Cast off from the dock in New Bern at 6:20. Motoring around the end of the long pier I radio a request for a 6:30 bridge lift. "6:30 lift, captain" is the tender's reply. While idling on the Trent River there are a couple dozen bass boat on the other side of the river, with more of the high-speed fishing boats arriving by the minute. Just as the horns sound on the lift bridges the bass boats head out in waves. There must be a 6 a.m. start to a fishing tournament. Fortunately they all turn up the river, taking their wakes with them.
Bridge opens and we motor through the last of the wakes. With the forecast of light wind I decide I'll settle for Broad Creek or Beard Creek, each just a few miles down the river. Or with any luck I could make Clubfoot Creek.
Full sail at 6:35, motor sailing beneath the high-rise bridges. 7:15 wind out of the NE and sailing at 2.4 with not a cloud in the sky. Reach my first goal, Broad Creek, at 8:45 with steady downwind sailing at 3.1, sometimes wing and wing.
A puff and we pass Beard Creek, 4.8 approaching Wilkinson Point.
Round Wilkinson Point at 11:40, 2.4. Making much more ground than expected. Clubfoot Creek is to my south but I can do better. Just after noon crossing the Neuse River to Adams Creek the gusts start to fill in, making 3.3 towards the shoals at the mouth of the creek. Rough water entering the creek at 1:30.
Calmer in the creek but still plenty of wind, 4.9 with wind on the beam. It is easy sailing following the curving creek, passing the first anchorages at Cedar and Jonaquin Creeks.
It is early in the day and I could easily motor down the canal to Beaufort by late afternoon, but being a Sunday with nice weather I imagine the docks would be full and the town crowded with tourists. I turn into Back Creek, a single sailboat anchored there with a woman reading a book in the cockpit. I sail about 100 yards past her, drop the anchor at 2:30.
It is hot and sunny, I put up the boom tent right away for shade, spend the afternoon doing R&R (reading and relaxing), and also breaking out the stored food and bagging daily meals kits for the for the next week or so.
A good long afternoon nap, beef stew for dinner. The sound of distant fireworks wakes me in the night. I am glad I didn't not go to Beaufort. I climb out of the sleeping bag and look up at the clear, peaceful night sky.
25.27 NM for the day