Heading South

Stephen and Roberta Arnold
Sun 24 Oct 2010 00:57

36:10.9846N 076:03.7914W


Saturday October 23, 2010 9PM


Yesterday we left the York River and headed towards Norfolk, but before I get into the details of the trip south I need to add more details about why we stopped on the York River.


My brother is a big Facebook user, I don’t even have an account. He has been able to reconnect with several of his and my high school classmates. One of them, Corinna,  lives in Williamsburg VA just a few miles from where we stayed near Yorktown. While we were in DC my brother arranged for the 3 of us to get together at her cabin in the Shenandoah mountains. It’s a beautiful place in the woods.



After a delightful weekend at her cabin I wanted to stop so she could see the boat.


I last saw Corinna 40 years ago while in high school. My first question was ‘So what have you been doing since we last talked?’. Within a couple of hours of being  together, it was like Roberta, Corinna and I had been friends for years – she is a super lady.


I never was a sailor who enjoyed winter sailing. Yes you can put on extra clothing layers to keep warm but you end up feeling like the Michelin man about to roll off the deck. Leaving the York River the temperature never got above 60 degrees and the winds built to 20-25 kts with gusts to 30. The good news was we were heading more or less downwind so we were almost comfortable. The wind helped us go faster than I planned so after a fuel stop in Norfolk we realized we could make it to the last lock opening of the day. So here we are in the lock as the water enters to lift us up. The foaming water makes it look like we are fighting a major current but it is not that bad.




Once through the lock there is a draw bridge that needs to be opened. The guy at the lock jumps in his car and drives down to the bridge to open it. Here we are waiting for the bridge to open with one of the other boats in the lock with us. The green on the water to the left of our boat is stuff growing on the water not trash. The water was virtually trash free.




Just after this bridge is a seawall where we tied up for the night. It is on the edge of a parking lot and there is a guardrail. Roberta couldn’t resist adding our name to the others on the back of the rail




We had an early start down the dismal swamp – there was still mist over the water it made for a very scenic start to the day.





Tonight we are anchored a very open position waiting for day light so we can cross the Albemarle Sound. The wind has started to pick up again defying the forecast – it may be a bouncy night. With luck we’ll be in Oriental NC on Monday night. Once there we’ll wait for the weather so we can head further south offshore. Right now the winds through next Thursday will keep us in port so our departure date is unsure. FYI - cell phone coverage between here and Oriental will be spotty at best but we will continue to get e-mails.