Day 2 Dawta to Isle of Hope: Pulling out of Dawta we waited for the tide to be on the rising side and we made our way back to the ICW and turned south. Another somewhat uneventful day except that our diet went completely out the window. While the first day was the usual breakfast bar, meat and cheese roll-ups with steak for dinner. Day two started with bagels and butter then Lou says around mid day; “how does a hot dog and a beer sound for lunch. Okay, not so much on boating but that was the end of my attempt to keep my girlish figure (not…). Another beautiful day as we slid closer to Isle of Hope.
At Isle of Hope we met the greatest couple who have a 40-ft. Tierra. We shared a couple drinks and he eventually came aboard to show us all the great spots to stop along the way south. What a great help because we had no clue other than Active Captain and Bob’s guides. Local knowledge was great to have. So we get up early the next morning but leaving early was not in the cards as the current was on a down-hill slide and we needed to wait until at least 10AM so we could leave on a rising tide. As a southern boy I am just not used to these 7-8 foot tides and never had a boat that was so affected by a current before. In any case, it came time to leave on the morning of day 3 and not having any depth sounder or navigation equipment on the fly bridge I started easing Belle back off the end of the dock so I could turn her and head south. Because there were boats in slips behind me, but I was blind to just how far, I went back just far enough… so I thought, and started to turn.
That’s when it happened. This is when our life with Belle changed for the duration of the trip. The ripping tide grabbed our Belle and turned her a full 90-degrees and laid our starboard side firmly against that nice guys Tierra bow pulpit and a sail boat. Trying to get Belle loose without doing any more damage I started to turn her into the current but that only resulted in us sliding further onto those boats. I stepped to the pilot house door to get a look at the carnage when the dock master actually yelled at me; “get back at the helm captain” but I was unfazed. This was not my first rodeo and seeing what needed to happen was better than just throttling down and hoping.
Getting a hold of the situation we managed to move our hull off of the boats before moving into the waterway. Okay, I will admit to being a bit shaken by the entire affair but who wouldn’t? I kept my calm and made positive moves to fix the situation and was now moving into the waterway when the dock master came over the VHF and said; “hey captain don’t you want to come back and leave your information in case there is damage?” To which I replied; “do you really want some more of that?”
We immediately called the marina and left our information and nothing has been heard of any damage. Even the guy whose boat we got up against called and said not to let it ruin our day. But, that was the end of marinas for as long as we could take it. It was ‘hookville’ for Belle and us and O’ my god was that grand.