2009 Chesapeake Bay Cruise

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Course: ASA 104 Intermediate Coastal Cruising 
Date: May 12-16, 2009
Students: Emily Hattwick, Richard Evans
Captain: Terry Griggs

Destinations planned:
Day 1, Dividing Creek
Day 2, St. Michaels, and Annapolis
Day 3, Inner Harbor, Baltimore          
Day 4, Swan Creek, Rock Hall
Day 5, Langford Creek Marina; home base.

May 12:    
Orientation with students, review of all areas of the boat,
reviewed provisioning, sail itinerary/destinations. Set up jack lines. Obtained provisioning at the local Rock Hall market, and cast off at 1:00pm.

Destination was to Dividing Creek on the Wye River. Sailed on broad reach and runs down the Chester River to Kent Narrows entrance where we doused the sails and motored to the drawbridge.  Emily hailed the draw bridge tender on Channel 13 to give a heads up that we were approaching. Had students point boat towards the shore to observe the effects of the current on the boat. Upon reaching the Red #2 Nun buoy off Parsons Island we attempted to sail Wing and Wing to Wye entrance.  Pressure on sails was very light, so changed to a standard run.   Winds died, then motored to Dividing Creek.   While watching intensely the depth meter, we slowly motored past a few boats towards the end of Dividing Creek. Anchored boat in a very serene, quiet, and peaceful creek. Rich turned on the propane, and activated the solenoid switch/valve. He then cooked a great dinner, a Chicken breast and salad dish.  We later reviewed various pages/chapters in the Cruising instruction book.  

May 13:
Motored out to the Wye River entrance, and sailed to St. Michaels where we tied up at the Crab Claw restaurant. Rich docked stern to, in slip. As we were early, the students took advantage of the time and toured St. Michaels and we ate at the restaurant upon their return.  Left at 2:00 PM; motor sailed to Eastern Bay, as there was very light wind.  Upon rounding Tilghman Point, winds came up strong and we sailed down Eastern Bay past Bloody Point Light, and up to Annapolis.  Great sailing conditions.  Pretty day. While on way, students took bearings of various land points, and indicated dead reckoning positions. Reviewed running fix procedures and students took turns laying out on the charts. Also reviewed rules of the road as opportunities presented themselves, ship priorities, "new reels catch fish so purchase some", "Sixty D Street", etc.  Arrived in Annapolis at 7:00 PM. Emily docked bow to in slip at Town Dock.   Lot of wind.

May 14:
Prior to leaving for the day, went thrhrough and identified all engine components, oil and battery levels, workings of diesel engines vs. gas powered engines. Motored out of Annapolis Ego Alley @ 10:00 AM. Winds from SE at approx. 15-20 knots with gusts up to 30 knots.  Students reviewed weather forecasts for next day and decided to bypass Inner Harbor and opted to sail to Rock Hall.  Reviewed reefing methodologies, techniques, and ended up sailing w/ 2/3 jib out and no main sail. Put out the jib at Severn River entrance spider, and arrived at Rock Hall's Waterman's Crab House at 12:45.  A 2 hour and 45 minute sail. Boat speeds were 7.0 to 7.9 Knots. This elapsed time was from dock to dock! While sailing reviewed many areas of "Cruising" book. Reviewed buoy system, channels, separation zones, range lights, and arrival times at various buoys/points.  Looked at wave heights, frothing foam on waves, and related wind speeds to visual conditions.  Discussed following sea, sea anchors, situations requiring heaving to, etc. Very overcast.  Again, a great sailing day, but could have been warmer. Rich docked boat stern to at Waterman's. We tied up parallel with the finger pier, and allowed the winds to keep us well off the pier. We ate at Waterman's. In that winds were very strong out of the SE and that we would be anchoring in Swan Creek, not well protected from the very high SE winds forecast, I talked to the Manager and was allowed to dock overnight at no charge. No other boats were out in the area and their business was only from people driving to the restaurant.

May 15:
Students indicated their parents and children would be at a local bed and breakfast, and decided as it would be a long sail back to Langford Creek Marina the next day, opted for departing for home base a day early. We sailed most of way up the Chester River, and arrived at home base with very little winds. As we were early for the day, we practiced picking up mooring buoys, stern to buoys, and docking techniques.  Also had students control standing off a parallel dock and stopping to a given mark. After reviewing what occurred during the day, students thought they'd like the opportunity for more practice of  proper techniques of docking. Took tests this day.

Both students departed for the Bed and Breakfast and stayed with their family's overnight ashore.  Students off loaded most of their gear in preparation for an early start for home the next day.  

May 16:
Spent a good hour or two going over proper docking methods and techniques that are standard operating procedures for handling boats in and around docks, and students felt a lot more confident in their docking skills. We sailed up the Langford Creek, north fork to near the end with a lot of jibes and sail handling adjustments. Tacked back and forth with very good winds and again, with sail adjustments/techniques being reviewed. We pumped out the holding tank with the students each taking turns at proper handling of the equipment.  As we had odors from the head, we purged the holding tanks several times with fresh water, and finally pumped out. Tied up at the gas dock, and refilled the fuel tank.  Did a practice standing right turn from the gas docks and returned to the slip. With all gear off the boat we started to tend to clean up procedures when our instruction paper was blown out of the cockpit and into the "drink". We retrieved it with the boat hook, and went down the check off list, without penciling in the boxes on the dripping wet paper.  We then met at the Maryland School office where we took pictures of  the graduation ceremony.

Captain Terry Griggs

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