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Old 06-09-2011, 07:52   #31
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Re: Delmarva Peninsula Circumnavigation - advice?

Thanks for the reply. The idea of the Seawind pulling off the Delmarva circumnav is interesting, and makes me feel a little better about getting a 22. I really like the looks of the S2 6.8 and hope the original poster will reply; I'd like to get a feel for how she behaved in the ocean. It's very hard to find info on the 6.8.
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Old 06-09-2011, 10:06   #32
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Re: I suggest an alternative...

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Originally Posted by s/v Breakaway View Post
Greg,
Given everything you've said about the boat and your experience level, I suggest you try a week or two long trip in the Chesapeake Bay and do the Delmarva next year. I've done the Delmarva clockwise and there are few safe havens for you on the ocean leg. The Bay has 5,000 miles of coastline to explore in an excellent gunkholer like your boat. A squall on the Bay can knock down an experienced sailor; what will it do to you in the ocean?
This was my thought exactly.

oops...need to check the date on posts
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Old 09-09-2011, 13:24   #33
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Re: Delmarva Peninsula Circumnavigation - Advice ?

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Thanks Charlie,

Appreciate the advice. I am off for a sail later today and will try reefing...haven't had the need yet and did not show the foresight to practice before the need arose. Will also be working with sail balance and try some self steering with bungy cords and whatever I can scrounge. Depth sounder is probably not a priority for me right now as the 2ft draft (with swing keel raised) is very forgiving!

Greg
I completed the DelMarVa trip with several other boats in June of this year in a very well equipped Catalina 30 with myself and 2 crew. The only boat that did not complete the cruise was a not well prepared Tartan 27. Judging from these email exchanges, you appear to have thought though many of the issues, but seem less than well prepared. The off-shore leg will be difficult to manage solo, and should you go ahead with your plans, I suggest a very thoughtful stop before going offshore - and do so in the daylight with a three day good weather/sea-state forecast. You will have less daylight than we did in June. Will look forward to future posts re: your decisions and experience.
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Old 09-09-2011, 22:48   #34
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Re: Delmarva Peninsula Circumnavigation - Advice ?

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Originally Posted by valinor30 View Post
I completed the DelMarVa trip with several other boats in June of this year in a very well equipped Catalina 30 with myself and 2 crew. The only boat that did not complete the cruise was a not well prepared Tartan 27. Judging from these email exchanges, you appear to have thought though many of the issues, but seem less than well prepared. The off-shore leg will be difficult to manage solo, and should you go ahead with your plans, I suggest a very thoughtful stop before going offshore - and do so in the daylight with a three day good weather/sea-state forecast. You will have less daylight than we did in June. Will look forward to future posts re: your decisions and experience.
There are 2 ways to look at the Delmarva off-shore run: as a single leg, and by parts. I did it 3 times in a 1200-pound catamaran with a small child for crew (basically single handed, though she was great help for her age). We never had a "a good 3-day window"; we ducked in and out and enjoyed a few lay days when needed. We never got "caught out" and we never used a small inlet as a "bail-out." We planned the legs and never had to go more than ~ 45 miles at a lick.

Other times, in my 32-foot cat, I've done longer legs, but that's NOT better. It easier in a bigger boat, even lazy--there's not much to think about, honestly--but it's not better. Open ocean is dull, whereas the barrier islands are wonderful.

You just need to plan the inlets and be prepared to let the schedule ride. One problem with group trips is everyone has to agree on weather and route. I can't imagine WANTING to do a long trip in a group. Might as well take a tour.
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Old 17-09-2011, 13:37   #35
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Re: Delmarva Peninsula Circumnavigation - Advice ?

Greg, I am planning to do the DelMarVa, the end of Sept, in a Hunter 36, larger, much better equipped for coastal cruising, Dep Deltaville, counter clockwise, in time for Annapolis Sailboat Show, then down the Bay. I could use a first mate.
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Old 31-08-2012, 13:30   #36
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I've done the trip 3 times during Thanksgiving Week in the mid 90s with my father- on his 35 ft O'day. We didn't have a gps, radar or cell phone, just a VHF. Oh yeah- and a Loran C to nail us down to within several hundred feet. We always went clock-wise.. He's done the trip before by himself going both ways.

