North Myrtle Beach/Little River

We left St James Plantation to head south to Lightkeepers marina in North Myrtle Beach today. It’s about 28 miles to travel today. When we woke up to get moving it was 48 degrees this morning. We are only staying one night here before we move on again and continue to head south toward Charleston.

There are so many elaborate docks and colorful homes along the intercoastal waterway.

This is our first glimpse of some sandy stretch of beach that we have seen. This is by the inlet to the Little River.

When we enter a new to us marina, we generally call ahead to see if they can tell us what slip we will be in and have them describe to us which dock, will it be a port tie or a starboard tie to the dock and ensure there will be someone on the dock to catch our lines. We will also look at the marina layout on an app we have called Nebo. It provides a google earth type view of the layout of the marina and the approach so we can ask all the appropriate questions when they are describing where we should go. Here is the view of Lightkeeper’s marina from the Nebo app.

There are actually 3 marinas in this particular basin. The docks that run north/south on the left side is Lightkeeper’s Marina. The docks that run north/south on the right side is Coquina Yacht Club. And the docks that run east/west along the top is Myrtle Beach Yacht Club.

So when I was talking to the guy on the phone to determine which dock we would be going to, he tells me we will be on T dock. I always love it when the marina staff list off a letter like we have a clue where T dock is. Ok, we are looking at your marina map, where would T dock be? He starts listing off letters and tells me that starting from the entrance there is N, O, P, Q, R, S, T docks. The number of letters he is listing off doesn’t seem to equate with the number of docks I see on the map, so I try a different approach. I asked him if T dock is the last north/south running dock. He tells me no, it’s about in the middle. We later learn that yes indeed T dock is the last north/south dock in the basin, just in the middle of the basin but at the end of their portion of the marina. Then he tells me that he will put us on the end of T dock. So, I clarify, do you me at the T head, the very end of the dock? Yes, I am told. I further clarify, do I need to turn down the fairway to get to a slip or are we at the end? He assures me we are at the end. Ok, we think we have a pretty good idea of where we are going. We are coming into the marina and there are docks and boats everywhere and it’s a bit confusing and you can never see any letters or numbers on the docks. We approach the last north/south dock that we think is the T dock and there are 2 large boats on the end of the T dock and no open spot. I see a guy standing on the end of the dock waving to us. This is the right dock but there doesn’t appear to be any room at the end. I tried to hail him again on the VHF to clarify where we are supposed to go. While waiting for him to respond, I see him walk back down the dock away from the end. Where is he going? He doesn’t respond on the VHF and after a few minutes I see him re-emerge almost halfway down the dock on a finger pier and he waves to us. Mark at this point is almost past this turn in to go down this fairway. I alerted him quickly, turn here! He was able to quickly turn down the fairway. Remember the guy told us we didn’t need to turn down a fairway? It’s obvious at this point that the slip we need to be in is halfway down the fairway where he is standing and certainly not at the end of the T dock. We finally pull in and get settled, however this guy gets the prize for worse directions in a marina ever! Sometimes a bit stressful pulling into unfamiliar areas.

Once we docked, there was another sailboat that came in shortly after us and we recognized the boat, as we saw them along the ICW in our travels today. We said hello and started up a conversation with Kathy and Joe and their friend Ray. We chatted about boats for a bit and where we are from. They are local to the area and live a short distance away and this is their home marina. Later, we were getting ready to head to a nearby restaurant for dinner and this restaurant is about 1.5 miles away and we had to walk there. Kathy and Joe were getting ready to head home from the marina and offered to give us a ride and drop us off at the restaurant. Thanks! Very Nice!

We had a bit of a celebration tonight. It’s our 10th anniversary of owning Painkiller and celebrating 2 years of retirement! Loving every minute!

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