We love to visit Manteo. It can accurately be described as a “charming” port of call. And, the city marina here is a SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR!
Downtown Manteo, within an easy step of the city docks, has a host of good restaurants (don’t miss Tranquil House Inn), a convenience store, and quite a collection of interesting shops (Manteo Booksellers, for one).
A word of caution, one of the two approaches for vessels northbound on Pamlico Sound, and the far shorter of the two, is by way of the Old House Channel from the Pamlico, to southern Roanoke Sound, and then north on the Roanoke Sound channel. There is NOTHING easy about this passage, and I do not recommend it for vessels drawing 5 feet or more.
The other, far deeper and navigationally easier route is by way of Croatoan Sound, and then a southerly cruise through northern Roanoke Sound. The caveat for this route is that you must pass under a fixed bridge with 45 feet of vertical clearance, plenty for almost all powercraft, but not enough for many sailboats.
The safest and easiest route to Manteo is by way of the AICW to Alemarle Sound. Then, a turn to the east will lead to northern Roanoke Sound, and then a quick trip to Shallowbag Bay and Manteo.
However, you get there, Manteo is worth the effort!
Greetings from Manteo, NC,
If you are still headed north and are not past Oriental yet one should consider heading from the Oriental/River Dunes Marina area out to Ocracoke and then up the Outer Banks to Manteo.
Manteo, NC is also a nice stop, complete with a free city dock to tie up to. The town is very quaint with lots of little shops and eateries, omelettes at the Magnolia Grill should not be missed!
Life’s2Short has really fallen in love with the state of NC and all the wonderful cruising it has to offer. Don’t be in a rush to get north, slow down and enjoy all the Outer Banks area has to offer. Gads, it sounds like I’m a poster boy for the NC travel & tourism council……
Hope everyone is enjoying the water under their keel!
Todd & Brenda Lanning
Someone told me once, that cruising NC today is like cruising the Chesapeake 20 – 30 years ago. Definitely a place to linger during the Fall and Spring seasons.
Contrary to what Captain Judy has heard, according to the Georgia Department of Transportation, the AICW at Skidaway Narrows Bridge on Hwy. 204 will NOT be closed during the initial engineering phases – beginning this month – of an upcoming construction project to build a fixed 65′ bridge across the AICW on site. The completion date of the new bridge is 2 or 3 years away and may require brief closures at some point, but nothing in the near future.
Subject: Skidaway narrows bridge and waterway closure
Cruising News: We have heard that Skidaway bridge and ICW waterway there will be closed on June 2 while they survey for new bridge pilings. Would appreciate info on this.
Wow, this is news to yours truly. We have never explored Kilkenny Creek past the marina. You can be we’ll be adding this anchorage to the Net’s “Georgia Anchorage Directory” SOON!
On this trip a day or 2 earlier, let me tell you of another anchorage that is probably the best place I had on the trip. About Mile 613.5, Kilkenny Creek. Favor the Stbd side at the entrance (15ft or so), then middle to Stbd the rest of the way in. Go about 2 miles. You will pass Lincoln Creek on the left (also good, saw one 40ft tug anchored just in that creek), go past the Kilkenny Creek marina, just after the turn to the right, anchor in about 11-15 ft of water, near N 31.47.520 W081.11.911. Plenty of swing room. I was boat number 3 that night and what a restful night it was. Was warned of Shrimp boat traffic, but I don’t recall anybody going by all night. Just make sure your anchor light is visible. There is a seafood restaurant just north of the marina with a dock. Hours until 2130 I believe.
We haven’t been to the marina in years but there wa nothing to recommend it then. the anchorage described is excellent though.
I have reviewed Captain Joe’s “blog” which is linked below. It’s really more of a web site, with a WEALTH of information for any cruiser calling at Portsmouth. Give it a look!
Hi Claiborne ,
Would you post this link to our blog Welcome to Mile Marker “0” AICW? I will writing often to inform boaters traveling the ICW about upcoming events, restaurants, stores, shopping, and where to buy everything from groceries to boat parts and how to get to them here in Portsmouth, Virginia.
We will also be publishing a FREE Boaters Guide to Portsmouth, VA. (available fall 2010)
The notorious Hell Gate section of the AICW, south of Savannah and Isle of Hope, was dredged during the summer of 2009, and for a time, all has been well on these waters. The posting below from Captain Bob is the first notice we have had that shoaling may once again be rearing its ugly head. Because Captain Bob does not provide an exact time and date when his soundings were taken (see below), it’s not possible to fully verify what an 8.8 foot reading “30 minutes after high tide,” would actually equate to at Mean Low Water. But, it certainly can’t be good news.
