11/14/2007, Beaufort, NC
On our 1st day on the ICW, we went under probably 15 bridges (some opened and some didn't have to) and 1 lock. The lock was a disappointment- the water only changed 6" we didn't even realize anything happened. The bridges were fairly easy because just out of pure luck we managed to time them fairly well so that we didn'thave to wait morethan ~10 min or so. The ICW so far has been very pretty but surprisingly remote until we got down to Beaufort. You are essentially going through swamp. Poor Giz must have been quite the sight seeing him and Tim standing on ~2' of swamp grass while trying to get him to go to the bathroom. There were a couple of mornings or evenings when there just was no place to take him. I've managed to get him to pee one other time on the boat and at least this time he didn't look mortified but he will not go if he can see land. We crossed the Albermarle Sound and the PamlicoRiver uneventfully, they supposedly can get quite nasty in a blow, passed the cruise ship that ran itself aground. Each night we anchored either in a side creek or right on the side of teh ICW because there was no place else to go!
We left Hampton on the 9th and gotto Beaufort this am.Somedays we hustled to get to a decent anchorage by night and somedays we took it easy. We'll stay in Beaufort for a couple of days. Then we'll probably spend 1 night at Lookout Bight where you're supposed to be able to see the turtles and then go out into the ocean from here and head straight for Cape Fear (that should take us ~20 hours).
I'll write more tomorrow w/ some more details
11/08/2007, Still in Hampton, VA
Well, we almost made it today. Dinghy was hoisted up, turned on the engines and were ready to head out and then we had a minor engine ignition problem so we're here hopefully just one more day!! It turns out thaqt we wouldn't have been able to make it too far anyway because the cruise ship that goes up and down the ICW got grounded at Pungo Bay so the ICW was closed but that of course happened after we had tried and failed to leave.
The plan is to wakeup at 6am tomorrow, slide over to the harbor master to fill up our water tanks and then head out at 0dark 30. At least that's the plan. The beauty of things are that since I no longer wear a watch and have absolutely no idea what day of teh week it is or even the date itself, I have absolutely no clue as to how many days we've actually been here.
On the positive side, today I was able to finally stow away all of our stuff, so we no longer have tubs lyingall over the place and since the harbormaster has free dumpsters, I think we've just about filled it up all by ourselves! Hopefully I'll be able to remember where I've got everything stashed and a few things accidently fell into one bottomless pit we call our bilge. I can't reach to fish it out so I guess the next time I reorganize, I'll try to remember to dig it out.
This is a pix of our cockpit enclosure. It's been great on these chilly days. It acts as a little greenhouse during the day and has been wonderful.Will write from our next destination (hopefully).
11/07/2007, Still in Hampton, VA
Well, we're still enjoying ourselves but, by our choosing we are still in Hampton. It's just so easy here and teh harbormaster is great. Hot showers are $1, found the laundromat today which was w/in a reasonable walking distance, went back to the grocery store (2nd time in 2days) and Tim went offon his bike to find the h/w store and an automotive store.
For those non-cruisers, Velco Beach refersto Vero Beach, FL where cruisers come for a short time and wind up never leaving. However forus,I think the thing pushing us on is going to be the weather. There is a frost warning for tonight although during the day it has been warming up into the lower 60s.I'm anxious to actually hit the ICW. It seems exciting although I'm sure after the 1st 2 hours that will turn out to be hohum and then after a couple of weeksof it I'm sure we'll be anxious to get out.
Regardless, I think we're going to try to leave tomorrow although this has been a welcome respite after the mad and crazy whirlwind our lives havebeen forthe last 2 years.
Take care and will writewhen I can.