Thursday, November 10, 2011


Redbird Creek, GA 31º51.220N | 81º09.781W

Sunset in Redbird Creek.
A narcissistic Redbird Creek lies still and utterly peaceful tonight, navel gazing, clearly oblivious to the tempest raging offshore, just a few miles to the east.

How nice for us.

Sean, the latest in a series of tempests barreling north,  has sent us barreling south on the ICW, if you could call toodling along at 6 knots barreling. You can't really, can you?

An offshore sail from Charleston to Florida would have taken us 24 hours. By the ICW, it takes at least a week, although in actual mileage it's not that much farther. The thing about the ICW in Georgia, is that it's twisty, turny and, in many places, excruciatingly shallow. Its tides swing by a daunting 9+ feet, its currents shift mysteriously every few miles.

Sound awful?

I have to admit that I'm secretly (until now) glad that the tempests have sent us back through Georgia, because it's my favorite part of the ICW, like floating through a majestic painting with sound effects. If you look at a map of coastal Georgia, it looks like a mess of spider veins, but those veins are winding creeks meandering through golden marshes, refuges for wildlife that squawk and grunt and caw somewhere just beyond the shore. The air is crisp and clean but for the occasional waft of a far-off paper mill.

We plod slowly through rivers, sounds and creeks never seen by land dwellers. In fact, in some lone anchorages there is no evidence that land dwellers even exist. How often does that happen in our sprawling culture where we spread around concrete and asphalt like butter on toast?

Bobbing here in Redbird Creek under an almost full moon, it's hard to remember why we should pick up and move again tomorrow. Should we?

A shrimp boat ambles home down Redbird Creek.


  1. After nearly losing Hans to those horrible 9 foot tides (he fell off our boat at 4AM due to a cold frosty deck) when he tried to reconnect our power cord at a dock (the tide dropped so far it had come unplugged) I vowed I never wanted to travel through Georgia via the ICW again.
    We only draw 2 and a half feet and there were times we weren't seeing much more than that beneath us. I would love to see more of Georgia but I wish the Army Corps of Eng had the money to maintain it properly.

  2. Clearly the ambling shrimp boat is popular with the birds. Perhaps the wildlife wouldn't stay just beyond the shore if you dropped a few hundred shrimp head on deck. Just thinking out loud...

  3. Laura: Yikes! Better keep Hans below in cold weather. The good news about tides in Georgia is that the highs are WAY HIGH. LOL

    John: Do you talk out loud while typing???

  4. Apologies. I thought everyone could hear that. What a relief.