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Old 05-01-2010, 09:55   #1
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Our Sailing Plan - Maine to Chesapeake...Thoughts?

So we spent the last to nights going over the cruising guides and charts mapping out our plan for May. We realize that weather and such may alter these plans but we are willing to be flexible. We have a month to sail from Belfast Maine to Chesapeake that being said we are not in a rush and if we only make it to New York or Boston in that month we are okay with that...we don't want to risk weather or push ourselves this is suppose to be fun...we have based our plan on sailing 30-35 NM a day sometimes more sometimes less. Our Hunter's hull speed is 6.5 and we figure we will have to motor somewhat. Does that seem reasonable?

We plan to leave Belfast first week of May (I know it will be cold but we are canadian and if we didn't sail when it was chilly we would never sail). Here is our planned stops some have more than one listed because the stop tha night would depend on the weather...any suggestions or ideas are appreciated...

Rockland, ME (not that far but we thought it will be cold so do smaller legs)
New Harbour or Pemaquid Harbour
Five Islands
Cape Elizabeth or Biddeford Pool or South Portland
Cape Porpoise or York Harbour, ME
Newburyport, MA
Salem, MA
Plymouth
Onset
South Dartmouth or Westport, MA
Newport RI or Point Judith
Fishers Island, NY or Niantic, CT
Branford, CT
Norwalk, CT
City Island or Throgs Neck
New York/New Jersey
Atlantic Highlands, NJ
Manqasquen Inlet
Atlantic City
Cape May
Delware/Chespapeake city

THen we would find a marina to haul or boat out for the summer and come back in mid October to sail the Bay and head down the ICW. But like I said if due to weather or other issues whereever we are at the end of May we will have to stop and come back later in the summer fro a week to sail her farther. Does our plan seem doable should we try to do more NM in a day or less....have we missed out on a good place to see or anchor? Thoughts?
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Old 05-01-2010, 12:49   #2
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Anyone know how dog friendly any of these places are? We are sailing with two medium sized dogs.
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Old 05-01-2010, 13:19   #3
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reluctantsailor View Post
......nd, ME (not that far but we thought it will be cold so do smaller legs)
New Harbour or Pemaquid Harbour
(We favor Boothbay here)
Five Islands
Cape Elizabeth or Biddeford Pool or South Portland
Cape Porpoise or York Harbour, ME
(We found the Cape Porpoise moorings not always reliable or
available)
Newburyport, MA
(Good free moorings at Isles of Shoals followed by a pass through the
Blynman Canal into Gloucester)
Salem, MA
(or choose Gloucester to Provencetown to Onsett)
Plymouth
Onset
South Dartmouth or Westport, MA
Newport RI or Point Judith
(consider Mattituck,-anchor at the head, free showers)
Fishers Island, NY or Niantic, CT
Branford, CT
Norwalk, CT
(free town moorings w/water taxi fee at Port Washington)
City Island or Throgs Neck
New York/New Jersey
Atlantic Highlands, NJ
Manqasquen Inlet
Atlantic City
(good anchorage inside at Rum Point)
Cape May
(good anchorage at CG station)
Delware/Chespapeake city

THen we would find a marina to haul or boat out for the summer .....
(Check prices at Green Point Marina & Wharton Creek Marina
at Wharton Creek just beyand the Sassafrass River on the
east shore of the bay)
Thoughts?
'take care and joy, Aythya crew
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Old 05-01-2010, 21:14   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Reluctantsailor View Post
Rockland, ME (not that far but we thought it will be cold so do smaller legs)
New Harbour or Pemaquid Harbour
Five Islands
Cape Elizabeth or Biddeford Pool or South Portland
Cape Porpoise or York Harbour, ME
Newburyport, MA
Salem, MA
Plymouth
Onset
South Dartmouth or Westport, MA
Newport RI or Point Judith
Fishers Island, NY or Niantic, CT
Branford, CT
Norwalk, CT
City Island or Throgs Neck
New York/New Jersey
Atlantic Highlands, NJ
Manqasquen Inlet
Atlantic City
Cape May
Delware/Chespapeake city
Go to Newport or Block Island (or both, as they both are worth seeing). Don't go to Point Judith; not the best spot. From there, go to Westbrook, then to Port Jefferson, then to Mamaroneck/City Island/Port Washington (any of those). From there, you can get to New York Harbor by timing the tide at Hell Gate and the East River. These all are roughly within your daily mileage goal, they are easy to get into and out of, they have services, and they're just nice places to see. Bon chance!
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Old 05-01-2010, 21:20   #5
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Yeah for that matter you've got to stop in at Martha's Vineyard. Last I checked South Dartmouth and Westport weren't exactly the crown jewels of Massachusetts. At least hit up the Elizabeth islands. Good luck, this sounds like a really fun trip, I like your attitude about weather and taking it slow.
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Old 05-01-2010, 22:05   #6
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Do Onset to Cuttyhunk. Nice sail. Won't be crowded that early in the season. I'd then do Cuttyhunk to Newport. If the wind is nice, go to Block Island the next day.

