Originally Posted by psneeld
First of all...I said "on deck
inspecting" to mean that long term anchoring
(not a permanent overkill mooring) your average ground tackle can fail pretty quick if not inspected regularly...not simple dragging.
And where I come form (pretty much the entire ICW
area I've lived along and flew USCG helos...read - flights inspecting storm damage...and also now work salvage
in the South Jersey area))....anchor outs out wind up on the beach in a much higher percentage than weekenders because when the weather
stinks...the weekenders are back at their dock
or never left.
I've agreed with pretty much all of your posts! Well said, all of them...
I have put my two cents in there already, and will make one last shot at it.
It irks me to see the "liveaboard" subject soo misrepresented on this thread. THIS ORIENTAL HARBOR ISSUE, IS NOT ABOUT ANCHORING RIGHTS, MONEY
, POLITICS, AESTHETICS, ELITISM, or NORTH vs SOUTH. It is about consideration of others and common sense, which these boats appear to have neither!
There is a time and place for most things, and these few "bum boats" that are long term dominating the small anchorage in Oriental, are 100% out of place there. They are free to do it in another "more spacious" anchorage, but HERE, it is so out of place as to be just plane rude, and inconsiderate of the hundreds of OTHER boaters that they prevent from using this small anchorage. Me for one.
As I am turning 60, I have seen this progression of bum boat anchorage "take overs" since I left my SC home @ 15 years old, to live an adventurer's life. I became a boatbuilder
to support my habit, and 3 times built my own small cruiser, (Twice while living in a one room mouse infested shack, connected to a barn). This was for 15 years! The "personal boat" building portion of my life has taken me over 20 full time years, and most of the others were spent seriously cruising ALL OVER the place, or living aboard
on the hook, while I worked on shore. I lived most of these years on an absolute shoestring!
As an old southern boy ex hippie... I am neither conservative, a Yankee, Republican, rich, insensitive to the poor, nor elitist, and I'm an environmentalist tree hugger, through and through... Now, my best friends are from all over the world, as I find our relationships richer, giving me a broader point of view than I would otherwise have.
Decades ago... I spent years living in huge liveaboard anchorages
like Boot Key Harbor Marathon, and behind Christmas
Tree Island in Key West
. I was dirt poor, but I built and maintained my humble little boats with pride and great care. I knew about my ground tackle's condition, and kept the boat's bottom clean, because I went sailing regularly.
, and many similar anchorages I have stayed at, were from 50% to 80% bum boats. The locals referred to the occupants as "dirt bags". They were "street people" on water... While I lived there, some were my friends, but I was NOT like them. I could not understand their lack of caring, lack or responsibility, and living their lives at other's expense. They were irresponsible with their bicycle spot, and dinghy
landing on shore, in their depositing of garbage, noise
, driving their dinghy too fast while stoned drunk, and lack of ground tackle maintenance
. They seldom used anchor lights, and some would even steel
I had LESS money
than most of them, but I paid for minor services on shore in a responsible way. I had more self respect, more pride in my boat, and a moral compass
that would not allow me to "live my life at others expense" as they were.
The "dirt bags" on the other hand, had ugly, non maintained bum boats, with permanent moorings made of several small anchors with numerous lines across the bottom all covered with barnacles
and twisted around each other, (like currently seen anchored in Oriental)... With every week long cold front, a Key West
bum boat or two would end up sunk or on the beach. Often they would damage other boats in the process. Then the owners might leave behind their worthless wreck, for the State to eventually clean up. (Like 20 years later) I saw this play out over & over & over, and for the longest time, the State could do nothing at all about dealing with this problem. The laws were not there, but, eventually... the State fixed that! Prior to this, hundreds or even thousands of DERELICT BOATS WERE EVERYWHERE. I don't want NC to get like South Florida
... not with the bum boat/derelict problem, nor the State response to it!
