Happy Easter/Welcome Home!!
16 April 2017 | Bath, NC
It's Easter Sunday, and we're up at 5:30 for a 6:00 departure. Robert helps NEMO with their lines while I make coffee.
There's enough light for us to ease out of our slip, into the White Oak River.
Is this the same river that we came into 12 hours ago??? This morning, it's calm, no whitecaps, light breeze. Still about 1.5 knots of current, but our departure went much more smoothly than yesterday's arrival.
Shortly after we pass the Hwy 58 bridge, the sun comes up. It is a spectacular sunrise; very appropriate for Easter Sunday. Just proof that you don't need to be in a church to have a spiritual experience.
Around 7:30, we deploy the spinnaker. The wind is forecast to pick up mid morning, so we're hoping to gain some speed.
I pass the early morning hours listening to some meditative music on Pandora. Trying to unwind a bit from the stresses of this trip, and do a little reflection on the beauty of our life.
The wind picked up, as predicted. Steady 12-15, gusts 23. We are making 7.0 knots average, but the spinnaker needs adjustment often. This wind doesn't last but about an hour, then becomes a steady 10.
We arrive at the Neuse River around noon, and initially the waves are right on our beam, but things settle quickly, and we're on a nice run. There are lots of boats out sailing today!! It's a gorgeous day; cool and sunny!!
Lunch is ham sandwiches, chips and salsa, and cheese.
As we come into the Bay River, we douse the spinnaker. We're quickly gaining on a big barge, and it's makin' me a little anxious!
Robert passes the barge just as we enter Hoboken Cut. NEMO follows suit.
Once past it, we raise the jib, and we're back up to 7.5 knots!!
The Coast Guard boat is in the cut with their flashing blue lights on. They board the powerboat ahead of us. Not our turn today!!
We make great time in the Pamlico River. The wind is blow in' a steady 15. Gusts over 20.
Praying it's not blowin' like that in Bath Creek when it's time to dock.
We arrive at our friend , David's dock in Bath Creek around 6:00 pm. Our welcoming committee is my sister Connie, Her hubby Rick, and David, the owner of the skip . We ease into the slip, tie off with a lot of effort on everyone's behalf. Then we help NEMO tie up at the end of the dock.
Dinner is hot dogs, brats, baked beans, and stuffed jalapeños, compliments of Connie and Rick. Numerous libations all around to celebrate our safe arrival to Bath; one of our favorite places on earth. Here's to family, friends, and fellowship!! Life is good!!
The crew of SeaQuell and NEMO have travelled many, many miles together. We're tired, but thankful. It's been a great ride!!
Flying Into Swansboro
15 April 2017 | Swansboro, NC
April 15, 2017
We depart Carolina Beach State Park Marina at 7:30. We're waiting till after low tide. It's very skinny water in here.
NEMO churns up a little mud getting out, but we both make it thru.
The ICW is nice this time of day. Just the snowbirds and small fishing boats. We enjoy it while we can; we know it'll be short lived.
We start off slow; but after about an hour, catch some current, and we're making 7 knots. We have 3 drawbridges we'd like to make before 1 pm.
As the morning goes by, boat traffic increases; especially around Wrightsville Beach. It's still not too bad, though.
Lunch is tossed salad, cheese and crackers for Robert. Yogurt and granola for me. After lunch, the wind picks up a little so we raise the jib. It buys us a knot of speed!! WooHoo!!
We wave hello to our friends Terry and Debbie as we pass their house near Surf City. We drop the jib (can't go thru NC bridges with a sail up).
We make it to Surf City swing bridge for the 1 pm opening! What a cluster!!! The new flyover bridge is under construction, and traffic is backed up on the swing bridge as far as we can see. There are 4 boats trying to maintain station in a very small area, and power boats are zooming in and out; despite No Wake signs.
The bridge tender gets traffic cleared/opens the bridge, and we all get thru unscathed. It may take awhile for me to "de-pucker"!! Whew!! I think Robert even felt some pressure with that one, even though he'll never admit it. He's always as cool as a cucumber. Guess that makes me as hot as a habenero!!
Once we're thru the bridge and traffic clears a bit, we raise the jib. We 're back up to 7 knots quickly.
We wave at Debbie's brother, Mike , and wife Linda, as we'll pass their lovely home right on the ICW.
I do a little cooking as the afternoon passes. I'm making deviled eggs for my contribution to tonight's dinner. I also whip up a quick little tray of blue cheese stuffed olives, pepperocini, pickled beets, and artichoke hearts.
We arrive at Swansboro City Dock at 5:45. Of course,, the wind has picked up to 18 knots as we're docking. Never fails!! The river is rocking!! Whitecaps everywhere. WTH??! This was NOT in the forecast!!
We get in safely, then assist NEMO with their lines. Robert takes Maggie for a quick walk. I make myself a very strong cocktail.
We enjoy a delicious fish stew aboard NEMO for dinner. The wind continues to blow like stink-- steady 15 knots with gusts to 19. Sure hope this diminishes overnight.
