Rondout Yacht Basin, Kingston, NY to Albany Yacht Club, Albany, NY — June 10, 2014

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01-Rondout-Yacht-Basin-Looking-East

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02-Rondout-Yacht-Basin-Looking-North

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03-Rondout-Yacht-Basin-Looking-South

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04-Rondout-Yacht-Basin-Looking-At-Office-And-Fuel-Dock

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05-Leaving-Rondout-Yacht-Basin

06-Downtown-Kingston-NY

06-Downtown-Kingston-NY

08-Buildings-Of-Kingston-NY

08-Buildings-Of-Kingston-NY

09-Landlocked-Tug-In-Kingston

09-Landlocked-Tug-In-Kingston

10-Hudson-River-Maritime-Museum-In-Kingston-NY

10-Hudson-River-Maritime-Museum-In-Kingston-NY

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11-Leaving-Kingston-NY

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12-Kingston-Rondout-River-Entrance

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13-Shoreline-Along-Hudson-River-North-Of-Kingston-NY

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14-Shoreline-Along-Hudson-River-North-Of-Kingston-NY

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15-Lighthouse-Along-West-Shore-Of-Hudson-River

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16-Tow-Boat-Headed-South-On-Hudson-River

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17-Athens-Hudson-Lighthouse

18-House-Along-The-Hudson-South-Of-Albany

18-House-Along-The-Hudson-South-Of-Albany

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19-House-Along-The-Hudson-South-Of-Albany

We had rain on Monday so it was easy to sit in the marina and not go anywhere.  The forecast for today is 60% probability of rain with a potential for thunderstorms in the afternoon.  Actually that is the forecast for the rest of the week. The weather radar looked clear in the morning so we left Kingston for Albany.

It turned out to be sunny with some clouds, high temps and humidity.  There was not much wind but the trip was good and we avoided any rain.

Not much traffic on the river in either direction.  We did pass a couple of sailboats and they were headed north.  There were very few fishermen out so it was really quite on the water.  We passed more tows than we did pleasure boats.

One real neat lighthouse we passed was the Athens-Hudson Lighthouse. It is not in use anymore but they must offer some tours because there was a pontoon boat parked next to it and a few people up in the top of the lighthouse.

We had been to Albany last year and I did an oil change on Champ III there so I wanted to do it again this year. I called the Albany Yacht Club to make a 3 day reservation.  They would be able to accommodate us for 2 days only, so we said OK.

I called the Albany NAPA once we arrived and they had the oil and filters I needed so we were all set.  They delivered everything in the late afternoon so I could do the oil change on Wednesday.

I also spent some time looking at the route up the Hudson River into Lake Champlain and on to the St Lawrence Seaway. Last year we went into the Erie Canal and it was not a real good experience because Mother Nature dumped a lot of rain on the mountains and the Mohawk River Basin. This year we decided to go up thru Lake Champlain to the St Lawrence and down thru the 1000 Island area.

The Harbormaster was really great at the Albany Yacht Club.  He had maps of the Champlain Canal that give the distance and approximate time between the locks.  We have about 8 miles and we go thru our 1st lock and we will be in fresh water again. He also gave us menus for several restaurants, made some recommendations and also invited us to a Club Happy Hour on Wednesday night.

Wednesday was a busy day with the oil change and preparing for a new area to visit on the trip.  I also had to bring out the large round fender balls because we will be in quite a few locks before we get to the St Lawrence and then some on the St Lawrence.  At least we remembered to do all the preparations.

Hope the rain hold off tomorrow.

