Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Cape May, NJ - Annapolis, MD

 38 53.39 N 076 32.03 W
Okay – we know it’s been a while since our last posting. We are just having too much fun to feel like updating this blog. We have definately slowed down our pace of travel since arrriving in the Chesapeake Bay. Presently, we're anchored on the western shores of the Bay, on the Rhode River sitting out some strong southerly winds and rain before continuing on our trek south. Favorable northeasterly winds are forecasted for tomorrow and we'll then be on our way again so today seemed like a good day to get everyone caught up on what we’ve been doing.
Long day motoring in calm waters
up the Delaware Bay
We left Cape May on Sat 9/18 and motored for 10 hours / 70 miles up the shallow, turbid, very long and visually boring Delaware Bay. We hadn’t planned on that long of a trip but our two attempts to anchor in one of the few suggested anchorages, this one at the mouth of the Cohassey River on the New 'Joisy' side, had too much river current setting us against prevailing wind so that our anchor chain kept riding under our hull. We decided to take advantage of the late afternoon flood current and continued the rest of the way up the Bay and halfway through the C&D (Chesapeake & Delaware) canal arriving at Summit North Marina just off the canal about a ½ hr after sunset.

Kathy returning to boat from
marina laundromat .
There was no room to anchor in the marina basin so we uncharacteristically paid for a dock slip. We even plugged in to shore power that night and next morning took full advantage of all the marina amenities - Kathy did laundry while Mark gave Carina a much needed bath; As Mark said he "intended to get his [bleeping] money's worth out of the $2.00/foot fee - by God !" After all the chores were done around noon we threw off the dock lines and continued through the canal and out into the upper Chesapeake Bay.

We stayed on Maryland's eastern shore side of the bay, anchoring in a protected cove with 2 other boats about 12 miles up the broad, smooth flowing Sassafras River. There were beautiful homes and “gentlemen-type” farms with tended fields, meadows or manicured lawns that came down to the shore. The water was very warm but not very inviting, being both the color and turbidity of tea. Crabbers were out every day setting traps around us. We observed 3 bald eagles perched in the treetops along the cove.
View of Sassafras River shore

At-anchor view across the Corsica River 
We left the Sassafras last Tues. and continued further south down the upper Chesapeake then up the Chester River to a tributary river called the Corsica River, also on the eastern shore side of the bay. Again, another pastoral scene of shore side houses, lawns and quiet solitude. We spent 2 days anchored here as well and went kayaking for the 1st time since Lake Tashmoo on Martha’s Vineyard.

Enjoying crabs at Cantlers.
Carina is tied up dockside behind. 
On Thursday we headed back down the Chester River out into Chesapeake Bay, passing under the Bay bridges. We made a lunch stop up Mill Creek, docking at one of our favorite restaurants in Annapolis – Cantlers for our first taste of delicious steamed Chesapeake Bay crabs in a few years.

L-R: Jerry, Scott, Diane & Tina
After lunch we motored in light winds a few miles past Annapolis to the Rhode River to meet up with fellow Manta owners, Scott and Tina Ligon on Sangaris and Jerry and Diane Wheeler on Babe and to take part in the annual fall Annapolis Seven Seas Cruising Association (SSCA) GAM.

Manta sail cats Carina, Sangaris &
Babe anchored up at the SSCA GAM.

SSCA cruisers at Friday night raftup on a
near-by island in the middle of the anchorage.
The event was held at the Camp Letts YMCA center at the head of the Rhode River. There were 50+ cruising boats in the anchorage and many more attendees arriving by car to take part in the 3 day event which included opportunities to meet with other cruisers, attend informative seminars and of course enjoy a dinghy raft up, cocktail parties and meals. It was a great time – we enjoyed spending time with old friends and making aquantances with many new ones that we’re sure we will see again in our mutual travels south.     

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