Monday, June 27, 2016

day eight - fog, sun, storms, rain

Fog.  Up before 6:00 and the trees on the shoreline are shrouded in fog.  Poking my head out of the boom tent I can see nothing else on Pantego Creek save for the fog.  There is a nice breeze.  

We sail off anchor at 6:45, navigating by following yesterday's track.  We make 2.8 mh down the creek past a couple of anchored boats, slip out through the breakwater and turn south making 4 mh.  By 9:00 the fog is gone.  Low grey clouds giving way to blue skies.  I spread out the foul weather gear to dry.  After yesterday's drizzle the warm sun feels good.

Off of Wright Creek a crabber is working his pots, a large black dog perched on the bow of his skiff.  The wind falls off approaching Wade Point, making barely 1 mh.  Then no wind at all and I scramble for my foul weather gear as a light rain falls, the sun shining all the while.  The rain stops and a north wind fills in, making 4 mh west on Pamlico River.  

Off of North Creek just after noon.  I had launched out of there a few years ago, a nice pretty creek that branched off in several different directions.  I wondered why I had not visited since.  Maybe later in the trip.  

There's a little blue sky, mostly white puffy clouds with flat grey bottoms.  Wind falls off and there is a light rain.  Off the ferry docks I look behind to see a storm building to the northeast.  It looks like it is tracking down the Pungo River, then builds over the shore to our north.  

Another arm of black clouds moves over the river ahead of us.  Strong wind out of the east.  The skies darken and this time I don't wait, I round up to bring down the main and mizzen.  

We turn downwind as the cool outflow rolls out from under the storm.  Making 5.3 mh under the jib alone.  The wind keeps building and I see we are sailing through a field of crab pots off of Gum Point.  I angle to the southwest to find deeper water.  The rain arrives but just as the storm seems to lose its energy.  Now just a heavy rain.  Making 4 mh under the jib we pass Marker "4" and head to Bath Creek.

Full sail up and wind drops.  Heavy rain.  Under power to the creek, tying up in an empty slip at Bath Marina about 4:00.  I knock on the office door wearing foul weather gear in a steady rain.  The owner opens the door, smiles, says "Out cruising today?"  He says I can leave Spartina in a slip while I get a sandwich at the sub shop across the street.   

We cast off in a light rain - it's been raining since we approached the creek - and motor to Plum Point to anchor for the night.  The rain stops and we get a little bit of evening sun, I can dry out Spartina before putting down the sleeping gear.  I check the weather radio:  Rain tomorrow morning, chance of thunderstorms, rain tomorrow afternoon, chance of thunderstorms.  And then the automated voice repeats the same for the next four days.  I think about visiting Bath and Belhaven in foul weather gear and rain, and I wonder about doing the same in Washington.  I decide to think about it over night.

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