Please Note That Postings Below From Fellow Cruisers Are Listed in Chronological Order, Based on Publication Date
Yellow Background Denotes Navigation Alert Postings
Please Note That Postings Below From Fellow Cruisers Are Listed in Chronological Order, Based on Publication Date
Yellow Background Denotes Navigation Alert Postings
Oriental is home to two SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSORS, Oriental Marina and Nautical Wheelers! The Spirit of Christmas is the perfect start for the Holiday Season. For more on this holiday event, go to http://towndock.net/happening.
Oriental celebrates the holiday with Spirit of Christmas — on the second weekend in December — on Friday and Saturday December 11 & 12. Among the Friday traditions — the lighting of the Oriental Star at the Town Dock, caroling, a display of lighted boats, and the lighted small boat flotilla of canoes, kayaks and other motorless craft — in recent years, lighted kayaks lent a cheery glow to the harbor as the paddlers approached. And as a backdrop to it all, luminaria line the streets on Friday night.
Highlights on Saturday include the SOC Parade — at 1p again this year — and live nativity at the Methodist Church, lots of open houses at businesses and booths for charities around town.
The opening night of Oriental’s Spirit of Christmas is Friday December 11 and it centers on the water and many lights upon it. For instance, there’s the lighting of the Oriental Star down by the Town Dock. But before that, there are two boat events you can take part in…
A lighted boat parade [see http://cruisersnet.net/?p=153931] will pass through Oriental’s harbor around 5p. Here’s your chance to make your boat shine. If you’d like your boat to be a part of this parade, contact Joe Valinoti at email@example.com)
A bit later, comes Oriental’s newer tradition: the flotilla of lighted kayaks, canoes, paddleboards and any unmotorized dinghies. They’re a beautiful sight, the silhouettes at sunset and those twinkling lights appearing just over the horizon, as the paddlers work their way toward the Town Dock (after taking off from the Wildlife Ramp around 5p.) More small boats (motorless) welcomed – for more info, contact Larry Summers at 252-675-0467.
Oriental is home to two SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSORS, Oriental Marina and Nautical Wheelers! The Christmas Flotilla is the perfect event for the Holiday Season. The best viewing area will be the fishing pier by Lou Mac Park and the decorated boats should be going by around 5:00-5:15 PM.
Christmas Flotilla in Oriental
There will be a Christmas flotilla as part of the 2015 annual Oriental Spirit of Christmas festivities.
Boats will rendezvous at Oriental marker “1” at 1630 on Friday, December 11th and proceed on a prescribed route. Those participating and desiring a reserved slip at the new, free, town dock will be provided one on a first to register basis. This dock will be reserved from Thursday noon until Sunday noon.
A limited amount of electricity will be provided at this dock for lighting only. We will also havefree overflow slips available throughout Oriental for participating out of area or out of town boaters.
Please contact Joe Valinoti via email at firstname.lastname@example.org for the entry form and flotilla instructions including slip assignments.
You only have to spend a short time talking with Randy Mims to know that he has the soul of a true sailor. Randy not only built his 27ft gaff-rigged cutter, Ideath, but each year he single-hands the cutter from North Carolina to the Northern Gulf Coast and back again. “Ideath” is pronounced Idea-th and loosely translates as “house of ideas”. Randy stops along the way to visit maritime museums and, indulging his passion for music, he volunteers to sing in church choirs along the way. He also takes time to share his travels with his friends and has agreed to allow SSECN to post his emails. For more photos and more on Randy, go to http://towndock.net/shippingnews/ideath?pg=1 from TownDock.net in Oriental. Also see http://cruisersnet.net/?p=150703.
