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Monday, November 7, 2011

Carolina Beach, NC

For those that have followed us on our blog, I apologize that I did not do an update when we completed our trip more that a month ago.  I would like to say it is because I have been so busy that I didn't have the time but, truth is, it is more due to being lazy.  However, as late as I am, I wanted to close this adventure with a couple of pictures of "Knot Busy" new home in Carolina Beach, NC at Federal Point Yacht Club.  By the numbers, our latest adventure recap is as follows since leaving Bayfield, Wisconsin in June:

2377 Statute miles
292   engine hours - almost a third of the total hours that are on the engines now
1215 Gallons of Diesel
78     Locks in Canada and the Erie Canal
97     Days on the water
52     Days we stayed in marinas
23     Days in free docks/Lock walls/town docks
22     Days on anchor - mostly in Canada (we miss these days the most)
 1      Hurricane - we rode Irene out on The Hudson River.  Don't want to do that again
 1      Blown head gasket - the only mechanical issue on the whole trip
????  Bottles of wine - maybe our greatest expense LOL

Our plans are to spend the winter making frequent trips to the coast to complete our "punch list" of projects on "Knot Busy" as we prepare her for more long term cruising in the future.  For now, we are enjoying our "floating condo" on the coast.



"Knot Busy" in her new slip at Carolina Beach




Gathering at Federal Point Yacht Club on our return home

Saturday, September 17, 2011

Almost Home

As we post this update, we are in Washington, NC, less than 200 miles from our "semi" permanent home for "Knot Busy" in Carolina Beach, NC.  Although we had intentions of traveling to Charleston for our home port, we were very fortunate to find a temporary slip at the Federal Yacht Club at Carolina Beach as we look for a more permanent mooring closer to Charleston.

When we last posted, we were at the Statue of Liberty, anchored and waiting for our friends John and Sue Winter aboard "Just Relax" for our trip down the east coast to the Carolinas.  Over the last few weeks we have traveled the ICW through New Jersey after a bumpy ride on the Atlantic, anchored in Atlantic City, traveled up the Delaware River to the Chesapeake where it rained for days (everything wet and waterlogged).  We spent 2 days in Annapolis, Md before continuing down the Chesapeake to Norfolk/Portsmouth before entering the Dismal Swamp and arriving in Elizabeth City, NC.  From Elizabeth City we traveled through the Alligator River to the Pamlico River and have spent the weekend in Washington.  We really look forward to spending more time cruising the many towns and waterways of Eastern NC in the near future. 

Next weekend, weather permitting, we will arrive in Carolina Beach and will be met by our former "crew members" Ed and Faith Long and Mike and Lynne Albert who will travel to the coast to welcome us home.  Although we will be happy to complete this final leg of our journey and returning home, we also look forward to our next journey - wherever that may be. 

Please enjoy the selected pictures for our latest travels:

Pia and Lucas "spooning" on the bow
John and Sue on "Just Relax"
arriving at our anchorage behind
"Lady Liberty"
Arrival in Atlantic City
View of Atlantic City at night from our anchorage

Lucas 1st Birthday "cake"
"Just Relax" and "Knot Busy" in Ego Alley
at Annapolis
USS Cole as we entered Norfolk on 9/11
In The Dismal Swamp
sign reads "Welcome to North Carolina"
Restaurant in Washington, NC
We passed this house a few times in
Washington with a dog on the roof.
Lucas was amazed.

Thursday, September 1, 2011

Our last posting began with the statement "it has been an uneventful few weeks...".  The last week or so since our last posting has been just the opposite.  We were joined in Schenectady on August 20th by friends from home - Mike and Lynne Albert - to make the final 6 locks on the Erie Canal, travel down the Hudson River to New York City.  We departed Schenectady on Sunday morning, traveled through a huge thunderstorm (while in a lock) and arrived in Waterford, NY that evening.  Mike and Lynne had never done locks before and were fascinated with the procedure as well as the amount of work involved in holding the boat in the lock while water churns below the boat.  I do believe they left with an appreciation of the process.

While in Waterford, we first heard of a potential Hurricane named Irene that may make it's way up the coast in the next few days.  We continued our trip down the Hudson aware that we could make changes in travel plans as the storm approached.  As we now know, Hurricane Irene did make its way up the east coast after hitting eastern NC and was headed directly into NYC. Unfortunately, Mike and Lynne were forced to depart early as we needed to find a safe harbor to ride out the storm.  They both thoroughly enjoyed the time they were on the water and felt that this was a unique experience for both of them.  I have no doubt this shortened trip only served to strengthen their committment to coastal boating in the near future. 

