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BCYC CRUISE TO THE SOUTHERN BAY II

Here are the blog entries of those members who went on the second Southern Bay Cruise. Sept 6 2014 thru Sept. 23, 2014.  Please feel free to comments to the entries.

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  • 24 Sep 2014 4:47 PM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    On Saturday Sept. 20, the rafts broke up early and everyone headed out for the long trip to Solomons Island.  The weather was nice but the wind was on the nose so everyone motored the whole way.  We arrived at Solomons around 15:30 to find the harbor awash in boats due the docking contest being held there that afternoon.  Our usual stop at the Solomon's Island Y.C. was unavailable so Sailmar, Harmony and Magic took slips at Zahnisers Marina just up the creek from the harbor.   Quaich and Sangeria decided to anchor in Mill Creek.  Dinner tonight was on our own and it was most pleasant just to relax and watch the sunset.

    Sunday Sept. 21,  brought 25 knot winds from the north and 3 to 5 foot seas.  Everyone but Sangeria decided to stay here another day.  Even the intrepid Sangeria, after several hours of bashing through the seas, decided to take a break and made side trip to Oxford rather the go all the way back to Kent Narrows.  The rest of us walked the town, went to the upgraded Maritime Museum and just rested. That evening Pat and I decided to have dinner at Zahnisers Dingy Dry Dock restaurant.  We were pleasantly surprised at the high quality and very reasonably prices.  We will come back here.

    Monday Sept. 22, dawned bright and clear with winds from the north at 10 to 15 knots and 2 foot seas.  All of us decided that it was time to head for home.  As the day went on the winds and seas abated and we all enjoyed very nice traveling conditions.  We arrived at our dock in Crab Creek at 16:00 and were greeted by Wally and Molly Stone.  This was a very nice welcome home.

    When we look back on this cruise, we can say that the weather was mostly good.  The food that the group prepared was very good, the grog excellent and the company of 20 cruising Back Yackers simply wonderful.  I cannot think of a nicer way to spend a couple of weeks in September on the Chesapeake Bay than cruising to different and out of the way places in the company of our fellow BCYC members.  We look forward to joining another voyage next September.


  • 20 Sep 2014 9:05 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Mon. Sept 15, 2014:  Another power boater’s day; flat seas, little wind, and temperature in the mid-seventies.  The fleet headed north to Indian Creek, a winding water way, just off of Fleets Bay.  To save you the trouble of looking up Fleets Bay, know that it is located just north and west of the Rappahannock’s Windmill Point.  We arrived around 15:00 and rafted up in 10ft of water. What a beautiful place!  High banks on both sides topped with beautiful modern homes lining the creek.  Boats are tied up at almost every dock.  With clear water and abundant wild life, it does not get much nicer than this. After getting settled, Richard and Michelle Sanger, Pat and I climbed into a dinghy and explored the creek.  Along the way we found a small marina right next to a corn processing plant.  They offered the use of a car for transients who docked there to make the short drive into the nearby town of Kilmarnock but since we did not qualify, we decided to try and find a water based way into the town.  We explored the creek until the water ran out but we had no luck.  On the way back we stopped at a dock on a vacant lot and walked thru a field to the road. After a mile walk, we gave up, went back to the dinghy and returned to the raft. Good decision since it was 5:00 somewhere! Kilmarnock will just have to wait.

    When we returned, John and Jo on Harmony, had joined the raft having just arrived after a long motor from Yorktown.  Happy Hour ensued followed by grilling of meats by Richard on his boat and more than a few drinks, we all went to bed.  Tomorrow would be an early day as Ben and Candy Wilson were leaving a 07:00 for home.  We all wished them a safe trip home.

