To Baltimore - don't mention the war (of 1812)

Martin and Elizabeth Bevan
Tue 7 Jun 2011 21:00

Position           39:16.99N 076:36.53W

Date                2200 – Tuesday 7 June 2011 (UTC -4)


Alice having been given duff gen about the Cruising Permit required for visiting yachts it was necessary for them to visit the main Customs Office at Baltimore to obtain one.  We therefore made an early, 0700, start for the 36 miles so that we could arrive during office hours.


Reluctantly we edged our way out of Crab Creek; a truly delightful spot.  Our host, Wolfgang’s house is in the trees behind the two yachts on his dock.



With very little wind it was a motor sail but for the first time for ages we had the tide with us as we passed around the Thomas Shoal Lighthouse, between the South River, Crab Creek, and the Severn River that the city of Annapolis stands on.



The Chesapeake being such a major obstacle to land transport there are huge bridges over the various tributary rivers and over the Bay itself.  This is the William P Lane Jr Bridges (plural) just north of Annapolis joining the west and east shores.



Baltimore lies on the Patapasco River and is one of the USA’s major sea ports, despite being some 250nm up the creek.  The approach to the older part and centre of the city is past Fort McHenry the site of one of the last major engagements of the war of 1812.



Whilst the war of 1812 tends to be largely overlooked in British History as we lost it; possibly due to the activities of the Napoleonic War in Europe we were looking the other way, it features very loud and large here and forms an important part of the Country’s very proud heritage.  The War essentially was the new USA flexing its muscles and telling Great Britain that it took a dim view of paying taxes and having its merchant fleet harassed and its seamen pressed when encountered at sea.  We intend to go and be on the receiving end of another dose of “The War” tomorrow with a visit to Fort.


Leaving Fort McHenry to Port we passed on and eventually reach the Cul de Sac of the Inner Harbour, right in the heart of the city.  Whilst there are many marinas we had been told that we could anchor in the Inner Harbour and that was what we did as the only yachts there.



Alice and Caduceus anchored in the Inner Harbour next to the USS Torsk submarine exhibition and the Aquarium Building.



Compare this evening’s view with the morning view in Crab Creek.  This cruising business can certainly be varied.


We accompanied Andrew and Celia to the Customs House, a short walk from the harbour and with a great deal of faffing about a Cruising Permit was produced.  This minor success was celebrated with the odd beer, Happy Hour price $3 for a 2 pint glass, and a very decent dinner at an Italian Restaurant well away from the tourist traps that surround the Inner Harbour.