Logs for 2008
The Adventures of Sailing Yacht Flipper
In October 2008 we left for our fall cruise to the Chesapeake bay. One thing lead to another and soon we were
heading south. In Deltaville, Va. we had Flipper pulled for a bottom inspection, all was good. On __ November we
proceeded south to Ft Monroe, Va. where we rented a car and brought those items which we did not need for a
trip South, and picked up our extended cruising items such as ditch bag, jack lines, more sails, etc. In Norfork,
Va. at Hosital Point we met up with another CYC sailing family aboard Sea Gypsea.
Thursday, Oct 23rd: Did some last minute things and left CYC at 13:00. Anchored at Mattawoman approx. 16:30,
pretty sunset, a few fall colors.
Friday, Oct 24th: Left for Colonial Beach and anchored where Scott Shramm had suggested, right in the channel
by the turning basin.
Saturday, Oct 25th: Cool, drizzly, rainy, and windy. Phil took Katherine in by dinghy to visit Scott. Katherine had a
great time playing with remote control planes and cars. Monica got “wigged out” (as our friend Linda says) by a
gust so strong it released the brake on the wind generator and made a hellacious racket. It was the first time it
happened. Phil and Katherine had a somewhat wet ride back in the dinghy.
Sunday, Oct. 26th: Front passed, sunny, went in by dinghy to take Katherine to a very nice jungle gym, walked
around, picked a few shells and Katherine’s 1st sea glass (nothing too exciting – piece of beer bottle) on a small
beach. Went back to the boat, weighed anchor, pulled in for fuel and water, picked up lunch at a seafood
restaurant, and left. Arrived in the Yeocomico River late afternoon and anchored at Wilkens creek to wait out
front #2. Pretty little spot, nice fall colors, couple nice houses, not much activity.
Monday, Oct. 27th: Phil saw an oyster boat working a couple oyster beds while I got ready for the 1st day of
“Flipper School”. The day was partly cloudy, breezy, and cool. We called Dad and Charlotte to wish them a Happy
Tuesday, Oct. 28th: Breezier, Phil went by dinghy to Kinsale Marina to pick up a couple generator parts he had
shipped there and check on a possible quick haul-out for FLIPPER. A strong gust lifted DOLPHINER’s already
elevated bow and almost had Phil in the water (DOLPHINER is what Katherine named the inflatable). No oyster
boats today, no activity on the water whatsoever. Heard someone hammering on shore. It was too breezy and
uncomfortable to go in by dinghy.
Wednesday, Oct. 29th: A little sunnier but still too cold and breezy to go in. Thank goodness for the fully enclosed
bimini and the diesel heater. A couple rifle shots in the distance, just a little disconcerting as the only anchored
boat in the middle of the creek but probably safe to presume they’re aiming inland. Still no activity on the water; I’
m now thinking this is the nautical version of Hotel California. Held 2nd day of Flipper School.
Thursday, Oct. 30th: We attempted to head down to Deltaville or Reedsville where we had found online there
were kid friendly Halloween activities but there was still a lot of roll in the Potomac and the Bay would be worse.
Headed back in towards White Point Marina and had to anchor right by the marina because the wind blew out so
much water it was shoal and we needed to check with the marina before going in. No answer by phone so Phil
went in by dinghy, came back, we docked FLIPPER, settled in, then took the courtesy car to pick up groceries and
a pumpkin from a roadside vegetable stand. Later that evening we took the courtesy car to Good Eats Café and
enjoyed a really nice prime rib supper. Katherine had chicken fingers and behaved quite well, a prerequisite, we
had told her, for future restaurant visits. Rob at White Point told us that the little town of Kinsale was a great spot
for traditional house to house trick-or-treating so we decided to
stay for Halloween.
Friday, Oct 31st: Held Flipper School in the slip at White Point Marina and “teacher Phil” and Katherine carved the
pumpkin as a craft activity. Around 17:00 we took the courtesy car to Kinsale where Katherine was quite excited
about trick-or-treating, her 1st time doing so the traditional way, from house to house, enjoying all the lights and
decorations as she went. We came back to FLIPPER where the pumpkin was aglow and waiting for us on the
Saturday, Nov. 1st: Left White Point around 07:00 towards Deltaville. Bay was calm, seas 1 ft. or so, sunny day,
arrived in Deltaville mid afternoon. All in all a pretty uneventful day except anchoring took a while because of poor
holding, soft mud. We were in the Southern fork of Jackson Creek.
