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Old 31-12-2011, 06:04   #136
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

I'll probably be in Georgia in about two weeks. I plan on staying in Savanna a couple of days.
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Old 31-12-2011, 06:12   #137
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

Glad you didnt take me up on the race ..I would have lost my bet...I could of done a few Willy Coyotes on yah...but that would not have been nice,sounds like your getting there in good time...good luck Don ...DVC
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Old 01-01-2012, 16:11   #138
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

Tough day New Years Eve

At Coinjock I met two sailing families going south (Bill and his wife on Act III, and Tim and his family on Dominion), and we made plans to anchor at the mouth of the Alligator River. I know I should have looked it up and made sure I knew the place, but I didn't. I missed the turn, didn't know the area and I was through the bridge before I was able to make contact with them. I told them I would push on. Dumb, meet dumber. There is NO marina to stop at between Alligator River Marina and Belhaven, and I wasn't going to anchor in an unfamiliar area without knowing it better, so I sailed on, and on, and on. Through Alligator River and into the Alligator River-Pungo River Canal, after dark.

The Alligato River-Pungo River Canal (A&P) goes for approximately 25 miles, it is mostly straight with a couple of turns, and it is dark! Not one light for 10-15 miles, then in the distance you will see a flashing green. My biggest worry was to run into a drawer bridge. Lucky there are just two bridges and both are over 65' high. The banks of the man made canal are stumps that you can just see the heads of. In the dark it was a very scary place, I made it through that without a problem and called BoatUS to help me find a marina that would have me at 2AM. The local BoatUS tow operator just happened to own a marina, but he was 75 miles away at Hatteras. He told me to go in and pick any slip, HA!. Getting in I missed his "Well Marked" channel (an old stump of a piling with some green iridescent tape on it.) and ran aground, EASY, I saw it coming but didn't believe he would send me into a shoal, I was doing about .25 knts when I hit. Called him again and he said sit tight I'll be there in the late afternoon. Well a few minutes later I noticed I was moving. I backed out of there and on the way out I saw the stump. I was able to get into the correct marina and tie up. I know I woke the couple in the "Bonnie Sue" next to me but they were gracious enough to understand my predicament. The good thing about the whole night was the weather, bright stars and dead calm. Any wind and everything would have been different.

Now I want to thank the makers of OpenCPN, Before I left the Salt Ponds I plotted the entire course on the computer. I knew, however, that I would not be able to consult the computer every time I had a question. Then I noticed that my Lowrance Chart Plotter accepted .gpx files, and that is the native export file type for OpenCPN. I was able to copy the complete route into my chart plotter. This route, while not a set'em & forget'em, no need to watch, the plotter will take it from here, system, it does show me the way. On turns you have to be careful to stay in the channel, but on long straight courses you can set it on the line and Otto will just go. The auto pilot is not connected to it so you have to watch it, but as long as you stay on the line and you know the water is safe, it works like a charm. I haven't made a miss-turn yet. I know I would have never made it through the A&P Canal without it. It is only a directional aid, like the gps in your car, without the nagging voice.

And that brings me to my last subject for the day, my hand held VHF radio. I do believe it is next to useless, maybe as a sinker, no it floats, as a bobber then. I tried for ten minutes, within sight of the bridge, and I couldn't raise the watch. I ran down to use the desk set and got him on the first try. Running down to use the radio, and back up to command the vessel is terrible. I think I will get a water proof, full size radio for the cockpit.

This leg I left Coinjock at 9:30AM and arrived in the slip at Belhaven at 2:30AM, 17 hours, 85 miles, avg 5knts, and I had the sails up across the Albemarle Sound . I slept most of today. I will be staying here for at least one more day to do some routine maintenance on the boat and motor. This marina (River Forest Marina) is extremely rocky in a south wind. But it looks like all the marinas here are that way.

Happy New Year everyone!
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Old 01-01-2012, 16:24   #139
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

Don:

I hope you gave a little toot on the horn at midnight.
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Old 01-01-2012, 18:53   #140
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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Don:

I hope you gave a little toot on the horn at midnight.
Actually, I did. In the middle of the very dark A&P Canal. The air horn was on the seat next to me, I turned an it went off. I thought a tug was coming down on me!