    Tue, Sept. 16, 2014:  The fleet, now consisting of Sangeria, Sailmar, Magic, Harmony, Quaich, Keystone, and Mary Jane, left the Indian River at 10:00 and made its way in calm seas and light winds to the Rappahannock River.  We traveled under the 110ft high Norris bridge and past Carter Creek on our way to the small Virginia town of Urbanna, whose name, roughly translated from the local dialect, means City of Ann. The approach channel here is a little narrow with some shoaling but even at low tide everyone made it safely to their slips at the Urbanna Town Marina by 14:00.  This marina is a county run facility and offers 15 slips right on the creek.  The staff is friendly, they have nice clean heads, washers and dryers, picnic tables and the town is a 10 minute walk.  After getting settled, most folks went for a quick walk to survey the town which, because it was Tuesday, was mostly closed. After a happy hour on the dock with two couples who keep their boats here, we retired to our boats to fix dinner and to get a good night’s sleep with a cool breeze blowing from the west.

    Wed, Sept. 17, 2014:  The Captains decided to stay in Urbanna for another day.  The weather was sunny and cool and a walk back into town for lunch seemed in order.  A number of cruisers including the Sangers, Bernharts, Kranzers, Bidnicks, and Westbrook Murphy, went to the Chesapeake Bay Oyster Co. for lunch.  This is a unique casual restaurant open only from 11:00 to 14:00.  But they are all about the local bi-valve.  There you can have oysters just about any way you can think of as well as great hush puppies and other fresh seafood.   They are also in the business of promoting local oyster farming and sell equipment and spat up and down the east coast.  One of the sales persons spent 45 minutes explaining the oyster farming process as well as some of the politics surrounding the farming of oysters on the Chesapeake. All in all a very unique experience.

    After lunch we strolled around the town which unlike yesterday was mostly open, we went to the ABC store (more rum for Wally’s grog was needed) the IGA grocery store for a few things and returned to our boats for a nap and to await happy hour.  For dinner the group decided to go back into town to “Something Different” Restaurant recommended by Brenda Ripley.  Their motto “meet, fire, good” just about says it all.  We had some of the best smoked beef and pork I have ever had.  They also sell super deserts and locally roasted coffee that is wonderful.  If you are ever in Urbanna, and are not a vegetarian, I would highly recommend this local eating place.  After dinner, back to the boats to enjoy the cool evening.

    Thur. Sept. 18, 2014:  Another beautiful day for the fleet to make the long and arduous journey to the Tides Inn located on Carter Creek about 8 miles from Urbanna. We arrived around noon and with the help of two friendly dock hands settled in quickly to enjoy the delights of probably the most luxurious boating destination on the Chesapeake Bay.  We were joined here by Brenda and Ray, JJ and Juliana, and the John and Pam and Debra and Henry.  After lunch, some of our crew went to the pool, others tried one of the new standup paddle boards (SUPs), some enjoyed the sit down paddle boat, and some toured the Inn. We all came back together at 17:30 for drinks on the dock.  Today was Terry and Jeanie Bidnick’s anniversary so we celebrated with a song, toast, and a Tides Inn souvenir card.  While they went off to dine in the lap of luxury, the rest of us had small plates around the fire pits on the patio and enjoyed the cool evening.  Most were on their bunks by 22:30.

    Fri. Sept 19, 2014:  Today we bid farewell to Wally and Molly Stone and Westbrook Murphy who left today on Mary Jane for home.  We wish them a safe journey.  The weather over the last few days has been so boring.  Blue skies, moderate temperatures, light winds and cool nights just don’t provide very much drama.  Today was the same, and the crews took advantage of a great breakfast provided gratis by the Tides Inn to start the day.  If you haven’t had the local delicacy of scrambled eggs, fried oysters, buttermilk biscuits and sausage gravy, you have missed a great southern tradition.  After a suitable recovery period, most of the crews went to the local Steamboat museum.  We enjoyed a private tour organized by Brenda Ripley.  They have some wonderful steamboat models representing some of the more than 200 passenger and freight carrying boats that plied the bay from the 1870 to 1937.  Shopping and lunch in nearby Irvington followed.  Not too much going on here but it gave everyone a chance to work off a little of the huge breakfast.  A few of us took bicycles provided by the Tides Inn and visited the Dog and Oyster winery not far away.  The wine is expensive and not all that good but the trip was pleasant.  Tonight everyone is going to dinner at the inn.  The food is good but not at the same level as last year. The prices are higher and the wine is ridiculously priced. After dinner we gathered around a fire and sang a few songs and chatted.  We all agreed that is was a very relaxed evening.  Tomorrow we have a short trip to the Great Wicomico for our last raft up. 

