Ocracoke to Carolina Beach, North Carolina

In which we leave a North Carolina Beach town to arrive at a North Carolina beach town via a sound, the ICW, the ocean, the ICW- 20 knots on the nose, to 0 knots, to 20 knots on the nose. This is boating!

November 8
We were up at first light (like real sailors) and departed Ocracoke. Exiting the Ocracoke channel was pretty rough with breaking waves and a glaring puppy. We seem to like beating directly into 20 knots of wind. Thankfully it calmed down after 2 hours. After 4 hours we had 0 knots of wind and had to motor! 
Hastings was unhappy about bashing into the wind. He's also been so cold, he shakes! Poor baby. 
We re-joined the ICW which was surprisingly quiet. 
North Carolina ICW
ICW, near Beaufort, NC
We headed out the Beaufort Inlet at sunset. We haven’t sailed the ocean or done an overnight passage since St Mary’s to Charleston in June. Part of that record still holds as we motored all night. First, there was only 3 knots of wind. While the wind did build to 20 knots throughout the night, it was - you guessed it - directly against us. (We did the math on tacking out to sea and back and forth, but decided to keep motoring. Laziness always wins around here!) 
Sailing a catmaran out the Beaufort, NC Inlet
Beaufort Inlet at Sunset 
Sailing out the Beaufort, NC Inlet
Beaufort Inlet at sunset
Fishing Boat being swarmed by birds
Fishing Boat, Beaufort Inlet
We took 3 hour shifts. We were within range of an NPR station all night, so election coverage kept the on-watch person company. It was an easy overnight - we had the moon to the west, stars in the darkness to the east, and dolphins checking out our underwater lights. 

We arrived at Masonboro Inlet at dawn, and ducked back inland due to an impending cold front. We’re on a pleasure voyage and there’s no joy in bashing into 14 foot seas and 30 knot winds. 
Sunrise, Atlantic Ocean
No matter how long the night, the sun always rises. 
We re-joined the ICW and motored 1.5 hours to Carolina Beach. We were joined by a number of dolphin families with baby dolphins on the way. Upon arriving in Carolina Beach, we picked up a mooring ball. 
North Carolina saltwater marsh, ICW
North Carolina saltwater marshes
At this point, I had been awake since 3AM, but a nap is not my first priority.  A land walk for Hastings is! The Carolinas are the dog-friendliest states we have been in and allow dogs on the beach. We enjoyed a quick walk, coffee and pastries from the Java Hut, and headed back to the boat to veg and stare at weather reports.  
Dog walks on Carolina Beach
Hastings enjoying a quick beach walk
What's your priority after a long night? 

You Might Also Like


  1. I like your "lazy" approach to sailing. It's right up my alley. After a long night, I just want to sleep, but somehow I never can fall asleep. It's annoying.

    1. Yep! We got back to the boat and lounged, but I couldn't sleep!

  2. We haven't done an overnight passage for such a long time. It's a shame, really. We could knock off so many miles that way but there's enough debris in the water here (logs and kelp) that it isn't worth the risk.

    Stephanie @ SV CAMBRIA

    1. Debris and crab pots etc are a worry for sure. Thankfully the ocean waters have been pretty kind to us at night. And yes, it's nice to make miles sometimes!

  3. When we had dogs, their potty break on land was the priority, after lowering the dinghy and installing the engine on it after a longer passage. Without the dogs, after safe anchoring, we would have a nap! Nice about the dog-friendly beaches in the Carolinas. I was just rereading my blogs about Puerto Rico this morning and, apparently, it is not dog-friendly there at all. Just a heads-up!

    1. The Carolinas love dogs like no other place! Thanks for the heads up. I'm not sure that Puerto Rico is "on the list". We'll be in Miami and the Keys through the New Year and the Bahamas for the winter. The jury is out for the summer.....either a long passage to Maine where it is cool or Miami if we can get a suitable hurricane haul out plan. We like places that like Hastings!


Flickr Images