7. Jekyll Island to Kilkenny Creek, GA and then to Savannah, GA

Decided to stay an extra rest day (Tues) at Jekyll Island. Marina was pleasant, one of the surprisingly few island restaurants was located right off the dock and the marina had loaner golf carts – and on the Island golf carts are legal on the streets.

There are three basic areas in the Island. 1) The Beach development anchored by a Westin Hotel plus a couple of streets of new shops (similar to the Orange Beach, AL waterfront) with a great ocean beach. A good area to take the golf cart for an ice cream cone on a 90 + degree day.

Looking from the beach boardwalk back towards Westin (left) and the shopping street

2) The Historic District and they mean it. Probably 3/4 mile west faci waterfront “cottages” and a Mackinac Island type Grand Hotel built in the late 1800’s at a cost of $48,000. Situated off the waterfront are the homes of the servants. Those houses still around now function as eclectic gift shoppes while the hotel appears to still do a brisk business. Within the enclave are the large “cottages” of people like the Goodyear’s. Also in this area is the Georgia Sea Turtle Center devoted to the study, care and rehabilitation of sea turtles.

This was the full time Admiral’s house – now gift shop
Another house converted to a gift shop
The Jekyll Island Resort hotel.

3) The rest of the island – golf course, campground, Holiday Inn and other such motels and the many homes of the regular folk and long stretches of road thru woods and wild.

Dinner was enjoyed at the marina restaurant (Monday nite crab cake sandwich and Tuesday nite a pound of peel and eat shrimp accompanying a glass of chilled white Z.

WEDNESDAY. Left port on a rising tide. The balance (6 mi) of Jekyll Creek is shallow and problematic for my draft at low tide. Paying attention and with the tidal assistance, it was navigated without incident. Planned on taking two days to get to Savannah where I’ll be for few days to get some work done. It was a fairly long day covering 75 statute miles. The wind stayed nearly 10 knots the entire day and Last Resort crossed a number of ocean inlets/sounds where the wind had a chance to make waves. With the area going under a sever thunderstorm watch in mid afternoon, pulled into a small marina on Kilkenny Creek. Besides the t’storm issue, it was nearly low tide and ahead is a short waterway section known as ‘Hell’s Gate’ – another skinny water area for which I need mid or higher tide and preferably a slack current. My navigator keeps me updated with info like that.

Is that Forrest Gump??
At Kilkenny Creek Marina. Floating dock piling gives some idea of the tidal range

THURSDAY. Left Kilkenny Creek to finish up the remaining 27 nm to Savannah, GA. Arrived at Hells Gate at high tide and nearly slack current. Joined two other boats, both Gold Loopers having already completed the Great Loop, and so crossed with experienced company. It wouldn’t have been a problem without them but they provided a confidence boost after having read other poster’s grounding stories. Got a slip for the weekend at Thunderbolt Marina a few mile Uber ride to downtown.

I have some work scheduled to be done. Complete change of oil and filters for the engines, generator and transmissions. Also need two new tranny oil pressure senders. I have a diver scheduled to scrub the bottom and check the props for damage after touching the rocks at the Mayaka Locks. Haven’t felt any vibrations but… I have a tech coming to see why I’m getting an antenna fault for the KVH (Directv). And am having service on the air conditioning sea strainer and bow thruster. The Ft Myers yard apparently doesn’t understand the word “hand tighten” and I am not strong enough to loosen it to clean the strainer. Cleaned the strainers on the genny and engines at Jekyll Island and they were dirty so am guessing the AC strainer is as well and the system is not getting enough water flow.

The bow thruster is a mystery. The bow thruster is a small electric motor connected to a small prop located in a tunnel cut crossways through the bow. It provides short term sideways thrust to the bow for maneuvering in tight quarters. A few days ago it started up by itself and wouldn’t shut down, until it overheated-even when the circuit breaker was turned off. It has turned itself on and off several times since – disconcerting to hear when you are asleep at a dock and something you for sure don’t want happening while at anchor. And of course, it is not functional when you do want it. Go figure.

We’ll do some sightseeing as well in this historic town. Been here a couple of times RVing but never really walked around and boating is helping me walk better so am looking forward to that. On the next dock over is a comm’l shrimper and the dockmaster said to walk over and buy some freshly caught shrimp to cook for an onboard meal! Not so good for me though is that every morning the marina delivers a complimentary newspaper together with Warm Krispy Kreme donuts.

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