FL to CT Day 21
Alligator River, NC to Coinjock, NC
Last night was very interesting evening... when we anchored winds were already whipping up with the approaching cold front... about 2030 the winds increased significantly... going to the pilothouse and checking the wind speed I saw 33 knots and gusts to over 40 knots... it was pitch black outside except with each lightning strike... oh yeah... there was lightning and with each flash I could see the clouds of the approaching front billowing down all the way to the water... looked as if there was a wall approaching... we saw on the weather earlier that there was a tornado warning in effect until midnight... sure did not like seeing the clouds hanging so low... anyway, the wind continued until the wall of clouds was on top of us... literally hanging maybe 100 feet above the water... rain and hail... lightning... it was a little dicey for about 30 minutes and
then wind subsided to 20 knots and the lightning was moving away from us... only the rain remained.... by 2200 it was pretty much over... the anchor had held so we did not end up in the swamp land behind us... LOL.
We went to bed and hoped to see the sun in the morning... 0600 alarm went off and the winds were calm and you could hear the birds outside... I took a photo of the sun rising up over the swamp. It was a beautiful morning... although it was COLD!
I was off in the dinghy with Beecha to the Gum Neck Landing for her morning walk... this trip was much nicer than the one from the previous evening when we arrived... glass smooth water... the canal going back to the boat ram was very pretty... cypress trees lining each side and old cypress stumps protruding above the surface on each side... there were signs warning of submerged hazards and to use caution. It was very beautiful.
We had one bridge to deal with today... the Alligator River Bridge at the mouth of the Alligator River at the Albemarle Sound... as we approached there was sailboat hailing the bridge for an opening... we were still 15 minutes away... thought for sure we were going to miss the opening... we were still 78 minutes out when the bridge swung open allowing the sailboat to pass... I hailed and asked if he would hold the opening... surprisingly he agreed and held it open for us... this rarely happens... very nice!
Albemarle Sound can be a bear with high winds... winds were still up 15-20 knots out of the NNW... reports from boats out on the sound already were mixed from less than 2 feet to 4 footers... different people's perspectives I guess... anyway, we headed out and saw typically 2 foot waves and towards the end of the crossing some swells that were maybe 4 foot... did not expect them... must of been some residual from the cold front passing...
We soon were in the North River heading to our destination for the evening... Coinjock Marina. We arrived and were securely docked by 1530. Our location for the night N36°20.920', W075°56.941
Posted at 4:56 PM
FL to CT Day 20
Oriental, NC to Alligator River, NC
We spent a layover day Thursday the 24th in Oriental, NC and had a real nice visit with Fran Reich… she’s family but not sure what she would be… she is Susan’s Sister Lisa’s Husband Alan’s Sister… anyway, we really enjoyed her visit… she drove three hours one way to see us… ?
We woke up at the normal time 0600 but had sort of lazy start not rushing around too much at all and did not get away from the dock until 0715… heading out of Oriental Harbor to the Neuse River… winds were forecast for 5-10 in the early morning and increasing to 20-25 in the afternoon… they did pick up a little sooner but we were almost off the Neuse before the winds had a chance to whip up any large waves… 2-3 foot was max we saw. We also had to cross the Pamlico Sound and it had 3-4 waves but the ride was not bad at all.
There was a cold front approaching and it was supposed to really pickup so we opted to cut the day short and anchor at the south end of the Alligator River rather than go all the way to Alligator River Marina.
I had seen an anchorage on ActiveCaptain just to the west after exiting the A&P Canal at the south end of the Alligator River. We decided to give it a try as there was also a boat ramp near it that we could take Beecha to shore. The wind was already whipping up as the front approached and I was seeing gusts to 35 knots as we turned out of the ICW at marker 52 and followed the charted deep water west into Alligator River… not quite as deep as charted especially just as you exit the ICW… charts had 9 feet we saw less than 6 feet but after than the charted depth was pretty close. We continued west winding back until we reached a curve in the river than put use behind a point of land and in the lee of the wind and dropped the hook between Bonnet Point and Piney Point in about 11 feet of water… winds blowing 25-30 knots… I put out 100 feet of chain… roughly 10 to 1 scope… I want to sleep soundly tonight.
Our location for the night… N35°41.565’, W076°07.548’. We traveled today for 9.75 hours covering 68.9 nautical miles averaging 7.0 knots.
Posted at 6:18 PM
FL to CT Day 19
Layover in Oriental, NC
Susan has an old friend/family visiting so we are staying over a day in Oriental while they catch up... :)
I have a ton of work that has piled up over the last week so I am spending the time catching up on that... :(
You can see us docked an the Oriental town dock...
We'll depart on Friday morning early.
Posted at 10:20 AM