Friday, November 22, 2013
Boring can be a good thing
Well, I wish I could have some excitement to report for our blog readers. But, for our sake, I am happy to report that I do not. We had a completely uneventful trip from on our first day of the cruise. It was certainly a long day, though. We departed at 8:15 am, and arrived at our first anchorage at 11:00 pm. But the weather cooperated this time, and we had a smooth trip. Even across Mobile Bay. In fact, it was dead calm when we entered the bay at 6:30 pm. Paula even cooked dinner as we crossed the bay... chicken & dumplings. Yum-oh!
This was our first full crossing of the bay at night. While we got caught in a storm here last time we crossed in May of this year, we were 3/4 of the way across before night fell. This time it was black as pitch by the time we got there. To make visibility even worse, there were patches of fog across the bay. But we had no problems, and did not even see another boat in 2.75 hours it took us to get across. We entered the ICW on the east side of the bay at 9:15 pm.
As we progressed eastward we passed Lulu's, and Tacky Jack's. Since it was Friday night, we expected them to be packed. Much to our surprise, both places were almost totally empty! I have never seen Lulu's like that. Of course, it was 9:45 pm, but I expected at least the bar to be hoppin'.
As we approached the Wharf marina we started getting multiple alerts about impending collisions. Looking at the chart plotter I could see at least six boats had left their AIS transponders on. Since we were going to be passing within 10-15 yards of them Coastal Explorer software was warning us of the close approach. I finally had to mute it.
As we approached Ingram Bayou I could see two targets on the radar. So it looked like there were at least two boats already anchored in there. When I made the turn to enter I briefly turned on the spot light to see how they were anchored. It turned there were not two boats, but seven? One small sailboat that we have seen here before, anchored off to the side. Then six trawlers, all rafted up together in the middle. I squeezed between them and the sailboat and went all the way to the back and dropped anchor in 10' of water. With all the trees around we are well protected from the high winds forecast for tomorrow. Now it is time for a nightcap and some well deserved sleep.