LAT: N 32° 38.8'
LON: W 80° 17.0'
50s, winds 10 - 15 kts, brisk and cloudy
|Friday, December 5, 2003
No Cruisin' Blues For Twos
945 - We took Slowly over to the fuel dock for last minute errands.
1120 - Departure from Charleston.
1200 - After passing through Elliott Cut in the Stono River.
1302 - By Log Bridge Creek, we see no log bridge.
1412 - Passing Yonges Island.
1515 - Entering Tom Point Creek through the shallow opening.
1528 - Anchored on a good hold around a couple of bends in Tom Pt. Creek.
Arggg me maties, the Pirates of the Caribean ride scared me glass eye out of me head.
A Flotilla Of Two:
Slowly and Tevake Team Up
Hungry Hungry Hippo- Guest Editor
There were things to get done. We started up the engines after charging the batteries for some time since they had been out of commission for a few days now. We have become pros about not worrying when the engines will not start and turning the generator on to help give the starboard engine the boost she needs. We picked things up around the boat and headed in to the fuel dock.
Wanting to make the most of our time at the marina, and the $30 bucks a night for the mooring, we showered and dropped off our trash before turning in the key. Glad to be under way we then drifted off the dock, said so long to Charleston and got back onto the ICW with Tevake, our cruising buddies, close behind.
It was a grey day and we drove from inside while we slipped under a high swing bridge and through some residential districts. Going through Elliott Cut was a little shaky since the currents in the narrow channel really picked up, but we made it through no problem and took some pictures of the large houses and trees along the way.
The rest of the day was a maze of rivers and cuts as we wound our way south. Mostly, it was wild marshy land, but every once in a while, a long dock, alone or in a cluster, would reach out from a house into the water. We were also passed once by a handsome vessel, "Sea Tabby." Our day was short, having started after 11, we were anchored in our own private creek by 3:15. Stopping in a town or at a beautiful anchorage is increasingly preferable to being under way, so we enjoyed the short day.
Tevake ran into a little engine trouble on their way, so we made it in some hours before they did. Quite impressively, they came into our little creek under sail after dark and set anchor. We were thus happy to prepare dinner [It's a race, it's a chase, hurry up and feed my face! -Ed.] for both crews in the meantime and host a salty movie, "Pirates of the Caribbean," which was recently released on DVD. Another simple day came to a close, happily shared with friends. Tevake rowed back to their boat, and we turned in leaving our tiny sink full of dishes.
Anchoring. Since leaving Boston, we have anchored out many nights. It has been easier to find good anchorages as we travel south because there are more little creeks and inlets. Anchoring is an interesting, somewhat artful, and complex part of boating. First, in finding a spot, we are looking for a location where we feel confident that we won't hit any other boats or run aground. This requires crudely estimating a circle where the boat will swing once the anchor is dropped. Next we go up to that spot, and one person releases the anchor and lowers it to the bottom. We then slowly back the boat up and let out anchor line until we have enough "Scope." Scope is the ratio of the length of anchor line to the depth of the water. This is important because as the boat pulls on the line, we want the force to pull the anchor along the bottom instead of up off the bottom. So we always try to have a scope between about 3 and 7, depending on the conditions. Thus, in 10 feet of water, we have between 30 and 70 feet of line out. The last 20 feet of line going to the anchor is actually chain. This chain acts as an added anchor by pulling itself down to the bottom. In calm waters, we may never actually pull on the anchor since the weight of the chain causes enough resistance to our movement. Setting the anchor is another little game. Once we've let out enough line, we back the boat up and slowly pull the anchor along the bottom until it catches and pulls back, stopping the boat. If it's not catching, you can see the line jerk as the anchor skips along the bottom. Once the anchor is set, we let the line sag some and then put the boat into reverse again giving it one last good tug to make sure she is good and set. If we are expecting a lot of current or wind, we might even leave the boat in gear, just tugging on the anchor to set it extra firm.
Anchoring is another aspect of boating where it would be fantastic if we could see under water, down to the bottom. Without that ability, we use our boat science, probing and experimenting to best guess the truth of the matter. Beyond, we use our boat religion, left with our hope and faith as we pray the anchor doesn't break lose in a storm.
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