Monday, November 17, 2008

Inside ~ Outside

Mile 505 South Endisto River ~ south of Charleston, SC ~ We got up at 5:30 AM this morning – cold – in the 30’s - put on layers of clothes as this was to be the day we headed off shore. Me for the first time, Don for the first time in over a year. One of the first things we do each day is listen to the NOAA weather station – the report had changed from last night – a cold front is blowing through and predictions increased the winds to 25 knots and a small craft warning. We had decided we would only take this 30 hour 180 mile jaunt if all the pieces were perfect. With disappointment we decided to call Greg and Michelle and let them know we didn’t think we would take on the journey given the new weather report. Greg is far more experienced than we are and has a 46-foot boat. The wind predictions were still from a favorable direction so they decided to go on.

We left Dewees creek around 7AM and headed to Charleston together. When we got into the channel at Charleston harbor they went left and we went right. We spent a few moments lamenting our loss and then quickly got to work as a large container ship was entering the channel, coming in from the ocean. It’s a very busy harbor and pleasure craft must be completely aware of all the commercial traffic, ships, barges, ferries , Naval ships and more. It was amazing how fast he went form being a spec on the ocean to a huge high-rise behind us. We scurried across the channel, knowing he would head up the river behind us and not towards the ICW.
We had a good day, getting farther than we anticipated as we waited for a 10:30 Am bridge opening just outside of Charleston. We were alone at the bridge happening and only saw one other vessel all day. We have been travelling is such a pack of boats each day with lots of motorboats passing us and usually 5 or more sailboats together that it felt very different. The sun was out, the sky blue and the winds light but the winter air was old and bit our faces the entire day. There were a few skinny patches along the way but we were graced with high and half tide most of the day as we wound our way down several river sand through several cuts that connected them. Those are the tricky spots and at times the current can be as much as 3 – 4 knots. A 9 hour day – at around 4 we came into our chosen anchorage on the South Edisto River and we were the only ones here. By 5:00 2 other sailboats had come in to anchor for the night.

We were treated to flocks of shore birds silhouetted against a deep red and orange sky. A wonderfully large and majestic great blue heron stood on the river bank 60 feet from our boat and stared. Maybe the cat? Maybe we are an intrusion. Maybe he was just listening for his dinner. For now a peaceful gorgeous spot with a sky absolutely full of stars. The night is supposed to bring us 25 knot winds and more cold. They have predicted 20’s for the morning - holy cow !………..Margaret
Can you spot the kitty cat on the bow? In Dewees we had oyster stew on Argonauta and got to take a few photos our our boat ! A sail in the distance coming down the icw - Heron surveying things in our anchorage.

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