I have been having some wonderful times and survived some not so wonderful times here on the North Carolina coast. After leaving Beaufort, I went up to New Bern to Duck Creek Marina. Duck Creek is one of my favorite places in NC. It is the boat yard that I haul the boat to keep it maintained on the way back from each voyage. I won’t be hauling the boat until the end of the month but I came here so my long time friend could come down and go sailing with me for a weekend. This enabled me to ride back with him to Greensboro to visit my 92 year old father and the rest of my family. My sister brought me back to the boat and we had an exhilarating sail out in the Neuse river with all the wind that plan sail could handle from exactly the best direction for flying down and back up the river. Unfortunately, the next day was blowing a gale so we spent the day dodging the rain and visited Tryon Palace and museum. Next Stop was Elizabeth City. I had the trip planned out to arrive the following Saturday to tie up to the town dock (48 hours free) so I could go to church on Sunday. Listening to the weather radio changed my plans by Wednesday. Insted of a leisurly pace of twenty some miles a day and lots of time playing music and reading, it turned into driving on into the night to be in Elizabeth City before the gale spawned by hurricane Joaquin arrived. I arrived on Thursday night and not wanting to use up my 48 hours before Sunday, I anchored in a very secure cove in the Pasquatank river. Saturday morning I moved the boat to the City dock. The predicted wind had arrived and getting to the dock slip had lots of opportunity for disaster. I made double sure all my lines were all ready and well coiled, took a pass and realized I needed to be more upwind. I aborted and came around for a second try. Coming into the slip I hit strong reverse to slow the boat down but the slower it goes the less steering you have and the more the wind will push it sideways. I braced myself and threw a line with a loop on the end to the outside windward piling. Wonder of wonders the loop settled around the top of the piling and the boat came to a stop exactly the proper distance from the dock for the guys on the dock to take the neatly coiled lines and secure the bow. It appeared so calm and planned when actually my heart was pounding because I knew that if I had missed with the first line, even hitting full reverse the boat would have been blown down onto the pilings and possibly would not have stopped in time and hit the wall or would have gone sideways and been pinned against the pilings and pounded by the waves. This was graphically illustrated about an hour later when the next boat arrived and it took the two people on the boat and four guys on the dock to get the boat fended off and straightened out without too much damage. For the next two days it blew so hard that even in the harbor the waves were so high that with the boat tied up (with virtually every line I had) down below it felt like the boat was at sea. I did get to go to Church and sang with the choir. It was fun to see all my friends from when I was here before. They are always glad to have another tenor.
After the gale blew itself out, I took a very pleasurable trip up the Dismal Swamp Canal. The lock keeper at the other end has turned what is normally a place you go through and don’t look back into a famous “Cruising Destination”. People go through the lock and stay at the overnight dock and meet other cruisers. Everyone meets at the lock house the next morning for a Coffee and donut and yogurt breakfast before heading out. Stories are exchanged and people leave with a fondness for this historic canal and Robert the Lock Keeper. It is starting to really feel like fall here. Some of the trees are beginning to turn. Hope you all are enjoying the colors and being back into the fall routine. I am heading back to the boat yard to haul her and fix some places that need attention. I hope you enjoyed this update. I have posted some more videos on youtube and facebook. Please check them out if you can . Till next time
Thank you all,
Intracoastal Yacht Sales, a long-time SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, offers full service brokerage representation from three locations, Wrightsville Beach, NC, Little River, SC and Charleston, SC.
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Intracoastal Yacht Sales will be present with New Boats at the next 3 boat shows!
Click Boat Shows Below for More Information.
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Ft. Lauderdale Power Boat Show
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Our mailing address is:
Intracoastal Yacht Sales
10 Marina Street
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The Herl’s experience with these two marinas certainly speaks well for the attitude that Oriental has for transients. The marinas are competitors, but they put the needs of the traveler up front. Oriental Harbor Marina is on the northwestern shore of Oriental Harbor’s entrance off the Neuse River and Oriental Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, is on the eastern banks of Oriental’s inner harbor. Nautical Wheelers is also A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISER’ NET SPONSOR!
Originally called Oriental for a slip reservation, they said they were full and referred us to Oriental Harbor marina. Oriental transferred use and we received our slip reservation.
We arrived at 3:15 and they were ready for us. Gave the directions to our slip and had a dock hand ready to help dock.
Once we were docked and hooked up we walked to the office to check in. what a walk, It was at least a half a mile walk. For those how may be interested, there are restaurants and pubs on the way as well as a ships store with a few groceries. 3 restaurants, 3 pubs, and an ice cream shop plus the marina Tiki bar.