We are returning Hell Gate to the ranks of a true “AICW Problem Stretch,” and ask the cruising community to PLEASE forward ANY information about depths in Hell Gate ASAP, by clicking the “Comment on This Posting/Marina/Anchorage/Bridge” link below, or sending e-mail to me at CruisingWriter@CruisersNet.net. Many thanks in advance!!!
Good evening, Claiborne.
Looks like bad things are beginning to happen again at Hell Gate. Came through here mid channel this afternoon thirty minutes after high tide and observed a depth of 8.8 feet fifty yards Northeast of Green Marker 87. Didn’t believe what I saw so I went back and observed the same results.
Weren’t the dredges here just a year ago?
Captain Bob Poovey
We came through Hell Gate at 11.10 ‘“ 11.20 hours, May 21. Low tide was at 09.00 hrs. We favored the west side of mid channel a little going north. We never saw less than 13 ft.
S/V Sophia (The Netherlands)
Draft 6.8 or 2 meters
We also passed through Hell Gate on May 19. It was about 1-1/2 hrs after high tide and the lowest we saw was 12 ft. We tried to stay mid-channel.
For those of you who have not been following the Cruisers’ Net, or have not cruised through St. Augustine over the past two years, the historic Bridge of Lions has undergone a radical rebuilding. For a time, a temporary bridge was in place to serve automobile traffic, while the older span was being rebuilt. Now, the Bridge of Lions has reopened, and the temporary bridge is being removed.
Below, Captain Bob presents some IMPORTANT information (copied from the MTOA List-Serve) which could easily be interpreted to mean that the new Bridge of Lions incarnation ACTUALLY HAS LESS VERTICAL CLEARANCE THAN WHAT IS LISTED ON THE NOAA CHARTS and in the Federal Registry.
BE SURE TO READ MY SUBSEQUENT COMMENTS ON ADDITIONAL INFORMATION AT THE BOTTOM OF THIS POSTING. VERTICAL CLEARANCE ON THE NEW BRIDGE OF LIONS HAS SUDDENLY BECOME A VERY HOT TOPIC INDEED!
Here was the situation; we were approaching the Bridge of Lions in St Augustine at 7:45AM on 28 April 2010, with a tide level of +4.5′ and a listed bridge clearance at `low iron’ of 25′ above Mean High Water (MHW). According to NOAA, the MHW level for the St Augustine City Dock, which is next to the Bridge of Lions is 6.41′ (see NOAA link below). The tops of our VHF antennas were measured at 22′ above the water level. My calculations were:
Charted Bridge Clearance +25′
Plus Mean High Water +6.4′
Minus the Height of Tide -4.5′
Calculated Clearance 26.9′
Simply said, the listed bridge clearance 25′ is measured above MHW, and if the tide was at zero, the actual clearance would be 31.4′ (25′ + 6.4′); but we had a 4.5′ tide so the clearance should be 4.5′ less, or 26.9′ (25′ +6.4′ -4.5′).
Here is what we found as we approached the opening between the old temporary bridge, which is being demolished, and work barges from the north. Sue spotted a temporary tide board below the new bridge with red spray painted numbers indicating the current clearance was 22′ at low iron. We passed under the bridge with less than a foot above our antennas at the center of the bridge. I think the temporary tide board was correct, which would mean the actual clearance is closer to 20′ above MHW, and not 25′.
What am I missing? I contacted the Bridge of Lions and their contractor told
them that when I passed under the bridge the tide was extremely high and thus I
had less than the listed 25′ clearance.
MHW for the St Augustine City Dock:
Bob and Sue Mimlitch
M/V Our Independence
I asked Captain Bob to send me additional info when possible, and received the heartwarming reply below:
I should have said more about the difference between the listed bridge height on the charts and cruising guides, which is clearance at the center; versus the tide board which is clearance at low iron. A few bridges in Florida have signs that specify the number of feet of additional clearance at center.
I love Salty Southeast Cruiser’s Net. Thanks for all your efforts.
As of Monday, 5/17/10, the new Bridge of Lion’s vertical clearance has become a HOT topic! The Cruisers’ Net, Waterway Guide and ActiveCaptain are all in the hunt for information. We thank Waterway Guide editor, Chuck, for the info below. Since we received Chuck’s e-mail (actually a posting on the MTOA list-serve), I have personally spoken with both Captain Jay Bliss, member of the St. Augustine Port Commission, and Ms. Laurie Sanderson with the Bridge of Lion’s rehabilitation project. As Chuck notes below, this question will arise at a meeting tomorrow, and we have everyone’s promise to shoot us the results ASAP!!!! I will post this data the second it’s received, and probably send out a special “Alert” as well!
