Day 24 and 25: Sailing from Key West to Provincetown

On Monday, the 10th of June, we departed Cape Charles Yacht Center at dawn. We had not paid for the last two days of our stay, and the office was closed over the weekend. Therefore, I called them when they opened at 8am to give them our credit card numbers over the phone. I don’t think they had yet realized we were gone! We will definitely consider staying with them again, and hopefully their wifi is better when we do. We had stayed an extra night due to strong winds from the north.

This morning, we were on our way out to sea via the north channel of the bridge.

Crossing the north tunnel bridge of the Chesapeake Bay. Sorry for the wind noise.

The day went as planned, but we had to motorsail go fast enought to beat the coming storms.

We arrive in our Wallops Island remote anchorage just before the thunderstorm and gale-force winds arrive.

I had chosen a protected area of the bay but didn’t research the depths properly. You see, the regular navigational charts don’t have a lot of detail in areas not normally used. However, Navionics is now providing SonarCharts, which use depth sounder readings from a slew of boaters, uploaded when we download updates to our charts. Pretty accurate, too. Anyway, once I looked at the SonarChart, I realize we were probably not going to get to that point I had selected. We tried anyway and watched the depth slowly diminish. Three under the keel, two feet, ONE FOOT ONE FOOT, Lindsay says in my ear. I put the engines in reverse, then added more throttle. We got to less than a foot under the keel before I got the boat stopped and turned around. I sheepishly drove back on our track line on the charts to avoid any further risk of grounding. We settled on a spot with 12 under the keel and plopped the anchor down for the night.

The next morning on June 11th more thunderstorms arrive.

This anchorage is so desolate not even the birds like it.

Let’s get on our way.

The threat of gales cause me to talk through a sail plan from Wallops Island to Cape May.
This ship politely adjusted course to pass behind us, or it just seemed that way.
Two huge dragonflies try to land on my phone as I video them.
The dragonfly has landed… on my head.
Pounding into waves as we pass Ocean City getting ready to cross Delaware Bay.
The captain of this ship called me on the VHF radio and asked me to adjust course.

That is protocal according to collision regulations (COLREGS). Because his vessel is constrained by draft to the channel and is coming from our right. Both of those reasons give it the right-of-way. If we had continued our course and speed, we would have crossed in front of it about as close as we are now. That’s about 3000 feet. That would make anyone a little nervous.

Lindsay navigated the ICW using Google Maps. We missed the channel and cut off a big corner of it but the tide was high so no biggie. The dinghy only needs about 1.5 feet anyway. We found a restaurant for a free place to leave the dinghy. Lunch was just okay but they were very nice people. They let us leave the boat there while we got a Lyft to the boardwalk at Wildwood. We rode the giant Ferris wheel and played one of those quarter-shoving machines at the arcade. We won some movie candy, a box of Milk Duds was my pick.