Friday, June 16, 2017

Coinjock to Baltimore - 2017

--Blogpost written by Bob

Coinjock to Mobjack Bay

Coinjock was a nice stopover.  Besides a couple great meals at the restaurant, we met some other cruisers, some going north and others going south.  A couple on a Bristol 43.3 (sailboat) was headed back to Oriental NC after spending a cool, overcast, and rainy 5 weeks in the Chesapeake.  Someone else was taking a newly purchased Grand Banks trawler to its new homeport.

We left our slip in Coinjock shortly after six o'clock this morning, June 13.  It was our earliest morning departure yet and I was surprised that there was enough light to see the day marks but it was fine.  We're trying to make it to our first opening bridge of the day by 10 AM since we have several more opening bridges and one lock to go through today.

"Turn it upside down and smack it a couple times" Maggie said about the Aloe Vera gel I was getting out of the tube for easing the itch from bug bites on my elbows.  This is the second time we have experienced bug bites inflicted while we were sleeping and I don't think they are mosquitos because we have mosquito nets on all our hatches. 

The North Landing Swing Bridge is so close to the water
that it must open for almost any boat, not just sailboats.

This is the Centerville Turnpike Swing Bridge--it is
actually a double swing bridge.

This is a lift bridge for a railroad in Norfolk--it is normally open.

These blue cranes are used to unload ships in Norfolk.

We arrived at our anchorage just to the west of the New Point Comfort Lighthouse on Mobjack Bay at 6:30 PM--12-1/2 hours after we started our day.

Mobjack Bay to Solomons

We got an even earlier start today, June 14.  We pulled up anchor at 5:30 AM and began our 80-mile day up the Chesapeake Bay.

The sun was just coming up behind the New Point Comfort
Lighthouse as we were leaving our anchorage.

Wolf Trap Lighthouse was the next lighthouse we
passed on our way up the Chesapeake Bay.

Before mid-day, we experienced a slow boat speed (about 5.3 knots) and we couldn't go any faster.  Maggie dove down to check if we picked up a crab pot but found nothing.  We finally concluded that is was a tidal current that was against us.  We've experienced a lot of tidal currents on the ICW but I never expected a 1-knot tidal current on the Chesapeake Bay.

Smith Point Lighthouse at the mouth of the Potomac
River is on the Maryland-Virginia state line.

After we passed Smith Point Lighthouse a thunderstorm threatened and we had very high waves but the thunderstorm missed us, fortunately.  We finally anchored in a very quiet spot on Mill Creek in Solomons at 6:30 PM--it was a 13-hour day!  Its great to be back in the Chesapeake Bay!

Solomons to Galesville

I slept like a baby last night!  I didn't notice the slightest boat motion--maybe it was because I was completed exhausted from the 13-hour day on the water or there actually was no boat motion during the night (or both).  The overnight temperature was in the high 60's.  Since we have only a 45-mile day ahead of us today in very familiar waters, we will be leaving our anchorage at eight o'clock and picking up fuel and ice here in Solomons before proceeding to Galesville.

The Cove Point Lighthouse has been preserved
and it still has a lighted beacon atop.

We saw a dolphin just outside the Patuxent River--I don't think I've ever seen one this far north in the Chesapeake Bay before today.  June 15th was a cool day on the Chesapeake Bay.  There wasn't much wind and the wind we did have was on our nose--so, we motored all day.

We made it to Galesville by 3 PM and Hartge's Yacht Yard gathered all the information to make an estimate of the repairs to our bow caused by the flying anchor incident near Great Sale Cay in the Bahamas (it turned out to be a little over $5,000!).  

We stayed in a slip at Hartge's Yacht Yard and went out for dinner at Pirate's Cove.  We had another good night's sleep.  It seems like we are still catching up on our sleep from the couple 12-hour and 13-hour days.

Galesville to Baltimore

We left our slip at 6:45 this morning and headed out Tenthouse Creek and into the West River before the boatyard came alive.  The day was mostly overcast as we proceeded out of the West River, passed Thomas Point Lighthouse, and motored through the center span of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge.

Thomas Point Lighthouse under overcast skies.

This view of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge is looking east
just before we went through the center span.

We got into our slip in Baltimore at noon--it only took 5 hours and fifteen minutes.  It should have felt like a warm home coming (coming back into our condominium slip) but it didn't.  We immediately noticed an algae bloom in the water--the algae clung to the floats under the finger piers.  Knowing that the algae bloom was caused by either sewage or fertilizer didn't make it any better.  We are here for hurricane season and then we will be heading south again.

Our next blogpost will cover some of our dealings with our out-of-commission outboard engine for our dinghy and some of the other problems we will be fixing.

Thanks for following our blog!

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