Well, it didn't really feel like the North Atlantic, but that's what it says on the charts and it's an exciting title, so that's what I used. We left our anchorage at the Kilkenny River early this morning to catch the tide out because the nine foot tides create quite the flow. We anchored there just off the Intracoastal Waterway because we had gone far enough already. It's kind of stressful zigzagging back and forth through these creeks and rivers in the tidal currents and shallow water. We are constantly hearing about boats running aground and have to watch so that we don't join them. Bob looks at the iPad with its software and I look at my chartplotter and the daymarks as we try to figure it all out so far so good. And we got through Hells Gate, the worst spot in the ICW yesterday on a minus tide, quite the accomplishment.
So today we started to cruise down the ICW with the same itinerary in mind and came to an inlet, where the waterway joins the ocean and we turn back inland. On a whim, I checked the forecast for the outside (the North Atlantic Ocean side) and found it to be much better than it was yesterday. We turned outside, thinking we would try it out and chicken right back inside if we didn't like it. Well, we did as we encountered one foot swells which got smaller as we trundled south about 29 miles to the inlet to St. Simon. We saved lots of time, fuel and it was so relaxing, compared to the inside. All we had to watch for was a few other boats. I even made a hot lunch!
And here's the view from Bob, my navigator and able crewmember. Remember if his version differs from mine, always go with mine!
Day 7 anchored outside St. Simons Island, GA.
We spent last night, Day 6, anchored in Kilkenny Creek between the ICW
and the Kilkenny Marina. A nice calm river in the middle of nowhere -
really, this part of GA is lightly populated. We had hoped to dine at
the only restaurant in town but it is only open Wednesday to Sunday -
Not a major metropolitan area.
We talked to a couple of shrimpers as we passed by in the dinghy -
shrimping was bad and they were hoping for a change in the wind (?).
Then a stop ashore to get some extra oil for Adirondack. We met 2 more
of the locals - have you seen the movie "Deliverance?" I don't mean to
be unkind but communication was difficult and I thought about that
"...squealing like a pig" scene.
Adirondack was due for an oil change (every 300 hours whether it needs
it or not) and 2 (countem 2) new filters. A large diesel engine lies
just below the salon deck. Just enough room to crawl around on your
hands,knees then put you in traction. Jeff fit perfectly, but he needs
to get large shoehorn. So, 5 gallons of used oil came out and 5 gallons
of fresh oil went in...very carefully.
We took off early this morning continuing on the ICW until we reached
Sapelo Sound where the ICW passes the Atlantic ocean. The weather
forecast was good so We agreed to leave the ICW, for awhile, to make
better time, save a little gas, and most of all, take a break from the
constant navigation needed to keep from going aground in the shallow
passages of the ICW. This was the first time in the ocean since
Charleston and probably our only opportunity before Jacksonville.
We were surprised to find it so shallow and had to go to the 3 mile limit to get to safer waters.
The sea was gentle - Rolling along with easy swells for the 30 miles it
took to reach the south end of St. Simon Island. Fishing trawlers,
pelicans, dolphins and sunshine. Set a straight course, watch for
deadheads, then listen to classic rock on a Sirius channel. You could
also have been seasick for 30 miles.
Tomorrow, Day 8, it's a short trip to Brunswick, GA where we'll gas up, take out the trash, do the laundry and the town.
Storing good memories,