St. Paul-de-L'Ile-aux-Noix. Quebec to Key West, Florida

The "Windwalker"

The Daily Log
Date -
Made Good
Daily Log Comments
Wed, Aug 6
 Back in the water again, building mast, finishing, installing and testing rigging and mast, nearly two months.
Fri, Oct 10
HEADED SOUTH 11:30am after the fog had lifted on the Richelieu River bound for Rouse's Point, NY, Lake Champlain, to wait for delivery of sails. Wind calm, 63F, motoring 6kts, arrived Rouse's Point 1:30pm. Cleared Customs into the US about 2:30
Fri, Oct 17
Tied up for the week at the Lighthouse Marina since last Friday, weathered in with rain and gales to 50 kts. Sails delivered yesterday afternoon. Paul J. came down to see me off. Bound south at 7:10am down Lake Champlain under part clear skies for the Champlain Canal into the Hudson, motoring 8 kts into cold SSW winds.
Sat, Oct 18
Between yesterday and today I arrived at Lock 12 on the Canal and the town of Whitehall, NY, the birthplace of the US Navy. I picked up a mooring in a little harbor above Barber Point last night at dusk and slept well, getting underway at first light about 6:15am into a cold SW wind, and arrived in Whitehall about 3:30pm, backed the boat into the only available slip wide enough, secured everything, got canal pernit, and then crashed ... plumb tuckered.
Sun, Oct 19
Slept through the night, waking at 7am, prepared to enter the locks and was locked through Lock 12 at 8:10.. canalling begins.. nice day, a little chill, thru to just above lock 4, and anchored for the night. Entered the upper Hudson at 1:13 below lock 6. The foliage is just turning and the riverbanks were colorful.
Mon, Oct20
Entered Lock 4 at 8:15 after waiting for the fog to lift. Made Lock 3 after circling again until the fog lifted there. From there on it was clear sailing though Locks 2 and 1, and through the Troy Federal Lock into the lower Hudson at 12:15. I had the canal all to myself the whole trip. About 5 miles south of Albany, 1:15, the fuel filter plugged. I anchored and cleaned the filters, and adjusted the starter solenoid while I was at it. Finally running again about 3:20 and ran on until sunset at 6:10. I anchored again off a park with boat ramp at Praada Hook, 2 miles above Castleton. I was in behind a stand of trees to break the wind a little in 11 foot of water. It was clear and sunny all day after the fog lifted, and the high was about 52..Nice day...
Tue, Oct 21
I woke about 5:15 to gale force winds from the south, right up channel and through where I was anchored. The anchor was holding well, but the boat was "sailing around the hook," back and forth from side to side. Sunrise was at 7:15 and warm, about50. NOAA weather said the front should pass by 8am, it didn't. I tried to pull the hook at 9 anc couldn't even motoring into it..waited until the wind calmed a bit, maybe 20kt?? The wind had me blown up stream against the current, and single handed the strain was too much. Finally about 9:45 it let up for long enough to pull the hook, and then it really picked up to 25-35+ most of the rest of the day, really slowing progress down river. I arrived at the Riverview Marina on Catskill Creek at 3:45pm. I had the Hudson almost all to myself all day, 2 towboats with barges headed upstream, and one boat "Riverkeeper" passed me going down, returned later, then tied up behind me at dusk. Boat Captain John Lipscomb explained what Riverkeeper is all about, checking the river for possible environmental damage and assaults on the ecosystem, initiating action, lawsuits if necessary, alerting the powers that be for correction and resolution. He gave me the month's newsletter and a set of Hudson River tide tables... Will stand mast in the morning.
Wed, Oct22
 Got an early start on the day. Prepared everything, last minute rigging changes, cleared the decks and general cleanup. Mast was standing about 1:00pm. And after a little head scratching and thinking things through, proceeded to adjust and tighten things up. Everything fit like the plan and was done by 4. I took pictures and the boat looks great "Standing Tall". It was raining all day, cold drizzle, so the remainder of the day was spent drying out. I will leave in the morning after topping the tanks and paying the bill. Will wait for dry weather before I fit the sails, NOAA says that will be day after tomorrow .. I hope.
Thur, Oct23
Had to do a little grinding on the furler foils to provide sufficient entry of luff bead. I was going to hoist the Main and Mizzen but the wind came up, so I bagged that. Topped tanks and left Catskill Creek about 10:30. Anchored opposite Wappinger Creek south of Poughkeepsie in 20 foot of water at 6pm. Day uneventful but cold, lower 40s, with NW wind to 15 kts and gusts to 25, creating a choppy river a good part of the way.
