1 LiveBloggin' the ICW: On leaving Chesapeake Bay...

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

On leaving Chesapeake Bay...

I'm guilty of forgetting that many of you aren't active sailors....so sometimes my posts don't make a lot of sense for some of you either from lack of sailing knowledge or not knowing the area I'm talking about. It's ok, my posts sometimes don't make a lot of sense to me!
Still....here's my route from Annapolis, heading for New York. Leaving Annapolis, we go north up Chesapeake Bay to the C&D Canal. At this point, you want to be watching the tide so you get the current behind you - it gets quite strong here.
I usually layover in Chesapeake City, then head out the next morning for Delaware River. The trick is to get the tide behind you, which then pushes you along as much as two to three knots faster. On a five knot boat, that means you can do the 42 mile trip in five hours, rather than 8 hours. Makes for a much easier day. Ask Doc about that!
The challenge of Delaware Bay is that there are a LOT of big ships - I've seen as many as a dozen in one day. As long as you stay to the side of the channel, there's no problem.
Delaware River and Bay are not pretty - it's just a part of the trip that you have to get by. At the south end, you come to Cape May, an attractive tourist town. One thing about it I don't care for though - they charge you to go on their beach. Coming from where I do, that's just wrong but of course, this is New Jersey.
From Cape May, it's north on the Atlantic to New York, 118 miles away. I make a point of picking my weather for this part of the trip. I've seen it get nasty out there - this is the North Atlantic after all. In fact, just a few months ago, a 38 foot sailboat was wrecked at the entrance to Barnegat when it hit a shoal. That ought to bring some memories back to Terri, right? Except that was Absecon Inlet at Atlantic City...another story for another time.
In all, this part of the trip, Annapolis to New York, can take from three to five days, unless the weather kicks up and holds you back, as it did two years ago when I was coming south - had to hang out in Manasquan for about a week, until high winds and 10 foot plus seas laid down.
Do I know how to have fun or what?