Phil and Sandy Herl
These new lights are on the southwest side of the Neuss River, south of New Bern, NC.
NC – NEUSE RIVER – PRIVATE AIDS TO NAVIGTION ESTABLISHED
Craven County, NC is establishing three lights in the Neuse River to mark a submerged effluent diffuser, approximately two nautical miles upriver (west northwest) of the mouth of Slocum Creek. Each light will be slow flashing white and marked with orange and white dayboards worded “Danger Submerged Diffuser”.
Neuse River Diffuser Warning Light A 34 58 28.92N, 76 56 01.24W Private aid Fl W 6s NW on pile.
Neuse River Diffuser Warning Light B 34 58 28.80N, 76 56 01.42W Private aid Fl W 6s NW on pile.
Neuse River Diffuser Warning Light C 34 58 28.67N, 76 56 01.61W Private aid Fl W 6s NW on pile.
Charts Affected: 11552, 11520, 11009 LNM 28/15
The Oriental area is home to three SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSORS: Oriental Marina and Condos, Oriental Nautical Wheelers, and River Dunes. Please say hello for us as you enjoy this wonderful Fall weather and the delicious buys at the Farmers’ Markets.
The Oriental Farmers’ Market happens every Saturday on Hodges Street from 8-11a. Local produce, baked goods, artisinal work can be found there. There are also markets on some Wednesdays. Next markets are Wednesday Oct 22 and Saturday Oct 25. To find out what’s for sale, visit http://towndock.net/market
At the Oriental Farmers’ Market, the emphasis is on “local” — all of the items for sale are locally grown or locally made. The market turned 7 this year and it’s still growing – it now has two rows of vendors providing a great selection for a market in a town of our size. Stop by and see for yourself.
Our thanks to Capt. John Hersey of SURVICE Engineering for sending this recent ARGUS reading from the Neuse River south of New Bern, NC. You can compare the earlier ARGUS readings by clicking “Argus(MLLW)” on the top of our Chartview page with the newest ones shown in the chart clip below.
You will notice from our track when we left New Bern that I took a slightly different route. Local boaters told me that water was deep on the new route, and they were correct. It is slightly shorter, but better still is that it avoids the dog leg in the channel.
A second free town dock was opened to the public in April of this year, see http://cruisersnet.net/?p=137352. Now that dock, originally intended for pleasure craft and located just to the southwest of SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Oriental Marina and Inn, is being over-utilized by commercial craft, prompting needed limitations on usage. SSECN is ever so grateful to Captain Diana Doyle for these excellent photos.
Diana and did a touch-and-go in Oriental, NC the other day to pick up an anchor and our forwarded mail.
Here are three pictures to help orient SSECN readers:
The new free town dock is in and available to cruisers, next to Oriental Marina & Inn’s fuel pumps.
With the old dock, in front of The Bean, that makes four cruiser-friendly slots.
And if folks miss out on the docks, the anchorage is now pretty clear (absent of homesteaders) and there’s a great town dinghy dock.
Oriental keeps getting better and better!
Captains Mark & Diana Doyle
A second free town dock was opened to the public in April of this year, see http://cruisersnet.net/?p=137352. Now that dock, originally intended for pleasure craft and located just to the southwest of SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Oriental Marina and Condos, is being over-utilized by commercial craft, prompting these editorial comments and reports in Oriental’s Town Dock. Our thanks to good friend Tom Beaty for sending this report.
Here are some clips from Town Dock from the past two days:
When Oriental’s new Town Dock opened this spring on the southeast side of the harbor, it was thought to be a place where visiting boaters — cruisers, day-sailors, small craft basically — would tie up for free and visit town. In recent weeks, a wrinkle in that expectation: relatively massive trawlers have tied up to the dock, denying the smaller boaters their chance to stay at that slip.
That’s prompted a Letter to the Editor from resident Steve Snyder who asks what the Town Board is going to do about it.