We were successful in securing a slip in Haverstraw Marina 30 miles north of NYC where we stayed until the storm passed.  A lot of wind and rain with a lot of rocking in the marina but we made it safely.  All of us agreed that we don't want to do that again!

With a few days delay due to Irene, we arrived in NY on Tuesday, stayed at a marina one night and traveled a short distance on Wednesday to anchor behind The Statue of Liberty.  Here we met up with John and Sue Winter aboard "Just Relax" - friends and boating partners from The Lake Norman area - who we will travel with the rest of our journey to the Carolinas.  We traveled with John and Sue when we began The Great Loop and look forward to spending time with them again.

Our plans are still to be somewhere in the Carolinas at the end of September and find a semi permanent home for "Knot Busy" for the winter.  We will continue to keep you informed of our travels through The Chesapeake and into eastern NC and hope Irene was the last storm of this season.  Hope you enjoy the pictures of our travels down the Hudson with Mike and Lynne.

West Point on the Hudson
The navigator and his assistant Pia reviewing charts
Lighthouse on the Hudson River
Entrance to Catskill Marina
None of the marinas in Catskill made it through the storm
Lucas posing with one of the decorated
Cats in Catskill
Celebrating Pia's birthday with Mike and Lynne
Lucas has developed a technique to
climb the stairs to the bridge
Calm before the storm?
Flooded marina after the storm
Water rose almost 10 feet
Sunset while on anchor in Haverstraw Bay
One day after the storm
Pia navigating The Hudson with NYC skyline in view

Saturday, August 20, 2011

It has been uneventful (that's a good thing) last few weeks as we departed Peterborough on the Trent-Severn Waterway, made our way to the end of the waterway to Trenton, Ontario and waited for a good weather day to cross Lake Ontario.  We have all enjoyed our time in Canada - the scenery was magnificent and the people were equally as grand.  Fond memories as we hope to return in the future to explore this beautiful country again.  Fortunately, we only had to wait one extra day for calm winds in Trenton and made the 80 mile trip across the lake to Oswego, NY - back into the US - on August 13th.  It was another long day on the water but we enjoyed the calm seas.

We entered the Oswego Canal - a 23 mile/8 lock waterway that connects Lake Ontario to the Erie Canal.  When we were on The Loop, we did not take the Erie Canal so this was a new adventure for us.  The Erie Canal stretches from Waterford, NY on the Hudson River to Lake Erie in Buffalo - a total of 363 miles and 35 locks.  We intercepted the Erie off of the Oswego Canal - 160 miles west of The Hudson River - and began our trip East.  Although the Erie was originally created as a shipping canal connecting NY to the Great Lakes, today the majority of boat traffic is pleasure craft.  Along the way, most every town on the canal has free public docks for boats to tie up for the night, many with electric hookup.  We took advantage of these opportunities and spent a night in Oswego, Phoenix, Sylvan Beach, Utica, Canajoharie, and Schenectady, NY where we are now awaiting the arrival of Mike and Lynne - more friends from NC - to travel with us the remaining few miles of the Erie, down the Hudson River to NYC. 
Tug used on the Trent for maintenance

Lighthouse as we departed Canada to cross Lake Ontario

We met this guy in Phoenix, NY.  He built this vessel himself from plywood and now lives aboard.  It took him 9 years to build, launched her last October and spent the winter in Florida.  Quite an accomplishment.

Erie Canal early in the AM

We encountered this dredge across the canal one morning and had to wait as they moved her to one side so we could pass.

Typical view along the Erie Canal

This was our 200th lock counting the locks we passed on The Loop.  Can't wait until we get beyond all the locks!

Deer along the Erie Canal

Sunday, August 7, 2011

It has been a few weeks since our last posting because we have had limited Internet coverage and because we have really been busy - in spite of traveling on Knot Busy!  A lot has happened since we left Killarney for the Georgian Bay and The Trent Severn Waterway. 

The first two pictures below were taken in Killarney before we entered Georgian Bay - the first of us tied to the dock and the second of the local LCBO (Liquor Control Board of Ontario).  As do a lot of  towns in Canadian waters, Killarney really caters to boaters, even having a dock at the LCBO for boaters to tie to while shopping!  Not sure if this is really a convenience? 
Killarney with Sportsman in background
Dock at the LCBO

In order to keep this posting brief so we can include more pictures, let me recap what has happened in the last couple of weeks, some which is captured in the pictures below:

*  We departed Killarney on July 18th, traveled about half way down Georgian Bay, arriving at Pointe Au Barrel inlet on the small craft route the same day.  We anchored in Hopewell Bay for two nights.

