Originally Posted by midlifesailor
What are your thoughts on entering Chincoteague in a mono hull? Most of the folks I've read about doing this trip seem to go for a "cape to cape" run but the plan for the HH group is to run an overnight leg covering Delaware Bay and a section of the Atlantic leg, planning for a daylight arrival at Chincoteague.
Unfortunately, I can't make the trip this year, but was curious about why most others have chosen to do the Atlantic leg from Delaware Bay to the Chessy or vice versa, if Chincoteague is a reasonable stopping point. Many accounts I've read have indicated there was not suitable harbor (for a sailing vessel) between Cape Henlopen and Cape Charles.
I have been in Chincoteague 4 times, always in multihulls. However, I have never seen a low tide depth less than 7 feet in the channel. Yes, there are thin spots in the harbor, but no worse than many harbors in the bay. Large ocean trawlers call this port home, so there is deep water. High tide adds at least 4 feet. There is a current, but it is not tricky and does not make the aproach rough.
The aproach scares many because the chart described the markers as "variable and not plotted." There is a CG station in Chincoteague and they move the markers as needed. That said, if you read my trip report (above), the last trip I made was in the wake of huricane and ALL of the other ports, including Ocean City, were breaking. Chincoteague was easy and wide. I would not try it at night.
You can always call the Chincoteague CG. There is no fuel available without special araingments (you can go to a gas station). The private marinas generally do not have the draft, but the town dock is deep. You will need to be good in currents to get between the pilings.
Mono-hull sailors that have been in Chincoteague in the past few years - please chime in!