Be sure to time your approach to the Cape Cod Canal. You really can't make headway if the current's against you.

If the wind is calm when you wake up, get going right away under power. The wind will usually come up by noon and you can have a great sail knowing that you've already got 20+ miles of progress. Much less of a grind.

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Old 05-01-2010, 23:29   #7
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and no motor sailing in the canal too, right?
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Old 05-01-2010, 23:31   #8
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Eastern LIS...Up Connecticut River Essex and Hamburg Cove.
Port Jefferson...Oyster Bay...Manhasset Bay (over City Island if
at anchor) all above are protected and good services available.
So many great places.
Re: Hell Gate (East River NYC)...not so bad...must keep few things in mind...traveling from the sound, west/south to NY
harbor...must time tide...you want outgoing tide(running south) or slack tide when passing Hell Gate. I usually ride outgoing tide down River for speed of about 9-10 knots over ground.
Don't go down East river if there is a strong wind opposing
tide...can get nasty standing waves.
Immediately after Hell Gate...stay west of Roosevelt Island,
(there is a low bridge on the east side of the island.
It won't be bad and you will be rewarded with the NY skyline,
the UN complex, about 9 bridges (all plenty of clearance)
the Statue of Liberty and unfortunately plenty of traffic.
If you don't stop in the city, you can make it to Atlantic Highlands no problem...the tide should be with you a good part of the way.
Enjoy! Hugo
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Old 06-01-2010, 09:13   #9
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Thanks everyone it is so hard by just looking at a book to know what is good so I appreciate your input...we are going to go through our cruising guide and check out the places you mentioned. We really are really excited about the trip...there are a number of places we are really looking forward to like Salem, MA and Atlantic City
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Old 06-01-2010, 11:06   #10
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Also need to get the 2010 Reeds tidal almanac.
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Old 06-01-2010, 14:13   #11
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First week of May? You're brave. That early Maine can have lousy weather. I would get south with the first 20 knot northerly to come through, and make for Provincetown. Don't try to enter Newburyport in a northeast wind, especially on an ebb tide. Portsmouth, NH/Kittery is nice, as are the Isles of Shoals but that early I would be going south, to get south of Cape Cod as fast as I could.

From Maine to points south we just do an overnight to P-town or, if the tide is timed right, transit the Cape Cod Canal and duck in to Onset or Pocasset. Onset is nice, so is Pocasset, and there is a sandy island to anchor off and walk ashore. In May, I don't expect anywhere to be crowded. An overnight that time of year in the gulf of Maine will be COLD.

Second the Cuttyhunk stop, but that early, don't expect much to be going on. It would be a nice time to visit Martha's Vineyard and Nantucket, before the crowds set in.

Newport is crowded and touristy, but again, you're early. Pt. Judith smells like fish. Don't miss Block Island. The beach is worth the visit. In Great Salt Pond, if you don't want to pay for a mooring, farther in the harbor where the water is shallow, the bottom is fairly hard sand and shells, choose your anchor accordingly. Farther west the water is deeper and the bottom is very soft mud. Again, choose your anchor accordingly.

Have fun!
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Old 06-01-2010, 14:30   #12
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Anyone know how dog friendly any of these places are? We are sailing with two medium sized dogs.
We live in Maine (Castine) and have made the trip 7 times now, the last time with 2 labrador retrievers. Check out our blog - go back to the beginning in August and you can get an idea of our trip. We started out with a big jump overnight from the Penobscot Bay to the Cape Cod Canal. The rest of the trip through the Chesapeake was all day hops.

Northport, especially, on Long Island is a really nice place for dogs. We waited for weather there for almost a week and got to know the place really well.

There are so many places on the Chesapeake that are wonderful for dogs especially if they like to swim.

Our blog:
TakingPaws
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Old 06-01-2010, 16:12   #13
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You may want to sail the DelMarVa peninsula to the entrnce of the Bay instead of running up Delaware Bay. The trip up the Delaware Bay can be the roughest part of your trip.
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Old 06-01-2010, 16:33   #14
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Not a bad idea, if you are trying to get south.

Quote:
Originally Posted by speciald@ocens. View Post
You may want to sail the DelMarVa peninsula to the entrnce of the Bay instead of running up Delaware Bay. The trip up the Delaware Bay can be the roughest part of your trip.
You miss the Chesapeake expereince, but Chincoteague is a nice stop for that size boat. There is a post about our last trip in the area (Sail Delmarva: Search results for trip report delmarva) on my blog, plus some guide revision info as well.

Also, be prepared to through in some long days, not because you must, but because sometimes the wind is just right and you want to go far! Days are long then and 60 miles is not always too far.
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Old 06-01-2010, 16:56   #15
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The only reason we haven't thought of doing the Penobscot Bay straight to Province town is that we are in a new to us boat that we have never sailed before we are picking it up in Belfast . We will sail it around there for a few days to get a handle on it but not sure about taking on a 24 hour overnight sail and also we have never done an overnight sail. Do you think we are being overly cautious? Is that sail pretty straight forward?
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