Atlantic City, NJ
The last you heard from us was from Beaufort, SC. We’ve since covered a few states with a couple of overnighters and several days in the ICW. But first I want to back up to our excellent tour of Charleston, SC with Cindy Stancil and her kids Jack and Hayley. We drove around town and rubbernecked at all the old buildings and cool street markets on the waterfront. Then we walked a couple of miles getting a close-up view. After that we took our dinghy out to Stardust for grilled burgers and hotdogs. The water was very busy on Saturday, June 16 but we made it through the boats to and from Stardust. We want to thank Cindy very much for such a wonderful day! (We met the Stencils’ in St. Augustine, and now Jason is headed for Africa as captain on a Mearsk ship.)
The overnight passage from Charleston to Beaufort, NC started with a broad reach in south 10-15kt winds which made for a very comfortable cruise. Kathy and I swapped 3 hour watches during the night, and in the midst of one watch change we were awed by the sight of glowing dolphins riding our wake and jumping out the water. The bioluminescence was fantastic. Even the flying fish glowed and dripped sparks as they flew away from the dolphins. It was a spectacular half hour, one we’ll always remember. But the winds clocked more from the SW, and dropped in velocity so we ran the next day under motor in the weak downwind conditions. We arrived in Beaufort at 11pm, our first landfall in a strange place in the dark. The gps chart plotter was invaluable, and kept us out of trouble when the navaid lights didn’t seem to make sense. We anchored in the first available spot inside the harbor next to a couple of other sailboats, and Jupiter’s Smile arrived an hour later from their journey up the coast. We had covered 221nm in 38 hours for an average of 5.8kts.
We moved to the town anchorage the next day, and spent a couple of days there continuing the quest to find the air leak in the generator fuel line. I’ve replaced practically everything, and it still plagues us to this date. We had a great dinner on board Jupiter’s Smile with Jay and Barb, and our friends Richard and Pam from Tisha Baby were there too. I helped Richard with his engines, and he helped me trouble shoot an electrical problem with the Yanmar earlier in the day, so celebrations were in order.
On June 22, we motor/sailed the ICW to Oriental, NC, which we promptly fell in love with. A quiet little historical town with friendly people, and the so called sailing capital of North Carolina very much suited our tastes. We joined Jupiter’s Smile in the small anchorage, and then ran into more friends from the Bahamas, John and Jan from Stella Maris. They took Rachel for a speed boat ride over to some sailing races, and then helped us with some mail issues. They own a beautiful physical therapy facility in Oriental, and dock their boat in their backyard.
On the 24th, we blasted up the ICW to Durant Island to cover 75 miles in 10 hours. The 25th saw us make it to Great Bridge, just south of Norfolk, VA for 72 miles in 10 hours. We passed through Norfolk at 1pm the next day, and the weather was good for another offshore passage so we kept going into the ocean arriving at Cape May the next day at 3pm. We covered 181 miles in 28 hours for a 6.5kt average speed.
We found a perfect little anchorage in Sunset Lake except for the jet skis. Kathy and Rachel rented a car to drive to northern NJ to meet up with McKenna on her birthday, which was the point of all the mileage we had been logging.
Kathy and I (and Whitefoot) will leave here tomorrow morning bound for Sandy Point, NJ at the entrance to New York City. It’s about 70 miles away so it will take all day. Winds will be from the north, so we’ll probably have to motor most of the way.