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With just over 9 hours of traveling yesterday, we made it from Swansboro to Wrightsville Beach, NC where we are anchored now. The anchorage in Swansboro was pretty sketchy as it has a strong current, coupled with strong winds that were pushing us towards a low fixed bridge. These are the kind of conditions that just beg to dismast a boat. In fact, I heard of that exact thing happening with the Tappan Zee Bridge on the Hudson River when a cruiser’s mooring broke free and sent him drifting into the bridge. We sure didn’t want that to happen which made the fact that our port engine was acting up even more disconcerting.

Yes, we are experiencing more engine woes. It seems our port engine is now suffering from similar issues to those that were plaguing our starboard one a few weeks ago. The Yamahas have apparently decided to take turns acting up and if they really must do it, we certainly do appreciate them not being difficult at the same time! Having the redundancy of two engines is a great benefit.

Our latest path of troubleshooting is looking for an air leak in the fuel lines. We replaced a small piece of hose and replaced the O-rings in our Racor filters. Some additional lines might end up getting replaced today after we go shopping for parts.

The long trip yesterday was a bit reminiscent of the old game Snakes and Ladders. While touring down the ICW, one crosses various inlets where the current either pushes us along faster or slows us down. This made estimating our ETA to the four bridges that we needed to transit a bit challenging. Some bridges open on the hour and the half-hour while others only open once each hour. With our engine misbehaving we were really trying hard not to end up doing donuts in front of a bridge, waiting for it to open, especially if the current was pushing us towards it. Fortunately we were able to adjust our speed up or down to mostly avoid that.

Our plans today are to explore Wrightsville Beach a bit and head south again tomorrow. The cooler temps here are definitely motivating us to put in a few long days southward towards the warmer weather.

Some visitors while on the water.

Our starboard engine reached a big milestone.

She never quits!

More military zones to transit. We dodged the bullets this time.

My lawn ornament is bigger than yours!

Well, my house is brighter than yours!

One of many bridges on the ICW.

No, not a shot glass. This is one of the Racor filters filled with gasoline.

Wrightsville Beach, NC, where we are now.

I think this is a fitting end to the post.


  1. Wow! That last picture is probably the best one yet!

  2. You are the second blogger in the past month to take a picture of the PINK house. Must be impressive. Check out Gigi’s Island blog. They’re in S.C. ahead of you. Looks like if you check out other blogs you get information on good spot and maybe some bad spots.

    Great pictures!!!!!!!


  3. So, now that you are south of Cape Hatteras, would you consider going outside some days? Seems like it would save time on some days and also allow some longer days (could sail all night or at least head out pre-dawn). It seems close to shore (inside 20 miles) there would be no Gulf stream. I’d be pretty tired of the ditch by now, I think. I’d have to mix it up.

  4. No matter who takes how many pictures of the same thing, they are still awesome!

  5. We’ve taken pix of the pink house every time we’ve passed – it gets more outlandish each time. And the giraffe we have seen about four times. Great fun. From where you are on south, keep your camera handy at all times. It WILL get used!

    Enjoy your trip. We are taking it vicariously this year through you and other cruisers. We’re staying in Md. and freezing our tales. (Pun intended.)

    Captain Larry and Saltwater Suzi

  6. We spotted our first dolphins yesterday, but I’m sorry to say that we have yet to see any pink houses or fun lawn ornaments. Perhaps folks living on the Virginia Cut are boring.

  7. Perhaps they should change the name of that bridge to “No Tappen Zee Bridge”. I believe that’s German for “don’t hit the bridge” ;-{)

  8. We visited Wrightsville Beach in May of last year, though we did it from the land side:)
    My sister and her family were stationed in Fayetteville at the time.
    Loving the pictures and the stories you share!

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