I've only been into Cape May once. The anchorage near the Coast Guard station is bigger than it looks on the chart -- but it's relatively between the channel and shallower water
. There is a bunch of current
, so don't get too close to other boats, depending on the current
and wind, you might make an acquaintance you didn't expect. :^)))
It's really a question of time: If you have too much vertical or underwater draft
to get under the bridge and out the western side of Cape May, then tucking in there takes some time, because to get back out to the buoy and then make it around to the proper channel into the Delaware Bay will take time. Also, once you're in there, you need to watch when you're leaving to time the entry into the "Mouth of the Bay" go head
If you want to hang-out, there are some marinas
(few with a lot of draft) -- but that time of year should work to your advantage, as long as there isn't a fishing
AS for the "Harbor of Refuge", it's very wide open. It does have protection from the sea if you position yourself. Certainly, if you're in a stormy situation with an easterly wind, it works. It's not all that deep. It really isn't anything but what it's name suggests.
If you're with the tide, and the wind isn't counter to it at more than a few knots, it's only 50 nm up to the C&D Canal
. The Delaware Bay is fine as long as you stay to the side of the Channel; and keep your eyes (and AIS/Radar on the traffic coming up your stern.) Use Channel 16 and 13. I've always found the traffic to be responsive and courteous. Stay to the side, you'll be fine. At the bends in the long runs, be mindful that the big traffic needs some "swing" room.