We had really really very nice weather in Charleston SC for the time we spent, temps in the upper 70's to low 80's with little humidity. Great sleeping weather with lows in the 60's, very near perfect in our opinion. I tried to take advantage of it and worked a lot outside and a few inside chores. Jeannie returned from the west coast on a Wednesday and we rented a car to get additional provisions. We were looking to buy stuff like paper goods, frozen foods and basic staples; things that will last and are less expensive here than in the Bahamas. We made a pretty good run and were looking for places to store things by the end. I think we are sitting a little bit more in the water as a result. We will not starve, that's for sure.
As good as the weather was, I guess all good things come to an end. The day we left a cold front blew through and the wind picked up and the temps went down. We pulled off in a rainy mist and warmer clothes, the weather gods were certainly saying time to go and find warmer weather.
We have been having remnants of tropical depressions and cold fronts from Canada. The result of all of this is rough waters offshore with an occasional break for a day or two. One of our favorite internet sites for weather is the Ocean Prediction Center along with National Hurricane Center, both give you a great over view. Mike's spaghetti models is another great site for a good overview.
XM Weather which is a satellite based weather service. To the right is a color pictorial of the waves along the east coast of Fla. The reds are wave heights of 12-19 ft and the yellows are 9-12 ft. While on the west coast of Fla the wave heights are a more civilized 1-2. What makes these waves more pronounced on the east coast is a combination of north-north east winds against the north flowing gulf stream in addition to the offshore lows. We also use a couple of IPad weather sites include my radar and National Buoy data ( both internet and Ipad app)
Bottom line: not a fun place to be.
As we traveled down the ICW we found a large contingent of boaters who would rather be traveling in the ocean rather than in the ditch, as the ICW is often referred to. We like our boat because it gives us the option of either riding outside in the ocean if we want or inside when the weather is bad, both in comfort and safety, while our draft lets us travel in some of the more shallow spots.
We were originally planning on using a Active Captain recommended anchorage but because of the wind direction we decided to move a bit further
One of our great pleasures is spotting the great
the great variety of birds. Here is a "little blue" heron in the low country marshes.
Surprisingly we have seen more eagles on this trip than all the previous ones combined. This one is an immature bald eagle.
We traveled to St Andrews Sound on our way to the first stop in Fla. This sound which is quite large has the ICW going out into where the mouth and ocean meet. Many boats were taking a longer and slower route through the marshes as an alternative to the ICW. That was because the tide was going out and the wind was in the opposite direction so the waves, while not large, were turbulent; the best analogy is like a washing machine. The depths here are quite shallow and the conditions were not the best but it is quick and we had some spray, otherwise uneventful. What we got as a reward was to see the wild horses on Cumberland Island, what a treat? There were easily dozens grazing along the shore line....An awesome sight!
Cumberland Island is the farthest south we can go until November 1st. It is our navigational restriction from our boat insurance due to hurricane season. The day we went past it was the 1st of November!
We are Bahama bound.