Fri, Oct 24
Underway at first light about 6:30. Hook pulled easy from the mud. The day was uneventful, took pictures of West Point, until I reached New York Harbor off Manhattan, and then all hell broke loose, HIGH SPEED FERRIES, Zillions of them going in all directions leaving 5 foot wakes. There is nothing the oceans can throw at you that will strain the boat and rigging more. I was directed to the east side of the river and waited about 15 minutes then headed out of the mess to the Narrows and the Verazzano Bridge. There were still ferries everywhere, but I was out of their traffic patterns, although the wakes were still racking the boat and me. I was in salt water after the bridge at 7:45pm and headed to Sandy Hook, New Jersey, and harbor there in the dark. I hit it right on course, but could not see the breakwater, the entrance does not have marker lights. So I backed up, went the other side of the Ferry Terminal, found 12 ft of water in the open roadstead, dropped the hook about 10:30, fixed some coffer and dinner, rocked with the swells, put a cigarette lighter plug on the searchlight that Joseph had left, figured out just exactly where I was, plotted a course to the harbor entrance, and prayed. I got underway very slowly about 1:00am, knowing there was no way I could stay where I was, the ferries would be running again in the morning at 6am. Hit the breakwater entrance on the mark, circled a couple of times scanning it with the search light, upsetting all the seagulls and pelicans, went right on in and dropped the hook about 500 feet inside. After checking security of the anchor, I crawled in the berth at 2:15 and died.
Sat, Oct 25
Woke to the racket of the ferries about 7am. Spent the first hours clearing the decks and stowing gear, preparing to rig the sails. Rowed the dinghy ashore, walked into town, found a "Skipper's Shop" to buy some cleats and eyebolts for the furler line fairlead blocks. Had breakfast about 11am. Hoisted the Mizzen and installed reefing gaskets. Sail fit perfect. Wind came up about 4pm. Main, Jib and Genoa will wait till morning.
Sun, Oct 26
Woke to the racket of the ferries about 7am.again. Hoisted the Main, rigged the furler fairleads. Main looks good, furlers work fine. Waited again for the wind to calm, hoisted the Jib, it too looks good. Waited again, 2 hours, unrolled the genoa. Find that Larsen Sails owes me $400 CDN, they forgot to install the UV Cover on the genoa. 5kt wind came up again. Waited 2 more hours and had the Genoa up by noon. Looks good, need to tighten forestays. Went to town about 4:30, went to marked and bought two bags of supplies, a mile and a half walk each way. Had Chinese dinner in town. On board about 7:30 and in bed by 8.
Mon, Oct27
Woke to the racket of the ferries about 7am.again.Weather is nasty, so spent the morning cleaning up, washing dishes, etc. Went into town about 10:30, located a West Marine Store in Highlands, 6 mile round trip. Bought a $500 Magellan GPS. Located a meeting at 6pm, about 6 blocks from harbor, returned to boat and read up on the basics of the GPS. Returned to town about 4:30, got caught in a downpour and squall, made it to the Atlantic Diner, had dinner, more than I could eat and good. Got to the meeting on time, shared, then Steve and wife Pat offered me rides back to the boat. On board about 7:30 and in bed by 8.
Tue, Oct 28
Woke to the racket of the ferries about 6am.again. Hoisted the mizzen, and was underway by 7:15. Motored out and around Sandy Hook a mile offshore and set course for Cape May and Delaware Bay. Set the Main and motor-sailed to about Pleasant Point, then furled main and set Jib, handling better in a slight following NE breeze. Sails were not much help other than as steadying sails. Entered Barnegat Bay inlet jetty about 4:30 with the ebb tide running with rollers and a 4 kt current out to sea .. nasty.. Ducked into the outer cove and anchored at 5:15 at dusk During the day the GPS indicated 6kts speed, knotmeter indicated about 9...north flowing current of 3kts?. It started to rain just after I got everything stowed and secured. Heavy rain expected tonight. Later, about 1:30am -- an old boat I anchored near, not noticing that it had way too much anchor rode scope for the depth, was "sailing at the rode and actually sailed in behind me, nearly fouling my rudder and prop with the rode. I pulled the hook and moved out of reach, reset the hook and went back to bed.
Wed, Oct29
Rain downpour, wind howling in the rigging, boat setting quiet. Leaks around hatch combing and triangle shroud chain plates. Will have to re-caulk when rain stops. Slept well after re-anchoring. NOAA reports the rain should stop or moderate after noon. High spring tide at 10:03. Winds will continue to gale force for the remainder of the day. Offshore is nasty with winds against the current. Stayed at anchor and sat it out. Washed dishes, cleaned up and tried to get fuel gages working. No luck. Slept a lot.
Thur, Oct30
Left Barnegat harbor at 8 on the full slack after unsnarling the anchor from an abandoned mooring. Tried to get fuel but tide race at fuel at rough piling sided fueling dock. Have enough to make Delaware Bay. Set sails about 3 miles off shore. SHE SAILS!! 30° off the wind under a combination of sails. This is the first try and will take some getting used to and a few changes necessary, at least two more winches. Did about 10 kts with genoa and mizzen in a 15kt breeze. Rounded Cape May,NJ, and made Delaware Bay about midnight and anchored in 12 ft of water on Delaware side about 2am. Cooked a hamburger, rice and veggie dinner and died by 2:30.
