Life in Thunderbolt Marina, Savannah, GA

Saturday, June 24, 2017    Thunderbolt Marina, Savannah, Georgia

We have moved into our new temporary ‘neighborhood’.  A week ago, we took up residence in a marina in Thunderbolt, Georgia, a suburb of Savannah that is 10 miles up the Wilmington River from the ocean.  Our ‘neighborhood’ is a diverse mix of ‘homes’ ranging in size from our very nice, but comparatively modest catamaran to the “McMansions” (Te Manu, a boat that you and 11 of your friends can charter for $188,000 per WEEK) and finally the ‘Mega mansions’ (think 5 stories with a glass elevator and rumored $1B art collection on board.  Google Aviva to get more info).   This is the ‘slow time’ in this marina– most of the mega yachts left here a month ago to head to their summer residence in the NE- ala Hamptons, Martha’s Vineyard, Newport- you get the idea.  Many will return during September to December to be readied for their winter escape in the Caribbean.  We definitely are not in Minnesota anymore.

Thunderbolt Marina work bays 62317

Thunderbolt Marina bays


Little, Big, Biggest


Aviva the mega yacht

Life in the marina is interesting – at least to me.   Our docking space is relatively nice- facing a row of tall pine trees across the road.  The marina has large, floating, cement docks that rise and fall twice a day with the 8 – 10 foot tides.   Our view changes from looking at a wooden wall covered with barnacles to looking at the landscape across the road.  We have a resident egret that regularly walks along the dock and eats small crabs, etc. that are exposed during low tide.  Mornings still bring beautiful sunrises and there is a small ‘herd’ of feral cats that hang around the marina.  We haven’t seen a mouse yet.

Small part floating dock Thunderbolt marine 61817

Floating dock that rides up poles


Low tide view from boat

Thunderbolt Marine at high tide savannah 61817

High tide view from boat

Fishing for grabs along float dock by boay 61817

Hunting for crabs


First light from boat


Dawn rising

Dan Sammis, the HH rep from Jupiter, Fla. drove to Savannah last Sunday to help coordinate the work that must be done on the boat while we are here and has been a tremendous advocate and resource for us.  Dan was here until Wednesday which gave us the time to get to know him a bit better and learn about his very interesting background (which includes, among other things, crewing on treasure hunting boats).  The staff at Thunderbolt Marine have been great – very professional and personable.

Savannah, like Minneapolis this time of year, has lots, LOTS, of bugs though here they are mostly small gnats which don’t bite but do annoy.  Make no mistake, there are also mosquitoes as well so we are adding a screened enclosure to the aft/rear deck so we don’t have to cower inside the salon continuously.

Generally daily living goes on rather routinely with cleaning, laundry and errands.  However, there was one exciting, but unfortunate development this week in the neighborhood.   A catamaran that was on its way to Thunderbolt lost its mast, boom and new sails to the ocean, 13 miles offshore, due to a structural failure in their hull.  The captain/ owner was very lucky in one respect.  When the boom came down it stopped just short of falling right on him.  He sustained some bruises and other slight injuries but was otherwise unhurt.  He and his crew put out a May Day and were towed into the slip next to us.  Needless to say,  they were a bit shook up but in general took it all quite well.  They were super nice and we wish the captain good fortune getting repairs made quickly so he and his family can move forward with their plans for cruising.

At this point, we aren’t certain but we are estimating we will be in Savannah until after July 4th which will be a first time celebrating in one of the original 13 colonies.  I have long wanted to visit Savannah so our plans including seeing the sights and the surrounding area while we are here.

One last note to my friends and family experiencing the cooler, brisk air in Minnesota this week– ENJOY IT; be thankful for it!!   Blessed air conditioning.   This upper Midwest gal has not adapted to the southern heat and humidity!  Thank goodness we have shore power and unlimited air conditioning.  I reiterate:  air conditioning is the single best invention of mankind!!!


De-masted catamaran 


Mundane life goes on with lots of quarters


  1. Lori Aspaas · June 26, 2017

    That washer and dryer look so out of place! Is that really on your boat?

    • minnehahasailing · June 26, 2017

      No we have a smaller combo wash / dryer. It would have taken a week to do all the sheets etc so i heafed to the laundromat in the marina. Hi to Dan.

  2. Toni · June 26, 2017

    Thanks again for the beautiful pictures and letting us know how and where you are 😊

  3. Becky · June 27, 2017

    You know your yacht is big when it has a Wiki page (Aviva).

    I think Minnehaha should too! She’s a beauty!

    • minnehahasailing · June 27, 2017

      If you read the Wiki you noticed there’s not 1 Aviva but a second larger one currently cruising the Mediterranean. Alas 1 small, but beloved, Minnehaha cannot compete for Wiki worthy attention.

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