Sunday, December 6, 2009

UPDATE: Back to Oriental

Ginny and I made it to our old sailing grounds of Oriental, NC yesterday, Tuesday, December 1st. Sure seemed good to be back here and see old friends. We are staying at the Oriental Marina and it has been great. The Christmas lights here have put us in the Christmas spirit and it feels good.

We left Portsmouth, VA. On Saturday, November 28th and ran down the ICW to Coinjock, NC. We met a young family in Portsmouth over Thanksgiving who is traveling on a Vagabond 47 which is almost identical to our previous boat. We gave been running together for the past few days and have really enjoyed getting to know them.

Sunday, November 29th we ran from Coinjock down the North River, crossed the Albemarle Sound and up the mighty Alligator River to the southern end where we anchored for the evening. Every time we do this leg I am always in awe of the natural beauty of the NC coast and coastal rivers.

Monday, November 30th we transited the Alligator River/Pungo River canal then down the Pungo River to Belhaven.  While in the canal, boneheads on power boats from Cape May, New Jersey almost ran us into the canal stumps with their big wakes from their power boats. They don’t have enough sense to know they are financially responsible for damage that occurs when they are irresponsible.  The Pungo River was stirred up with heavy wind and we were glad to pull in behind the sea wall in Belhaven just as the wind velocity ramped up to 40 knots. We waited a while and got the anchor set. The wind died in the afternoon just to come back with a vengeance around 9:30 pm with the approaching front. The wind clocked around as the front approached and we again saw 40 knots of wind for a while. I was up until after midnight making sure our anchor didn’t drag. Not one of those nights you wish or hope for but one that you have to tolerate every now and then.

Tuesday, December 1st, we left Belhaven and ran the ICW down the Pungo River then crossed the Pamlico River to the Bay River then up the Neuse River to Oriental. The weather was awesome and we had a great run.

Wednesday, December 2nd we stayed in Oriental and had visits from friends who live here. It was great to see them and relax for a day. It rained almost all day and the wind picked up around 11:30 pm as the front came in. We had heavy winds blowing straight into the dock and I had to get up and run more lines to the pilings. Listened to a USCG rescue that was unfolding off the NC coast on VHF channel 16 until around 2:30 am. Still not sure what happened but the last transmission I heard they CG was sending a 2nd rescue helicopter.

Thursday, December 3rd – the glue in Oriental was very sticky so we stayed another day and waited for better weather to move on.

Friday, December 4th we backed out of the slip and headed out for Morehead City Yacht Basin looking forward to seeing our oldest son and his family.

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