There is currently nothing in the Town’s Docking regulations to prohibit the large commercial fishing vessels from using the free Town Dock intended for pleasure craft. Coincidentally, the Oriental Town Board at its meeting tomorrow night is to consider some amendments to the 6 month old Docking Ordinance.
Whether the Board takes steps to keep the large fishing trawlers away from the docks — we’ll know after the meeting. But, given some of the buzz about town in recent days, this subject is likely to come up at the very least in the Public Comment period at the opening of tomorrow night’s meeting.
Non-recreational vessels may not tie up to Oriental’s Town Docks. The Town Board voted just now to amend the Docking Ordinance to read that commercial vessels of any size — with exceptions such as recreational fishing charters, recreational charters, and tow boats — may not use the Town Docks nor stay overnight. It was an amendment suggested by Commissioner David White.
4:15p A big fishing trawler has now moved away from Oriental’s new Town Dock but its presence there since Saturday has provoked questions that don’t go away: if the dock was meant to attract pleasure craft, why are commercial fishing trawlers tying up there and what should the Town Board do about it?
The trawler was having work done from the adjacent property owned by fishing businessman Chris Fulcher. The story is here. The Town Board meets tonight starting at 7p
Letters to the Editor on the subject are here.
Oriental’s Town Board last night amended the town’s Docking Ordinance. Among other changes, it now states that commercial vessels could not use the Town Docks. There were some exceptions — recreational charter fishing vessels, recreational boat rentals, recreational charter sailing groups and tow boats.
town hall signCommissioner David White’s amendment was a response to several fishing trawlers in recent weeks tying up to the new Town Dock. The Town Dock was to have been an attractant for recreational boaters but their access was limited by the trawlers. In recent days, the Gulf Stream III, an 80 foot fishing trawler getting repaired out of Chris Fulcher’s adjacent property, had been using the new Town Dock as a personal repair yard. It filled or blocked a slip there off and on since Saturday. More on the story coming.
The Board also formally formed a permanent Harbor Waterfront Advisory Committee and voted 5 residents to it: Bill Hines, Art Tierney, Lisa Thompson, Ed Bliss & Gerry Crowley. That panel could fine tune the overall Docking Ordinance.
Left River Dunes yesterday heading for our home marina in Beaufort, NC.
We were 4-5 hours away and decided to stay 2 nights at this high end marina because it is so nice. The pool, the staff, the cabanas, the hot tubs, the porches, the quiet places to unwind…well you get the picture. One morning a dock hand was walking the dock “knocking down the spider webs” to keep up the appearance of this beautiful place. Truly a little piece of heaven so very close to home.
Thank you River Dunes staff!
We continue to hear good things about this marina in Bridgeton, across the Neuse River from New Bern, NC. Cruisers heading upstream to New Bern on Neuse River, depart the AICW at the northern entrance to Adams Creek, Statute Mile 185.
Bridgeton Harbor Marina has the best, bar none, slips and piers of any Marina I have been to. The dock master is very helpful and easy to get along with. The live-aboards are open and very helpful. If you want excitement or drama, this is not the place to stay. But for an easy access, non intimidating stay, this is the place.
A search for a number of weeks in response to a request (http://cruisersnet.net/?p=129228) by Oriental merchant, Pat Stockwell, the errant sailing vessel, Primadonna, and her crew have been found.. Our thanks to Dave Boxmeyer for sending us this update from TownDock, http://towndock.net/news/primadonna-s-latest-controversy.
It appears that the saga of the S/V Primadonna continues. The crew is in jail in Nassau and their boat has been stripped. And now it seems that the French government has gotten involved.
While it is hard to feel any sympathy for the Primadonna’s crew, based on there stay in Oriental; I have absolutely no respect for the crew of the Fata Morgana. Things are pretty bad when we have started to eat our own.
Very interesting–thanks for the follow up. For some reading this I think there is some grey area here. For example, I remember seeing an intact motorboat washed up on the rocks in New England and by the morning it was toothpicks and an engine sitting on the reef. It might have been better to try to salvage some things off the boat before it became trash on the rocks. Sometimes it is hard to tell when a boat has been truly abandoned. I personally would not take to salvaging stuff unless I had the owner’s or the insurance company’s permission or somehow knew for certain that the boat was abandoned, but how would you ever know? Also, most of us are used to being in a country where a boat like Primadonna wouldn’t stay there for long, someone would come with a towboat and take it away. In the Out Islands of the Bahamas salvage would likely have been more expensive than the worth of the vessel, so essentially it was just trash on the reef.