The trip always started in the Magothy River - just across Dobbins Island on a very cold Saturday morning. The first day- the anchorage would either be the Bohemia River or forge on thru to just on the other side of the C&D Canal. There is a nice little spot just on the south side of the jetty for protection - surrounded by two shoals. The next day would be sailing down the Delaware river and bay. Option 1- we'd anchor at Cape Henlopen and the following day would be Ocean City behind Assateague Island. Option 2 - we'd continue through the night past Cape Henlopen on into the ocean, either hugging the coastline or on one trip- going about 50 nm out. We wouldn't stop until we arrived in the Chesapeake Bay at Cape Charles. From there we'd go to a place called Mill Creek off the Great Wicomico. On to Dun Cove near Knapps Narrows. The last night before returning to the Magothy - we would drop anchor in the Wye River - either in Shaw Bay or Dividing Creek.

That was the trip detail for when everything went to plan...

During one circumnavigation, we were motoring about 15nm's or so off Chincoteague when the coast guard came up to us to check us out and who we were.. After showing them our identity papers and boat registration - they went on their way - still heading east. (The only other boats we would see at that time of year were ships and tugs - not one pleasure boat the whole trip.)

As they headed off out to sea- we cranked up the engine - and in about 1 min, it sputtered out. The cause wound up being the fuel pump. Unfortunately- we didn't have a spare. Our only option was to start sailing.. (I wanted to call the coast guard back- but my father didn't want to deal with them for towing us 30 some odd nm's). We started sailing on a tack that led us towards Cobb island. We didn't have much wind, 5-10 kts at best. No engine meant not being able to charge the battery for running lights, depth finder, etc.. So to maximize our tack, we wound up getting a little too close to the surf- my heart started skipping beats as we scraped the ocean floor several times. It was dusk- running aground near the old Cobb island coast guard station would obviously not be good. So we tacked again heading south east- this time making sure that on our next tack, we'd have a good course right up into the Chesapeake Bay.

We arrived at the mouth of the bay around midnight. The wind had died down to pretty much nothing. The bay bridge tunnel at the time was having major construction being done to it. There were construction barges everywhere, our maneuverability was extremely limited. The only thing going for us was that the tide was taking us in at about 1 knot. The little wind we had was from the SE. As we passed under one of the spans- (they were increasing the lanes from 2-4 on the bridge) I noticed two barges on my port and starboard- about 300-500ft out in front of me- closing in. We passed through them- but barely. I couldn't have gone several hundred feet past when I looked back and saw that the path that I had just gone through was completely blocked. It was a very close call. I don't believe they ever saw us.

That night wound up being very uneventful. At dawn- we were just past Cape Charles. We had a steady 5-10 knt wind from the NE which progressed us past the mouth of the Potomac. Once again, by night fall, the wind died down to nothing. All night and the following day - we finally reached the Calvert Cliffs area. It was around 3pm. Dark storm clouds started coming in from the west. We had been sailing with our main jib. The sky was so dark- you couldn't separate the sky from the water.. We took down the main and put up the smaller storm jib minutes before the storm came. And when the storm reached us- it literally went from calm hardly any wind- to 45-50 mph winds from the NNE. That was nov 26 1996. The front page of the annapolis newspaper read, "tornado like winds hit annapolis." Waves were 4-5 ft and crashing. The bow would dip in the next wave constantly. And it wouldn't let up for the remainder of the trip. When night finally fell on us- I really didn't know how we could keep this up. It was pitch black, 50+ mph winds, constant spray- and we were exhausted. My dad was on the helm the whole night- tacking every 15 min or so. Around 4am- we passed under the bay bridge. And right before 6- we had a very tricky process to face- docking in the heavy winds under sail.

We lowered the jib halfway and made the most use out of our last tack to push us closer to our slip.. We made it to about 5 slips away and pulled ourselves with the docking pole hook.

That was a trip I'll obviously never forget. I use it as a reminder for when I cruise today - to always expect the unexpected and to carry an extra water pump and 2 extra fuel pumps. That was my last Delmarva trip. I still cruise the bay.

Happy sailing...
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