Tuesday, September 10, 2013


I've been wondering about fuel consumption lately, particularly with the new Honda 2.3 four-stroke outboard.  I've had the outboard for about a month now, but my only use has been to get away from and then return to the dock at the ramp.  We haven't done any long distance motoring and I've had a difficult time trying to get a grip on the fuel to miles covered ratio.

I should have three canals to transit on the fall trip.  The Alligator River to Pungo River Canal being the longest at, according to the internet, 21 miles; the Goose Island Creek Canal being the shortest at 10 miles; and the Adams Creek Canal to Beaufort at 15 miles.  We have passed through the Goose Creek and Adams Creek canals a couple of times over the years.  The Alligator River to Pungo River Canal would be a new one.  

So I turned to my best source, Paul, aka Dances with SandyBottom, for his experience.  Who else but a statistician would have great numbers easily at hand.  Paul tells me that on the Tag Team Trip (too many years ago) Dawn Patrol used .95 of fuel to cover 33.3 miles in 9.4 hours.  

I will start the trip with a full internal fuel tank - .29 gallons - and 2.5 gallons in a gas can for a total of 2.79 gallons on board.  

My 2.79 gallons, using Paul's numbers, could carry Spartina nearly 100 miles.  Paul warns that "mileage may vary," but his numbers, plus the fact that I'll be able to refuel along the way, put my mind as ease.  Thank you, Paul.

I did try to buy two fuel canisters for the jet boil today, only to find they were out of stock at the sporting goods store.  I've got a couple of other local sources for the canisters and will pick them up by this coming weekend.

The forecast calls for a steady north wind and temperatures as low as the 70's this coming weekend.  Sounds like a day or two on the water.



Anonymous said...


If you reference the "ActiveCaptain" website & the Interactive Guidebook on it, @ activecaptain.com/, markers will indicate marinas and fuel docks along the way.

Some markers indicate pure gas for sale (no ethanol). My marina on Clubfoot Creek carries it.

Going down Adams Creek, Sea Gate Marina half-way down on the starboard side sells gas & and has small store.

I'm sure you are already using "A/C" for trip planning. It has been helpful to me for extended trips on the Neuse & Pamlico Rivers.

Keep me posted on itinerary & starting date. If I am nearby on the Neuse, will be happy to assist anyway I can.

Neuse River Paul said...

Well, with any luck you can sail right through the Hobucken Cut and Core Creek Cut as well. The prevailing SW-NE winds and sparse traffic this time of year make it very doable. You may never find out what kind of mileage that little Honda gives you - and that's a good thing.

I calculate mileage by the season - how many miles I traveled divided by how many gallons I burned. I get something like 200 miles per gallon.

Steve said...

Yes, Paul. I'm hoping for good winds and minimal outboard use. And 200 miles to the gallon sounds good.