A no-brainer.

After leaving Oriental we made steady progress north.  We reluctantly decided to skip our beloved Belhaven, which is the first time we’ve missed it.  Unfortunately Covid cases were increasing in North Carolina and from what we could observe on Facebook, Belhaven residents weren’t fans of masks.  Sadly, if that attitude remains Belhaven will have to be a pass for us until Covid is somehow resolved.

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Looks like there’s no point in swimming for respite on the Pamlico Sound in late June – the water temperature was 100 degrees!

We had a sporty ride across the Albemarle (it’s a large, shallow body of water so every time a gnat farts a nasty chop kicks up), spent several days sweating it out in the Dismal Swamp Canal, and rode out the Fourth of July weekend anchored at Hospital Point by Portsmouth, VA.

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The Saharan dust cloud turned the sky steel gray crossing the Albemarle.
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Wandering on a path at the Dismal Swamp park.

Continue reading “A no-brainer.”

Mount Harmon Plantation on the Sassafras River and Rock Hall.

While waiting for Dorian to settle on a track we had several days to decide where the next stop would be.  We had approximately three weeks before we needed to be in Annapolis, so we thought we would head south down the Eastern Shore for awhile before crossing over to the Western Shore and working our way back north.  Looking through our Waterway Guide, we quickly decided on a visit to the Mount Harmon Plantation, followed by Rock Hall.

Dorian passed giving us nothing but some clouds and moderate winds, so the next day we pointed our bow towards the Sassafras River.  It was a gorgeous day as we tacked our way out of the Bohemia River and several miles down the Chesapeake before the wind died.  Firing up Big Red, we motored up the Sassafras before dropping the anchor in a nice spot near Mount Harmon. Continue reading “Mount Harmon Plantation on the Sassafras River and Rock Hall.”

Solomons and south.

There wasn’t as much VHF chatter on our way from Annapolis to Solomons as there had been on our previous leg.  At one point on our way to Annapolis someone (presumably a fishing boat) was calling for a radio check and when no one responded he asked, “Am I all alone out here?”  “I can hear you.  You’re not alone” came a response.  After a few beats someone else came on and said in a solemn voice, “We’re all alone.”  That cracked us up. 

Anyway, after motor sailing for 45 nm from Annapolis, we were happy to drop the anchor in Solomons, MD.  Solomons is an extremely popular destination for Chesapeake boaters, but being late in October we didn’t get a real feel for it.  It’s kind of like being on Block Island after Labor Day compared to the height of summer.  A lot of places were closed for the season, but it was o.k. because we knew we would definitely be coming here again.  

One place that wasn’t closed was the Calvert Marine Museum.  The museum had several great exhibits, including many fossils, an outdoor habitat for river otters (so cute!), the Drum Point Light (which had been relocated from its original location), and indoor aquarium exhibits.   Continue reading “Solomons and south.”

Chesapeake City. Will the “firsts” ever end?

The current and tide dictated an afternoon departure from Delaware City on Sunday so we decided to make it a short day and stop on the other end of the canal in Chesapeake City.  Applying our lessons learned from running into the dike, we carefully reviewed the chart for our intended route and also looked at Active Captain and the Coast Guard’s Local Notice to Mariners.  Anything we weren’t sure of we looked up on Chart Number One, and we wrote reminders on a write on/wipe off board that we had purchased at Staples in Delaware City.  Although I was nervous leaving, all of the preparation made for an overall much less stressful trip.  It looks like we have a new evening routine from this point forward!

While the C&D is reportedly the third busiest canal in the world, we didn’t see any freighters as we motored along.  Not that we were disappointed about that given that they take up their half and the middle too. 

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Looks like a freshly painted bridge on the canal – nice shade of blue!

It was an uneventful afternoon and soon we found ourselves setting the anchor in Chesapeake City.  It was a pretty tiny anchorage with stone walls a bit too close for comfort on three sides of it, but we were quickly snuggled in.  I wanted to check out the C&D Canal Museum the next day, so we had decided to stay for two nights and leave on Tuesday.

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Continue reading “Chesapeake City. Will the “firsts” ever end?”