The waiting and anticipation finally came to an end. We picked up a rented cargo van and loaded it with everything we thought we might need, and could fit into it. We attempted a minimalist approach, which applied to clothing, food,and galley needs, but not safety equipment or tools.
We began our third drive to Maryland, one to view the boat, second for the survey and sea trial, and this third one to bring it home to Connecticut. Back over the George Washington Bridge in New York and down the Jersey Turnpike.
By 1:30 pm on Saturday, we had arrived at Piney Narrows Marina on Kent Island where Unfunded Requirement sat waiting for us. I did not take photos of either Saturday or Sunday because all we did was unload, clean, and unpack for hours and hours. With the emphasis on clean. We also filled a dumpster with things abandoned on the boat by the previous owners. It became more and more obvious that this boat had not seen real attention in several years. Somebody lost interest. Poor thing. Looks like another rescue job for us.
It was now time to start the journey home and step into “trawlerhood.” Monday morning we pulled out of the slip and stopped at the fuel dock. Our first moments on the “dark side” brought that inevitable, and expected, sticker shock at the pump. 120 gallons of fuel added to the 300 gallon capacity tanks. Our little tank on the Morgan only held 50 gallons.
That first day was a long rough ride – strong winds (20 -25 knots) and seas of 4 feet. We both discussed reefing before setting out into the Chesapeake Bay. OOPS! Wait a minute, we don’t have sails to reef anymore! Old habits die hard. We took a lot of spray over the bow and even up to the flybridge. What a baptism into “trawlerhood.”
We arrived at Chesapeake City at the western end of the Chesapeake & Delaware Canal at 4:30 pm. Hooray –There is a spot at the end of the free town dock and Al maneuvers the boat into it. Two fine docking jobs in one day!
Our reward for the long rough ride was a visit from Alicia, Aaron, and Ella!!! What a nice way to spend the evening. We introduced the grandchildren to the new boat.
Day 2 of the trip home begins with the trip through the C&D Canal and down the Delaware Bay. It was a much calmer day, both the waves and the winds had died down. The air was cool and dry, and the skies were a little overcast.
The Delaware Bay is looong and not very scenic. It just isn’t.
While I was at the bridge helm, Al investigated the anchor lines and windlass in preparation or anchoring in Cape May Harbor for the night. Hmmmm…..
This time we can go through the Cape May Canal instead of around the tip of southern New Jersey. With the sailboat we didn’t dare try that. The bridge clearance is 58 feet and our mast was 59 feet. The Cape May Canal is man-made, 12 feet deep by about 100 feet wide, and was built by the Army Corps of Engineers during World War II. This was done so that maritime traffic wasn’t exposed to German U-Boats that may have been patrolling near the coast. Today, for pleasure craft and smaller fishing boats, it makes a shorter and more protected run from the ocean to the Delaware Bay, avoiding “the rips” off of Cape May Point.
Our second day ended with our first anchoring experience in a trawler. It was successful, and we slept peacefully in the Cape May Harbor for the night.