Blue John and A Good Day

BlueJohn001No we didn’t add a cold crew member. Blue John is what my grandfather called milk that had had the cream removed and had been cut with water — whether this came from his childhood or the Great Depression, I don’t know. I do know he didn’t like it one bit. He showed me what he meant one day, and sure enough, the milk in the glass looked blue and transparent — just like the low fog yesterday morning. The sun lifted and evaporated it fairly quickly, but since we left at sunup, we ran in that milky stuff for a while. It wasn’t enough for running lights or signals, but it left us feeling like we needed to rub our eyes clear or clean our glasses.

It took a while for things to warm up (relative term), but fortunately, except for a few twisty spots, the light breeze followed us, and serious windchill wasn’t an issue.

Click for full size

Click for full size

As we made our way through the cuts that connect the Stono, Wadmalaw, Edisto(s), Ashepoo, Coosaw, and Beaufort Rivers the porpoise activity picked up, and we got an escort that stayed with us nearly five minutes. It is a reminder that just a few miles south and east the Atlantic rolls.

Another thing we learned today is with our boat speed of 7.5 sm/hr, leaving Church Creek at dead low tide (on a half moon) allows us to reach the thin spots south on a half rising tide and to make Beaufort at an average of 8.2 sm/hr. The current also switched to ebb at Beaufort so we had perfect conditions for docking — wind and low current right on the bow.

We saw two cruising boats all day, one at the Ladies Island Bridge (spelled correctly) going north and one going south minutes after we had tied up at Port Royal Landing Marina (they have cable — essential for watching the Cotton Bowl victory for A&M).

The boat at the bridge passed us going north at a time that meant the bridge must have opened at 1330 — not allowed according to Waterway Guide (second bridge info error this trip). Janet called the bridge by cell and was nicely informed they opened on the hour and half hour when not restricted for the a.m.-p.m. automotive rush — and oh, by the way, there was a fuel barge (we had seen at the USMC pier) scheduled to come up behind us for the 1400 opening. The tender offered navigation advice if the barge arrived as we were trying to clear the bridge. Very nice, and unnecessary, we cleared the bridge at 1400, and the fuel barge passed us 20 minutes later as we were tying up.

This marina is nice, but like Cooper River Marina in Charleston, it is a looooong way from the T-head to the showers, laundry, etc. — planning is required.

Speaking of planning, in the latitude related post a few days ago, I left out a graphic which talks to how efficiently the ICW subtracts degrees, minutes and seconds from ones latitude.

The graphic is below. If the efficiency is “1”  that means one has gone due south. Negative efficiencies mean one has gone back north. From the chart one can see a whole lot of inefficient wandering is involved before the ICW really starts to take one south. But is is really pretty wandering in some places. Yesterday we crossed the halfway mark between Mile “0” and our jump off for the Bahamas. The “beta” (average inefficiency) behind us is .57, that ahead is .78. Things are improving!Efficiency

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