We arrived in sunny Myrtle Beach late yesterday after another day of adventures.   Long story short, SOMEONE was not paying attention as we waited for the Sunset Beach bridge to open at low tide and we ran aground and missed the opening.  It cost us an hour and gave me a few more gray hairs but we managed to get off when a power boat went by with a wake.  We should have followed Larry’s advice and turned our depth alarm ON!!

At least Sunday and Monday were uneventful (in the cruising sense.)  We had a relaxing day anchored in Wrightsville Beach.  After a leisurely breakfast we took our beach chairs, lunch and Bailey to the beach.  Bailey was so happy to run and chase his ball.  He met lots of other dogs including another sheltie.  We stayed for a few hours but it was actually too hot to sit out in the sun.
Bailey is ball crazy on the beach
Bailey loves playing with the ball on the beach

In the evening we were invited to Blue Heaven, a beautiful Bristol 41.1 to have drinks with Al & Arlene.  We had fun exchanging cruising stories and adventures.  We hope to meet up with them further south or in the Bahamas.

On Monday we made the trip down the Cape Fear river and past Southport.  Catching the outgoing current in the river makes for a fast, smooth trip.  The Southport marina was full so we decided to try St. James Plantation.  It turned out to be the best deal so far–$1.05/ft Boat US rate.  They have nice showers, a restaurant and a little market (mostly beer and wine).  We walked around the boardwalk in the evening to watch the sunset over the waterway.
Enjoying the evening

Sunset near Southport
Sunset on the Waterway near Southport
St. James Plantation
St James Plantation marina–a nice place!

We were hoping that the Sunset pontoon bridge would already be retired due to the new high bridge but, alas, it was still there and that’s where we had the INCIDENT which I won’t mention again.  I will add that after we were moving again I saw a beautiful monarch butterfly hovering over the boat.  My mother is goofy about butterflies.  She thinks it’s my father looking out for her.  Anyway, I said “Hey that’s my Dad coming to tell me to chill out” and Skip replied with “Thanks, Mick–you’re da man!”

There were 2 more bridges before we arrived at the Grande Dunes marina in Myrtle Beach.  Our friends on Dakota II stayed there and recommended it to us.  They have a nice long face dock with fuel and it’s much more protected from currents and wakes than Barefoot Landing.  They even gave us a nice bottle of wine!

We had a lovely dinner at Cathy & Ken McGill’s house near Shallotte.  She came and picked us and we even got to do laundry and spend the night.  (I do miss sleeping in a real bed…)  Their dog Callie was so excited to have Bailey visit.  They also invited Tom & Jane Evans (who we knew from SSA) for dinner.  They had owned a sheltie and made a big fuss over Bailey.  There are a lot of retired SSAers in this area.  Who knows, maybe we’ll join them someday!
Cathy & Ken
Cathy & Ken with Callie

Bailey & Callie
Bailey & Callie

We just got back from having lunch with Judy Ziolkowski.  (Danny was busy playing golf.)  It was great to get caught up with her and hear all about the good life here in Myrtle Beach.  Friends Al & Bev Ibbott are coming over this evening to take us to dinner.  We love seeing everybody here!

Tomorrow we’ll continue south…next big stop is Charleston!
Bailey keeping up with Dogbook
Bailey keeping up with his friends on Dogbook