Charleston is always a favorite stop, we seem never to tire of walking or biking the streets of this historic port, always enjoying the sights of its beautiful homes and neighborhoods. We arrived Friday morning after a stopover at Price Creek. Our traditional stopover is at Charleston Maritime Center, where the staff is friendly, helpful and great at helping to dock in the sometimes challenging current that rips through the marina. Being aware of the current and the challenges it presents, we time our arrival for slack or close to it when the current is not an issue. Other cruisers would do well to do the same, it minimizes some of the drama that goes with docking in strong current, particularly for the less-experienced cruiser. We had no trouble, however we had two incidents where adjacent sailing vessels hit us, twice on the same day. Fortunately, no damage other than a gelcoat scar at the rub rail from a novice helmsman who was clearly beyond his skill set. It could easily have been avoided had he heeded the advice of the experienced marina staff. The second incident was a similar scenario, an arriving sailor simply didn’t account or plan for the swift current that carried him into our bow. We saw it coming, and fortunately had fenders at the ready. The hapless operator was attempting to fend off with his arms, that tactic never ends well! Sailboaters seem to be the worst at close quarters maneuvering!

We spent a few days revisiting favorite locations, and pulled out our bikes to extend our travel range. There are myriad beautiful homes in the Charleston style to see, photos are posted in the gallery of the highlights. We visited a dog park in the south part of the city near the battery where Molly made some new friends. One of the advantages of staying at the Maritime Center is the proximity to a Harris Teeter, only a short walk from the marina. Provisioning at its best!

We departed Charleston on Monday and headed to sea for our first ocean run of this trip south. Our destination was Beaufort, SC., about 72 nm. By transiting outside, we avoid some shallow spots; some are not a problem as long as we play the tides and pass through the skinniest areas at high tide, but if the sea conditions are calm, it’s simple to just avoid those areas altogether. We arrived in Beaufort about 1640 hrs. and secured a spot on the fuel dock since we planned to pick up some fuel in the morning. Beaufort is another pretty town, but this time we only stayed overnight since the moorings were all taken. They just installed a new mooring field, modeled after the ones in Marathon and St. Augustine, but the field here at Beaufort was poorly executed, with moorings located so close together that they are only able to utilize every other ball to keep vessels from banging into each other every tidal shift……”I’m from the government and I’m here to help….”


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