The Tale of Tortuga

Vessel Name: Tortuga
Vessel Make/Model: Catalina 440DS
Hailing Port: Hood River, OR
Crew: Jan & Scott
11 December 2018 | Alligator River, NC
07 December 2018 | Dismal Swamp
05 December 2018 | Hampton, VA
03 December 2018 | Mill Creek, VA
01 December 2018 | Solomons, MD
30 November 2018 | Galesville, MD
18 November 2018 | The Chesapeake, MD
14 November 2018 | Haven Harbor Marina, Rock Hall MD
10 November 2018 | Hood River, OR
07 November 2018 | Rock Hall, MD
Recent Blog Posts
11 December 2018 | Alligator River, NC

On the road again!

We found our way out of the dismal swamp and into Elizabeth City N.C. where we tied up to a nice public dock and rode out a nasty little 2-day storm on Sunday and Monday. Today we woke up to beautiful sunshine and off we were heading.... uhhh, south! Made it across Abermarle Sound, where at one point, we were totally out of sight of land at all points and in 9 feet of water. Amazing!! The water was a beautiful color of Coca Cola (or Pepsi depending on your pref.) or hot chocolate depending on the sun angle. We have been traveling with Scrimshaw IV (Pete & Patricia) for a few days and have benefitted from their experience, as well as thoroughly enjoyed their company!!!! Starting into the Alligator River. Wonder why it's named that????

07 December 2018 | Dismal Swamp

Happiness in a dismal swamp!

Alright! Southward we travel into the Deep Creek Lock that signifies the beginning of the Dismal Swamp. What a beautiful (but narrow and shallow) channel we took today, rich in history. Much of it originally owned by George Washington as a real estate investment. On the way we crossed the North Carolina border (where there actually was a sign)! Didn't see any gators though... yet!!

05 December 2018 | Hampton, VA

Historic Hampton Roads

Pulled into Hampton yesterday. Weird to think we were sailing over the same spot of the battle between the ironclads, the Monitor and the Merrimack. We had a free coupon for the Hampton public pier. Of course, Econ 100, day one... 'There is no thing as free lunch!' Especially in the boating world! We have made it to the southern end of the Chesapeake, and tomorrow we will head south past Norfolk, into the Elizabeth River to the mile marker 0 of the intercostal waterway. The first stretch gives you two options, the Virginia Cut or the Dismal Swamp. For some reason, we just cannot resist the allure of exploring the Dismal Swamp. Right now it is spitting snow, so we are hoping weather shall improve with a new day tomorrow. We are also awaiting our first guest aboard Tortuga. Our Jackson Hole friend Jeff is driving down from Richmond for boat drinks. We are honored!

03 December 2018 | Mill Creek, VA

Not the last of our firsts!

A few more firsts for us today. We are on anchor tonight in Mill Creek, south of Reedsville, VA. Yes that’s correct, we have actually changed states (another first). I was quite disappointed there was no ‘Welcome to Virgina’ sign on the Chesapeake. Motor-sailed again with both sails up. Still waiting for a first great “sail” only day. Hopefully just around the corner! Also, our first day with SiriusXM radio. Jan got her NPR fix and me my Margaritaville radio. Enjoy your sunsets, my friends... cheers!

01 December 2018 | Solomons, MD

Let’s get &*#@!^+ south!

Our new life seems to be requiring a reset of our body clocks. This a.m. we rose at 5:30 (2:30PST) so we could be underway at first light. The first sunrise (of hopefully many more) greeted us as well as a skiff of ice all around the foredecks. At 31 degrees, it's hard to imagine life in the tropics. [...]

30 November 2018 | Galesville, MD

1232 miles to Key West

But only 931 miles to Graceland! After a couple weeks of sorting and stowing, packing and pruning, Tortuga is finally ready to go. We had to wait for an extra day to get out of the marina due to a low tide and scalloping wind. Today we bid Haven Harbor (and their wonderful staff) and new boat friends [...]

Let’s get &*#@!^+ south!

01 December 2018 | Solomons, MD
Scott / Rain's a coming!
Our new life seems to be requiring a reset of our body clocks. This a.m. we rose at 5:30 (2:30PST) so we could be underway at first light. The first sunrise (of hopefully many more) greeted us as well as a skiff of ice all around the foredecks. At 31 degrees, it's hard to imagine life in the tropics. I'm pretty sure Jan had all the warm clothes on that she had on the boat plus was making good use of the hand warmers she brought. I kept thinking all day that life forces you sometimes to make passages that might be unpleasant at the moment, but that lead to better things. Today, Jan & I count our blessings! To all you out there making tough passages, we salute you!

Galesville, MD - Solomons, MD (44 nm)
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