  • 15 Sep 2014 9:09 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Sun. Sept 14, 2014.  Sunday dawned bright and cool with winds from the North.  Since this was another lay day, we slept late and had mimosas, bloody mary’s, quiche, hash browns, fruit salad on Quaiche 09:15.  We were joined, around 11:00, by John Campbell BCYC’s first commodore and his wife Carol, who live in Onancock a small eastern shore town about 25 miles away.  They provided us with local information as well as transportation to local sights throughout the day. Their kind hospitality is very much appreciated.  During the day some of us walked into town, worked on outboards that would not start, did laundry, and just enjoyed the leisurely day.  Tonight we dined at The Shanty a restaurant located on the marina grounds.  The food was quite good in a casual style.

  • 15 Sep 2014 9:08 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Sat. Sept 13, 2014.  Today it was on to Cape Charles in calm winds, bright skies and flat seas.  In short, a power boater’s dream.  We motored uneventfully along for 25 miles to Cape Charles Town Harbor.  The route leads across the bay in view of the Chesapeake Bay Bridge Tunnel and up a twisting but surprisingly wide channel to a huge marina with floating docks and 60 ft. slips.  We arrived around 13:00 and spent the afternoon checking out the town including a lovely little wine shop.   Dinner was at Kelly’ Ginger Nut, a pub in an old bank building.  The food was good, the prices high and the air conditioning broken.  We all agreed that we have dined on better fair in more comfortable surroundings on most of this trip.  Over the evening it rained and the wind picked up making for a somewhat roily night in our slips.

  • 15 Sep 2014 9:05 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Fri. Sept 12, 2014.  The group spent the day resting at the Mathews Y.C.  Six days of partying and boating does take its toll, you know.  Some of us worked on boat projects while Brenda and Ray took others to museums, stores, cafes, and oyster houses throughout the day.  In the evening, MYC held a Friday night buffet of mixed Italian and seafood fare.  Everything was good and the desserts were outstanding.  We treated Brenda and Ray to dinner and gave them each a Vagabond Cruise shirt.  This is a great club to visit and its member’s hospitality is very much appreciated.

  • 15 Sep 2014 8:59 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Wed. Sept 10, 2014.  The weather was mixed clouds and sun with 15kn. out of the South.  The trip to Antipoison Creek was uneventful except that one of our boats ran aground near some fish traps.  They had hardly realized their predicament when a local waterman, gourmet chef, and former restaurateur, came by in his boat and pulled them off of the sand bank.  At the raft-up later that evening, the same waterman stopped by and wanted to speak to the captain of the boat he had rescued.  We invited him to join us in the cockpit of Sailmar, a Benateau 50, and he partied with the group of 20 for a couple of hours.  As he was about to leave, we presented him with a BCYC cook book, signed by all of the cruisers, and wished him well.  It never ceases to amaze me who you will meet on the bay.

    Thurs Sept. 11, 2015  Early this morning the raft was rocked by several fisherman roaring through the anchorage leaving big wakes.  This unwelcome gesture seemed to have been done almost on purpose.  A little later our friend Dave motored by and waved as if to say "sorry about that".

    We all left early to make the short trip to the Mathews Yacht Club on Stutts Creek.  This is always a nice trip through the swing bridge at Gwynns Island on to Milford Haven and up the meandering creeks that lead to our destination.  We were welcomed at the club by Brenda Ripley and Ray Blake long distance BCYC members who live nearby in a beautiful home on the shore of the Mobjack Bay. They were great hosts.  They carried us around to stores, got boat parts for us and invited us to a wonderful swim party at their home.  Everyone had a wonderful time and went to bed late.

