May 7, 2016

May 4-7, 2016  Days 30-33  Spring 2016
Great Bridge Free Dock
Chesapeake, VA

We departed Dudley’s Marina in Swansboro early Wednesday morning and had a mix of clouds, light rain, and then very heavy rain much of the day.  We passed Morehead City at 11:00, noticing the busy port with ships unloading their cargo. By 1:35, we entered the Neuse River. Four hours later we were in the Pamlico River.  We continued on to our anchorage on the Pungo River, joining one other boat just as the sun was setting on this long day of cruising.

On Thursday we headed out again, with a very light rain or drizzle but very windy at 22 mph.  We spent two and a half hours on the narrow Alligator River-Pungo River Canal, which connects the two rivers. Then we entered the Alligator River, which was choppy with 2 ½ -3 foot waves.  We knew the Albemarle Sound would be worse.  After we went through the Alligator Bridge, we decided to travel a few more miles on the Sound and then find an anchorage near shore at Manns Harbor.  We were glad we made this decision, and so did seven other boats near us!  We also knew we were running low on fuel. Since we are only running on one engine, Bill was able to transfer fuel from the starboard engine to the port engine by using the generator.  He did this successfully at anchor.

On Friday we were greeted with calm seas and continued cruising on the Albemarle Sound until we reached the North River at 10:20.  We arrived at our destination, Coinjock Marina and docked with about 30 other boats! Eight of them were rafted together. Fortunately we were one of the first to arrive.  We had dinner at the Coinjock Restaurant at the Marina. It is known for its prime rib and Bill will attest to its   quality! He can also attest to the quantity – their small portion is 16 ounces. Can you imagine the 32 ounce size?  We had a wonderful meal and even treated ourselves to a dessert.

This morning we got some desperately needed fuel before leaving Coinjock and heading into the Virginia Cut.  We had another good travel day although we had some occasional showers. We had to time three bridges, but this worked out fine. We reached the third bridge (Great Bridge) at 3:00 and found space on the free wall just past the bridge.  By day’s end there were six boats docked on this wall. We had a quick dinner and then watched the Kentucky Derby!