We do not know the vessels involved but before we pass judgement, does anyone have relevant information as to what is correct in Bahamian & maritime law/rights? The vessel will most likely never be salvaged out there so who can give us more information? How does Dave know what went on and anything else that is pertinent.
Over the weekend of April 19-20, 2014 I had the good fortune to attend the Oriental, NC Boat Show, and hold three seminars. During the show, I made the acquaintance of Bill and Camilla Wheeler and their unique business, “Oriental Nautical Wheelers.” I am very pleased to say that this firm is our newest SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR!
Oriental Nautical Wheelers is located in a historical Oriental homeplace, right on (411) Broad Street (252-249-0359), in downtown Oriental. It is within easy walking distance of SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Oriental Marina and Condos, and Oriental Harbor Marina, plus the town’s two free docks. From Whittaker Creek, you will need to have auto transportation available for a visit.
How to describe Oriental Nautical Wheelers? I could say that this unique establishment contains everything “coastal” from clothing, to shoes, to home furnishings and accessories, to Adirondack chairs. However, that would overlook the wine section, the voluminous selection of all types of gifts and personal items, not to mention the “revolutionary Keira Watering Cans.”
The selection and range of merchandise is staggering, in a very good way, you understand! EVERY cruiser visiting Oriental will want to be SURE to include a stroll to “Oriental Nautical Wheelers.” Don’t believe me? Well, then just follow the photo gallery link below!
We announced a few months ago, that SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Bridge Pointe Marina in New Bern, NC, had reopened after a year-long rebuilding project. I have twice undertaken a personal inspection of Bridge Pointe’s new reincarnation, and it can be stated with no fear of inaccuracy, that this is now a state-of-the-art facility. Below, we hear more from dockmaster, Jesse Schmucher, about his newly revamped marina.
Our new state-of-the-art marina includes 150 Brazilian hardwood [decked] floating deep water slips ranging from 30FT – 150FT, cable television, free wireless internet, metered electric and fresh water connections for each slip. Our newly redesigned and completely renovated boater’s lounge includes showers, restrooms, charcoal grills, laundry, and a comfortable air conditioned sitting area. Monthly dockage rates are $6.50 per slip foot, plus a $20 Pedestal Fee + Metered Electric (13 Cents per kilowatt). We will be offering a special rate for a limited time, so be sure to contact us today at (252)637-7372 or by email at email@example.com.
For more information on Bridge Pointe Marina, follow the links below:
A phone call to TownDock.net confirmed the new free dock which is located just to the southwest of the fuel dock at Oriental Marina and Condos. The dock is c. 70ft in length and for now does not have amenities, although adding water, electric and a restroom, as well as more length is being discussed. SSECN is grateful to Skipper Valinoti for bringing this new facility to the attention of our readers, just in time for the Spring Migration!
Has anyone reported on the new, additional, free town dock?? It is located to the right of the Oriental Marina and is about 80 ft long with room for 4 cruising boats depending on length. Presently there are not any ammenities. However, it is planned to have heads and showers along with a pump out.
Truly a shame that (south) Florida doesn’t treat cruisers the way places like Oriental do. Seems you almost have to go north out of FL to get that southern hospitality…
The new dock is quite nice and solid looking. Only problem is that the south side of the dock is partially blocked due to the Lady Deborah, a large shrimper being docked on the next dock to the south. According to one of the locals, the Lady Deborah hasn’t moved from this spot in a quite a while.
If you don’t have too wide a beam you’d fit just fine, but it would be tight, not to mention if you have two boats on this side the one closer to shore would be blocked in.
All in all, well done Oriental. Free town docks like this should be the norm, and not the exception.