We take a walk around the cute little town of Swansboro, and discuss our plans for tomorrow.
Gotta get up at the ACOD. Lots of ground to try and cover tomorrow. Only about 100 miles to Bath, NC.
A Very Busy Day
14 April 2017 | Carolina Beach, NC
We had a busy lay day yesterday at Osprey Marina. Robert worked all day , despite a very poor internet and cell coverage.
Maggie, Judy and I went for a couple of nice, long walks. Maggie loved being able to run off leash for a change. There is a big empty field close to the marina, and she explored every blade of grass in it!! There was also a field of goats, but she didn't pay one bit of attention to them.
I did some housekeeping, 2 loads of laundry, and a little cooking. Filled the water tank, and helped get the fuel tank topped off. Enjoyed the marina porch rocking chairs in the afternoon; reading and people watching.
We all went out to dinner at Scatori's, a wonderful little Italian restaurant. They will come to the marina, pick you up, take you to the restaurant, and return to the marina for $10. Our young driver was very nice; he even took us by the drugstore to get a prescription for Judy.
Upon return to the marina, we hit the head one last time ( never pass up a real, flushy toilet!!), and turn in our bathroom keys in the Dropbox. We're planning to leave at 6:25 am .
Friday, April 14, 2017
We depart the marina right on time. It's just getting light as we sneak out into the ICW.
All is quiet on the water this morning. Just a few ducks and geese out this early.
NEMO's right behind SeaQuell. Hoping we can catch the tides right, and get a little push. Today's destination-- Carolina Beach.
As the morning progresses, the boat traffic steadily increases. By noon, it's an absolute zoo!!
Jet skis galore, kids on tubes, powerboats flying by, kicking up wakes like crazy!! You can certainly tell it's a holiday weekend!!
Lunch is yogurt and granola for me. Tossed salad and wings for Robert. Maggie eats nothing. Just sleeps!!
After lunch, I take them helm for a bit so Robert can work thru a work-related issue. I'm pretty nervous-- all these fast-ass boats flying by; music blaring; people shouting to communicate above their engines and music. I'll definitely be ready for a cocktail once we reach our destination for today.
We reach Carolina Beach State Park Marina around 6:00 pm. NEMO docks right behind SeaQuell.
Dinner tonight aboard SeaQuell is beef stew with vegetables, rice, and cornbread. Thanks for the yummy cornbread Judy!!
After dinner, we sit on the marina porch with cocktails in hand and watch the sunset.
After sunset, Judy and Intake Maggie for a quick walk, then we retire to SeaQuell's cockpit to discuss tomorrow's plans.
We were planning an offshore run from Masonboro Inlet to Beaufort Inlet but rechecking the weather, we decide to slog on up the ICW tomorrow. Seas 3-4 ft aren't bad, but we have to be super careful about putting more stress on our radar arch support beams-- hoping Robert's rigged fix will hold for the rest of our trip.
It's been a long and somewhat stressful day. Think I'll turn in early with a good book and let Robert watch a little tv.
12 April 2017 | Osprey Marina , Socastee, SC
I awake to the smell of coffee. Robert has an early meeting today, so he started the coffee before I got up. Nice!!
After coffee, Judy , Maggie , and I take a nice stroll around McClellansville. What a cute little town!
Lovely homes, pretty yards. The azaleas, daffodils,and wisteria are in full bloom. Looks like spring!!
We chat with a couple that shares info about a great little restaurant on the main drag, with "to die for" soft shell crabs. Wish we could stay and enjoy some for lunch, but we gotta make tracks north.
We depart the marina around 9:30, with NEMO right behind us.
We're staying in the ICW today. It's a gorgeous morning!! Sunshine and a light cool breeze.
I spoke too soon!! It IS a gorgeous morning, but we have just been invaded by swarms of NoSeeUms AND Flies!!! we have to crank up our Thermacell unit in the cockpit!!
Those little suckers come right thru our screens! I douse myself in essential oils! It helps significantly, but now I smell like a field of herbs!! Oh, well; better than getting eaten alive!!
After a lunch of leftovers from last nights' dinner, we come to a wider section of the ICW (Winyah Bay), and the bugs are finally gone!! Hallelujah!
Maggie has slept all morning, and shows no interest in food. She's drinking well though, and she actually ran a little on this morning's walk.
The afternoon goes by slowly. Robert works while manning the helm. I read, then listen to some tunes on Pandora once I finish my
There is very little boat traffic today, which seems nice.
We meander thru one of our favorite areas on the ICW - Waccamaw River. Trees on the shoreline are hanging with Spanish moss. I even see some beautiful Dogwoods in bloom!
Lots of Osprey in their nests.
We arrive at Osprey Marina at 6:30 pm. We plan to stay here a day or two for Robert to catch up on work.
Dinner aboard NEMO tonight. Thanks Judy!!
After hot showers for both of us, a walk for Maggie, and a golf cart ride back to our dock, we return to SeaQuell to watch a little tv/read/relax.
