worst parts of the Georgia ICW, but with some planning and the many anchorages in the area, making a safe transit at a higher tide is not difficult. As we got underway, the fog was still around but not dense, and the day began cloudy and dreary. As we past red marker "192" in the Little Mud, our depths began to shallow up and soon we found a stretch that would be 3.5 to 4.5 feet at low tide. Even with Beach House's 4-foot draft, we would be hard aground without the help of the higher tides. The rest of the channel maintained what would be 5 to 6 feet at low tide. Although the really shallow spots are few, they are enough to cause concern for most boaters and certainly for deeper drafts.
It's always hard for us to leave Beaufort, South Carolina. There are discussions about staying for a while and talk of former good times. The folks are friendly and welcoming, and it just feels right. But the waterway called once again and we gave in to the beckoning. The winds were gone and the sun was shining. It wasn't an ideal day for departure, but ideal days are sometimes hard to come by. There was a 30% chance of rain, not too awful, but once again, it was time to point the bow south and begin our winding journey through the dreaded Georgia ICW. I say dreaded, because the Georgia waterway is the least maintained section of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway and has a terrible reputation for very shallow stretches. Even with the winding channels and occasional shallow areas, it's still a gorgeous section of waterway, and by planning head, transiting anywhere in Georgia is not that difficult. We wrote an extensive post on the Georgia ICW that might be a good read for anyone wondering just how bad it is.