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ADDITIONS TO THE BLOG as of December 2015 (USET): Shamal and her Crew are STILL cruising the east coast of the US * Should you want to contact them you can do so by clicking on the Contact Us tab below. * We recommend that you subscribe to the Blog, so that new posts are emailed to your inbox.




17 April 2016

The Intracoastal Waterways - I.C.W. Part Two



Adams Creek
Hello To You All Again

 
This update is very late arriving out to you which I am sorry about, but so much has happened with so much to share.  I am taking you on a bit of a historical trip down the Inter Coastal Waterway, and then you will see where we are now.  So, here we go.

 
After our morning ashore, we up anchor and with the quaint town of Oriental in our wake we cross the Neuse River, which is very wide here, to join the ICW into Adams Creek.  The temperature has risen to 21 deg.c. which makes for a nice change. From here we motor for 21nm to the town of Beaufort, NC.  where we drop the anchor, eventually, in Taylor Creek after three attempts to get it to set.  Another yacht which we have been seeing along the waterways on several occasions was having the same problems anchoring.  There are a number of yachts on mooring buoys here, plus a couple of sunken vessels which we do not want to get caught around. Finally we are dug in. 
Wild Horses
 
We are now just inside the Cape Lookout area with the Shackeford Banks between us and the Atlantic.  These are home to wild horses.  From our anchorage we watch as they come and graze among the marshes.  Later we also watched a couple of obviously inexperienced guys from one of the boating recovery companies trying to pull a marooned yacht from the shore, but to no avail.  They ended up pulling its mast off before retreating defeated!!!  We were not sure why they did it at low tide – high tide would have given them a much better chance to remove it.

 

A Job NOT well done!!
A Marooned Yacht

13 January 2016

The Intracoastal Waterways - I.C.W. Part One


Hello Again

Lifting Rail Bridge
 
Swing Bridge
Once you reach the lower Chesapeake you have two options to reach Key West in Florida which is some 1,200 miles to the south. One can take the coastal Atlantic Ocean route, the outside route, or, depending on your vessel’s draft and mast height, you can take the ICW. ( Intracoastal Waterways).  Many do a mixture of both as there are safe  estuaries and channels used by big shipping to enter and exit  through.  Many though require local knowledge, the correct tide, and good weather to pass through as silting can be a major problem.  As we had sailed up the Atlantic Ocean route, we decided we would do the ICW on the return trip. We would have dozens of bridges to pass under or wait till they open for you. The Fixed Bridges are all around 65ft. Our mast is 58ft so no problem there.  Other bridges are Swing, or Bascule – lifting.  These have different opening times, usually on the hour and half hour, so you try to time your approach just before they open.  Each of these bridges has an operator whom you call ahead to and advise of your pending approach. Also we would have a couple of locks at the northern end to pass through.

10 January 2016

Cape May, New Jersey - to - Norfolk, Virginia




Hello Once More


First we want to wish EVERYONE Seasons Greetings. We hope your plans and preparations for the festive season are well underway and that you have a great one with family and friends.  As for us, well we are still meandering down the east coast of the U.S.A. not sure where we will be for Christmas.  It is so nice not to have the stress that can go with this season.  America really does know how to celebrate Christmas, and we are really enjoying seeing how the different towns that we are passing through decorate and dress themselves up with lovely decorations. Everyone really seems to get into the Christmas Spirit with shops, banks, public buildings and private homes all putting up wreaths with red ribbon, Christmas Trees, lights, and the likes.  Even some of the private docks in front of peoples homes, will have a Christmas Tree covered in lights sitting out on it.  It really is very pretty. We have even managed to catch a Christmas parade which was fun.