low tide.
The funny thing about these river sections is that when the tide ebbs (flows out to sea), there is a strong current that lasts a long time. When the tide floods, at least in the upper regions of the river, the beneficial current for someone traveling up stream is very small and short-lived. We hardly saw more than 3.7 knots of speed for the first several hours, and then gradually we surpassed 4 knots. Only at the very end of the journey did we see 5 knots. Our 31 mile run took just over 6 hours.
Today's run was interesting in that the first part was through beautiful trees. Their roots were visible at low tide and made many interesting patterns. Although the recommended track for the waterway brought you very close to the trees with 20 feet of water depth, I tried to stay at least far enough away that a fallen tree couldn't be lurking easily beneath the surface.
The second part of the run was in the man-made canal (or cut) that runs somewhat parallel to the beach in the Myrtle Beach area. It is not as pretty, but there is much development going on so there are many homes of all sizes and types to observe. In fact, there was one stretch where I saw more variety in the architectural styles than I ever noticed before.
We were passed close aboard by two gorgeous motor yachts of perhaps 80-90 feet in length; one was from Annapolis and one from Newport. At one point, you pass under an overhead tramway with cars that transport golfers from one side of the canal to the other at a height of about 70 feet, so that sailboats can pass under.
We are currently docked at Barefoot Landing on the long dock (S) side of the canal. The other side is a full-fledged marina, but we don't really need access to the showers or laundry and this is closer to the beach and other things we might want to visit. Clyde got a short walk ashore but was typically not too interested.
We just returned from a biking excursion to the beach. Even with our small tires and Duane's weight, we were able to ride along the hard-packed sand of the very wide beach. It was a mostly cloudy day, however, so not many people were there. Then again we have no idea what crowded is on this beach, part of the "Grand Strand." The way back was slightly different, but still entailed crossing the busy and not-so-friendly Rt. 17. That highway is not set up well for pedestrians or bikes and we had a few close calls.
Getting back to the Barefoot Landing (a large assemblage of shops, restaurants, attractions, and entertainment), we relaxed with an al fresco ale. Back on Diva Di, it was time for some boat chores and then supper - fresh shrimp with three vegetables. We have tried to cut down of the heavy starches so far and substitute more vegetables. It seems to be working to keep us feeling healthier.
Being alongside a long dock with other transient boaters means that people are strolling by often. We have had several enjoyable encounters with other cruisers, as well as some visiting tourists. The evening temperature is wonderful with low humidity and no bugs. There is a lot of light from the lanterns along the promenade, and the setting is far from natural, but pretty nonetheless.
Tomorrow, Diane will get to the beach in her suit for the second time this cruise.