Fruit Isles mooring - Offshore sailing meets canal boatin g

Martin and Elizabeth Bevan
Sat 11 Feb 2012 23:02

Position           26:06.17N 80:09:34W

Date                1200 Friday 10 February 2012


Brian left us this morning to return to Washington, it was sad to see him go and I am extremely grateful for his contribution to the sail south.  Elizabeth drove him to the airport whilst Greta, Gary and I moved Caduceus to a mooring some 3 miles further up the New River where she can lie for some time whilst we work out what to do next.


It was of course bucketing with rain, the compensation is that the rain is warm but there is a limit to the amount of “singing in the rain” that you can really enjoy.


First off it was back through the 3rd Street Bridge, again.



Note the Bob the Builder tugboat moored beyond the bridge, a happy looking ship.  With a flooding tide producing up to 2 knots of current under the bridges, timing is important; thank heavens for reverse and a bow thruster.  The next bridge is “open unless closed” which is standard for railway bridges.  Fortunately there were no trains due for as we found in Norfolk the bridge closes for a very long time before a train is due.


The New River is navigable for a considerable distance beyond Downtown and many of the marine facilities, workshops etc.  are situated on its banks.  This makes for a great deal of traffic of all sizes; one of the motor yachts going in the other direction that we passed, was 146 ft.


You do not get signs like this on the River Thames.



The final approach to the mooring kindly offered by the father-in-law of the secretary in Lauderdale Batteries, from where we are buying a new set of boat batteries, is on one of the canals bordering Guava Isle, off the New River and in his gargen.  This is about three of our boat’s width wide.  The mooring is some ½ mile up the canal and it was necessary to reverse all the way to the berth.  Gary and Greta now understand my statement that the Amel manoeuvres as well backwards as forwards.  Immediately opposite our berth is an Amel Super Maramu which leaves not much room for other boats.  There is definitely a requirement to leave fenders out on the canal side of the boat.  It is nevertheless and a great mooring for the boat for a couple of weeks.



It was then farewell to Gary and Greta who were off to stay the weekend with friends living in Fort Lauderdale..  The boat seemed quite deserted as we packed a mountain of laundry and retired to our luxury riverside abode.  Dinner was round 2 of one of Greta’s chicken casseroles, a catering bonus for the boat.