Galesville, MD to Lodge Creek, VA
Rhode Island to Florida - Day 12
We departed from Galesville, MD City Docks at 0720 hours and headed out just as the sun was rising… saw an orange ball as it broke over the horizon and from the looks of things that was the last time we were going to see the sun all day. Forecast was for 15-20 knot winds out of the north increasing to 20-25 late afternoon and as we left West River we had about 10 knot north winds… Seas were choppy but nothing to worry about... and we had an awesome boost from the ebb current making 7.5-8.5 knots.
Engine started right up… still a mystery as to why it did not want to start in Chesapeake City… anyway, we saw a few boats during the day… a sport fishing boa passed us first ting in the morning and a larger motor yacht passed mid morning… had a huge ship cross our bow near the Little Choptank River… still can’t get over the size of these ships no matter how many I see. The winds had already reached the 20 knot level by mid morning but were out of the northeast rather than the north so while we were in the narrow portion of the Chesapeake Bay above the Potomac River the waves were not bad… 2-3 foot with an occasional larger one… we were also close to the eastern shore and in it’s lee.
Early afternoon the winds picked up to steady 25 knots and with gusts to 35 knots… waves also increased to 4-5 feet… it was a flowing seas so it was not too bad but starting to get uncomfortable… just below the Patuxent River we started moving away from the eastern shore and the waves started to increase… soon we had 5-7 seas with some larger ones every few minutes… the ride was now definitely not what you enjoy… As we approached the mouth of the Potomac River it got really really rough… had a steady 8 foot wave hitting us on the port quarter… we were doing some surfing and rolling… it was 1500 hour and we had 2 hours +/- to go for our planned destination of Reedsville, VA and it appeared the conditions were worsening… then the Coast Guard came across the VHF with a PAN PAN… weather alert... for the area we were approaching… warning of gale force winds and gusts to 50 knots… all boats should immediately seek safe harbor… so that’s what we did… changed our destination to Olverson’s Lodge Creek Marina the MTOA Yacht Club located off the Potomac… it would be well protected from the weather and it’s a great place to stop… :)
We turned toward Point Lookout at the northern side of the mouth of the Potomac River and this eased the ride tremendously… the 10 foot + seas were directly on our stern and we surfed them towards Point Lookout… once around the point we would gradually move in to the lee of the northern shore of the Potomac… and gradually the waves subsided to 3-4 foot as we headed up the Potomac towards Olverson’s. With the turn we slowed as the current was against us but it was nothing horrible.
We left the Potomac and headed up the Yeocomico River that leads to Lodge Creek… at 1700 hours we were safely docked at Olverson’s Lodge Creek Marina. We traveled today for 9 hours and 40 minutes covering 70.03 nautical miles and averaging 7.24 knots.
Trip totals to date:
Distance: 504.65 nautical miles
Hours: 84 hours 16 minutes
Avg Spd: 5.99 knots
Days not moving: 2