For cruisers headed south, the reports indicate that while hurricane Florence wreaked havoc in parts in North Carolina, many of the marinas along the ICW between Norfolk, VA Beaufort, NC are open and accepting transients. Between Beaufort, NC and Georgetown SC there is extensive damage (See black dashed oval in the attached picture.). There are no reliable reports of the conditions in the known trouble spots at the CW inlet crossings. Beaufort Town docks reports that they only know of one boat headed south in the ICW. The boats headed south are going offshore 160 nautical miles to Georgetown or 205 miles to Charleston. Between Beaufort and Myrtle Beach, marinas are reporting very little boat movement. Between Myrtle Beach and Georgetown, no boats are moving today.
The big news is the USCG Captain of the Port of Charleston has closed the ICW between Myrtle Beach and Georgetown SC. See the red oval in the attached picture. With flood waters in the Waccamaw running 20 feet above normal, you must contact the USCG and receive permission to enter or transit this area. Given that the Socastee Bridge (Stm. 371) is underwater, and its drive motor removed for safe keeping, there will be no boat traffic through the area until the water recedes. The Captain of the Port had ordered these restrictions through October 19, unless conditions improve sooner.
The casino boats are using the Little River Inlet, so that is a fair-weather option for south bounders looking to bypass the inlet crossings between Beaufort and Myrtle Beach. Between Southport and Myrtle Beach it is an outside run of only 26 nautical miles. From Beaufort, NC to Myrtle beach is 128 miles. Myrtle Beach is a reasonable place to wait for conditions to improve.