In the meantime, NOTE THE CONTRACTOR’S ASSERTION IN CHUCK’S NOTE BELOW THAT CRUISERS SHOULD ONLY COUNT ON 22 FEET OF CLOSED VERTICAL CLEARANCE AT HIGH WATER WHEN PASSING UNDER THE NEW BRIDGE OF LIONS!!!!
I have just spoken with Laurie Sanderson from the Bridge of Lions Rehabilitation Project and the bridge clearance is up for discussion at their meeting tomorrow. According to the contractor on site, the MHW clearance for the new bridge is indeed 22′ regardless of what the charts say. We will post more tomorrow after the meeting and more details are known.
As many of you have already heard, the state of North Carolina has changed its laws concerning MSD (Marine Sanitation Devices) regulations. Among other provisions, there is a rule that cruisers must keep a pump-out log, and portions of the NC coastline have been declared “No Discharge” zones. There has already been a host of postings on the Net concerning these changes, but now, we can provide you with the text of the entire law in question. Click on the link below to check out the statute.
The report below, which originally appeared on the MTOA List-Serve, was in response to earlier reports here on the Cruisers’ Net and other nautical lists, which reported the Savannah City Docks were going to be closed for some time to come on Mondays through Wednesdays for maintenance work. Then, we saw reports that these closures were a thing of the past, so I removed the earlier posting here on the Net. From what Captain Feller says below, sounds like you’d better call ahead to make sure. Follow the link below for a telephone number.
Also, you could always moor at the River Street Market Place Dock, just a tad farther downstream. This facility is also within easy walking distance of Savannah’s wonderful historic district, and its many, many dining attractions.
The phone said it would be closed Mon-Wed, we got here today (Thu) and the worker said it was CLOSED! But not to worry, they got what they needed done and opened the docks this evening….there will b work being done in the next couple of weeks so b sure to call ahead…..ps we found out if u pull into the hyatt dock, u can stay for up to 4 hrs if u buy something in there lounge….cokes count….fyi.
Knot Tide Down
Thanks to Richard Tobacco, this message sheds some light on the reasons this new law might have been enacted. Portions of the new law can be found in the earlier post on this issue. See New Law: Pumpout Log to be required in NC And No-Discharge Zones Created, dated May 5. (http;//www.CruisersNet.net/new-law-pumpout-log-to-be-required-in-nc)
Boaters, some of you may be unaware that the NC General Assembly passed a law that gos into effect July 1st.
Why was this law written? In New Hanover, especially in Banks Channel, there were live-a-boards and weekend party boats that had been emptying their holding tanks at night. The law was written to insure ‘certain’ marinas police this (already) illegal act and a New Hanover ‘pilot program’ went into effect January 1st. [Statements have been made that this pilot program will not expand beyond New Hanover (intent of the word ‘certain’), however the law reads differently.] The law states that all boaters are required to keep a log of their pump-outs indicating when and where you were pumped out.
a. Can the typical boater be required to produce this log? Yes
b. Is it likely a non-live-a-board will be asked to produce this log? (Insert your own opinion here.)
c. Not keeping this log is punishable as a Class 3 misdemeanor. No civil penalty shall be assessed for a violation.
Captain Richard Tobacco
We stop and spend money in NC each year while cruising North and South.
Our purchasing of diesel for our 72′ yacht, restaurants, parts, dive shops, golf, rental cars, and marinas will no longer be income for NC.
The surrounding States didn’t make illegal what the Coast Guard states as a legal system.
We did the right thing and purchased a Type 2 waste treatment system which cost a lot of money.
Now another political system run by idiots decided that a Coast Guard approved system can’t be used!
Captain Sam Streater
Liquid Waste Products
A father and son are fishing from shore all morning while drinking coffee and sodas ‘¦’¦’¦ wonder what happens?
Four buddies go our for the day in a 20’ center console complete with cooler of beverages ‘¦’¦’¦. wonder what happens?
Family of six go swimming from a remote shoreline area all afternoon when it is 98 degrees and staying hydrated is necessary ‘¦’¦’¦.. wonder what happens?
A local community gets pounded by a few inches of rain that overwhelms their storm drains, the oil spotted streets get cleaned, the chemical laden cigarette butts disappear ‘¦’¦.. wonder what happens?
An older residence along the ICW has a septic system that has cracked and is in disrepair ‘¦’¦’¦. wonder what happens?
Millions of fish and other critters living in the waters eat to gain nourishment ‘¦’¦’¦ wonder what happens?
A 28’ sailboat just passing through with a 15 gallon holding tank and no potty log ‘¦’¦’¦. we know what happens in NC.