Bumps in the Night in St. Marys Anchorage, St. Marys River off the AICW
St. Marys River flows into the northern tip of Cumberland Sound and the path of the AICW, just north of Fernandina, FL, and serves as the coastal state line between Georgia and Florida. The town of St. Marys is an easy trip up the St. Marys River, departing the Waterway at flashing green marker #29, statute mile 713.
We anchored off of st Marys town dock in march 2011. We chose a spot towards the south shore across the harbor from the main dock. After we anchored a guy in another boat came over and suggested we actually spend the night at the town dock as the current was so strong in that area. This sounded nice but I did not believe that was allowed by the town and chose to stay at anchor. The current through there was really unbelievable. Very fast. The sound of debris hitting the boat as it passed by and under us kept me up all night. Things going bump in the night. Our dingy has no engine. It rows very well but I did not dare leave the boat with it. I estimate 5 knots of current at times. The morning found wind and tide giving us a very slow drag to the west. I would not anchor here again. The downstream anchorage shown is where I would go. At least if you drag there is no one to hit and a soft landing. You need a motorized dingy though to safely get to and from town.
We tied up at the town dock [St. Marys town dock] last winter on our way down. It is really just a floating hunk of concrete, with no electricity or water. It says that there is a limit of 6 hours, but it does not appear to be enforced. We talked to people to stayed for a few days, and no one seemed to bother that we were overnight. BEWARE!!! On a falling tide the current (truly impressive!) runs perpendicular to the town dock. Getting off the dock is challenging, and we ended up with notable gelcoat scars! But I’d go back.