Cast off 10 a.m. Somers Cove Marina, Crisfield, Md. Sails up and through the cut in a matter of minutes, experimenting with mounting the GoPro on the peak of the gaff. Out into the Little Annemessex and making 3.7 with clear skies and a pretty day. Waterman in a small skiff near the marsh cull their catch but can't tell if it is peeler crabs or oysters that they are sorting.
Make Long Point at 10:30 and open the Chesapeake Bay chart book to page 10, Tangier Sound. The faded and worn words on the map make me realize how many times I've opened the book to that page over the years. I need a new chart book. We tack to clear the channel with work boats coming from each direction. At green marker 7 light winds, ospreys on their nest on the nearby range tower, 2.6 kts. There is the hum of distant diesels on deadrises, the cries of the laughing gulls and the high-pitched whistle of the ospreys.
Just after 11:00 making 3.1 towards Island Point at the mouth of the river where it opens onto Tangier Sound. Tuna, crackers, mango fruit cup and raisins for lunch. Light wind over the shallows at the point, surprised that I don't touch bottom. There is a narrow white beach with rocks at the point and a flock of gulls nearby. Tangier Sound at 11:30, making our way through a field of crab pots.
With the fresh breeze, clear skies and open water ahead of me I remember why I sail. Noon, 3.1 with wind on the port beam. I put out the trolling line but too much eel grass in the water and the treble hooks quickly foul.
Early afternoon the north end of Martin National Wildlife Refuge at the north end of Smith Island is due west of us, and Solomon's Lump lighthouse marking Kedges Strait just north of that. The wind comes and goes, 1.3 kts. Ripples darken the water to our north, coming our way. Slow sailing, the mast creaks as SPARTINA struggles in the light wind. Under power, then a tease of wind. Just after 3 pm the afternoon breeze arrives out of the southwest. We're near the entrance marker to Rumbly, tacking back south to the entrance to Mine Creek.
Breeze picks up, 3.9 rounding Prickly Pear Point. Touching bottom, CB and rudder raised so slide over the shoals. Anchor down Mine Creek at 4:30. Surrounded by marsh I can see a few houses in the distance to the north. A nice evening breeze. Lamb fettuccine and a fruit cup for dinner.