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Old 05-03-2021, 20:48   #1
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Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

I am working on planning my first real sailboat 'trip' for the upcoming season. Boat, a Columbia 36, which is kept in Sparrows Point just outside of Baltimore. I am looking for something around a week or two roundtrip before being back at my home dock.

My current thinking is starting from her home port and making my way over to the Delaware Cape Henlopen. Then an off-shore run out probably 70-120 miles out before turning south and running along the deep water at the drop off (and hopefully pulling in a fish or two.) before heading back into Chesapeake around Virginia Beach. Then spending rest of time exploring the lower bay area, before making the run back to home dock.

The Columbia 36 is new to me and thinking of spending first bit of season shaking her down in the Upper Chesapeake getting her ready. So maybe setting off late summer? Maybe early to mid August?

Looking for some opinions? Would be my first open ocean passage and thinking that could be a good first one. Planning is going to be tricky, and want to pick I time that has good chance of having acceptable weather window for the ocean portion. Best time to make that trip from Delaware Bay down to the Chesapeake?

Brian.
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Old 05-03-2021, 22:05   #2
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Sounds like a fun trip... I may come down the Jersey shore and if you'll be by Cape May, then let's meet up for a beer in a nice anchorage. I have a Jeanneau SO409 and keep her in Jersey City, NJ, but sailed down to Atlantic City and Cape May in the past.
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Old 05-03-2021, 22:47   #3
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Maybe consider joining a rally, a lot of support and friendships to be made this way.


https://www.worldcruising.com/arc_delmarva/event.aspx
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Old 05-03-2021, 23:10   #4
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Quote:
Originally Posted by Bean Counter View Post
Maybe consider joining a rally, a lot of support and friendships to be made this way.


https://www.worldcruising.com/arc_delmarva/event.aspx
Awesome, I had no idea there was a rally for this route? I was thinking of going the other way around and want to head way further off-shore. Really just want to go off-shore because I want to have shot at pulling in a Tuna

Doesn't look like they have dates for 2021 yet, but I will absolutely be keeping an eye out for this. If timing works out this is a strong contender

Brian
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Old 06-03-2021, 01:50   #5
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Catching in shore Tuna
https://www.proptalk.com/fishing-ins...delmarva-coast
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Old 06-03-2021, 05:05   #6
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Without looking at my charts, I'm not sure how close you will be to the Gulf Stream, which could influence your choice of CW vs CCW.

You might enjoy reading Western Wind Eastern Shore (if you can find a copy) by Robert de Gast, who did this in the 70's, but much closer in. Very close.

It will help you appreciate what you are sailing around. The Virginia Inside Passage is no longer maintained, and even then useable only by boats much smaller than yours. But a lot of his track up the bay side can be repeated today. If you have time, you would enjoy many of these stops.

And Thinwater here wrote a good guide describing places you could duck into if necessary on the Atlantic side. Hard to find this info elsewhere, maybe you can get a copy from him.
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Old 06-03-2021, 08:28   #7
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Here is another organized rally for that route. Good info for prepping boat and crew. They also have Maine and Caribbean rallies at different times of the year.

https://www.saltydawgsailing.org/delmarva-rally
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Old 06-03-2021, 09:53   #8
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

The Maryland Sailing School based in Rock Hall used to offer a cruise around Delaware that started in Rock Hall, up to and through the C&D canal, down Delaware bay, down the Delaware coast with an overnight stop in Ocean City, then down to the Bay Bridge and back up the Bay to Rock Hall..Took 3 or 4 days as I remember..great learning experience
They did it on an Island Packet 40 with an experienced Captain along for guidance.
Might be something to consider as a warm up
--Reuben
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Old 06-03-2021, 11:35   #9
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Like RMEZ, I too enjoyed the Maryland School of Sailing "Del-Marva Circumnavigation" trip. In fact, I enjoyed every moment of it. I'm remembering a 7 day trip./ Captain Stephen Runals was EXECELENT!!!. I specifically took this trip because a Del-Marva circumnavigation is in my future. The information passed on to the crew is invaluable. I have returned to the Maryland School of Sailing for their docking class, also excellent and this summer, the Admiral wants to take a few classes there too. Good luck and don't wait another year, do it NOW!!!
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Old 06-03-2021, 12:00   #10
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

I am planning a delmarva loop myself. My plan as of now is mid may to mid june this year. Just watching for a good weather window. I'm planning on a clockwise track leaving out from anchorage marina in baltimore.
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Old 06-03-2021, 12:08   #11
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

remember the current in Delaware Bay. You need to plan your departure accordingly. We left a marina in mid-C&D canal about 3am to catch the favorable out going current. It was well worth the early wake up time.
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Old 06-03-2021, 12:11   #12
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Salty Dawgs also do a rally which is late May. https://sdsa.memberclicks.net/delmarva-rally
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Old 06-03-2021, 13:45   #13
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

I am planning this voyage as well. However, this year will be my training year and in 2022 actually sailing the DELMARVA loop.

Those rallies look like an interesting approach. I'll check more into those.

What are the pros/cons of CW and CCW?
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Old 06-03-2021, 13:57   #14
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Join AGLCA and ask in their forum. Many members and several Harbor Hosts in the region.




Quote:
Originally Posted by Fishzine View Post
I am working on planning my first real sailboat 'trip' for the upcoming season. Boat, a Columbia 36, which is kept in Sparrows Point just outside of Baltimore. I am looking for something around a week or two roundtrip before being back at my home dock.

My current thinking is starting from her home port and making my way over to the Delaware Cape Henlopen. Then an off-shore run out probably 70-120 miles out before turning south and running along the deep water at the drop off (and hopefully pulling in a fish or two.) before heading back into Chesapeake around Virginia Beach. Then spending rest of time exploring the lower bay area, before making the run back to home dock.

The Columbia 36 is new to me and thinking of spending first bit of season shaking her down in the Upper Chesapeake getting her ready. So maybe setting off late summer? Maybe early to mid August?

Looking for some opinions? Would be my first open ocean passage and thinking that could be a good first one. Planning is going to be tricky, and want to pick I time that has good chance of having acceptable weather window for the ocean portion. Best time to make that trip from Delaware Bay down to the Chesapeake?

Brian.
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Old 06-03-2021, 14:37   #15
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Re: Loop Delaware and Chesapeake Bay

Quote:
Originally Posted by Dr. D View Post
I am planning this voyage as well. However, this year will be my training year and in 2022 actually sailing the DELMARVA loop.

Those rallies look like an interesting approach. I'll check more into those.

What are the pros/cons of CW and CCW?
This is my training year as well, Just got the boat last fall and only motored it up from Annapollis before she went on hard this winter. That is why I am looking towards the second half of the season. This spring and early summer I will be shaking down the boat and getting my skills up. So assuming all goes well with that hoping for the late summer/early fall to be ready. Will see....

I am not sure of the pro/cons of CW vs CCW route options. The CW route (down the delaware) is with where boat is I can be in ocean within a day. If weather window looks good, then I will go with that. If weather window needs some more time I will slowly make my way down the Chesapeake buying me a couple days to a week searching for better window for ocean portion. I figure with going out 100 miles I am probably looking at up to three days for the ocean portion. But that with perfect weather window, if I have a shorter window I can always stay closer to shore and then ocean cross should be much closer to 24 hours. One of the ways I am trying to build as much flexibility into this. That said I am very interested in suggesting on which route is best. Particular if I am getting that far off shore that I am likely getting into the Gulf Stream influencing options

Also need to dig more into weather tendencies in that time frame to see when I actually want to schedule this.
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