Fri, Oct 31
Woke about 6:30, tried to go back to sleep., but -- So pulled anchor at 7:30 after a breakfast of the other hamburger and beans. Motored all day with a following surge. Made the entrance to the Delaware and Chesapeake Canal and anchored on the Jersey side in Salem Cove - well protected on all sides in 20 ft. Figure I have 5 gallons of fuel left.
Sat, Nov 1
Slept 12 hours, woke at 6:15. Foggy and still. Had a minor leak at the forestay chain plates in the forward cabin. Caulked them. Spent the morning adjusting rigging and cleaning up. The trip down stretched the cables some. Opened the vents to air and dry the boat out. Pulled anchor for Delaware City and fuel at 11am. Found Delaware City Marina in the narrow, shallow canal cutoff. Fueled at noon after jockeying the boat back and forth waiting for another to finish. 20.4 gallons from Catskill Creek up on the Hudson. The engine burns about a liter an hour...excellent. Left there and rounded the corner into the Delaware and Chesapeake Canal. Trip to Chesapeake City nice except for powerboat wakes. Anchored at 4 in the nice cove there and went into town. Tried calling Casey and Irish twice. Nope. Will try calling again in the morning. Back on boat at 6:45 and secured for the night. All quiet.
Sun, Nov 2
Daybreak. Into town. Spent all day trying to get in touch with Irish and Casey. Up early, breakfast in town, tried calling Pat again, no luck, finally got her brother Mike's number, answer machine .. damn ..back to boat after waiting by payphone all day and trying to call a dozen times.. finally figured I was calling Pat's work phone on the weekend ... crap! Located her home phone number. Finally got Irish, Mike had told her I was calling, and she came down about 4:30 and we went to her place. Renewed friendship. Called it a day at 9pm.
Nov 3-4
Spent the days on phone determining status of documentation, another 3-4 weeks. Will be sent to Post Falls. Brother Mike will deposit refund from Canada and mail documentation to me after I get south and located. Good evenings with Pat and Laura. Helped Laura with her homework. Mike G. came by and he took me around to buy groceries and to the boat the long way touring Delaware and part of Maryland. Meeting and back to Pat's for the remainder of the delightful evening. Mike will pick me up in morning to take me to the boat. Updated FIR and Blad and Judi on progress and location. Need to Update Paul next time I get to internet.
Wed, Nov 5
Left Pat's at 9am. Sent $200 wire transfer to Well Fargo Post Falls. Bought $57 worth of supplies. Mike and I drove down to boat, said our goodbyes and I was on boat at 10:30. Foggy, socked in. Lifted a little at 11:45, left Chesapeake City harbor at noon. Navigated the first 5 miles 50 feet off the canal bank at half speed, then was able to set course from bouy to buoy, maybe half mile visibility, to Grove Point. Rounded the point and anchored across the bay off Lloyds Creek in 10 feet Three other sailboats came in a few minutes after me and anchored within a 100 yards. All snugged down for the night by 4:15. Thunderstorm approaching.
Thur, Nov 6
Slept about 12 hours, 6:30. foggy, visibility 100yds at most, 65 F, still. Activity on other boats at 7. Tow boat up channel a mile or two away. Corned beef hash. Two of the boats were Sandy and Gary who I met in Catskill Creek on the Hudson were we all put up our masts at Riverview Marina. Sunup came and went with no sign of the sun, still socked in at 8:30. Forecast is colder 30s at night, 40s-low 50s days with some rain. Started lifting at 9, pulled the hook at 10:20. Raining all day. Anchored at Annapolis at Spa Creek yacht basin in 16 ft. at 4:10, wind 5 NE, boat fairly still.
Fri, Nov 7
Daybreak, partly clear. Rained most of the night. Hook up at 7:15 sunup. Dry all day but wind astern against tide made for bad chop and slow going with constant attention to the helm. Tide was against me most of the day. Made harbor at Pt. No Point in St. Jerome Creek just off channel, shallow, 5 feet on falling tide, just at 5pm dusk, very protected. Gales expected in night.
Sat, Nov 8
Boat on bottom at daybreak, NE gale winds to 25, clear. Worked off bottom at 8:15 and moved about 150 feet into 4 feet of water and re-anchored. Gale picked up to 35kts with boat swinging to hook. Computer on the fritz - not loading. Onions, potatoes, hamburger. Nothing to do but sit it out. Hook up at 1:10 on slack of high tide. Heading 160 for 2 1/2 hours, then 180 to Windmill Point, then to the lee south side. Anchored at 7:05 in 12 feet. GPS paid for itself again as a gale was coming up 20 minutes before I entered behind Windmill. Made good 31 crow fly nautical miles, probably traveled 45 total from anchor out to channel lane and back in from lane to anchor again. With gale up it will be rock and roll even tucked in 150 yards from shore. Had another hamburger and rest of potatoes and onions for dinner. In the sack at 8:15, cold tonight, freezing.
