November 19, 2009

Cruising N on the St Johns River, FL

We had a good night at anchor on Deep Creek. Our trip down river (N), worked well for us. We had the tide in our favor most of the day. The St Johns is fairly wide in this area, almost like a big lake. You don’t see much wildlife this far from shore…but when we got to G 25 a beautiful Bald Eagle greeted us.


For you non-boaters…these are channel markers. They  correspond to the markers listed on the charts. That way you can tell where you are. When you are headed toward the ocean, you keep the Red markers on your L (port) side and the Green on your R (starboard) side. The old saying is “Red..Right..Return”. Meaning..Red marker on your R as you head home, or when returning from the sea. The lights flash at night and the chart tells you how often. You can see the battery box and the small solar panel. These also make great Osprey nest platforms. I am surprised there isn’t one here.

We decided to do Doctors Lake tomorrow. by the time we got to the entrance to Black Creek, the current was against us…but would be pushing us up Black Creek if we went that way…so we did.  We traveled 13 miles up the river…it goes from wild to residential and back to wild etc. Here are a few of the waterfront “cottages” that we saw.

Notice the high ground and terracing around them.


I think all this dock work was for one house.


If you are looking for a piece of land for a place on the water…want to have a fast boat…then this is the place to be. Other than a few houseboats…every boat we saw was designed to go fast. We never saw a “no wake..manatee zone” sign…they did have a couple of “no ski” zones..but there were short and few. I don’t think we want to be on Black Creek on a weekend, with Slow Motion. It is definitely not a “slow” type boating area…water skiing, jet skis, and cigarette boats abound.

We saw very little wildlife. A few birds…no gators. Whether that is because of the 20+ ft of water that runs in Black Creek..or the fast boats, I don’t know. There have been days on the St Johns when we never saw a they may be in there. We saw one Manatee area sign on a side creek, Peters Creek.

Black creek continues on past our turn around point. We made it to the split at Middleburg, but wanted to anchor near the entrance to the St Johns River for an early start with favorable tide, in the morning, so headed back without checking any farther.

This is the only wildlife I had to photograph today.


We anchored…walked the dog…had supper and a beautiful sunset.


We’ll explore Doctor’s Creek and Whitey’s Fish Camp tomorrow.

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