I put the horn in it's proper place.
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Old 01-01-2012, 19:17   #141
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

Sailing at night in the middles of the Pacific would be unnerving. Can't imagine at night in close quarters like that. Every movement , every sound, nerves jangling. I understand a lot of people do it, but can't you just anchor, why have to get to a Marina?
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Old 02-01-2012, 00:50   #142
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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............. but can't you just anchor, why have to get to a Marina?
Sure, you can! One of our favorites is just north of the flashing red at Bear Point after leaving the south end of the Alligator River. It's also a fine choice to anchor off the channel in the Alligator River, but wise to use a trip line because of all the snags. There is also a good anchoring area at the point where southbound vessels leave the Alligator-Pungo Canal.
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Old 02-01-2012, 03:24   #143
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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I understand a lot of people do it, but can't you just anchor, why have to get to a Marina?
In an unfamiliar spot, with no one around for support if things go south, I wouldn't be able to sleep. I have enough trouble sleeping in a rocky birth! Every noise is someone creeping on deck, or the boat crashing into the dock, not really but that is what I imagine.
Dropping anchor in the middle of the A&P Canal with the tree stumps on either side, nope couldn't do it and get any sleep. Trouble is I want an anchorage too big to protect me from the weather.
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Old 02-01-2012, 05:02   #144
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

Too late for you now, but the Skipper Bob ICW Anchorages publication is worth way more than they ask for it. It gives you complete local information on almost every potential anchorage spot along the ICW - particularly the area you are now in.

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Old 02-01-2012, 05:45   #145
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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Too late for you now, but the Skipper Bob ICW Anchorages publication is worth way more than they ask for it. It gives you complete local information on almost every potential anchorage spot along the ICW - particularly the area you are now in.

Mark
Saw that in the office at Coinjock, should have picked it up.

Actually there were a couple of places in the A&P that looked good, deep bottom and at the confluence with an incoming drainage ditch. I just didn't have the nerve to do it. I do think that if you did 2 anchors you could probably be safe on the side of the canal. But if one let go you could be on the stumps in seconds. I measured a .5 knt current through the canal (west to east), I don't know if this is tidal or just the norm.
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Old 02-01-2012, 06:29   #146
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

After checking the oil and coolant I am ready to go today, but it is windy and I will stay till Wednesday when the wind will abate. At 1.65/foot I really don't want to stay but they are calling for high winds. My next stop is $1.00/foot, and is a much better marina.

I will not buy fuel here, I have over 3/4 tank and am burning .3 gph I should be able to make it the 35 miles to my next stop. Fuel here is over priced (as is everything) and the quality is iffy. (It's the quality that worries me more than the price.)

Belhaven is a dying town and everyone is trying to get enough to leave. (The Antebellum mansion/restaurant that is the BIG thing in this town is up for sale). You can buy a two story office building, with a storefront, on main street for $59,000, and still feel robbed. This marina was damaged in the last hurricane and has barely been re-fit. The docks are wobbly and the restaurant is closed. Closest food is "The Fish Hook" about a mile down the road. Shopping is 2-3 miles. They let you use the golf cart, but someone else always has it. This could be a convenient stop with a little work, but the return might not be there, big gamble.
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Old 02-01-2012, 09:21   #147
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I've never done the ICW & from the sounds of it I'm glad. I'll stick to big oceans with lots of room to maneuver! I had to look up Coinjock. Looks like an interesting business deal for he right person. I thought so until I saw it was in the 40's temperature-wise. You must be freezing! Thank you for keeping us up on your adventure. I would like to sail it vicariously through you in the comfort of my slip. I'm gripping the armrests reading your journey!
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Old 02-01-2012, 14:42   #148
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Don, we were reluctant to anchor when we moved our (new to us) boat from Destin FL up to RI, and now we're distressed by how much we spent on marinas that trip. We now anchor almost every night on the ICW, a few weeks ago at the head of the Alligator/Pungo canal, then all the way to Savannah. We've found that the waterway guide is quite accurate regarding anchorages (plus many we've found just looking at depths). A single CQR style anchor with chain has served us well. A good anchorage at Cedar Creek #9 at the top of Adams Cr canal coming up.