Sun, Nov 9
S by SSW
Up at daybreak, clear, cold in low 30s, wind NE 5-15. Surge around Windmill Point rocked me all night. Pulled the hook at 7:15 and made for center channel. Unfurled main as a steadying sail as waves were 4 to 5 feet. Made up to 14 kts on 3/4 main for about 4 hours. Then wind died to 4-5 kts, so I motor-sailed until about 2 when a monster wave from a freighter wake hit me broadside and a bolt holding the lower mast band broke. I got the sail furled and motored as straight downwind as possible to keep from loosing the mast - it was like a snake - only the upper shrouds holding it. As luck and HP would have it Fort Monroe and Hampton Roads was downwind and we made it into the lee of Fort Monroe, VA and inside Hampton Roads, anchoring at 3:30 in the lee of Old Point Comfort. Dinghied to base marina, no help available. Settled in for the night, tomorrow is another day..

I don't know how long it has been that I have been that up-tight for so long, yet calm all the way. Did some serious talking with Charlie, and thanked him muchly for bringing us to safe harbor. Sundown was 5:00pm, and the wind came up at 6pm 15-30kts and the mast creaking and groaning.

Mon, Nov 10 Up at first light, fairly quiet until sunrise at 7:05 with the wind picking up to 10-15 kts. Moved boat up channel to a sheltered spot, went into Phoebos and called to see if any of the marinas had a crane to lower mast, none. Went to Wanchese Fishing Dock. Elsie (Mom) and Phil Beck were of great help. Phil ran me all over town to find a come-along, none, bought an electric winch at Pep Boys. Back to boat at 1pm. Started rigging winch and unrigging furlers. Found the electric winch would not reverse, so I rigged a snatch block and sheet to sheet winch and let the mast down, no problem, easy. Secured by 4:45. Returned to Wanchese dock as Phil was to meet me at 5.. He had been and gone as I dinghied in. But Elsie was getting ready to shut down office and took me to Phil's home. I bought pizzas and we had good company until 8:30 when Phil brought me back to dinghy. I was on board and in bed by 9:30.
Tue, Nov 11
S by SSW
Veteran's Day and Bro Mike's birthday - Happy 60th, Mike!! Re-packed winch and Phil took me back to Pep Boys for refund about 10. Returned to boat at 11am. Wind calm and in the 40s. Did engine check, added a pint of oil, tightened alternator and pump belt, checked gear lube - and found all the bolts of the shaft coupling loose with one out and in the bilge. Tightened them as much as I could with 14 and 17mm wrenches... Was able to read oil filter type - PF402AP. Damn, I left the AA batteries in Phil's truck - Oh, well. - Secured mast, started engine, up-hook at 11:20 for cross channel and the Intracoastal Waterway. Made the Elizabeth River and the ICW at 1:05. Down the ICW in flat water and tied up at 5 just after the Great Bridge Lock (1 1/2 ft of lift) and just before Great Bridge, VA. Walked about a 1/2 to a shopping center, bought AA cells and 3 for HP calc. Back on boat at 6:50. Made 18 mules as the crow flies, must have made 30 in the ICW. Studying the chart I see I have missed the turn-off to the Dismal Swamp Canal..damn...
Wed, Nov12 Up just before first light. Bad weather. At sunup I started fixing the rigging, and had it all repaired and adjusted by 10am. I eliminated most of the chain links I had put in at Gosselin and at Catskill when I raised the mast by adjusting the turnbuckles and band location. Walked to Exxon 3 blocks and refilled propane and bought 2 gallons of kerosene. Clam chowder for lunch. Walked a mile north of the ICW and a mile south to library. Got the Barefoot's World domain paid up again - it was off the web, disabled - $390 for 6 months. Next I need to get Verizon paid up and phone disconnected - and a laptop computer. Went to meeting at Methodist church in Great Bridge. In bed by 10:15.
Thur, Nov13 First light and coffee. Started project of installing a through-bolt at the lower mast band, done by 8:30. Wind up 25-30 rippling the ICW channel. Hardly any traffic - a couple of towboats, none of the sailboats moving. Walked into library, got Verizon amount and sent check. The domain is back up. Wind gusting to 45 at noon. Spent day cleaning and stowing. At 4pm the wind really picked up and turned cold, slowing some after sundown. Barometer 30.05 and rising.
Fri, Nov 14
 First light 5:45. Corned beef hash for breakfast, filled the thermos. 40 in the cabin, wind down to near calm. Through the bridge at 7, stopped and fueled at Atlantic Yacht Basin a 1/2 mile below bridge - 14 gallon since Delaware Bay. Bought a PL259 connector for the VHF and 2 gallon of oil for the engine, showered and did the laundry. Installed the connector, radio works better. Wind cold 5-10 kts out of the west, wind chill 33. At 2pm I moved across the channel to the free dock there. Walked to store again and bought $16 of staples. It was 42 at 4pm, 30.2 and rising, wind W 10kts.
