We set the alarm so we could get up in time to take a cab 2 miles to downtown Beaufort for a 3 hour Outer Banks Cape Lookout Lighthouse Tour. We ate breakfast, walked Auggie, and called a cab. He picked us up at 8:20 for our 9:00 tour. We arrived in Beaufort, just across the river, and checked in at the office for the tour.
There is a herd of 140 horses that roam free on the island. They eat the lush grasses that are exposed when the tide goes out and drink fresh water from holes they dig in the sand. We saw quite a few of them and you know how I love horses! We continued on to Cape Lookout Lighthouse where we would have an hour to explore the beach, lighthouse, and keeper’s quarters museum. We would have to be efficient with our time. Bob and I first walked down to the beach. We both wanted to see a “wild” beach on the Outer Banks.
We toured the lighthouse keeper’s museum and were able to see Lookout Bight from there. (That’s where we would have anchored had the weather been better. )
We came back along Harker’s Island and through Taylor Creek along the Beaufort waterfront lined with big houses and lots of boats.
July 25, 2011 Morehead City to Dudley’s Marina, Swansboro, NC
I am getting so tired of this wind……It was breezy and humid again this morning. It doesn’t seem like this windy, hot weather pattern is going to break any time soon. We decided to move on, so at 8:00 we pulled away from the dock and motored out. The SW wind and tide were working against one another creating standing 1′ waves, otherwise I don’t think we would have seen much wave action this early. We enjoyed our stay in Morehead City, but wish the weather would have been more conducive to being outside or anchoring out. Oh well….it is what it is. We passed one sportfish towing another as we moved through Bogue Sound. We could see that one of the lines probably got caught in the propeller. It was frayed and still hanging over the side.
I wouldn’t want to be the one responsible for causing that to happen. Yikes!
July 26, 2011 Dudley’s Marina, Swansboro, NC (day 2)
The winds finally died off last night to create decent sleeping conditions. It did pick up again at some point during the night moving the boat around, waking Bob up. He got up early this morning to check the weather so we could decide whether to stay or go today. We decided that we would spend another night here at Dudley’s since there were small craft advisories out for points farther south….where we were headed. Better to be safe, not sorry. We took a closer look at the dock that the barge ran into yesterday and saw the damage. Bob informed the owner so that he could take the necessary precautions. The barge crew came back today to repair the damage they did.
The winds never came up today like they predicted, so we really didn’t have to spend another day at Dudley’s, but we got a lot done today, so it was worth it! We got a few sprinkles throughout the day, but really nothing to speak of. We haven’t had a full day of rain on this whole trip and only about 5 days where we had rain at all, mostly at night. That’s amazing! Tomorrow we’ll move on to Wrightsville Beach since the weather forecast looks good. Let’s hope the actual weather matches the forecast. The day ended with a beautiful sunset and a rainbow.
What a nice way to end a great day!
July 27, 2011 Dudley’s Marina, Swansboro to Wrightsville Beach, NC (Dockside Marina)
Bob plucked me out of bed at 6:30 to say we were leaving soon. Yesterday the firing range at Camp Lejeune was active with bombing practice with fighter jets and ground artillery for most of the day. The jets would go screaming by overhead and then you’d hear multiple explosions. Today would be another day of practice and when they do, they restrict boat traffic on the ICW with delays of possibly 1-4 hours. We didn’t want to get stuck in one of those delays, so we pulled away from the dock at Dudley’s at 7:10. The weather conditions were good–mostly sunny skies, light breeze, and the current was slack for getting off the dock. For once, the current would be working in our favor. Nothing was going on at the firing range—yet.
There was also a smell in the air this morning of something burning close by. There had been a report of a forest fire in the area on the news the other day. Maybe that was it. We’ll have to find out. A formation of 8 jet skis came by with a tour guide riding 2 by 2. All 8 of them had their water “rooster tails” showing. How much fun can riding in formation on a jet ski be?
We picked up speed a little to make the 11:00 hourly opening of the Surf City Bridge. As we motored south, we occasionally passed under a dark cloud that dropped a few sprinkles, but nothing significant. The temp. this morning (82) was perfect and the cloud cover helped to keep it comfortable. This guy must have thought the giraffe would draw attention to his “for sale” sign. Otherwise, why would you have a giraffe that big in your backyard? Hmmmmm.
We pulled in and got tied up at Dockside Marina by 1:30.
It turned out to be a nice day and started to warm up…..just about the time we got tied up. We had traveled a total of 54.4 miles today. Bob worked on his treasurer business for the Co-op and Auggie and I just sat for awhile and cooled off in the AC. Bob and I took a walk up to the Dockside Restaurant and Bar for a beer.
July 28, 2011 Wrightsville Beach (Dockside) to Myrtle Beach (Barefoot Marina)
We pulled out around 8:00 to get a beat on the heat and humidity. We had clear, blue skies and a light breeze from the SW. The current was with us, but we were going against the wind. That was ok because the breeze kept us cool and refreshed. In passing Carolina Beach Inlet we could see many boats fishing along the shoreline today. The winds were perfect out of the SW for smooth water close to shore. People had also driven down the coast of Pleasure Island to the sandy point at the Carolina Beach Inlet. They would be fine there for fishing, shelling, or enjoying the beach until the tide started to come in.
We passed Carolina Beach where we had anchored before and continued on through Snow’s Cut. Boat traffic was light and there was no tug pushing a barge to contend with this time. The passage through Snow’s Cut was uneventful.
Holden Beach was a congested area of people playing on the water in all kinds of ways. About 20 rental jets skies passed us as we left Holden Beach. We had never seen such a big group of jet skiers at one time.
July 29, 2011 Myrtle Beach, Barefoot Marina (day 2)
Things are heating up this week with temps in the high 90s and high humidity. Next week, they say will be in the more “normal” range of mid to upper 80s. We had a restful night and a leisurely breakfast. We wanted to get an early start before it got too hot. Bob put the bikes together for our 1 mile ride over the bridge to the beach.
THE INTERNET HERE IS VERY SLOW AND I’LL HAVE TO FINISH MY BLOG WHEN I GET TO SOMEPLACE WITH BETTER SERVICE.
July 30, 2011 North Myrtle Beach (Barefoot Marina) to Georgetown (Hazard Marina), SC
We left at 7:45 and already it was steamy and calm. There was absolutely no wind at all. Today would be the worst day yet for heat. Hopefully, leaving early would also reduce some of the weekend boat traffic. We passed a tug pushing a barge. We haven’t seen one of those in a long time.