Preparing for last Fall's sail on Tangier Sound I sent an application form and check to Somers Cove Marina for a year round pass to their boat ramp. I did not need the pass for a year's use of the ramp, only a week's use. But it is an excellent ramp with a safe secure parking area, well worth the $35.00.
A few weeks later I noticed I had not yet received my pass in the mail. I called the marina office, they said they had no record of receiving the check and application. The check had not cleared my account, so no problem. I would simply buy a pass in person when I arrived at the ramp.
The day before leaving on the Fall trip I received an envelope from Somers Cove with a 2011 pass and a letter. My check and application had been found, according to an administrative assistant, tucked away in the office safe. To make up for the inconvenience, of which there was none on my part, they were also sending me a 2012 pass, free of charge. I think I will use it.
Work and family schedules are starting to come into focus for 2012, which means the sailing plans are starting to fill in too. For a Spring walkabout trip - a four or five day trip - I might well use the free Somers Cove pass and return to Tangier Sound. Somers Cove Marina, located in Crisfield, Md., offers easy access to some of my favorite sailing areas. Tangier Island, Smith Island, Deal Island, South Marsh Island are all within easy reach. I have visited them all before, but there is always more to see. Plus the fishing ought to be fairly decent in early May. That's me, above, a photograph Bruce shot as we rigged Spartina in the parking lot at Somers Cove on Day One of the Crab House 150.
I've been wanting to get back to Cape Lookout ever since Bruce, Paul, Dawn and I visited it in June of 2010 on Days 5 and 6 of the Tag Team trip. It was a beautiful area lined by the white sand of Cape Lookout Bight with warm clear water. It felt very tropical, very much "out there". On our last trip we arrived at the bight midday after a sail down Core Sound, then left early the next day bound for Beaufort. It was too short of a stay. I would not mind going back and spending a day or two down there. And maybe that is what I will do for the Spring trip, an eight or nine day trip maybe out of Hobucken down the ICW to Beaufort, over to Cape Lookout and then up Core Sound to Cedar Island or maybe Ocrocoke.
I am not sure of Bruce's schedule. He may join me, or this could be a solo trip. We'll see. But I have mention to Paul and Dawn the idea of crossing paths with them at Cape Lookout, it would be great to see the cat ketch rig of Dawn Patrol coming through Barden Inlet.
As for Fall, Bruce and I had a good discussion about our trip over the top of the Delmarva Peninsula. We agreed on a starting place of Rock Hall (MaryLou, we've got some questions for you) with a goal of reaching Ocean City. And we also both leaned towards a sail down the Jersey coast of Delaware Bay with a visit to Cape May thrown in. There is much more to do in the way of research, but that is what winter is for.
Those are the plans, or at least the thoughts for plans, right now. It gives me something to look forward to as sit in my kitchen and listen to the wind and rain of a coming cold front.