Sat, Nov 15
S by SSW
Up at 6am, weather calm and warming in the 40w. Underway at sunrise 7am. Motored until 3:45 and dropped the hook in a cove at Broad Creek a couple of miles north of Camden Point and Albemarle Sound in the North River Extension. Made 35cfnm, at least 50nm by water. I am about 30 miles inside North Carolina. Chicken noodle soup for dinner, put the anchor light up and listened to Prairie Home Companion on NPR.
Sun, Nov 16
S by SSW
Hook up at first light on the tide. 54, calm, 30.2 rising. Had a good day, sunshine at 11, wind light all day - especially across Albemarle Sound. Made it down Alligator Sound and through the Alligator-Pungo Canal, which seemed to take forever. Hit a log deadhead in the canal and bumped bottom where they were dredging. Anchored in Pungo River at 5:10 just after sunset. Four other sailboats anchored before me and we are spread out 150 yards apart, all sitting quiet. 49cfnm.
Mon, Nov 17
S by SSW
One Month - Awake at first light. 54, calm, 30.2. Cleaned globe on anchor light that smokd up during the night. Underway at 7:10 sunrise. Winds light or calm all day, in the 70s. Saw a school of porpoise in Goose Creek off the south shore of the Pamlico River. They played in my bow wave and back and forth under the boat at 35:19N, 76:37W. Anchored at 4:10 in Cedar Creek Basin in the ICW south of the Neuse River. A couple of the same boats from last night anchored with me. 40cfnm.
Tue, Nov 18
S by SSW
First light, 58, calm, 30.2, light fog for five miles. Made Beaufort and missed the turn for the ICW. Wound up a half mile outside the Beaufort Inlet in the Atlantic - turned around and backtracked 3 miles and made the turn. Another 5 or so miles turned into Spooner Creek Yacht Basin for fuel, 12.6 gallons since Great Bridge, about 3 1/2 gallon per day. Big storm brewing on the horizon, black black clouds - supposed to be 35-45kt winds tonight and tomorrow. Dropped the hook at 11:45 in the center of the basin. Started raining at 1pm with winds to 25 between lulls, the boat sailing at the hook. I napped through the rain, waking at 3, the wind calm and the clouds lighter.
Wed, Nov19 First light - Wind South to 45 kts, 68F, 30.05. Not going anywhere today. Small craft advisory "Mariners stay in port" Gusts in sounds to 55kts possible, violent thunderstorms and rain. Snug here in Spooner Creek. At 8am NOAA reported gusts to 70kts and alerted for tornado watch. By 11am the winds were steady at 25+ kts. By 1pm the boat was sailing at the hook in +/- 30 degrees because the mast is down and overhanging the bow. Anchor check frequently. Rain really hit at 2pm with wind 20+. At 2:30 the rain really down-poured and the wind became near calm for a few minutes, then driving rain with visibility down to 100 feet. The squall was over by 3:05 and the wind backed from SE to NW at 4pm near calm. At sundown it was calm with the rain continuing.
Thur, Nov20
S by SSW
Up just before first light at 6am, 58, calm-5 from the NW, 29.8. Changed oil in engine. Underway at 7:15 clearing harbor at 7:30. During day shoaled out 4 times but came loose easy. Keelboats must have a bitch of a time in these waters and shifting sands. Anchored after sunset after shoaling two of the four times in Topsail Sound behind a reef, sitting quiet, tide flowing 2kt current. 51cfnm.
Fri, Nov 21
S by SSW
First light, 50F, 30.1, calm. Breakfast of corned beef hash. Underway at 6:50. Made Southport, NC. Had planned on provisioning but no place to anchor or tie up, so anchored in Dutchman Creek a mile or so away (in a marsh) at 3:30. 37cfnm. May be a couple of more days before I find a place with a store. I have potatoes and onions.
Sat, Nov 22
S by SSW
5am came early. Shaved and bathed. Did potatoes and onions for breakfast. Made a shopping list. Hook up and underway at 6:25 on making tide. Good day, fueling at 12:30 at North Myrtle Marina and made it into a market, reprovisioning $119. Had to leave the fuel dock for down channel at 3:45 and rafted up with Hans and Judy Meyden aboard Whispurr V at Barefoot Landing after dark. Had chicken noodle soup and cheese and crackers after looking at the T-bone Restaurant menu .. outrageous prices. Not bad miles made today, made 43cfnm with 3 hours on shore getting groceries.
Sun, Nov 23
S by SSW
First light, 40s, calm, 30.1. Cast off after saying thanks and goodbye to Hans at 7:10 after waiting for light fog to lift. Good day all day, winds light. Anchored at 4:05 in Minim Creek a quarter off the ICW with tide making in 8.5 feet of water. Made 50cfnm.
