Friday, May 1, 2009

It was the best of days, it was the ....

Carolina Beach, NC

Dear Reader:

I HATE the Cape Fear River. Piece of crap. When the wind isn't against you the current is. Or both are.

That said, and know that I am 8 beers (really) into the night:

We started at 7:00 a.m. and ended at 8:30 p.m. Here is the story, sort of, from a hazy perspective written while I drink beer #9 and listen to

Waccamaw River has a number of oxbows which are perfect anchorages. Southbound after passing the Cape Fear River make sure you take advantage of at least one of them. It is like being on the African Queen. Really. What a marvellous treat.

The day started well. Nice anchorage, nice beginning, tide with us. We made great time. Fantastic time, averaging 6 knots ON THE GROUND.

The only downer was the pontoon bridge at the entrance to North Carolina which opens only on the hour. Ten boats trapped on our side of the river. This is the only bridge I know where no one wishes the bridge master well. This little bureaucratic king takes his time. You are not allowed to pass the bridge until he gives permission, never mind how open the damn bridge is. He is a little Mussolini and when they replace his stupid little bridge many of us will bid for the right to give this pathetic little bureacratic loser his pink slip.

Southport, an anchorage shown by Skipperbob along the passage Northward is the Erieau of NC, ie. it is the asshole of the state. What a dive. Do not be tempted to take your sailboat (ie. real boat) into this 8th level of hell. We tried. No depth. No anchorage. No dock. I do not care what Skipperbob says. Just say no.

The Dutchman Creek anchorage just south of Southport is not worthy of consideration either. We tried. With any south wind at all it will not allow your boat to straighten into the current with the result that you are blown sideways into the bank and a guaranteed grounding. Trust me, we were there.

Then we traversed the perverse Cape Fear River, piece of *&*$#.

Now we are bedded at Carolina Beach anchorage and calm. Getting the anchor set we find the bilge pump plugged with oil and the diesel throwing oil like an NFL quarterback. Looks like the dreaded diesel replacement is stalking us.

Who knows? Not me that is for sure.

Yours truly,

Drunk and dissatisfied in North Carolina.

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