    Thurs. Sept 11, 2014,  The next morning the raft was awakened by several watermen roaring by in their boats.  Their wakes gave the raft a good shaking that resulted in minor damage to some gear.  tA bit later our friend came by slowly and waved as if to say, “sorry about them” .

    We left around 08:00 and proceeded to motor to the Mathews Y.C. on Stutts Creek near Gwynns Island.  Mathews Y.C. is very near the home of club members Brenda Ripley and Ray Blake.  These long distance members not only offered us transportation to stores for provisions, boat parts and fuel but also opened their beautiful home, situated on the banks of Mobjack Bay, to us for a swim and a great party.  We cannot thank them enough for their wonderful hospitality.

     





    Thurs. Sept 11, 2014,  The next morning the raft was awakened by several watermen roaring by in their boats.  Their wakes gave the raft a good shaking that resulted in minor damage to some gear.  tA bit later our friend came by slowly and waved as if to say, “sorry about them” .

    We left around 08:00 and proceeded to motor to the Mathews Y.C. on Stutts Creek near Gwynns Island.  Mathews Y.C. is very near the home of club members Brenda Ripley and Ray Blake.  These long distance members not only offered us transportation to stores for provisions, boat parts and fuel but also opened their beautiful home, situated on the banks of Mobjack Bay, to us for a swim and a great party.  We cannot thank them enough for their wonderful hospitality.

     


  • 15 Sep 2014 8:58 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Tue. Sept. 9, 2014.  Overnight the forecast changed.  At 07:00, the fleet captain rousted out the crews and by 8:00 we were on our way to the Corinthian Yacht Club on Smith Creek at the mouth of the Potomac.  Leaving Solomons was a bit of a challenge with adverse winds and current but finally everyone was on the way.  The weather was overcast with winds form the NE.  The mouth of the Potomac was predictably bouncy but the rest of the trip was uneventful.  The Corinthian Y.C., a discovery by Tom and Pat Bernhart last year, was a great place to tie up.  Chuck and Ron welcomed us to the facility and gave us the run of the property.  We cooked on their grills used their commercial kitchen for food prep, and ate outside at picnic tables.  After dinner we watched “Captain Ron” on the club’s big flat screen TV.  All in all a wonderful evening.

  • 15 Sep 2014 8:56 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Mon. Sept 8, 2014.  The weather forecast for today was for rain and wind, so the fleet decided to stay an extra day in Solomons.  The guys worked on their boats and, what else, the girls went shopping.  The weather was a little damp but by dinner time the rain had stopped.  Dinner was a potluck cookout on the club’s grills.  The forecast for Wednesday was worse than the one for today.  The fleet captain decided that the fleet would stay another day at SIYC.

  • 15 Sep 2014 8:54 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    Sun. Sept 7, 2014.  Magic, Sangeria, Mary Jane, Keystone, New Wave and Sail Mar traveled down the bay in windy but beautiful conditions to the Solomons Island Y.C. where we were welcomed by Al the dock master and other SIYC members.  We had stayed there the year before and they were glad that we had returned.  Quaich dingyed over from their anchorage on Mill Creek to SIYC to provide assistance to all incoming boats.  All enjoyed the hospitality of SIYC.  Dinner was at the Light House restaurant nearby.  Since it was a 45 mile day everyone went to bed early.

  • 14 Sep 2014 9:50 AM | Tom Bernhart (Administrator)

    06 Sep 2014 8:08 PM | Michelle Sanger

    Kind of like Woodstock, no, Boatstock.  Great music, fireworks in distance.  Over 80 boats many rafted now waiting for thunderboomers (all around us) to hit.  Batting down hatches and hoping for the best. BCYC well represented with 7 boats.   Solomons tomorrow is the plan. Check out the video and photos on Flickr. (follow the home page link)

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