Cast off from the Beaufort waterfront 6:55. A noisy night as a crew working on a nearby catamaran was singing, and singing very badly at that, along with a too loud radio. Adding to the noise was the outgoing tide slapping the transom of SPARTINA. Finally quiet early morning hours.
Ebb tide with northeast wind helping us along the way. Cool with a low grey overcast. 1.5 on the first short reach dead downwind. Jibe at 7:25, 3.3, steak and eggs, with a peanut butter Rx. Slip on foul weather gear against the cold, 4.4
8:00 I hear the sound of reveille, maybe from Parris Island Marine Corps Recruit Depot or maybe from one small Navy bases. Soon I hear reveille repeat.
8:30 full ebb tide, decent wind over the port quarter and doing 6.4 along Parris Island.
The wind helps but the tide is excellent and I watch the rushing current pull crab pot markers underwater.
Hilton Head in sight 8:45, wing and wing to round Parris Island Spit just after 9:00 following the crab pot markers that wrap around the point. Rounding the spit 9:25, jibe, very quiet and feel little wind or tide in the shallows. 2.1.
On Port Royal Sound 9:45, with the wind all I can do is hold even against the 2.0 kt full ebb tide. Crank up the outboard and motor sail across the sound. 10:35 near Dolphin Point, water swirls as the tides mix at the entrance of Skull Creek. Inside the eddies and chop there seems to be no running tide at all. At least for a minute or two, then feel the tide carrying SPARTINA down Skull Creek. A light rain falling. Stop at Skull Creek Marina to drop off some cruising supplies on Webb's GANNET, then full sail south. 11:50 2.7 with the helping tide.
12:05 cool, grey, 4.7 with wind over port quarter. 12:45 off of Windmill Harbor, wind comes and goes, 2.0 then 4.5. Slip on my gloves, 5.0 on Calibogue Sound. 1:25 the Daufuskie ferry PALMETTO MERCHANT slows down to reduce their wake, 2.3. 1:30 wing and wing, 1.5, a line of crab pot floats shows we are fighting an incoming tide.
2:50 round the point on to the Cooper River and the incoming tide now in our favor, 4.4 with Bull Island to starboard and Daufuskie Island to port. Making 3.3 at 3:00, just doesn't feel like it with the tide doing a lot of the work. 3:40 skies lighten a bit, feels good.
3:50 green marker "37" shows the tide is now against us, 2.9. Anchor down 4:30 in the New River not too far from ICW Statue Mile 570.
Beef stew for dinner.