On Monday, May 20, we left Coinjock at 5:30 a.m. We put the screecher and bowsprit back on.
We had oatmeal for breakfast.
It was a bumpy ride across Albemarle Sound. We saw several sailboats along the way. This one's a ketch which means that it has two masts. The rear mast, called a mizzen mast, is forward of the rudder post and shorter than main mast.
Franci enjoyed a turn at the helm.
This gave the captain time to catch up on his paperwork.
Stephen took the next turn at the helm and took us to the Alligator Bridge and into the Alligator River.
The Alligator Bridge is a swing bridge and it opens for you by request. When the winds are higher than 20 mph they cannot open the bridge at all for anyone because it becomes too difficult to close. After passing through the bridge you call the bridge master again on VHF and say “Thank you”.
Shortly after passing through the bridge there were thunderstorms all around. We put out the lightning strike preventer. We put down the eisenglass, but actually we never got much rain. The storms seemed to be going behind us.
We had prime rib sandwiches for lunch. There was a jet plane buzzing around us making lots of noise. Soon the quiet sound of naps took over. The captain drove on through the Alligator River.
At 2:15 we left the Alligator River behind and headed into the Alligator Canal. The canal connects the Alligator River and the Pongo River. Belhaven, our destination, would be in the Pongo River. We rolled the eisenglass back up. It had warmed up and there were no more thunderstorms in the sky
We passed several boats in the canal who were headed north. This one is called a Gemini.
We passed under the new Fairfield Bridge. Ralph and Arlene recall when they had to wait for the old bridge to open.
We saw three boats ahead. Stephen said it looked like school just let out.
At 3 o'clock we had tea time. The cookie of the day was Ginger Snaps.
There's a lot of farmland along the canal. Occasionally you would see a house.
Eventually we came to the Wilkerson Bridge. After that we would be in the Pongo River. Franci got to take the helm and steer us to the final anchor spot close to Belhaven.
By 6:30 that evening we were anchored in a lovely spot. We had been 88 miles that day. We were the only boat around.. On one shore we could see some private homes, One of them was over a hundred years old and had been a plantation before the civil war. We're not In the north anymore. Ralph and Arlene said that at one time it was a very cool restaurant. There were also new condominiums and numerous other private homes.
For dinner Arlene made us the best fish taco spread we've ever had. Food continues to be great here on the Dolce Vitaville.
Life is good.
Franci and Stphen