It froze last night so we had to be careful not to slip and slide on both the dock and the boat deck. We both wore knitted watch caps – Thank You Susan! The first thing this morning we measured the vertical clearance of Knot 2 Fast. 22 ft 10 in. Then we cast off at 7:15am on high tide with the sun in our eyes. Bob steered and I stood on the forward deck and pointed the direction to leave the yard since it was impossible to see through the pilot house windows into the sun.
|Norfolk Ship Yard|
|Norfolk Railroad Bridge|
About 10am we could see the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel to our left off in the distance. We entered the Elizabeth River with the Norfolk Navy ships to port as we headed toward the Dismal Swamp. There were security vessels outboard of some of the Navy ships and government buildings, navy yards and shipyards on both sides with a few ferry and tourist boat docks thrown in. Upriver a paddle wheeler passed us going the opposite direction. Both banks were very industrial looking.
We spent a good part of the river following the big red tug “Jack Hampton” which was pushing a sand barge. He had to swing from one side of the river to the other as he maneuvered the many turns until he eventually came to the Gilmerton Bridge where we asked and received permission to pass him as he slowed to line up for the bridge passing. We were out of sight by the time he went through but it didn’t look like he would have had much extra space between the bridge pylons.
After the next bridge was the right turn into the waterway leading to the Dismal Swamp. Just inside a short distance we stopped at picturesque Deep Creek Basin which is too rectangular to be natural but is a nice place to stay. Every other tree had a No Trespassing sign posted. The only negative is that Hwy 64 is visible out the entrance and the sound comes in as well. We enjoyed the last sunlight of the day and maybe the week as clouds are predicted for tomorrow as well as sinking temperatures throughout the week. Two sailboats were rafted up when we arrived and two fishing boats came in later, both anchoring to fish for a while. Of the two rafted boats, one has a dog which they take to shore call in their dinghy.