Voyage 2009-2010: Chapter 5

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11 Jun 2010, A few days in Elizabeth City, 36 18 N/ 076 12.48 W

    We spent the rest of that day readying the boat for a bit of rest. We even used the air conditioning on the boat. How decadent! Mike of SV Defiance again offered the use of his car for our convenience. Of course, we accepted and filled a couple jerries, provisioned at the Food Fresh, and dropped off some old oil at Advanced Auto Parts. Sadly, we did not see much of the engaged couple (Josh and Lorelei) that we enjoyed during our last visit.

    We were surprised that the 'free docks' were nearly full while we were in Elizabeth City as it was late in the season. Cruiseheimers had most of the cruisers north of the Carolinas. We walked to town to see how EC was weathering the economic downtown. This town was suffering greatly from (insert your favorite diatribe against George W or Barack H here). We enjoyed a great lunch at the Cypress near the 'free docks'. Today we are readying Jule for the trip to Hospital Point tomorrow. -----

12 Jun 2010, The Dismal to Norfolk, 36 50.748 N/ 076 18.08 W

    We left EC at 0630, traversed the bascule bridge at 0645 and then headed up the beautiful Pasquotank to the South Mills bridge and lock. This is one of our favorite partds of the ICW, especially during the spring time. The trees are green, the wildlife is abundant, and we normally have it to ourselves. However, the secret is out and each year there is a bit more boat traffic.

    At 1055, we arrived at the southern lock of the Dismal Swamp and Frank took our lines on the eastern wall. A single handler did not move up all the way on the western wall so the last two boats had to go to the opposite side. Once through the lock and bridge we enjoyed our 20 sm trip through the Dismal Swamp Canal to Deep Creek. There we Robert guided us through the bridge and the lock in near record time. While the water was receding in the lock, Robert would play tunes on a conch shell. Not bad! Once we left the lock, we slowly headed for the Gilmerton bridge on the Elizabeth River. The bridge would not open until 1730 so we just slowly meandered down the Elizabeth.

    We were concerned that Hospital Point anchorage would be full as today was the beginning of Riverfest. When we arrived at Hospital Point it was indeed crowded. However, there were holes towards the north end of anchorage and we found an OK place in 7 ft of water. There was much drinking and noise but it was also fun. There was quite sa bit of law enforcement (blue lights) on the water in case the crowd became rowdy. -----

18 Jun 2010, Norfolk to Herring Bay, 38 46.584 N/ 076 33.94 W

    The early morning was foggy but we left at 0545 nevertheless. The current was against us until we were well North of the Hampton bridge-tunnel. Then the current was with us much of the way to Reedville. Wind was out of the South at 5-10 knots which was favorable for a motorsail with the jib and mizzen. But it was very hot! We heard SV Fairwinds on the VHF and agreed to meet at the Crazy Crab in Reedville. They caught our lines at 1630 in a heavy head wind and by 1645 we were secured. We walked the town, ate at the Crazy Crab, and then headed for the bunks as we were getting up very early the next morning.

    Today is our last day on the water traveling up the Chesapeake. It was another very, very, very hot day with light SW winds in the morning, light and variable by mid day, and 10-15 kts and gusty out of the West in the late afternoon. All jib and jigger conditions with a bit of motor. There was lots of traffic and lots of squalls but we managed to dodge them all. We arrived at Herring Harbour North at 1700 and managed to catch Fairwind's lines by 1830. Not bad. -----

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