Wilmington and Carolina Beach

Southport NC
Posted by Bill

This past weekend several of us on D dock took our boats up to Wilmington for a few days. We had 6 boats in the flotilla. We were going to stop at an anchorage on the Cape Fear River on the way up on Thursday, but the weather was supposed to be nasty and we opted for a party on the dock instead. Friday we timed the tide, as the currents can be very nasty in the Cape Fear River, and made the trip in about 4 hours. Here are a couple of pictures along the way:

We docked on the river in front of the Hilton Hotel. Wilmington has a great riverfront area, with lots of bars and restaurants. We hit the Copper Penny for happy hour/dinner on Friday:
On Saturday we hit the farmers market and attempted a pub crawl. We only made it to 2 places. The second place was the Duck and Dive, a popular dive bar that had great drink prices and a fun atmosphere. We played darts (boys vs. girls) and watched football all afternoon. The boys got their asses kicked in darts…unfortunately:
Then we did happy hour and had a cookout on the dock:
It was a great time! This was also the first time we had our boat off the dock since we landed in Southport in May, so we really enjoyed being on the water again.

As we headed back down the river on Sunday, we decided to take a detour and go to Carolina Beach for the night. They have a mooring field that is 2 blocks from the beach and is close to several restaurants and bars. It was a beautiful day, both days we were there, and we didn’t even put the dinghy down to go ashore. We just relaxed on the boat and enjoyed being “on the hook”. I so much prefer anchoring or tied to a mooring versus marinas and it was a real treat. Carolina Beach was a favorite of my moms, as she went there as a kid many times, and it was our first introduction to the beach and ocean when we were kids. It was good to reflect on everything and just listen to the sound of the waves on the beach. Our view:
This is a great mooring field, well protected, and the moorings are in very good shape. The guy who owns them comes around and takes trash and he was really helpful. Highly recommended.

Monday, it was back home and starting on boat projects again. We are about 4 weeks from leaving to go south, and the pressure of getting everything done is starting to mount!

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