Day 3 - Sapelo to Fernandina

Boy.  This has been a rough one.  We set off this morning to calm waters and light winds.  We made it to St. Simons Island very quickly - we thought we had a few hours minimum, but were obviously closer than expected after winding our way down the ICW last night to search for anchorage.  Our anchorage turned out to be perfect, by the way.  Best night of sleep we've had so far.

 Today we are thankful for - the autopilot!  It's 1:09pm right now and we've been under way since about 9am.  The boat is driving itself.  We headed out the St. Simon's inlet to the ocean (a VERY clearly marked channel), set a straight line course to Jacksonville and have been motoring along ever since.  We had the jib out for a while (still haven't pulled out the main sail this trip) but the winds are pretty much zero.  The seas are on the stern, pushing us along nicely at a 6 knot average.  Per the chart plotter, we might make Jax before sunset - if not, we'll cut into Fernandina or some other spot north in time to anchor in daylight - and maybe get a little beach going in!

Here we go zooming past the St. Simon's lighthouse - way earlier than we expected.
If you are not following us on Facebook, we had a change of plans when  we got to St. Simon's so early - the weather was too perfect to stop and the promise of warmer weather in Florida made us change course.
These birds are flying away from Luna Sea.  We apparently can't even keep the dang things off the boat when we're under way!

These are the crazy seas today.  Oooh, scary.  

One of many dolphin encounters today.  Too bad I missed the jumping - I was too busy watching it to take a picture!

In the meantime, Mark has been able to hang the safety line all the way down the starboard side of the boat, which makes the hike to the pee pad safer for the puppies.  We only had it around the cockpit before we left.  Speaking of pee pads - (and I know everyone is anxiously awaiting news of our dogs' bowel movements) but they finally pooped on the pad this morning!  And one of them apparently peed on it a little last night.  If you are a dog-owning sailor, you know our excitement.  If not - well, imagine a stressed out dog trying to hold its pee in the middle of the ocean.  They already don't love the sound of the engine and now they have to hold their bladders too!?  It's too much.  They are still not convinced they want to go there, but at least we know they won't explode.  Exploded wieners on a boat would not be fun to clean up.  We are trying to conserve water, after all. 

Just keep her between the red and green markers - as far as the eye can see.
We cruised on into the St. Mary's inlet - another super-marked channel from the ocean, and around the bend past Ft. Clinch and on into the Fernandina Harbor Marina.  
Ft. Clinch

We topped off the fuel tank (15 gallons of diesel, but not all of those are from this trip, we haven't filled up in weeks) and the water tank - we've been naughty and showered regularly.  Bad, bad sailors.  I was able to sit/nap on the bow in the sunshine to let my hair dry.  See, we do conserve some things.
Captain taking a break while I navigate the treacherous channel.

Fernandina/Amelia Island area is pretty industrial - at least from this point of view.

Lots of shrimp boats - just like Savannah.  In fact, they were about the only traffic we saw today.
After we settled up with the super-friendly marina dudes and walked the dogs on real grass - they apparently have much larger bladders than you would think - we headed out to find a local place for dinner within walking distance.  Turns out there are tons of them.  We settled on Jack and Diane's and it was pretty good and reasonably priced.  My pizza was ordered with mushrooms, spinach and green olives.  It came out with collard greens.  I guess they thought I wouldn't notice the difference?  I did.  Tricksters.  Who knew collard greens would be good on pizza?  Learn something new every day. 

People on the dock had on shorts when we got here.  We were still in snowboarding gear.  I did a little happy dance for the sunshine and higher temps before changing into more appropriate clothes.  Tomorrow we'll head off to the marine store and stroll around town before heading to the beach once it warms up.  This is a very dog-friendly town - one of the main reasons we stopped here instead of going on to Jacksonville.  It's so cool that we're in Florida now!  We just left Saturday, didn't rush at all, and are already warm and cozy in Florida (as Beulah knows, it's always different weather across the state line).  Tomorrow we're hanging out, so we'll spend another night at anchor here before heading off further south.  I really hope it keeps getting warmer - I'd like bikini weather before we have to turn around and head back!  The trip back will be against the tide, so we won't likely be cruising along at 6-7 knots on windless days, like we have so far on the way down.  
View of tonight's sunset from Luna Sea


  1. OH...WHAT...FFUUUNNNN ! ! ! ! ! Reads like ya'll are really having an adventure! ! ! Who would ever think of putting collards on a pizza WOAH! ! Glad you can take it easy and enjoy this part of the trip....what lovely pictures and the water is so peaceful. HAVING FUN, HAVING FUN WOO HOO............can hardly wait to read more. candy :)

  2. Hi Guys,

    We have much enjoyed the last three posts. Looks like you are having a great trip. Did you get a chance to take in Amelia Island? We really liked Fernandina Beach.

    Glad the dogs are peeing on the mat. What good puppies!

    Mark and Cindy - s/v Cream Puff

    1. Thanks, Cream Puff crew! We certainly enjoy sharing the stories. More to come as soon as we have a good internet connection - later today :)


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