18 November 2018 | St Augustine, FL
Just tied up after 31 hours of travel, most of it in sloppy conditions in the Atlantic. Time for a beer and a nap!
Sunset at Sea
17 November 2018 | Atlantic Ocean
We have left the inlet near Savannah and are hoping to make it to St Augustine by tomorrow night.
We have a hitchhiker
16 November 2018 | Somewhere north of Charleston on the ICW
As we were motoring along, Chuck asks, is that a leaf on the dinghy engine? No, it was a little green snake. It stayed for awhile and slithered around on the engine, but when it started making a move toward getting in the dinghy, Chuck got a boat hook, and it went for a swim.
13 November 2018 | Waccamaw River
There are many effects of a hurricane, and we have seen many of them lately thanks to Florence - broken docks, sunken boats, businesses closed due to flood damage, but one of the effects that we observed that is seen in the vegetation itself, is the dark line along the trees and bushes that marks the storm surge. Yesterday we were traveling along the Waccamaw River, and the line was clearly evident for miles. This one was originally made by Matthew 2 years ago, and any vegetation that had regrown was drowned again by Florence.
Our new friends are not impressed
11 November 2018 | Myrtle Beach, SC
We are at Osprey Marina by Myrtle Beach, SC. It’s a great protected reasonably priced place to stay, so we’ve stopped to change the oil in the engine and the generator, fill water, get diesel and gas, plugin to shore power so we can have heat, and to get off the boat for awhile. We met some other boaters up in the lounge, and went for a walk. We walked up to see the goats in the nearby field. Upon seeing us, they all immediately trotted over to greet us. They were quite interested until they realized we had no food, and then turned tail and walked off while making rude noises.
Water, water, everywhere, even some to drink
13 September 2018 | St Inigoes, MD
Is the cooler half full, or half empty? This year in the Bahamas was marked by lots of water - from the sky that is. In the 2 months we were there we only bought 10 gallons of drinking water. The rest we caught with our high tech catchment system shown in the picture - our trusty Igloo cooler that we set out under the torrent of water flowing off the hard top. So, the good news is that we didn’t have to buy much water. The bad news is, that’s because it rained so much, in what’s supposed to be the dry season. We had a fabulous time in the Bahamas this year, snorkeling, visiting Nippers and Grabbers, doing yoga, and eating bacon. Barb and Barry were such great fun to spend time with, whether it was running over to Marsh Harbor with them, fixing our lower unit, or just hanging out on our boat or theirs.
Our return trip went flawlessly, traveling up over the top of Great Abaco, and doing a 25 hour run from Great Sale, across the Banks and the Gulf Stream to Ft Pierce. The government has actually implemented a great new app for checking in (at least it was for us). We were able to complete our check in totally through the app, not even being required to do a video chat with an agent. All our information had been entered previously, so the actual check in just required us to mark us and our boat as having arrived and anchored. It took about 5 minutes, no phone call, no trip to the airport. Awesome.
Traveling up the East Coast was enjoyable, with a stop in Charleston as our main sightseeing stop this year. Great architecture, history, and food! We would love to spend more time there, but the marinas in the area are quite pricey. As per our plan, we arrived at River Dunes in Oriental, NC in late June for a 2 month stay. During that time we drove back to Michigan to visit friends and family, take care of various appointments, and deal with our storage unit. We rented a truck from Budget (Great price on the truck, terrible customer service - went to pick up the truck from the place reserved, no trucks only cars. Unbelievable.) packed up everything and moved it to a storage place in Oriental NC. As it turns out, maybe not our best choice. We had great visits with both Chuck and Margi’s family, and saw as many friends as we could squeeze in - never enough time. Chuck’s family came to River Dunes for a week, and stayed in the large rental cottage. Lots of fun eating, swimming, eating, shopping, eating, going to the ocean, and oh, did I mention eating? Tons of great food, including Thanksgiving in August. Fantastic visit!
The theme of water from the sky continued all spring and summer, with afternoon thunderstorms occurring more often than not. At River Dunes, the deck on the side of the boat that got less sun started growing green algae. Our idea to spend July and August at a dock so we could have air conditioning was well founded, as in addition to all the rain, the temperature and humidity were habitually in the high eighties and low nineties.
We left River Dunes in late August to move up to the Chesapeake Bay. On the way we suffered the worst bug infestation we have ever experienced. They were an insect referred to as blind mosquitoes, looking like mosquitoes, but not biting and leaving a green slime behind when they died. There were clouds of them all over the boat, so bad we had to cover our mouths to keep from inhaling them. It’s taken hours of Chuck initially rinsing the boat off using the anchor wash down hose, and 2 major boat washings at the dock to get rid of most of the carcasses and the green stains. Occasional bodies are still appearing.
Arriving on the Chesapeake, the heat and afternoon thunderstorms were still with us. We spent a week and a half at the Egeli’s dock, working on replacing our port screens with no see um screen, and spending time with the Egelis. It would be hard to find a nicer bunch of people! Unfortunately the time was not all stress free, as Florence formed and starting heading towards the East Coast. Everyone has spent many hours following her path. Fortunately for the Chesapeake Bay, she has swung further south, and we are now only expecting moderately high winds and a lot of rain. Up where we are, there is no storm surge currently predicted, only some flooding from the rain. The bad news for us, is that Oriental is flooding from storm surge,
and they are getting extremely high winds and major rain. We don’t know if our storage unit is high enough to avoid being flooded. Hopefully the roof will stay on the building. Better the storage unit than the boat though, things are replaceable. We are currently anchored in a nearby creek to wait out the wind and rain.
We, like millions of other people, are waiting anxiously to see what happens with Florence, and wishing our family and friends in her path good luck. While our plans for returning to the Bahamas this winter remain unchanged, when and how we get down the coast to Florida is completely up in the air.