To the DSVC

To The Dismal Swamp Visitors Centre
 
 
 
Dismal_Swamp_003
 
Our anchorage in Norfolk waking. We were up and ready to leave at eight, excited to be heading to the start of ICW on the Dismal Swamp Canal
 
Dismal_Swamp_004
 
The workers of Norfolk were getting busy
 
Dismal_Swamp_006  Dismal_Swamp_008
 
Many girls in refit. I couldn’t take the picture of the sign because the girl on the right had her patrols out, but it said “Beware of Jet Blast and Roters”
 
Dismal_Swamp_011  Dismal_Swamp_010
 
Another girl, and Akula rang a bell; later we remembered parking next door but two to her on our first visit to St Lucia
 
Dismal_Swamp_014  Dismal_Swamp_019
 
Then we saw a bulk oil carrier called Cape Bear
 
Dismal_Swamp_021
 
A stubby lady, a new shape to us
 
Dismal_Swamp_022Dismal_Swamp_024
 
This rail bridge was unusually down, an excited Bear was in for a surprise ?? To watch a train go over ?? So me being the nice wife / First Mate stood like a tool for twenty minutes at Beez nose, camera poised.
 
Dismal_Swamp_028
 
All that went over was a car on rails – a rail inspection.......... Bear must have looked a little hesitant when the bridge finally went up. The radio chirped “Cmon up Skip, I’m at eighdy farve feet. Y’all have a good ‘un”. Having waited so long it was a huge rush to get to the Gilmerton Bridge for the nine thirty opening, very touch and go. Luckily for us a tug was going through and a boat called Penguin had gone aground just in front, obviously got too close to the muddy edge waiting for the bridge. They had to hoist their sails to get out of the mud, that took a few minutes, enough time for us to get near enough for the bridge lady to have us in sight. The bridge lady was the same one as when we were northbound and very kindly she held the traffic for three minutes for us to get through. Phew. Had we not got through, the next opening would be ten thirty, then we would miss the eleven o’clock lock opening at the beginning of the Dismal Swamp Canal. We thanked her profusely for her kindness.
 
Dismal_Swamp_029
 
Back to normality and girls at work
 
Dismal_Swamp_030
 
Dismal_Swamp_031  Dismal_Swamp_032
 
Yeeha, Mile 0 on the ICW. Instead of turning left and going down the Virginia Cut (the way we came north) we turned right into the shallow water leading to the lock, complete with fly fisherman
 
Dismal_Swamp_034  Dismal_Swamp_036
 
We waited at the lock behind Dividend. A heron watched as we tried not to “sail on the spot” in the very shallow water
 
Dismal_Swamp_037  Dismal_Swamp_038  Dismal_Swamp_047
Dismal_Swamp_049  Dismal_Swamp_051  Dismal_Swamp_056
Dismal_Swamp_057  Dismal_Swamp_059  Dismal_Swamp_062
 
The lock opened, we nestled. The back gates closed, the front gates opened and worked up a huge head of froth
 
Dismal_Swamp_066  Dismal_Swamp_068
 
  After twenty minutes we rose high enough for a hug with U-Turn. Robert the Lock Master trotted over for a chat.
 
Dismal_Swamp_069  Dismal_Swamp_071
 
Time to leave the lock, take a quick photo of the mileage chart, just 1087 to Miami
 
Dismal_Swamp_076  Dismal_Swamp_077
 
As we left Robert played his shell – a tradition. I told him not to give up his day job, he laughed and waved us off. Now we are ON The Dismal Swamp Canal – the oldest in the USA
 
Dismal_Swamp_078  Dismal_Swamp_081  Dismal_Swamp_082
 
Dividend led the way and sped off, Captain wiping his new fenders – he does like clean fenders, see Pepe’s eyebrows nip. The 12 mile marker
 
Dismal_Swamp_083  Dismal_Swamp_084
 
The old Superintendent’s House qualifies as a ‘One Careful Owner’
 
Dismal_Swamp_087  Dismal_Swamp_089
 
We passed relics of a bygone age. Not only do we have to check for depth coming along here, we have to look out for rogue overhanging branches.
 
Dismal_Swamp_091  Dismal_Swamp_092
 
On our left the Welcome to North Carolina behind us on the other side Welcome to Virginia
 
Dismal_Swamp_095  Dismal_Swamp_096  Dismal_Swamp_048
 
Skipper all gleeful. 24 mile scale – we are in the middle of nowhere. Small scale there is a canal
 
Dismal_Swamp_099  Dismal_Swamp_101
 
We arrive at the Dismal Swamp Free Visitors Dock and chat with Mike and Cyndy – Writers on the Road – traveling in their RV
 
 
Dismal_Swamp_102  Dismal_Swamp_103
 
A rare picture of the two of us and Bear by the sign that says ‘we are here’
 
 
Dismal_Swamp_135
 
 
Beez Neez, now covered in pine needles and her bedmates, one American and one Canadian
 
 
 
 
ALL IN ALL EXCITED TO BE IN THIS FAMOUS SPOT
                     SMASHING TO BE IN THIS PEACEFUL PLACE IN THE COUNTRYSIDE
 
 
 
.