Experiences in The Chesapeake (Deltaville & Reedville) 9-15th June 2011

Wed 15 Jun 2011 22:28
Our first stop up the Chesapeake was Deltaville.  We had made provisions to be lifted out at the Deltaville Boatyard , whilst we returned to the UK in September, but we wanted to ‘recky’ the place beforehand.
The entrance to Jackson Creek in Deltaville was somewhat tricky (something like the Beaulieu River entrance ), as it was really shallow and we ended up bumping our 7ft draft over the mud near one of the green markers in the approach channel.  Anyway we managed to find a good anchorage along with Scott Free and Loon and this was to be our last night all together, as Sarah and Kenny were leaving the next day.


More US Naval Ships in the Elizabeth River as we headed towards The Chesapeake


During our stop in Deltaville, we didn’t fully agree with the boatyard’s  motto “If you love your Boat, you’ll love our yard!” and we were not too happy with being hauled out there.  Kenny had already suggested there was a very good boatyard near Annapolis, which he had been to with Loon. 


Deltaville Boatyard

Provided we pay $11 each per day, we did have use of the facilities and the loan (for an hour) of boatyard’s 4x4.  We rode into town with Chris and Steve and noticed the devastation caused by a recent tornado, which ripped down the Main St and cut the Town Hall in half.  Fortunately, no one was killed or hurt.


Deltaville Town Hall – ‘cut in two’ by the tornado


We enjoyed a lovely BBQ cooked by Steve and Chris on our last night at Deltaville.  Scott Free was to remain in Deltaville for a few days, waiting for some work to be completed before making the trip to Washington DC.


Grilled aubergines for starters!

Once we were out of the entrance we were hit by very strong headwinds and in fact the conditions were so rough that we ended up turning back to Deltaville and to make matters worse we grounded in the buoyed channel. Michael, gently persuaded Nimue off the mud and then dropped the anchor outside the channel until the wind had subsided a little.  We waited a further 4 hours before departing for the second time, but even in 15 knots of NW wind, the seas were still kicking up.  Anyway we managed to successfully reach Reedville, about 30 nm north before dark and found a beautiful spot to anchor in Cockrell Creek, opposite the Crazy Crab restaurant. 


The buoyed channel at Jackson Creek, Deltaville


The ‘angry’ sea conditions we incurred out of Deltaville


Arriving into the picturesque Reedville


The Crazy Crab restaurant


Sunrise coming out of Reedville 

We left Reedville early the following morning for Herring Bay and to ‘recky’ the marina Kenny had recommended.  However, we were not expecting the same weather conditions as the day before, but soon found we were heading right back into strong 20 knot NW winds and the sea state was especially awful as we crossed the mouth of the Potomac River, leading up to Washington DC.  We later found out that the Chesapeake is a bit like the Solent on a bad day!  Due to it’s shallowness, the sea state builds up quickly into a sharp chop and the Potomac River entrance is renown in strong NW’lies.  Apart from getting wet and the odd wave coming into the cockpit, Nimue ploughed through the conditions and we were soon safely anchored in Herring Bay.


The conditions became worse just around the headland


Point Lookout Lighthouse