Looking For A Window
22 November 2022
We really wanted to head offshore right from Charleston but the weather just wasn't on our side. As we were preparing to leave on Sunday morning a Tarten 41 arrived on an overnight passage from Beaufort NC. They had been roughed up quite a bit so we decided to continue down the ditch for a day or two hoping the conditions would improve. In the meantime at least we were moving south. Our 11 o'clock departure allowed use to transit Elliot's Cut on a rising tide and we were off.
However, we forgot how much the route south of Charleston twists and turns prior to arriving in Beaufort SC. At times we were actually north west bound, which to say the least is extremely frustrating.
Georgia used to be the state that everyone wanted to avoid but I must say the section of ICW south of Charleston ranks as a very close second. There has been severe shoaling in a few areas the last couple of years and the Army Corps of Engineers is having trouble keeping up. We ran two sections that at low tide have less than 4 feet of water; fortunately, we got our timing right again and didn't have any issues. Needless to say it makes for a long day. After taking on fuel in Beaufort we anchored just south of Hilton Head for the night. The range of the tides are increasing, not Bay of Fundy range, but still impressive, so vigilance is always required when choosing a spot.
We have been pouring over weather reports the last couple of days trying to decide when and where to jump offshore from. This morning we thought we'd go offshore today (Tuesday) but we decided to wait one more day. After morning coffee we hoisted the anchor and moved 15 miles down the ICW to stage at an anchorage close to the Savannah River. Once again we anchored in a salt marsh creek with an 8' tidal range, at full ebb flow the knot meter reads 1.7 knots. These places always fascinate me, one thinks they're in the middle of nowhere as the odd fisherman roars by, but the lights of Savannah are visible in the distance. Across the marsh today I could see a container ship heading down the river, but as the tide fell all I could see was a stack of containers crossing the marsh.
The plan is to depart Wednesday morning around 10 so that we arrive at the mouth of the St. John River (Jacksonville) by 7 a.m. Thursday to once again take advantage of the 3 knot flood tide.
Today’s picture is of a ship we passed a few days ago. Considering American Thanksgiving is in 2 days I thought maybe this was a group of a pilgrims who got lost.