Mon, Nov24
S by SSW
First light, 50s, calm, 30.1 and clear. Hook up at 6:45. Took wrong channel at North Santee River in fog following a powerboat, I could just see the flying bridge - lost about 5 miles before realizing mistake - whole rest of day slogging against SE headwind to 25kts and adverse tide currents. Anchored at 3:10 in a small channel in 10 ft at low tide, about 5 or 6 miles NE of Charleston, SC. I shut it down early - storm brewing ahead, but made good 42cfnm. I had a couple of mosquitoes for company. Wind almost dead at 3:20, by 4 it was 15kts and clearing to SE. I can see a string of beach houses across the top of the sawgrass and hear the noise of "Mt. Pleasant." A change from the quiet and solitude of the ICW for the most part. Raining at 4:30. High tide will be about 6:15 and again when I get ready to leave in the morning.
Tue, Nov 25
S by SSW
56F, 2-3kt breeze, 30.05. Up at 6:15. Breakfasted and underway at sunrise 7:05. Good day all day, milled around Charleston Harbor loosing a half hour - two new bridges not on my chart had me bumfuzzled. I was right the first time but screwed up by not continuing, turned around and backed up a mile to where I was sure I was right, then returned, carefully. Anchored at 4:45 before sunset in a channel behind Beet Island in 10 feet of water at low tide. There was a lot of winding and turning all day, but even so made 45cfnm. I am about 14 miles from Beaufort, SC.
Wed, Nov26
S by SSW
Awake before first light, 5:45, 50ws, calm, tide making, 30.15 rising, clear. Spit bathed and shaved, clean clothes, breakfasted, filled thermos. Hook up at 6:55. Made Beaufort, SC at 9:30, fueled 12 gallons, $18. Tide race at fuel dock made it a bitch to get alongside. Anchored off marina. Went into town, library, internet, lunch, barbershop, two meetings, and a lovely lady named Joanie gave me a ride back to the marina. I called Randy M. and put him at ease. Rowed the quarter mile back to the boat by 10:10. Snack before bed. All dead calm, tide is ebbing 2-3kat current. Made 13 miles good and accomplished a lot.
Thur, Nov27 Thanksgiving Day. Laid in bed until sunrise, 54, calm, light fog, 30.2 rising. Lay Day, did laundry, shower and a great meal at the clubhouse, taxi to Port Royal $14 for an excellent meeting and meal. Back on board at 2:30, napped, put away clean clothes.
Fri, Nov 28
32:04:00N, 81:00:13W
S by SSW
Woke at 6am, 60+, calm-2kts, low tide, 30.08. Hobby horsed and splashed all day in 10-25kt S to SW winds. 25kt driving rain at 2:45 forced anchoring just off the ICW fairway and too close to shore just south of the Savannah River. 3:15 - Wind still howling and driving rain - will try to re-anchor if it lets up a little before dark - I am soaked. Fixed hot soup. 4:20 - Moved about 150 feet and re-anchored, much better, swinging room and a little more scope. Wet clothes off and drying out. Made good 37cfnm. 6pm - Wind whistling, but boat fairly quiet. Midnight - Gales. Stayed up a while and had tea and crumpets.
Sat, Nov 29
S by SSW
COLD, 30s, windy to 20-25kts, 30.2 rising, freeze warning on NOAA for tonight. Miserable windy cold day since hook up at sunrise 7:05. Shoaled out for 30 minutes trying a side channel to get out of the capping chop, got free on a big wave. Anchored at 4:45 in Wolburg Creek, 12 feet. Did dishes, dinner. Have sprung my lower back - aspirin and tea tree oil - bed at 7pm.
Sun, Nov 30
S by SSW
6:30, 40, calm, 30.05, tide ebbing, boat quiet all night. Sunrise 7:10 - waiting for tide to clear bar, it has fallen a foot to minimum 6 feet since I woke. Will wait until it makes 8.7 - flow reversed at 8:10. Hook up at 9:13. Good day, channel winding, lost chart overboard in a wind gust, followed another boat for a couple of hours until the next page of charts of the ICW. Porpoise in channel all day. Anchored at 4:20 where Joseph anchored 20 years ago behind a little island with a clump of pine at green buoy #231 - 12 feet of water and tide running, no bar, Wally's Leg Creek. Made 27cfnm. Quiet, good anchorage. Chili and cheese and crackers. Bed about 8.
Mon, Dec 1
S by SSW
6:45, 39F, 30.3, clear, calm, low tide - bad week of weather coming - north winds. Had a good day. Bumped bottom hard in Cumberland Bay - should have had clearance, uncharted shoal. Into Florida about 2:30. Anchored at 4:35 in Alligator Creek in 10 feet - High tide 15+ feet. Wind 3-4, boat quiet. Made 42cfnm.
