Friday, October 24, 2014

Island Cove to Goose Pond

Sunday the 19th of October we traveled from Island Cove Marina to Shellmound anchorage, just north of Nickajack Lock.  We cozied into the back cove there (skirting the greenery in the water) and had a nice, uneventful night.

Monday we were socked in by fog and didn't get going until around 10.  The lock wasn't busy, though, and we got in and through in no time.  We were only going about 38 miles that day down to an anchorage 10 miles north of Goose Pond Marina.  We had plans to go into Goose Pond on Tuesday...and with only 10 miles between us and the marina we'd be there in no time and have a WHOLE DAY at a great marina with laundry and a convenience van (a vehicle the marina makes available to transient boaters).  We learned this little move on the last trip.

So...Jones Creek at mile 388 was our selected anchorage for the night. Sounded ideal, down to a deserted boy scout camp with dock for taking Lucy in with the dinghy. We turned off the river into an entrance that, after a short channel, opened out into a little lake. Tree-filled hills surrounded the place and the wind was calm. Nirvana!!

We picked our way to a 10 ft. depth in close proximity to the deserted camp and another dock that looked promising. Secured with a bunch of chain dropped on top of the anchor, we got the dinghy off and took Lucy for a ride/walk.

We tried the closest dock first, not the boy scout dock. Turns out the dock didn't go all the way onto land and looked a little rickety. We motored over to the deserted camp area and found it to be a new dock...about 4.5 ft. off the water.  We tied the dinghy to a post and Wayne hoisted himself up onto the dock.  I then "handed" Lucy up by the handle on her life vest (most handy handle).  I then waited in the dinghy for them to do the necessary...when we loaded up the two and motored back to the boat.

This is a picture of the boat anchored as we came back from the dock outing.

We're thinking, "Wow, this is the perfect anchorage!"  Until...

Around dark we happened to look out the back door and see, oh, I'd say a gazillion bugs hanging all over the boat.  They looked like fish flies to me, except not as long.  Totally creepy, though.  I'm imagining having to "deal with them" tomorrow morning when we take Lucy to the shore.  I'm not real fond of bugs, anyway.  Much to our relief, the bugs left...even before we went to bed.  Quite a phenomenon, though.   

A beautiful morning greeted us the next day, though there was a little wait for lifting fog.  We suited up (we have started wearing our rain pants and jacket for morning rides due to dew) and headed back to the new dock for Lucy's communion with nature.  Everything went fine until we got back in the dinghy for the return trip.  A few yards away from the dock the engine stopped.  Oops.  We'd run out of gas.  Wayne rowed us back to the boat while I held Lucy on the side of the dinghy and gave directions.  He definitely got his exercise in that day!

Out of the anchorage early, we made it down to Goose Pond Marina in no time.  Goose Pond is notorious for having an approach that is thick with millifoil and water lilies, so much so that depth finders often misbehave and give false shallow readings.  And here I always thought water lilies were pretty!  These are not.

The transient dock was nearly empty when we arrived, but slowly filled up as the end of the day rolled around.  We had a chance to take the courtesy car for groceries and do some laundry before the demand for those services was taxed.  

We met all kinds of nice people there on the dock, most doing the Loop, too.  We also got to see a previous owner of the boat, Ray Whitney.  Ray and his wife Patsy live nearby and he has a boat at Goose Pond.  We had a good time visiting with him and learning a bit more about the boat's history.  I caught a picture of Wayne and Ray looking over Journey.