June 3rd Pentecost Sunday. The Spirit is a movin.

Written by Jack van Ommen on June 5th, 2017

“Fleetwood” moored in the Nautical Boat Marina in Portsmouth, Va. on the James River, yesterday afternoon. It was an uneventful sail from Jacksonville, Fl. to Beaufort, N.C. A fast ride from Jacksonville on the ebb tide. The 350 nautical miles on the Atlantic took a little over 3 1/2 days, constantly changing wind strength and direction but always a run or a broad reach. Then the about 210 statute miles through the ICW took another three days.

About three o’clock on Sunday (5/28) morning, I heard this loud banging on the deck above my bunk. It turned out to be an unusual large, about eight inch, flying fish. He or she ended up in the frying pan for breakfast, just before I ran out of propane. The rest of the six days it was raw cauliflower, celery, onions into a tasty salad and canned tuna. On Tuesday I caught a nice small tuna that made great sashimi. I could get used to raw fish and vegetables but I missed my morning ritual of espresso and soft boiled egg. The dishes are stacked up high in the sink waiting for the propane to be refilled.

The blue fin tuna

The blue fin tuna

This is the fourth time going up/down the ICW between Norfolk, Va. and Fort Lauderdale, Fl. with some portions done outside on the Atlantic Ocean.  This was the first time that I saw the landscape in early summer, lush and green. The times before were mostly in the midst of winter and the reed fields were in hibernation and a desert storm sand color, now they are bright lush green. The bald cypress are also a pretty green instead of bare or rust colored needles. I will never get tired of this ICW landscape. Unfortunately, I discovered in Jacksonville that my CSM card for the Nikon D-50 camera had locked up and I had left my spare cards in the North West. Since I am the last of the passive resistors to the smart phone I was left with just the use of my Go-Pro, which does not make good still pictures. The other difference with my previous ICW experiences is that I was able to sail and motor sail a very good portion of the ICW, beginning from Fort Lauderdale and I had some great sailing on the Albemarle Sound, yesterday and earlier on the Pamlico Sound. But I had to be constantly watch my depth, many times I had as little as little as a couple inches under the keel and I did get stuck a few times. This is particularly problematic when you have the mainsail up and sailing downwind. The other annoyance is the bad apples among the power boaters who should be required to mount rear view mirrors and stern cams and be forced to watch the havoc they cause to the slower boats they pass in these narrow channels.

Today, Pentecost Sunday, our youngest daughter, Jeannine was confirmed in the Sacred Heart Church in Ghent-Norfolk, Va. It was a beautiful service and I am very grateful for the opportunity to be with her and for her to have chosen her dad as her sponsor. Her two older sisters had been confirmed in 8th grade in their St. Patrick parochial school in Tacoma, Wa.

For a short video of the occasion go to: Jeannine’s confirmation  Family

I have made up two more videos: Green Cove Springs Marina and  The ICW from Florida to Virginia. Voor de Nederlandse lezers raad ik aan om het artikel in “Zeilen” te lezen dat ik schreef over de winter tocht op de ICW in 2008: www.cometosea.us/albums/Intra%20Coastal%20Waterway.pdf



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