Today was a character-building experience. Not because of weather or equipment failures or navigational challenges. It was simply a matter of endurance. We sailed 89.4 miles today from Atlantic City to Atlantic Highlands in Sandy Hook Bay. That translates to 12.75 hours on the water.
Why not layover at another location on the coast that requires less travel? Because there is a scarcity of navigable inlets on the Jersey coast that can safely accomodate sailboats with 5 foot keels. Manasquan Inlet is ideally located for a layover. But even in today’s calm conditions, we could see waves breaking on the bars in this inlet through our binoculars. Because the channel in the inlet is constantly shifting, the U.S. Coast Guard relocates the entrance buoys frequently. As a result, the location of the buoys do not appear on the government’s navigational charts. And even if one was lucky enough to successfully navigate the inlet, there are few services or anchorages available for deep draft vessels in these harbors. Too much risk and too little reward.
We bid farewell to the bling of Atlantic City with anchor up at 5:30 AM. We dropped the hook at Atlantic Highlands at 6:15 PM. We are currently anchored deep inside Sandy Hook , just 15 miles south of Manhatten. This will position us for a quick trip into the City in the morning.