Welcome to Gypsea Heart

This blog documents the adventures of the sailing vessel Gypsea Heart and her crew Rankin & Sandy. Thank you for visiting our blog and we encourage y'all to poke around and explore. We have many features which will enable you to keep track of us and in touch like subscribing below. We hope you enjoy your visit and follow our adventures.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Charleston, South Carolina

Charleston City Marina

We arrived safely in Charleston harbor yesterday around noon.  We're booked at the Charleston City Marina for a month which is located about two hour (sailboat time) down the harbor.  As we motor down the harbor, we slowly cruise past Fort Sumter on our port side ... it hasn't changed a bit.  The starboard side is lined with beautiful southern homes.

We continue down the harbor and immediately notice the "new" bridge.  The last time we sailed into this harbor was 2003 and we were pretty sure this bridge did not exist at that time.  We later found out it's called the Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge.  Here's a quick Wikipedia excerp, "The Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge, also known as the New Cooper River Bridge, is a cable-stayed bridge over the Cooper River in South Carolina, connecting downtown Charleston to Mount Pleasant. The eight lane bridge satisfied the capacity of U.S. Route 17 when it opened in 2005 to replace two obsolete cantilever truss bridges. The bridge has a main span of 1,546 feet (471 m), the second longest among cable-stayed bridges in the Western Hemisphere."   It's quiet attractive especially today since a sailboat race is about to begin and there are many boats cruising around vying for the best position with the bridge displayed in the background.  By the way, the sailboat race was cancelled due to lack of wind.

Arthur Ravenel Jr. Bridge or New Cooper River Bridge

We finally arrived and docked at the Charleston City Marina around 2 p.m. and proceeded to get the boat settled (connecting power and TV cables, etc.).  Then, it was shower and nap time.  Walt and Pat arrived at 6 p.m. and we had a splendid evening sharing new stories and reminiscing about old cruising exploits.  We are truly looking forward to spending the next two weeks with our friends and enjoying Charleston.

Me, Walt & Pat
Rankin, Walt & Pat

Sunday, September 11, 2011

Thunderbolt, GA to Charleston, SC

Overnight Trip

We are currently sailing from Thunderbolt, Georgia to Charleston, South Carolina and our current position is below. We left Thunderbolt about 5:30 p.m. planning on a beautiful night sail so we can arrive Charleston in the daylight. As we weave our way down the Wilmington River, a sunset on our starboard side provides a nice orangey, pink backdrop. On the port side, what looks like a full moon provides a subtle display of its own.

We motor past the beautiful red roofed homes surrounded by trees until we arrive at the low lands. We see a boat anchored which from a distance has the illusion of being anchored on land. The water blends into the land so seamlessly the only distinction is the change in color from blue to green.

There's a park ashore and Rankin observes the people through binoculars as they watch us pass by. From my view, the sun is silhouetting Rankin as he sits at the helm and I relax on the moon side enjoying the view. There are no other boats around no noise except the hum of the motor and sound of a few sea gulls. Earlier while raising the mainsail, we had problems with the electric winch, however, as we slowly make our way down the Wilmington River into Wassaw Sound these small inconveniences seem to fall away like the setting sun.

We slip slowly past the red and green markers into the ocean. The channel to the ocean seems endless and the seas and winds impede our progress, but no short cuts are allowed due to shallow depths on either side. It has taken three hours, and we finally reach the last flashing red marker signalling the finish line enabling us to point North, pull out our jib, turn off the engines and sail.
The wind has been blowing around 10-15 knots from the stern quarter with calm 2 foot seas which enable us to sail at around 6 to 7 knots. At times, the wind is a bit fickle and on occasion drops under 10 knots. Though we may sail slower, it's been a very nice night passage. The moon hanging around until just after 4 a.m.

It's about 8:30 a.m. and I just finished making morning breakfast and espresso coffee for that extra "pick me up" after a night of two hours on two hours off watches. We should arrive Charleston this afternoon and will meet up with our old cruising friends Walt and Pat from sailing vessel Centime. We can't wait.

LATITUDE: 32-28.83N
LONGITUDE: 079-53.33W
SPEED: 5.0