Chesapeake cruise - perhaps Delmarva loop - SailNet Community

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Old 06-11-2010
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Chesapeake cruise - perhaps Delmarva loop

Hello -

I have a 1976 Pacific Seacraft 25 that I've been slowly fixing up and I need a sailing partner for the last week of June through the July 4th holiday. My boat is located in Severna Park, MD and I'm thinking of making a straight run from here to Cape Charles, then either go out to one of the inlets on the outside or just make my way back up the Bay, stopping at interesting places. If wind, weather, and time permit and we feel up to it, perhaps we could even do the Delmarva loop. My goals are to get some serious miles under the keel, improve my sailing skills, and have a good time.

My sailing experience includes casual laser/dinghy sailing in high school here on the Severn, then in 2005 I owned a Westerly 22 that I sailed mostly singlehanded on the Potomac, crewing on a delivery from St. Augustine to Charleston, crewing on two deliveries in Europe (including taking a Jeanneau 42 from France to Turkey), and finally sailing my PS25 on the Severn since last October. The boat is not the newest, the sails not so crisp, and there's only a porta-potty, so I'm not looking for someone that needs the usual cruising amenities. I usually sail engineless, though I could be talked into bringing an outboard along.

I'd prefer crew that have completed a sailing course or have equivalent experience, who can read a chart, steer relatively straight, and who I can get along with.

Please respond if this trip sounds appealing or if you know someone who might be interested.

- Will Dirks
443 370 2603 (c)
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Old 06-11-2010
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Your one week time frame and your desire to stop at interesting places don't go hand in hand. Some of the most interesting towns and anchorages are up rivers and creeks. Just getting from Severna Park to St. Michaels could take 8+ hours with the kind of light winds we get around here in the summer.

If you want to cover a lot of distance, that's great, but I think you'd have to go more into passagemaking mode, sailing round the clock with crew on watches, stopping only occasionally and not staying long any one place. That kind of thing can be brutal in heat and light wind.

You'd get to see more (though cover less distance) doing a "gunkholing" type cruise, sailing only by day and stopping every night in a different anchorage, but you might be surprised by how little distance you can cover in a week doing that. You'd be very lucky to make it below the MD line. The bay and its tributaries are enormous!
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Old 06-11-2010
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Thanks for the input. When I said "straight through" to Cape Charles, I meant doing that leg in passage making mode, then deciding how to do the rest of the trip. Of course, if the winds don't cooperate, we could always go gunkholing - plan B - from wherever we run out of wind.

I actually have closer to 10 days than one week for the trip. The Rehoboth Bay Sailing Association has itineraries posted on their website where they've made circumnavigations of the peninsula in 11 days, doing no more than 50 miles per day and no night sailing.

- Will
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Old 06-11-2010
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I've done the Delmarva a number of times in a boat no larger than yours, and with similar amenities (Stiletto 27). I became so enamored of the expereince, hopping in an out of the inlets, that I wrote a detailed guide book that I sell through Alibris and my blog, below.

That said, you've drawn a big challenge. No engine on the Bay is workable, but it's going to make the tidal inlets a hazardous proposition, unless the wind an tide are just so. Time is a problem too. Why rush the experience? It took me 8-10 sailing days each time, with shorter days in some cases, but that's on a boat that could motor at 10 knots and sail faster. It is about 450 miles, and given some headwinds, no winds, and bad days, that's a bunch! But I won't say that you can't do it - I do suspect some long days and a few evenings.

Read "Eastern Shore - Western Wind" for a wonderful account of the trip in a small boat. I think it was 24 days. There is also information on my blog. I hope you make the trip, but allow a little more time, I think, so that you can drink in the expereince. Your classic boat deserves that.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willyd View Post
Thanks for the input. When I said "straight through" to Cape Charles, I meant doing that leg in passage making mode, then deciding how to do the rest of the trip. Of course, if the winds don't cooperate, we could always go gunkholing - plan B - from wherever we run out of wind.

I actually have closer to 10 days than one week for the trip. The Rehoboth Bay Sailing Association has itineraries posted on their website where they've made circumnavigations of the peninsula in 11 days, doing no more than 50 miles per day and no night sailing.

- Will
I looked at the Rehoboth Beach Sailing site, and the course seems reasonable for your boat:
http://www.rbsa.org/PostCards/Circum...e%20Course.htm
I've stopped all of those places. Sand Shoal Inlet is also workable.

Alas, they didn't do it in 11 days without engines.
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I've bought a copy of your book and am reading it. It's quite helpful. I think if I were to go outside I definitely would bring along an outboard to negotiate inlets.

Having just bought a house here, I don't think this will be my last time sailng on the Bay, which is why I'm not that concerned about bypassing certain areas right now - I'd actually like to hit some in the fall instead.
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Quote:
Originally Posted by willyd View Post
I've bought a copy of your book and am reading it. It's quite helpful. I think if I were to go outside I definitely would bring along an outboard to negotiate inlets.

Having just bought a house here, I don't think this will be my last time sailing on the Bay, which is why I'm not that concerned about bypassing certain areas right now - I'd actually like to hit some in the fall instead.
Sounds like a plan.

BTW, that's a gorgeous boat!
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