Tue, Dec 2
S by SSW
Woke early, 5:30, wind uo, anchor rode snapped in roller woke me. 42, clear, 30.25, 7-10kts. The forecast for the week to be windy, N-NE winds to gale force. Inland waterways to be choppy and rough. Anchor light blew out during night. This reed marsh channel I am in does not offer much protection from direct wind blasts, except water will be relatively smooth and quiet. Switched to port fuel tank. First light 6:20. Starter switch wiring not working, had to jump the solenoid, solenoid OK. Good day until I anchored at 3:30 - Hook dragged and I fouled another boat with its rode fouling my rudder. My anchor had ridden up one of the anchor rodes it had set out. The boat has been abandoned in the St. Augustine harbor for about 2 years. Joe from OdySea helped me get straightened around and rafted alongside it on my port side for the night. Wind is up 10-20kts, tide is ebbing. Made 41cfnm. Recovered my anchor. It never had a chance to set, riding right up the other rode.
Wed, Dec 3
S by SSW
Woke a half dozen times during the night to check the security of the rafting. Up at 5:30. At first light I started rigging to free rudder from anchor rode. Joe saw me working and came over in his dinghy to help about 7am. We floated a line forward, gave it a jerk, rode came free from rudder, shoved it down with the boat hook. Joe pulled it back and clear. We re-tied it off on the other boat and I was free. Started the engine, warmed it for 5 minutes, thanked Joe and cast off headed south at 7:25. Good day all day in light breeze, partly cloudy for a change. My sunburned face appreciated it. Fueled at noon near Newcastle, 16 gallons for 5 days. Anchored at 4:25 near Ormond Beach just north of Daytona. Made 38cfnm. Spit bathed, feels better after 4 long days. What for dinner?? Just had granola bars all day. Potatoes, onion, sausage, tea.
Thur, Dec 4
S by SSW
Wind and rain during the night. Morning calm, 60s, 30.1, sunrise 7:25 and anchor up. Pretty nice day, wind light and part cloudy. Got a chance to repay the help that Joe of the OdySea gave me. A houseboat ahead of me shoaled out and I anchored in the channel and dinghied a line to him and towed him off. Put me in Titusville area after dark but I had a good anchorage in calm water a few hundred feet off channel in 6-7 feet of water at 6pm. Drizzled on me just as I anchored. According to the GPS I am a half mile from a yacht basin and marina, and maybe a mile from a more protected anchorage. Tomorrow is a LAY DAY!!! Meeting day! Maybe a shower day!! Communication day!!
Fri, Dec 5
S by SSW
60s, 30.05, light breeze from SW, high tide. Woke early from noise of train on shore. Sounded like it was on top of the boat. First light 6:30. After looking at chart will run on down to Cocoa, better anchor area, less open water, 17 nm away. Made Cocoa at 10:30 after up anchor at 7:15, clearing the Titusville swing bridge at 7:30. Ran on in a light drizzle which lifted just as I cleared the Cocoa bridge and was ready to anchor. Put dinghy in and prepared to go ashore. Located meeting room after going to the library and answering email, had a good lunch, walked 2 miles to get tobacco and supplies, sat around town wearing out the afternoon, caught the 6pm meeting. Jack B., Olivia and Will (his kids, he is a single parent) took me home, fed me a wonderful chicken dinner and I got a shower. Then back to the boat at 11pm. Anchor light filled, lit and to bed.
Sat, Dec 6
S by SSW
55, NNE wind 10kts, 30.05, mid-tide rising. Up at 7:30, cramps, nasty day ahead so I stayed in Cocoa and re-anchored further into the bight at 9am, maybe moved 200 yards. Went to library, and up on the net, posted FIR. Meeting at noon and spent the afternoon with Jack B. again until 6pm meeting. After meeting I walked down to beach and rowed out to boat by 7:25.
Sun, Dec 7
S by SSW
Pearl Harbor Day - Cold, Wind chill 31, cabin 42, wind N at 10, 30.1. Up at 6:45, sunrise 7:01 - Go or no go, that is the question. Waited until the sun brought a little warmth. Underway at 8:30. Kind of a short day, dropped the hook at 4 in a cove at Barker Island near buoy #109 in 4-5+ feet of water, calm and protected all directions. Had to sneak in over a 3.5 shoal, hoping I have more when I leave. Made 49cfnm. Chicken and dumpling soup, crackers and cheese.
Mon, Dec 8
S by SSW
First light 6:15, 54, calm, 30.1, Sunrise 7:00, high tide making. Cleared the bar with a foot to spare at 7:15. Good day all day in a light breeze and warm low 70s. Anchored at 3:25 at buoy #40 with 2 ft under keel at the ICW 1000 mile mark. Light E wind will shift S by SW tonight and I am in good position maybe 5 miles from North Palm Beach. Can run one more day before I switch fuel tanks. Made 48 nm today. Potatoes, Onions and Spam for a big dinner. At 6pm a towboat and barge wake rocked the boat a bit, otherwise quiet.
