ICW update report September 17, 2018

17 Sep

Update 12:00 EDT September 17, 2018

As previously suggested and as hoped, the Northern part of the ICW between Norfolk and Beaufort NC is partially operational. Some facilities are fully up and running. Some facilities are damaged but running.  Some facilities are closed. However the ICW seems passable with dockage, fuel and water available in places between Norfolk and Beaufort, NC.  Those facilities which are open for business are anxious to have cruisers come through.  But be aware that many homes and businesses are flooded and already damaged.  Be even more careful about your wake, as in flooding conditions your wake is hitting homes and yards. The ICW south of Georgetown SC is operating normally.

But that 125 miles between Beaufort, NC and New River (Myrtle Beach)  is still flooding, is lacking electrical power and phone lines,  and is several days away from being able to fully report, and weeks or months from being back to normal water levels.

  • Great Bridge bridge and lock are fully operational.
  • According to USACE Norfolk District Dismal Swamp Canal is open and the locks and bridges are operating on a normal schedule.
  • All is OK at Coinjock. Over 20 boats have left and headed to Hatteras, Wanchese,  Beaufort and points south! They have not heard of any reported problems in any of the canals and creeks to Beaufort NC.
  • Alligator River Swing Bridge is operational.
  • Dowry Creek has power to the office and heads, still working on the dock power. The water is below the docks but is still up 2.5 feet.  USCG has been through Alligator Pungo Canal to check ATONs. There are damaged ATONs.
  • Wilkerson Bridge now at about 60.5 feet
  • River Forrest Marina has no fuel but is taking reservations.  Transient space is limited to smaller vessels. Grocery store is open, downtown restaurants are “drying out” after 4’ of flood water.  Main streets are dry this morning, but only just barely.  Many parts of town are still flooded. .
  • 9/17 A tug and barge headed north in AP canal this morning, so commercial traffic is resuming.
  • Hobucken USCG has covered about 20% of their territory.   So far AP canal to G7 in Adams creek has been checked.  ICW has damaged ATONs.
  • Jarrett Bay is closed. No Power. Area is devastated.  2 USCG boats went north bound in Adams Creek this morning 9/17.
  • Homer Smith Docks had no damage.  Still has no power but is taking transients.  They report that boats are moving up and down the Beaufort waterways with no trouble.
  • Morehead City Marina is not answering their phone.
  • Beaufort City Docks are operational. No Power as of noon 9/17. A generator is wired to the fuel pumps, so fuel is available.  2 x  100’ yachts are inbound from Coinjock today.
  • Onslow Beach Bridge phone not working 9/17
  • Surf City Bridge phone not working 9/17
  • Figure 8 Bridge phone not working 9/17
  • Wrightsville beach bridge 910.256.2886 not answering 9/17/18
  • Southport NC: All the marinas were spared major damage.  There is still no electrical power in the area.  The city potable water system has had several major breaks and  it is unclear how long it will take to get the water flowing again.  All of the roads leading into Southport are washed out and flooded.  At this time there is no vehicular access to Southport.  The Cape Fear river is expected to crest later this week.  There will be significant debris washing though.
  • Myrtle Beach YC is fully operational with power and water. Center console boats are running in the ICW
  • Wrightsville Beach Bridge not answering 9/17/18
  • All bridges in Horry County SC (Myrtle Beach area) are operational! Socastee Swing Bridge, Barefoot Landing and Little River Swing Bridge. Flood waters are still rising inland and it is entirely possible that the bridges will be  non-operational at some point  as the rivers crest. The 65’ bridges aren’t! Water still high and rising.   After Matthew it took weeks for the water to get back to normal levels.
  • Myrtle Beach YC is fully operational. Center console boats are running in the ICW
  • Osprey Marina reports that they survived with no damage. The Waccamaw crest is expected Thursday . It could be worse than Mathew.  Expect floods and a slow speed zone through Socastee.  The 65 foot bridges in Socastee are far less than 65′ right now.
  • Port of Georgetown is open. Marinas are open and selling fuel.
  • McClellanville, Leland Oil open reports USCG has checked channel. They have not heard of any problems.
  • Isle of Palms Marina is fully operational and taking transients. No word yet on the condition of ICW to Georgetown. No boat traffic in ICW except center consoles and work boats.
  • Ben Sawyer Bridge is now operational and back on normal schedule.
  • Port of Charleston Open. Charleston Marina is taking transients.


  1. Rolo Martinez III

    Thank you Tom. This is another one of your legendary contributions to the entire boating community.

  2. Capt Ted O'Rourke

    Tom..thanks for the update. We plan to begin our trip south from the Chesapeake after Columbus Day. Will continue to monitor your info. Thanks again for your efforts!

  3. Dennis Carpenter

    Tom, thanks so much for posting this update. Like many others I was headed south, from NH. However, I decided to leave my boat in Northern Chesapeake Bay in the Sassafras River on a mooring, rented a car and headed home. Hope to be back in boat and heading south on October 1. Hopefully more facilities will be back on line and operational by then and some of those poor souls in the affected areas will be back in their homes and and on their boats, my thoughts are with them.

    I’ll look forward to future updates. Keep up the great work.

    Thanks again

  4. Bob Ragan, Palmetto Moon #2940

    Tom; Thanks for the up-dated info. Like Many others we anticipate heading South in next few weeks and wondered what if anything was operational.

  5. Jeff Janacek

    Thanks for all the time you’re putting in on this! We are heading for the Bahamas (In Boston tonight awaiting Florence) but read every word you post about whether we can get through!

  6. John Gula

    Great report, thanks. FYI Lightkeepers Marina , Little River might have some open slips. Power and Water is up. Call for availability.

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