We got away early this week for an overnight, the winds dictating our destination to Rhode River. We enjoyed an incredibly serene sail of 3.5-4.5 knots with easterly winds giving us a beam reach for several hours.
En-route we encountered a parade of daysailers in tow. Perhaps a yacht club or sailing center loan to a summer sailing camp.
We made our left turn at green #1 and made our way up the West River, then north into the Rhode river. A look at the google map below gives you an idea of what a warren of creeks and coves constitutes Rhode River. It’s great for exploring, and we’ve only seen a little of it.
We always anchor in the north end above the north-most island. Actually, it’s the only island. The island pictured south of that is not really there. It is an extensive shoal now, with nothing above the water. We know people who have lived on Rhode River for 60 years, and they remember the island back when it had trees, sheer cliffs, and a beach. This is a testimony to the action of current and the mobility of soil in a tidal zone. Ironically, its name was “High Island,” and is still shown on charts of the area.
Early in the week is a great time to cruise. Anchorages are sparsely populated, and that was the case this past Monday night. We shared the northern cove with one other boat, which was anchored 500 yards away from us – we could barely see them.
Early to bed. Time on the water is exhausting, and the constant motion of the boat takes more out of us than we anticipate. We showered and briefly read our books before conscious thought ceased for the day.
Our new LED cabin lights worked perfectly. I am very pleased with the amount of light shed and electricity used. The reading lights also worked just as I had hoped. They are infinitely adjustable and the neck is long enough to allow us to position the light for maximum benefit. They couldn’t have worked out better.
Morning dawned, but I wasn’t awake to observe the event. Uncharacteristically, Ruth was. She made a thermos of coffee – and drank it all! That’s usually my trick at anchor. I didn’t rise until 0800, at which point we made more coffee. The weather forecast included rain and strong southerly winds for the trip home, so we got underway by 0930. As we passed Camp Letts, we had fun watching the daysailers ply back and forth. I never went to sailing camp growing up, but this looks like such fun to me! These kids looked like they were having a great time.
Conditions on the river(s) were benign, but once out on the bay we got the typical Chesapeake chop of steep waves and short periodicity. 15-18 knots on the nose makes for a rough two-plus hour ride home. There was no avoiding the crash-and-bash. Instead, I went east longer than usual before turning south. This allowed us to take the chop on our port bow, and somewhat quarter the waves rather than plowing straight into them.
As we drew into the arms of Herring bay, the seas moderated and the wind backed around a bit due to land-effect. We motored the final 3 miles under much calmer conditions, backing into our slip by about 1215.