*  On the 20th, in heavy fog, we traveled from Hopewell Bay to Perry Sound Marina, staying two nights for some reprovisioning and sightseeing in this small waterfront village (home of the Bobby Orr Museum)

*  Our plans were to be in Penatang on the south end of Georgian Bay for a Looper Gathering on the 26th - 28th of July.  We departed Perry Sound on the 22nd, spent one night on anchor in Port Rawson Bay, and arrived in Penatang on the 23rd in time for the gathering on the 26th and the arrival of some friends from Charlotte on the 30th.

Pointe Au Barrel Lighthouse
(notice the barrel on the left point)
Anchorage in Hopewell Bay
*  Our week in Penatang was busy with more reprovisoning, a few maintenance items on the boat, attending the Looper Gathering, and preparing for our first guests on "Knot Busy".

*  On Saturday, July 30th, we drove to Toronto in a borrowed car to pick up friends and fellow boaters Ed and Faith Long from home and departed Sunday, leaving Georgian Bay to enter the Trent Severn Waterway.

*  With Ed and Faith aboard, the next 6 days we traveled from Port Severn at the beginning of the Trent Savern Waterwayh to Peterborough, a distance of 140 miles and 20+ locks. 

*  Unfortunately, while approaching Fenlon Falls on The Trent, we experienced our first mechanical challenge on the trip and, with Ed and Faith's help, traveled the last 60 miles/10 locks on one engine - quite a challenge on a 45' vessel.  However, with the help of "the crew" we were able to get to Peterborough and a diesel mechanic was able to fix the issue. 

*  On Saturday, August 6, Jack remained in Peterborough with the mechanic and Pia drove Ed and Faith to Toronto for their return flight to Charlotte.  While in Toronto Pia also was able to visit her daughter and family for the weekend.  We really enjoyed our the time we spent with Ed and Faith and look forward to seeing them soon when we arrive in Charleston.

*  We will leave Peterborough on the 8th and should be at the end of the Trent Severn in a couple of days prepared to cross Lake Ontario for re-entry into the US and the Oswego Canal by the next weekend.  At the end of the Erie Canal, we will be joined by more friends from home for our trip down the Hudson River to NYC.  As we return to the US and better wi-fi coverage, we hope to provide blog updates more frequently.
 
Inukchuk leading the way on an island

Small channel leading to anchorage in
Port Rawson Bay (very narrow)

Port Rawson Bay anchorage

Ed and Faith locking thru on the Trent

"The Crew" at Peterborough Lift Lock

Big Chute Railway Lock

The entire Crew

Ed and Faith at Peterbourgh Lift Lock

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Little Current to Killarney


Lucas on the dingy with ears in the wind
From Little Current to Killarney is 23 miles on the water - it took us 6 days to make the trip because of the great scenery and anchorages in the area.  Unfortunately, before departing Little Current on Monday, we awoke to a very sick puppy!  Lucas ate something on one of the islands in the Benjamins and was feeling a little "under the weather" for a few days.  Whatever it was got the better of him and before leaving Little Current on Monday morning, we spent a lot of time cleaning his bed, floor, the walls, etc. (I am sure you get the picture).  Good news - Lucas is now back to normal.

From Little Current, we traveled to Mary Anne Cove in Baie Fine, a fiord created by glaciers during the last ice age, made of white quartz rock.  We anchored in the cove in a driving rain and were able to anchor and tie to shore with the help of one of the other boaters.  After the rain passed, the next few days were spectacular.  When we think we have seen the best anchorage on the trip, we find another that we like even more.

Overlooking Little Current
Lucas felt as bad as this picture looks
After 3 days in Mary Anne Cove, on Thursday, we traveled to another cove not too far to Covered Portage, another beautiful cove surround by 400 feet high white quartz.  We actually hiked to the top of one of the rocks and took a few of the pictures below.  Another great anchorage!  Again we stayed for 3 days.

On Sunday morning we moved to Killarney and are currently at the Sportsman Inn Marina for reprovisions and chores.  Killarney is our last stop before entering Georgian Bay, our last leg of this part of our journey.  We will be in Midlands on the south end of Georgian Bay next weekend to attend a Looper Gathering and to wait on friends from home that will join us for a week of travels on The Trent-Severn Waterway. 


Baie Fine

Anchorage in Mary Anne Cove



Anchored in Mary Anne Cove
Sunset in Mary Anne Cove
View of Knot Busy from the top of the rock
in Covered Portage
It is a long way down