Today was a great day!!
Makin' Good Time
11 April 2017 | Charleston, SC
April 10&11, 2017
After a good nights' sleep ( both of us/in our bed) , we are underway at 7:30.
NEMO is making the trip with us today!
We slug along, up the ICW, enjoying our coffee and granola bar breakfast.
While underway, Robert detects a broken weld in our roof support .
He rigs up a temporary fix (we hope), to prevent further damage. We knew we got our butts kicked yesterday afternoon, but it must have been worse than we realized. We're talking about breaking a 2" aluminum pipe!
We head out the St. Mary's Inlet around 11:30. I'm a bit nervous, but things should be tolerable if the weather guessers are right.
Winds are out of the east-- about 10 knots. Waves only about a foot. Very nice!! Man I hope this holds!
We raise the jib and the main, and cruise at about 6 knots.
Lunch is chicken salad sandwiches, chips, and fruit.
We see several dolphins playing on both sides of the boat. This always brings me joy!
Maggie seems content. She ate about 1/2 of her food, but has retained several bowls of water.
The afternoon goes by slowly. We pass the time reading, chatting, and napping in shifts.
We stay in radio contact with NEMO. It's nice to have a buddy boat!
Dinner is my famous "clean out the fridge" smorsgasord. We consume all the leftovers from previous days' meals. It's quite the assortment. Eggs, spinach, lentil stew, black beans, chicken, Mac n cheese, and fruit.
After dinner, we watch Wheel of Fortune. It's pretty amazing that we can watch tv out here!
We ready for the night ahead, and settle down in the cockpit. The sunset is spectacular! The moon is full, and the stars are abundant. I love the nights like this!!
Robert takes first watch, and I head down to bed around 9:30 pm. It's wonderful!
I relieve Robert at 1:00 am. I pass the time reading,watching, and snacking.
The night passes on without incident. A few big ships pass by, but several miles away from us.
As the sun comes up, so does Robert. He slept well.
We chat for a bit about today's plans; conferring with Don and Judy by radio.
When we have internet, we'll check the weather again, and make our decision .
Looks like the consensus is to head in at Charleston. Conditions are almost perfect right now, but it's probably not gonna last.
Lunch is tuna salad sandwiches; chips and salsa.
We head in at Charleston around 2:00 pm. We time the Ben Sawyer Bridge with no wait!! WooHoo!!
Maggie takes a walk out front for a potty break. She's still shaky; I think she's just super tired.
We idle up the ICW all afternoon, arriving at Leland Marina at 7:30 pm.
Dinner aboard SeaQuell is Smoked Sausage, Peppers, Potatoes, Succotash, and Deviled Eggs. Don and Judy join us for dinner.
It's gonna be an early night. The NoSee-Ums are rampant, and have run us inside.
There's a big-ass pink moon shin in' down on us. the
We're fading fast, and our bed is calling!! Goodnite all!! Thanks for hang in' with SeaQuell and crew. More adventures to follow!!
The Weather Gods Rule!!
09 April 2017 | Jacksonville, FL
Sunday April 9, 2017
It's a gorgeous morning! Sunny, light breeze, and warm.
I'm able to trade the jeans, sweatshirt and socks for shorts, a t-shirt, and flip flops.
The seas are calm, so I take advantage of it! I wash dishes, spiff up the galley, run the vacuum, and put away the blankets/jackets etc.
Robert adds a little oil to our poor old engines.
After morning chores, we kick back and relax in the cockpit.
Maggie is not feeling so well today. She barfed earlier, and seems kinda shaky. However, she is drinking well . It's a tough life for our old girl.
Very few boats out today. We do see several small fishing boats as we approach St. Augustine.
Robert naps, I watch and read.
Lunch is tossed salad, cheese, and fruit.
After lunch, Robert installs our new speed and temperature sensor while I man the helm. Maggie sleeps.
Bat 2:30 pm, I detect a distinct change in the wind speed. The waves also increase in size, and become super choppy. Who pissed off the weather gods????
For the next 4 hours, we beat into 15 knot winds on the nose. Waves are about 3-5 ft. with a 3 second period. YUCK!!! Maggie barfs again!! It's bad when your dog gets seasick!!
We tolerate this crap until 6:30 pm , when we finally come into the inlet at St. John's River.
We head to Morningstar Marina to top off the fuel tank, and head to the Sister's Creek free dock.
Don and Judy (on NEMO) are waiting to catch our lines. After getting SeaQuell all snug in her slip, Robert takes Maggie for a walk.
I mix a couple of very stout cocktails for Robert and I, and head down the dock to enjoy dinner aboard NEMO.
We discuss our plans for tomorrow. We abandon our offshore run. We plan to head up the ICW in the morning, reevaluate the forecast, and possibly head offshore tomorrow evening.
Robert, Maggie, and I return to SeaQuell around 9:30. I'm whipped!! Early to bed; blah, blah, blah!! Goodnight all!