Tue, Dec 9
S by SSW
Woke early, moonbeams streaming in the hatch, wind coming up, 60s, 30.1 and rising. Underway at 7:15, light E wind all day. A pot full of bridges I couldn't get under. One was in a pack of sailboats and longest wait to open was 10 minutes. Refueled at North Palm Beach at 10:30, 13 gal in port tank. Ran rest of day on port tank to lower level a bit. Switched to starboard tank after anchoring at Boca Raton at 4:50 in Lake Raton. 49nm made good. Chili beans and rice.
Wed, Dec10
S by SSW
Two months since leaving St. Paul de L'Ile aux Noix. Fitful night, gusts to 20-30kts from E. Wind shifting to south. Rain forecast. Awake and up at 6:15, did dishes and straightened a little - wind up from SE, glowering stormy day. Reading "Alaska" by Mitchener, not a day to move. Fixed pancakes and spam. Raining all day until 2pm when the rain stopped and the wind died. At 10pm the wind started gusting and howling like mad.
Thur, Dec 11
S by SSW
60s, fair, quiet, 30.02. Slow start this morning, bathed, breakfasted, and read for an hour or so. Ready to move out about 8:30 with some hesitancy. Kind of nice to just sit quiet and uncertainty of what to do next. Underway at 8:45. Anchored at 1:45 at Hollywood in North Lake near the city marina near the launch ramps. Went ashore, contacted Bruce Johnston. He took me around to PC World and I bought a Toshiba Laptop. We caught last fifteen minutes of a meeting and had dinner. I find I can only anchor in any one spot for 24 hours. Unpacked computer and got familiar with it until almost midnight. Plays DVDs, watched movie "My Fellow Americans." Tried to get old computer alive, no luck.
Fri, Dec 12
Key West
60s, 30.07, part cloudy. Up at 6:45.Bruce will pick me up at 8:30 to go to 9:30 meeting. He said that boaters there may be able to tell me where to find permanent anchorage and/or slipway. 8am- Harbor Police informed me I have to leave. After Bruce came I pulled across channel to some free restaurant dock space. We got to meeting about 10 minutes late, I shared, then after meeting another fellow brought me back to boat. Bought $25 worth of groceries at outrageous prices, 50% high. A Laundromat was handy so I did clothes, lazing through the day. Took taxi to 5:30 meeting, Vincent brought me back. Bruce was there waiting. We shared a pizza, and gabbed until 9:15, then I cast off and re-anchored across channel in North Lake with a couple of feet under the keel. Wind up a bit mayb3e 5-7kts.
Sat, Dec 13
W by SW
Wind SE 5-7kts, 60s, 30.1. Woke early about 5:30. Made coffee and pondered near future and the jobs left to do to finish this boat. Logistics, communication and transport will be problems. One Day At A Time the answers will come. Spent first couple of hours studying the charts to Key Largo and Key West, then up anchored at 9:30, cleared Miami about 1pm and anchored at Key Biscayne at 2pm in the lee of the SE point just off "Hurricane Harbor." I stopped there because the next good anchorage is a day's run across Biscayne Bay in open water with winds coming tomorrow. At 6pm about 25 boats gathered for a lighted boat Xmas Parade nearby and at 7pm they moved out in file around the point and returned about 2 hours later. I sat out and watched for an hour in pleasant evening.
Sun, Dec 14
W by SW
Underway at 7:30, long reach across Biscayne Bay to Key Largo. Last 2 hours squalls and gales. Made it through the Cross Key Cut and bridge and anchored in a squall with 2ft under the keel. I am soaked. At 3:30 I looked out and saw the meanest looking cloud I have ever seen, and then the rain started - damn howdy!! - Finished reading "Alaska" at 5:30. Dinner and bed by 8pm.
Mon, Dec 15
W by SW
Calm, mostly clear, 60s, 30.05a, tide ebbing. Rested well, spit bathed and dried out. Need to air out the cabin in clear weather. Finished last of last night's dinner for breakfast, filled the thermos and underway at sunrise 7am. Wind picking up NE 5-7kts. Good day, winds light, made it to buoy #22 and the pass outside. Wind increasing and the sun glare was in my eyes, so I decided to back up to little harbor at Marathon Key behind Fanny Key to afford me a little lee from the NE as near gale winds are on the make. Wind will shift to E a little later and I should be in a fail lee. Anchored at sundown and by 5:30 it was rock and roll but the wind was slacking a little and veering East.
Tue, Dec 16
W by SW
5:30, 60s, NE 5, 30.1 and falling. Up and gone at first light for Key West. After a good day mostly outside the keys I anchored at Key West 60 days after leaving Rouse's Point, NY at the US border - as far up and as far down as you can get in the contiguous US - Anchored at end of point south of bight at Fleming Island. During the day I ran the starboard tank empty about 1pm switching to the port tank. I am anchored in about 12 feet of water with about 100 feet of scope, 120 feet from shore and 150 from another boat, sitting quiet. Took water taxi in to shore - $5 -Located fuel and water dock, library and internet access - located meeting club, and 5:30 meeting, had a hamburger and fries. A young couple living aboard gave me a ride back in their dinghy at 8:15. Walked about 30 blocks in town.

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