No, really we are ready to go. Almost. We certainly could have rushed and run out tomorrow morning, but as cruising sailors there is one thing we are not very good at: Rushing. So we postponed the last grocery trip until tomorrow, and took a deep breath. Other than the provisioning, we have to make a stop for diesel fuel, and we’ll be off!
Karen spent all day today, and most of the day yesterday, cleaning and prepping the outside of the boat. In the heat and humidity here, that was a real herculean effort. Not only hot and humid, but interspaced with short intervals of thunderstorms and hail.
While she was working topside in the weather, I was slaving away in the air-conditioned cabin working out the details of our navigation plan for the first couple of days of our voyage. I did feel guilty (a little), but it had to be done.
We will be dropping lines here mid-morning on Monday to catch the tide and ride it up the Chesapeake, and through the C&D Canal to the Delaware where we turn right, and head out to sea. The canal will save us almost 200 miles compared to sailing down the Chesapeake to the ocean. The long range weather forecast looks excellent for our trip north. We plan to land near Halifax as our first stop, about 450 miles from the mouth of the Delaware. That should take us between 3.5 and 5 days. Maybe longer–if we linger and catch some fish!
The route is straightforward, and gives us several options if we feel we need to wait out some unexpected weather. If we need to, we can pause at Cape May, NJ or Nantucket in Massachusetts–which is about the halfway point.
We are looking forward to the cooler weather, the sailing, and fishing the offshore canyons, the shoals around Nantucket, and one of the most famous fishing grounds in the world, Georges Bank.