Wednesday, August 1, 2012

North Carolina to Norfolk, VA

The 3 days it took to get to Norfolk, VA were uneventful after our initial leaking water pipe.  We motored up the Intracoastal Waterway which led up from the Bay River through a canal passing by Hobucken, NC, across the Pamlico River to the Pungo River, then through another canal to the Alligator River where we spent the first night.  The mouth of the Alligator River is on the south shore of Albemarle Sound where I did field research on blue crabs and seagrass beds.  The wind picked up that day and we set the sails to test our new shroud plates.  We were happy to see that there was no deck lifting going on there anymore.  I would have been very surprised if there was.  There was not enough wind to turn off the engines but it gave us a boost allowing for the engines to be throttled down a bit.  Albemarle Sound is famous for its choppy conditions and a NE wind set the stage for a 2 ft chop which I remembered to be mighty fun when you were trawling for crabs in an 18 ft boat.  Somehow the ride was a bit better in our boat. 

After crossing Albemarle Sound we travelled up the North River and into another canal.  The second night we stayed at the Midway Marina, since there were no good anchorages in the area, then proceeded to Coinjock Bay (another place I worked in-so long ago).  Another long canal took us into Virginia and to the locks at Norfolk.  We barely made the bridges in time thanks to a delay caused by a fire truck then found that following a barge insured that bridges and locks would open. 

Until we got to Norfolk, the way was through beautiful pristine cypress swamp and pocosin habitat.  Osprey nests were on every other marker and we saw bald eagles every day.  It was a shock to enter the large commercial and military port with huge machinery and ships. 

Our anchorage was chosen for its proximity to a bus system where we could get to the post office. It’s near a noisy highway and navy base where helicopters circle all hours of the day and night.  Bill discovered at the last minute that our GPS card did not have the northern maps.  He ordered one and had it sent to general delivery here.  However that was a good idea in theory but not in practice.  He just found out that the post office he sent it to is only a distribution center and his package has likely been returned to sender.  He won’t be happy tonight!

From here “the plan” is to watch for a weather window so that we can go on the outside to Block Island

No comments:

Post a Comment