Sunday, Nov. 16th: At MM23 in the Dismal Swamp. Sunny, breezy, beautiful day after a long stretch of off and on,
mostly on, real “snotty” weather as Phil puts it. Made a few of the “back” entries for the 1st part of the trip.
On November 16th we left anchor at Hospital Point (Mile 0) on the Atlantic Intercostal Waterway (ICW) heading
South. Most of the bridges were in the up position and because it was Sunday the only other bridge opened on
request. We made the 1100 Dismal Swamp lock opening with hour to spare. We locked through with 4 other
sailboats, and proceeded South as the third boat. Along the way we bumped jetsum 5 times. We stopped at
about 1500 at the NC visitors center and rafted outboard S/V Sea Hawk (a 46' Morgan ketch) with 4 kids aboard.
On November 17th we departed the North Carolina visitors center in the Dismal Swamp at 0745 and arrived in
Elizabeth, NC about noon. We docked at Pelican Marina for electrical connections. Phil backed Flipper into a tight
slip without taking out our dingy or davits. Our packages which were forwarded by our mail service were waiting
and Monica was happy to see her espresso coffee in the shipment. We proceeded into town and purchased a
few supplies. Later we reconnected with the cruising families of S/V Sea Hawk and M/V Emily Grace aboard M/V
Emily Grace (a 42' Nordhavn) for a quick tour and play date with all the kids.
November 18-19 was sent dockside at Pelican Marina waiting for the wind to subside and the wind driven tide to
rise. Phil changed Flippers engine oil and worked on the web site. Katherine had school with Monica and Monica
did some paperwork.
Thursday, Nov. 20th: Left Elizabeth City, NC at 07:00. It’s a beautiful day but breezy and cold. NW wind about 12
kn., just a little rolley for now but not bad and Phil has our yankee up. The whole East coast, down to FL has
experienced unusually cold temps the last few days (Jax and Charleston, highs upper 30s) and will continue to do
so for about a week.
09:40: We had a few heavier rolls for a while but should be at the bottom of the Albemarle Sound around 11:00.
Katherine wanted to reposition her tea set and asked “lock me” referring to holding her by the foot for the rolling
and when she was finished she said, “ok, unlock me”.
11:20: Going through Alligator River Bridge.
14:08: The “fleet” sailing through the Albemarle and Alligator River arrived as a group at Tuckahoe Point where
EMILY GRACE had been anchored for a while. SEA HAWK anchored near us but it was just breezy and cold
enough that we wimped out when it came to lowering the dinghy and getting all the kids together.
Friday, Nov. 21st:
06:50: Weighed anchor at Tuckahoe Point and headed into the Alligator Pungo Canal. The last time we came
through here it was in the dark with minimum visibility due to rain. The forecast today is for snow flurries –
something about this place.
08:50: “Dad, is it amazing that it’s snowing?” Yes, it’s snowing.
Saturday, Nov. 22nd: We left Little Bear Creek at 06:40, once again, ever so grateful for the full enclosure and
diesel heater. We had 25 deg. And 25 knot winds for most of the night. The diesel heater does pretty well, temps
inside are low to mid 60s while our friends at anchor, EMILY GRACE and SEA HAWK, reported cabin temps in the
low 40s. Even at low 60s we had Katherine snuggled up in bed back aft with us. Mom and Katherine fell asleep
early last night, around 21:00, while Dad joined us around 23:00 so he could keep an ear and eye out as the
promised 35-40 kn. gusts kicked in late evening.
We had anchored in Little Bear around 14:00, a little more open than we would have liked, NW winds about 15 kn.,
but sunny and nice in the cockpit. We made calls, made supper, read to Katherine, then she watched a little
“quiet” dvd. Unfortunately it was still too uncomfortable to lower dinghy and get Katherine and Emily together
(EMILY GRACE was the only other boat anchored with us).