We'll be leaving Isle of Hope Marina (mile 590) on Wednesday the 4th, prolly stay a coupla days at Cumberland Island (mebbe 6th and 7th?) then on South until the butter melts. Hope you can join us! (but know it is a stretch). If you want pointers on anchorages and places to stop give me a call. Cell 401-862-7511. - Roland

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Old 04-01-2012, 09:40   #149
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

. If you want pointers on anchorages and places to stop give me a call. Cell 401-862-7511. - Roland Very fine of ya to help Don ..It is expensive and really not necessery unless you need the facilitys they offer...watch out for those Red Wolves that roam around they can tear a man(small man )apart in just minutes and the bears are to be feard as well, their as tall as a one of those English double deck buses and can swallow a man (small man ) whole,and the name sake of the place says it all about alligators,mean and big and its said that they can swallow a woman( a big woman)whole, anyway its a nice place to visit and the crabs and oysters are great..doing any fishing?.DVC..ps .the wolves are about the size of a hungry dalmation..Good luck Don and hang in there...
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Old 04-01-2012, 10:34   #150
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Re: I Have Pulled the Trigger !

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After checking the oil and coolant I am ready to go today, but it is windy and I will stay till Wednesday when the wind will abate. At 1.65/foot I really don't want to stay but they are calling for high winds. My next stop is $1.00/foot, and is a much better marina.

I will not buy fuel here, I have over 3/4 tank and am burning .3 gph I should be able to make it the 35 miles to my next stop. Fuel here is over priced (as is everything) and the quality is iffy. (It's the quality that worries me more than the price.)

Belhaven is a dying town and everyone is trying to get enough to leave. (The Antebellum mansion/restaurant that is the BIG thing in this town is up for sale). You can buy a two story office building, with a storefront, on main street for $59,000, and still feel robbed. This marina was damaged in the last hurricane and has barely been re-fit. The docks are wobbly and the restaurant is closed. Closest food is "The Fish Hook" about a mile down the road. Shopping is 2-3 miles. They let you use the golf cart, but someone else always has it. This could be a convenient stop with a little work, but the return might not be there, big gamble.
Lots of old towns along the water ways of NC look like they are always for sale, maybe we could stop and "incor(pirate) one of them and turn it into the "New Kingston" of the 21st century..if you get near Columbia NC they have a city marina(docks) free? maybe and the folks are good hearted and they welcome all visitors.. If you look at a map of NC and look at the east you see there is not a lot of people living there.I can remember driving to the OBX when I was a kid and the part of the state that sticks out further on the map has always been a unique and very influentual part of our great state of North Carolina and it seems to never change ..with the exception of the OBX proper... I have seen that place in the last 28 yrs go from a place that was original and unique to a place that has lost a lot of something that many towns have and wish they had kept 30 years later on...Did you know that by the time you have cruised North Carolinas shores you will be within 5 miles of some of the most important historic places on the east coast.Head east or west and you will inverably be within 5 miles of shuch things as Queen Anns Revenge(Blackbeards ship) The U-82(?)nazi German submarine,the Lost Colony which happens to be the oldest and longest running outdoor drama..This drama is a rendition of the first english child born in America meets Indians ,Sir. Walter Raleigh returns 4 yrs to late and the English colony is lost kind of thing..Of course you will be sailing past one of the most sacred and revered places in the whole wide world for aviation buffs.The Wright Bros. Memorial and First Flight Field..and you can climb to the top of the monument(Kill Devil Hill) and get a great view of the area.You will also be within a stones throw of at least 5 historic light houses and wild ponys roaming the beaches and hangliders flying from a top Jockeys Ridge ,the tallest sand dune on the east coast and for a few dollars you can take an introductory hangliding lesson at Kitty Hawk Kites The oldest and largest hangliding school in the world!And you can take sailboarding lessons ,the company called Mistrel has a factory/test center because the winds are so consistent..same reason the Wright Brothers chose the OBX......all of these places are in a 60 mile streach along our coast..this is just a small portion of what NC has to offer ..please look around and explore NC if you can. I am sure you will fall in love with her ...Best of luck Don and welcome to North Carolina...if ever in need while in NC remember you are among friends...Daryl
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