We are again under way in the Chesapeake, headed north to Annapolis, Maryland. With five hours of open water on an unchanging heading, this is an excellent opportunity to get a post up, at least here in the middle where the traffic is light.
Cove Point light, as we passed earlier today.
We had a nice calm night in Solomons, where we anchored in Back Creek, right in the thick of things (map). That's in contrast to our last visit, where we were concerned it might be too crowded or busy there, and so we had anchored around the corner in Mill Creek.
I dropped the hook in a spot where I thought we'd be out of the way and not in the traffic pattern, but subjectively it felt just barely so. That did not stop three other boats from anchoring even closer to the main part of the channel after us. We were on a short leash; I could clearly hear conversations on other nearby boats in the quiet of the evening. Coincidentally, it was on our last visit here that I did my write-up on where and how we anchor.
Vector at anchor in Back Creek, as seen from our dinner table.
We splashed the tender as soon as we were settled and rode the very short distance over to the Back Creek Bistro for dinner. We shared a prime rib, which was quite good, but the service was lackluster. We had remembered the place more fondly from our last visit.
The best shot I could get of last night's moon over the harbor with my cell phone.
Today being the start of the holiday weekend, we awoke to considerable boat traffic in the harbor. Tidal current dictated that we wait until at least 10 to depart, so the first wave was done by the time we weighed anchor, and we had an uneventful exit, but there were plenty of boats out on the Patuxent, mostly fishing. Rounding Drum Point was the usual crab-pot slalom, but those have been behind us since hitting the deeper water of the bay.
Although I expect it to be much worse tomorrow, the chaos of amateur hour out on the water has already begun. Today we heard distress calls about a vessel on fire, and a disabled vessel that was so hard to find they sent a State Police helicopter. And the DSC distress alert has sounded twice, from the same vessel both times but with no position, nature of distress, or other information, likely the result of someone playing with their brand new radio.
We'll be arriving in Annapolis just as the locals are returning from their day on the water, and I have my fingers crossed that we'll have an uneventful arrival. I don't think the real confusion will start until late tomorrow afternoon, as hundreds of boats jockey for position to watch the fireworks. We went through this last year in Norfolk, and having already been well settled-in, for us it was just another part of the evening's entertainment.