Norfolk - and the start of the ICW proper!

Melvyn Brown
Sat 13 Nov 2010 17:41

36: 50.6N 76: 27.5W


We left Fisherman’s Bay Harbour at 7 o’clock and got into Norfolk at just after 2 o’clock.  The conditions weren’t perfect but even so we made good time and covered 53 miles (…..a mere hour in that hire car!).


At the entrance were the Navy dockyards with at least two dozen ships of various types, including aircraft carriers.  It was a young boy’s Airfix heaven. Then there were the commercial docks with container ships and then some more navy ships – not sure if they were new ships being fitted out but they didn’t yet have their fiddly transfers pasted on yet. 


We chose the marina because it looked to be in the heart of Norfolk….and indeed it was….in what was probably originally the red light area but which has been gentrified and now goes by the name Waterside Festival Marketplace.  I’m not sure the authorities have entirely managed to convince the public since they offer a ‘complimentary safety escort to your downtown destination or vehicle’ if you are working or out late!




It was with some trepidation I went to pay for our slip but was pleased to find it was only $1.50 per foot – which we have come to think of as a good price.  We have booked for two nights as Melv wants to look over the huge WWII battleship Wisconsin anchored just off to the left in the picture above and photographed from the water as we passed this afternoon.



We added “P” for Pelicans to our I-Spy lexicon on the way down.  We have purchased a field guide of Eastern US birds and let me tell you it’s jolly difficult being a bird spotter here.  There are nine different wrens, eight different woodpeckers and twenty two sparrows for a start.  Indeed I thought I was going to be able to tick off the House Sparrow (which is identical to the UK sparrow) but the book tells me while often mistaken for a Sparrow (it’ll be the name I expect) it is in fact a member of the Weaver Finch family.  (One for the next pub quiz)