After our mishap around Annapolis, we were successfully back underway at 9 AM on Saturday, June 22. We quickly realized how busy a harbor Annapolis is on a sunny weekend day as boats were emerging from every direction as we exited the creek where we had been at the marina. Our plan was to head north with the hope to time things so we could traverse the Chesapeake and Delaware (C&D) Canal with favorable current. It was a fantastic day and while the winds weren’t always in our favor, we were able to do some great motor sailing. We entered the C&D canal as the current was switching, and as the sun was setting. Light lined the side of the narrow canal and the lack of boat traffic allowed for an almost spooky passage. Our only company along the canal were 3 tugs with barges and travel was a little exciting as we passed the massive boats. In our planning, we found traveling down the Delaware Bay can be a bit dicey based on the current flows and tides. There was an anchorage just south of the exit from the canal and found we would be getting there as currents were slowing. We were in unfamiliar territory, it was a dark night, and getting into the anchorage involved locating a tiny channel through a long breakwater. Stress levels were a little high but we were able to get in and anchor around 10:30 PM. After taking a moment to decompress from the long day, we headed to bed, knowing to catch the current going south in the morning, our day needed to start around 5 AM.
We woke up on Sunday June 23rd to the sunrise behind a nuclear cooling tower in NJ and could actually see the breakwater we had passed through the night before. Our trek south down the Delaware River and Bay was relatively uneventful, though we did have to motor due to the lack of wind. After anchoring off the beach in Lewes, DE, we took the dinghy to Lewes Yacht Club – the girls needed some pool time and we were able to use reciprocity with our Fishing Bay Yacht Club membership. Lewes is a special place to me as I attended graduate school here from 2000 – 2003. My advisor, Dr. John Boyer, is an avid sailor and he still lives in Lewes. I had reached out to him and his wife Jean and we made plans to meet them for dinner in downtown Lewes that evening. It was so good to catch up with them and they really enjoyed hearing about our plans for our sailing adventure. On our dinghy ride back to Beyzano, we stopped by the Boyer’s boat so John could show Mark a retrofit he had made to keep the diesel tank dry. While we were really enjoying visiting with John and Jean, we had to end or visit so we could get back to the boat before dark. Lewes has undergone some major development since I was last in town in 2005 for my defense. We were only right in the downtown portion, but apparently the growth is more obvious as you venture out of town. It’s still a unique little town with everything you need in walking distance – I was able to walk with Mollie to the Rite Aid in town to pick up ear drops for Abby’s swimmers ear (thanks Mike Coggin for the medical help!!). We will definitely stop in Lewes again and plan to spend more time exploring the next time we come.