In South Florida, this "irresponsible" liveaboard
behavior over 40 years, has now TOTALLY ruined boating
and especially "cruising" in the Keys, an area that used to be the mainland USs #1 clear water cruiser's paradise. The draconian legal
response aimed at fixing the "irresponsible" liveaboard problem, took the "responsible" liveaboards down with them. The landside powers that be, painted us ALL with the same brush! It's not right or fair, but true... This is what happens, because the lawmakers tend to NOT be cruisers, or know the difference between the responsible liveaboard from the dirt bags.
This sort of bum boat "liveaboard", as I said, was VERY different from my type of liveaboard. The difference was not at all money or boat size, it was about "looking" ship shape, using common sense, exercising responsibility, and caring about the rights of others as much as my own.
WHY CANT I DO AS I PLEASE ON THE WATER?
Remember... living on a boat is more like flying a plane than living on land. To fly a plane, you must have a licence and a PROVEN to be well maintained aircraft, because when it falls out of the sky, it can kill people! The same is true (but to a lesser degree) of anchored out boats. When they drag, they damage other's property. When they sink, they become a hazard to navigation
. If the owners can't afford the expense of REALLY good ground tackle, AND maintain it, then they should loose their perceived "right" to live anchored out. Same is true if they can't afford to repair ANY damage that their boat might cause. On shore, it is unlikely that their small house, or washing
machine box for that matter, will drag during a thunderstorm into its neighbor, causing MAJOR damage! On shore is where the destitute and dirt poor belong... Hopefully getting help and being treated kindly.
On the other hand... The relatively poor but "highly responsible" liveaboard, like I have been, might have a very humble/small boat, maintain it and their ground tackle with pride, keep a little "kitty" for emergencies, and choose an anchorage that is suitable to their proposed length of stay. VERY FEW folks in NC have a problem, "yet" with THIS sort of long term liveaboards. Unlike in South Florida, most coastal North Carolinians can still distinguish between the two types. I can through binoculars, in a few seconds.
REGARDING THE ANCHORAGE IN QUESTION:
The "multi anchor mooring" liveaboard boats in Oriental's little harbor, are not just likely to do damage, ugly, & ill maintained to the point of looking "scary", even to liberal tree huggers, they are polluting the water, while making it impossible for others that might want to stay a couple of days, to anchor here as well. This is simply the worst IMAGINABLE anchorage for what they are doing! We are all, as NC cruisers, paying the price
. Some is paid directly, by not getting to stop over in Oriental, and the rest is paid indirectly, in the changes and legal
restrictions that WILL come to all of our boating
freedoms, brought on by the irresponsible excessive few.
Imo, more laws are not the answer. We may not like what they come up with. I prefer persuasion. What ever happened to common sense? Perhaps with constant pressure, these folks will move on and not perpetuate the pattern. I suggested to "Town Dock" that a sign might be posted at the dinghy dock, saying...
WELCOME TO ORIENTAL! WHILE IN THE ANCHORAGE, "PLEASE" RESPECT THE RIGHTS OF OTHERS:
Stay out of the channels on both sides.
no generator noise
(wind or otherwise) more than a few feet from your boat.
Lay to a single
hook, not multi anchor moorings.
Use your holding tanks
Keep OB motors DOWN at the dinghy dock.
And PLEASE... Limit your stay here to just a few days, or if broken down, two weeks at the most! Give others a chance.
(It might work for those few that DO care, but just don't know any better).
PS... To the OP I might remind you, that 99% of ALL normal, kind, polite behavior that we do or do not exhibit to one another, is not in any law books
. We do not do these things, like hold a door open, or help a person up that's fallen, to comply with the law. We do these things to be "good human beings". In my book, I would MUCH rather be guilty of breaking a trivial law and pay the fine, than be a bad human being. Sure... There IS a grey area there, but the VAST majority of us can distinguish between selfish, rude, and inconsiderate people and behaviors, from their opposite. This sort of anti social behavior you exhibit and seem to believe in, can not be legislated. I promise... If you change your attitude, you will enjoy life more.
Kindness is its own reward!