Coming up from SSCA yesterday, motoring through the C&D canal I came to a spot with a bit of a tight turn. I could see a barge behind a power yacht and a small sailboat. All coming my way. If you look at chart 12277, go to
N39 32 07
W75 46 54
I was heading East, the power boat
, sail boat and barge where ahead of me in that order.
The barge must have been crowding the North shore because I lost
sight of him for a while. I could see the sail boat heading my way and I wanted to give him as much room as possible so I hugged the South shore. Obviously I was concentrating on the unfolding scene when, as the barge was developing back into full sight, I hit something - HARD. It lifted us fully a foot out of the water
and we slid right back in, slightly a canter. 5.8 knots.
I called the Coast Guard and reported it. They said they would check their charts
and see if there was an obstruction about there.
An obstruction???? In the C&D canal??????
Now, after the fact, looking at the chart I must have wacked the "pile" that lies at that location. If it was the pile I hit it fair and square with my keel
. Thank God for steel
. She draws 6-1/2, we were at the top of an extra high tide.
No I'm not gonna make excuses for not seeing that note "Pile." I was looking after business not playing video games on the chart plotter.
To my mind a "Pile" is something that sticks above the water
. I can tell you there is no "pile" of that definition there. There may well be a "submurged pile," in fact I'm pretty well sure of it.
This hit, taken in a differently constructed boat, could have been catastrophic. This "thing" what ever it is, probably lies within a foot or two of the water at low tide.
Now all of this is conjecture, all I know for sure is that I wacked something stouter than 22 tons of steel
just in front of the small old cemetery with the big brown cross headstone.
I am going to go over these charts
and mark any other similar "obstructions" before transiting again. You may wish to use similar caution.
BTW, I never heard to CG make an announcement about any potential danger
Sometimes I feel as though God likes to reach down and thwack me with his finger on the back of the head
once in a while, just for kicks. WTF???