Earlier in the day was definitely interesting with snow showers that started on the sleety side but quickly turned
to snow flurries that hung around for about 3 hours, one hour of which was a little tiring due to low visibility.
Sometime mid-morning SEA HAWK called us and EMILY GRACE to report the 1st dolphin spotting. FLIPPER saw a
dolphin ever so briefly a couple hours later when closer to Beaufort, NC. We arrived at Beaufort Town Docks at
approx. 13:00, took on water and fuel, got rid of garbage, and walked to the nearby pharmacy to ask if they had
the flu mist for Katherine. No luck, returned to FLIPPER and left the docks to go pick up a mooring across the
way. Shortly after we were settled in we saw a pony on the small beach right by the mooring area.
A couple hours later Chris and Michelle arrived with SEA GYPSY (new members at CYC that have been
“snowbirding” for a couple years and are headed South to the islands). The mooring they tried was in bad shape
so we told them they could raft up with us. They settled in, picked up Brandon (8) and Phoebe (5) from the
grandparents they had been with for the week, and later in the evening they all joined us on FLIPPER for play
dates and pizza.
Sunday, Nov. 23rd: Approx. 10:40 FLIPPER and SEA GYPSY’s crews took dinghies into town. We all started
walking together then Phil went with SEA GYSPY’s crew to the hardware store while Katherine and I walked
around the historic part of town on the waterfront. Katherine had a small cold and woke up early so while in one
of the stores she fell asleep in the stroller. I walked a little, went through the maritime museum, Katherine woke
up, and we went to find the church swings someone had told us about. We played with the soccer ball and
Frisbee in the grass, played on the swing, and then Phil joined us and played a little. We went back to the boat
and had very late lunches. Quiet evening, a little internet, and heated a can of corn chowder for supper.
Monday, Nov. 24th: Enterprise couldn’t pick us up until 10:00, then they were late, and they were 20-25 mins.
Away. So we got off to a late start but had a busy, full day hitting West Marine, Wal Mart, and Lowe’s, and getting
Katherine her 2nd dose of flu mist and hitting the commissary at Cherry Point Marine base. We drove to
Enterprise, put all supplies in a taxi, went back to Beaufort, got a little wet as rain showed up as forecast while
unloading groceries to the dock, but it was light and then stopped. We had a very full and heavy dinghy to take to
FLIPPER and spent most of the evening putting things away while Katherine watched her 2 new dvds and had
supper. Phil and I had yet another can of soup for supper.
Tuesday, Nov. 25th: Slept in a little. Katherine and Mom took showers, did lots of dishes, and a few log entries.
Late pm Phil took Mom and Katherine to the dock where we proceeded to get rid of some recycle (spotted a
couple bins behind a restaurant while walking around on Sun.), bought a few things at the small organic market,
and dropped off books that Katherine has outgrown at the library while Dad filled a few water bladders and
transferred water to FLIPPER. We then had a very nice meal on SEA GYPSY while the kids had lots of fun playing.
Wednesday, Nov. 26th:
07:07: Left mooring about 30 mins. ago. Beautiful, clear, calm day. SEA GYPSY will be going offshore to
Charleston. We were tempted but we need to do more securing for sea, pick up the Epirb we ordered, and figure
out what measures to take to prevent hypothermia, esp. for Katherine, heaven forbid we ended up in the water.
13:30: Anchored in basin/anchorage at MM 244, right next to WWII Amphibious Landing Ship #45 (part of Camp
Lejeune, imagine ship used for SEAL training).
Thanksgiving, Nov. 27th:
07:22: Got underway at 07:07. Beautiful, clear, cold morning with a little fog along the banks and frost all over the
yankee sail bag and on various spots on the boat. Yesterday afternoon Phil and I paid a couple bills online,
changed addresses, caught up on e-mails, etc. while Katherine played in the sunny warm cockpit. We caught up
on a couple phone calls, had a nice supper (Phil grilled meat), and then had to run the generator a little so we put
on pbs kids for Katherine and got online a bit more. Then Phil went to bed and I read to Katherine and we fell
asleep watching one of her favorite “quiet” dvds, baby einstein’s “shapes”.