October 26, 2013.
From Elizabeth City to the southern end of the Pungo Canal is 76 miles. With sunrise at 0720 and sunset at 1818 that leaves us with about 11 hours of daylight. 76 miles is ambitious so the answer is obviously leave in the dark. We'll get up at 0630 and be underway 15 minutes after that. And a funny thing happened on the way to this plan.
The alarm went off, I jumped up, hit the head and was brushing my teeth when Christy asked why I was up so early. We have our old chartplotter mounted next to the bed and I use it as a drag alarm. I set the range for 80 feet so when we're anchored in a tidal creek it wakes me when the tide swings us so I can make sure all is well. The drag alarm only beeps 4 times so when it went off, I hit the alarm clock, the drag alarm stopped. I thought that the alarm had gone off and was up brushing my teeth at 0430 instead of 0630. Crap. Back to bed for 2 hours.
Its cold, we do what we have to to get south. One benefit of this is seeing the sunrise from the cockpit as you head south.