Thursday, November 25, 2021

day thirteen - rum and coke, and good company

Checking Instagram I see Kristen has posted a message from Dun Cove off the Choptank saying she is waiting from the small craft warning winds that are forecast.  I message her asking where she is headed today.  Her plans match mine.  Sail off anchor 7:40 with a low overcast, making 3.9 outside of Mine Cove.  8:10 crossing the mouth of the Manokin River, 4.6.  Deal Island in sight 8:30, 4.8 as the wind builds.

Round up in the lee of Little Deal Island at 9:00 to tuck in a reef.  Setting the main I'm suddenly surrounded by dolphins.  They brighten the morning for me.  I don't know how many there are, maybe five or six, maybe more.  The stay with SPARTINA for about 10 minutes, 5.2 with the single reefed main, jib and mizzen.  Barge and tug ahead off starboard bow, I fall off to give them more room.  Overcast starting to break up.  Barge and tug head to the east, plenty of room to sail now.  

Approaching lower end of Bloodsworth Island doing 5.0, fall off to cross Hooper Strait and round Lower Hooper Island, 4.7 kts.  A little blue sky showing in the overcast. 

 Noon off the southern point of Lower Hooper Island, starting to cross Chesapeake Bay heading NW.  

Spot a freighter of some kind coming from the south heading up the shipping channel.  Passing Hooper Island Light at 12:50, 5.0, freighter from the south passes well ahead of us.  See a second freighter, this one to the north coming down the channel.  Choppy water in the shipping channel at 1:20, 4.5 in the rough water.   Second ship passes well ahead.

Pushed by a wave gps shows 6.7 as we approach the western shore.  Get a text from Kristen, she is at Drum Point entering the Patuxent River.  I reply that I'm still a few miles to the west.  Leaving the shipping channel at 2:00, green marker with a bell ringing as it pitches back and forth in the swell.

Cedar Point at 2:10, calmer water.  On the Patuxent River at 2:40, making 4.6 and get an invite from Kristen who is anchored on Mill Creek.

Pass under the bridge 3:15, 4.9 with both wind and tide in my favor, 6.6 in a puff.  

Round the narrow sand spit called Patience Point as water swirls with the incoming tide.  Enter Mill Creek at 3:40.

A handful of boats anchored on the creek, Kristen has the prime spot up near some wooded cliffs that completely bock the wind.  We tie SPARTINA up and let her drift behind Kristen's Cape Dory MAGDALENA.  I've crossed paths with Kristen a couple of times on the Bay and it is always a treat.  We talk about our day of sailing then break out a chart book and talk about other places we have sailed.

Kristen ducks in to the cabin and soon I hear sausage stir fry sizzling in the pan while I hop on SPARTINA to set up the boom tent for the night.

Kristen passes up a bottle of coke and a thermos with rum, we enjoy an excellent dinner on the beautiful creek as darkness falls.  Cast off to anchor just after 8:00.

 37.71 NM for the day

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