We depart Fernandina Beach at 7:45 AM. Our first objective is to take on fuel and water at Amelia Island Yacht Basin, just a few miles south of our mooring. Before we can accomplish this task, we must navigate Cutter Loose through a section of very thin water on the Amelia River. Despite the fact that we transit this section of the Waterway at mid-tide, there are only a few inches of water under the keel in certain shallow sections.
Our course today takes us through Sawpit Cut, across the St. Johns River and into Pablo Creek past the community of Jacksonville Beach. We enter the Tolomato River and pass alongside a residential section of Palm Valley where lovely homes and boat docks face the ICW.
Skies are becoming increasingly cloudy and stormclouds are gathering on the horizon. A cold front is approaching from the west. Southerly winds have been increasing in intensity all day. When we reach our anchorage at Pine Island at 4 PM, southerly winds give way to westerly, then northwesterly winds at 25 knots. Bands of wind-driven rain are now moving through the area and Cutter Loose is heeling and swimming around her anchor.
Our 43 mile journey today positions Cutter Loose just 13 miles north of St. Augustine. In the morning, we will make short work of this remaining distance.