We are back in Georgetown! South Carolina, that is – not the Bahamas! It was a smooth trip north to Georgetown so we were glad about that. We left Beaufort, SC, on Saturday morning, June 1 and headed north on the ICW. We made it about 36 miles to a wonderful anchorage area at Steamboat Landing, and the next day, June 2, we went another 56 miles to another anchorage area at Awandaw Creek just off the ICW.
Awandaw Creek is an interesting anchorage that is seemingly out in the middle of nowhere in an area where we were totally surrounded by marsh grass. It was also interesting in that the current once again was opposed to the wind, and it was actually quite windy there – probably 14 – 18 knots. At one point I looked at the anchor rode going down into the water from the bow and it appeared as though it was actually going under the boat and behind us. I have seen this a number of times and am always amazed at how the boat is seemingly pointed ahead of the anchor and it just stays there. I reach over and grab the anchor bridle and it doesn’t seem like there is a whole lot of pressure on the anchor rode, so the way the current is in relation to the wind must hold the boat steady in some way. I certainly don’t understand it, other than to know it’s holding us. (I’m also very careful that the anchor rode doesn’t get twisted around our keel or prop – wouldn’t be good!)
Anyway, we had a wonderful evening at Awandaw Creek and 8:00 am Monday, June 3, we lifted the anchor and we were off again. We ended up tying up to the dock at Georgetown Drystack Marina in Georgetown, SC, at 12:20 pm already as it was only a 29 mile day. We stayed at this marina on our way down the ICW this past November so knew it was a great place – check it out if you’re ever here! Very friendly and helpful staff! It is also right next to Hazzard Marine where we were going to have our boat hauled out to repaint the bottom. Hazzard Marine wasn’t able to haul the boat out until Tuesday afternoon, so at about 2:00 pm on Tuesday, June 4, we went a whopping 548 feet into their boat well where they pulled the boat. Always impressive seeing the boat come out of the water. She hadn’t been out of the water for 13 months!
Up until then the weather had been great, but it was predicted to start raining on Wednesday, so after they power washed the bottom and set the boat on jackstands at 3:30 we got to work. The goal was to get the boat painted on Tuesday so we didn’t have to deal with rain issues on Wednesday. Sharon and I sanded the entire bottom of the boat to make sure it was clean as well as to abraid the existing paint so the new paint would stick well. At 5:30 pm we had the bottom wiped off (sounds weird, doesn’t it?) of residual dust, and had it all taped up so we wouldn’t get paint on the boot stripe and I was off to the races with the bottom paint. Unfortunately it was very hot and humid yet and I soon became totally drenched with sweat in my Tyvek paint suit. But by 7:30 it was totally painted. Looked great! Interestingly, it only took a gallon of paint whenever I painted it in the cooler weather of Michigan, but it took one and one third gallons down here where it is so warm. The paint dries quickly, and because of the heat it just didn’t seem to go as far. Thankfully I had two gallons onboard. I will have to pick up another gallon at some point this summer for when we do this in the fall again in order to have enough.
We slept great on the boat on jackstands on the hard at Hazzard Marine – although we were so tired after all that work we could have been anywhere and slept fine! It was strange looking out from the boat and seeing cement and gravel all around us, but it was no problem other than having to go up and down a ladder to get on and off the boat. Max wasn’t a fan of this, but he survived – we lifted him with his lifejacket handles to get him on and off.
On Wednesday, June 5, we once again got to work before we went back in the water. I changed the zinc anodes, thoroughly cleaned and sprayed transducer paint on the depth and speed transducers, and changed the engine impeller. For some reason I always get nervous changing the impeller, but it came out great thanks to a special tool my brother-in-law, Steve, modified for me. The impeller really was in great shape with no cracking or signs of wear, but I put a new one in anyway just to make sure we don’t have any issues this next year.
Around 11:00 am they came over with the slings to lift the boat off the jackstands so I could get bottom paint under the keel and where the jackstands were, and at 1:30 pm, after letting the paint cure a bit, we went back in the water. The new impeller worked great as the engine started discharging water right away and we moved the same whopping 548 feet back to the marina. So cool it all worked out well! Whew!
It was supposed to rain all day today, Thursday, June 6, so we decided to not head out. Of course it didn’t end up being too bad, but it was alright to have a day to relax. Of course there are always other projects to do, so it was good to get some of those odds and ends done. I even fixed a squeaky cabinet door in the forward head and totally washed all the walls in the aft berth!
We have noticed, however, that we are really wanting to get underway and move again. It was great to stay so long in Beaufort and to have the time here in Georgetown to get the final paint job done, but it is time to go! I think we may be getting a lot of rain from the Invest 91 (or whatever it was called) in the Gulf as it swings east, but the next 4 or 5 days shows a lot of rain each day. We certainly can move the boat in the rain, but it’s not as fun especially if it gets windy and nasty where you have to navigate tricky areas on the ICW.
So we’ll see what the forecast is again tomorrow for the upcoming few days – it seems to change a lot. It would be good to be heading north but we don’t want to put ourselves at risk either. We’ll see.
We continue to be so happy our a/c is working! It’s not as blistering hot as it was in Beaufort, but still warm and especially humid here. We have had the a/c running non-stop just to keep the humidity out of the boat – and to make it feel cooler too! The temps have been in the low 80’s or so.
We have had some great walks around Georgetown while we have been here. Many of the homes were built in the 1800’s and although they have been restored they have so much character and are so beautiful. There also is a great Harbor Walk boardwalk area with quaint restaurants, shrimp boats and many charter fishing boats. So fun!
We feel relaxed and ready to go, so hopefully we’ll be able to make some good decisions about what to do with the weather.