Stopped at the new pier the day after they finished it. Was the first Trawler to use it i was told. A very nice well built pier. The Rest. At the Marina there has great food and drink. Oriental is always a great stop free pier or no free pier.
The “Fire Dog” & Crew
Raymond W Smith
Bridge Pointe Marina, a new SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, flanks the southern banks of the Trent River (off the Neuse River), opposite the downtown New Bern, NC waterfront. This fine facility re-opened last Fall after more than a year of rebuilding their floating dock system which sustained major damage in hurricane Irene in August of 2012. As you can see from the comments from Skipper Fay and Mike, the rebuilding has been a big success!
Bridgepoint is a gem. Jessie the dockmaster is outstanding as is the staff at the hotel. Very helpful. Unless you can caught a ride with the “crowd at dock” taxis’ do not seem to be regulated very well, as you never know how to prepare for charges as they are private and not metered. New Bern lacks dinghy docks which is sad for the downtown merchants, walk or bike across the bridge. Beautiful town.
Fay and Mike
This discussion of mechanics and boatyards comes to us from our friends at Trawlers Forum (http://www.trawlerforum.com/) and, while the list contains both pros and cons, it does not reflect the opinion or endorsement of Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net. However, we invite you to add your favorite NC mechanic or boatyard to the list!
For diesel repair, we have had a lot of great results with Coastal Diesel in New Bern. Prompt, on-time scheduling and a team of very good mechanics. They are basically a mobile service and will come to you. It can be pricey, but once it’s done, it’s done. They just rebuilt my mechanical injector pump last week and rebuilt my genset last year. Good bunch of guys.
Deaton Yachts in Oriental is a good all-around yard. The complaints we’ve heard from there was that their time management isn’t that great. They have trouble meeting work deadlines. In disclosure, we have used their mobile service, but have not hauled out there. They have an onsite parts department and that’s a huge plus.
Wayfarer’s Cove in Arapahoe, NC is a good general yard. It’s a bit isolated from civilization and the yard, with its dirt lot instead of gravel, leaves you boat very dirty, plus, power hook-us are spotty. They have one of the best fiberglass guys in the area that works there. Tom runs the place quite well and is an honest guy. He will quote you a price and stick to it. If he falls short anywhere, it’s that he’s a bit edgy and sometimes hard to get in touch with. No email either.
I have called Bach Marine on several occasions, but have never used them. They always came in with the highest quotes and Kenny, while very knowledgeable, I have felt that I would have the same issues that I have with Sailcraft. Just a bit too “old school” with billing and communication.
Our new guys are True World Marine and Lightning Yachts. Both are boat builders (or former). They are both located in the marine industrial park where Jarret Bay is. True World is a very neat and well kept yard with good power and new facilities. Lightning Yachts is a repair place just up the road that can do about anything with boats. Both respond quickly to emails and will take the time needed on the phone to make sure all bases are covered.
Chuck Courtney is a mobile guy (Power and Sailboat Repair). He’s a good honest guy, but is very busy. I have used him a couple of times and he’s been good. I don’t think he’s the best engine guy (I would use Coastal for that), but he’s an good electrical guy.
If you want to do some snooping around, go visit Morehead City Yacht Basin and see who’s working on the boats there. Ask Mike (dockmaster) and ask for some recos.
Hope this helps.
Tom & Bess Beaty
m/v Skinny Dippin’
Sailcraft Service Boatyard is a full service boatyard located at 1218 Lupton Dr, Oriental, NC 28571, (252) 249-0522. www.sailcraftserviceboatyard.com/
The yard lies on the western side of Whitaker Creek, just east of Oriental Harbor.
I have traveled down the AICW for the past four years from Northport ny to fla. I have a catalina c 400 2005 sail, mystical paradise… I stop by every trip to have all my maintenance work done at sailcraft service in whittaker creek oriental nc. the service provided and the facilities are fantastic. from the owner manager Alan to the mechanics and office crew Shannon etc, the quality of service is phenominal.. it is a full service or do it yourself yard. prices are fair quality is tops. THe yard is walking distance of everything in town. They occasionaly lend a support vehicle in extreme cases. Tony Pozun NY