Half Moon Bay Marina, Croton on Hudson, NY to Rondout Yacht Basin, Kingston, NY — June 8, 2014

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01-Half-Moon-Bay-Marina

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02-Half-Moon-Bay-Marina

03 Half Moon Bay Marina - This Way Out

04-Leaving-Half-Moon-Bay

04-Leaving-Half-Moon-Bay

05-Anchorage-On-South-Side-Of-Half-Moon-Bay

05-Anchorage-On-South-Side-Of-Half-Moon-Bay

06-Frieght-Train-On-West-Bank-Of-Hudson-River

06-Frieght-Train-On-West-Bank-Of-Hudson-River

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07-Freight-Train-In-Your-Front-Yard

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08-Crew-Resting-After-Undocking-Procedures-Are-Complete

09-Rock-Crushing-Operation-On-Banks-Of-Hudson-River

09-Rock-Crushing-Operation-On-Banks-Of-Hudson-River

10-Houses-South-Of-West-Point

10-Houses-South-Of-West-Point

11-Tow-On-Hudson-River-On-Sunday-Moving-North

11-Tow-On-Hudson-River-On-Sunday-Moving-North

12-West-Point-Military-Academy-On-Hudson-River-Looking-Northwest

12-West-Point-Military-Academy-On-Hudson-River-Looking-Northwest

13-West-Point-Military-Academy-On-Hudson-River-Looking-West

13-West-Point-Military-Academy-On-Hudson-River-Looking-West

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14-West-Point-Military-Academy-On-Hudson-River-Looking-Southwest

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15-Mountains-Helping-Form-The-Hudson-River-Valley

16-Bridge-Over-Hudson-North-Of-West-Point

16-Bridge-Over-Hudson-North-Of-West-Point

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17-Light-Traffic-On-THe-Hudson-River

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19-Rugged-Shoreline-Of-The-Hudson-River

20-Rondout-Yacht-Basin-In-Kingston-NY

20-Rondout-Yacht-Basin-In-Kingston-NY

Another cool, clear morning with minimal wind.  Quite a few boats out in the anchorage on the south side of the marina.

We got underway a little after 8:00.  I was not sure  what the currents would be in the river.  High tide was predicted at about 9:30 at Croton on Hudson.  We were pretty fortunate with the current.  We were able to get a positive effect for almost the whole trip north and that was good.

With the good weather we had plenty of locals in the areas of the towns. The locals appear to stay right around the town and we only saw a few venturing up or down river.  Still quite a number of boats moving north.  We passed 2 trawlers that had left Half Moon Bay earlier than us. We also passed “At Last” a large trawler we were docked next to in Cape May.

You can see in the pictures that the wind for the most part was pretty light. This made for good boating conditions for everybody.  We were quite surprised to see tows on the river on Sunday. We passed 3 going south and one going north.

We passed the West Point Military Academy on the west shore of the river.  It is quite an impressive Looking community.  You can see which buildings are from the original granite and limestone construction.  West Point was occupied by the military in 1778 and is the oldest military installation in the US.

As we got nearer to Kingston there was a little breeze from the south.  The sailors were happy and there were sailboats all over the river and it was a little like a slalom course to avoid the sailboats and follow the channel markers.

After rocking at the dock for the last 2 days in Half Moon Bay we decided to go to Kingston. There are several marinas here along with a Maritime Museum and about a mile up the Rondout Creek is the Rondout Yacht Basin.  It was good to see that the sheriff patrol was on the water enforcing the No Wake zones. The water was nice and quite.

The marina was busy and most of the large slips were full.  We had called ahead and they had a slip for us.  The docks are floaters and a little old and wobbly. They appear to maintain the marina but the facility is pretty old.  The seasonal boats here are generally the small boats and there are still a lot of boats on the hard.  Some have been on the hard for a long. long, long time. You can tell that when you see the plastic shrink wrap deteriorating and shredding on the boat.

There are probably 3 boats here that were at Half Moon Bay last night.

They are predicting rain tonight and rain on/off tomorrow.  Actually, other than Wednesday, there is a chance for rain every day this week. Our next stop is Albany.

Liberty Landing Marina, Jersey City, New Jersey to Half Moon Bay Marina, Croton on Hudson, NY — June 6, 2014

01-Lenore-Practicing-Taking-Selfy-Pictures

01-Lenore-Practicing-Taking-Selfy-Pictures

02-Leaving-Liberty-Landing-With-Staue-Of-Liberty-In-Distance-At-Left-Center

02-Leaving-Liberty-Landing-With-Staue-Of-Liberty-In-Distance-At-Left-Center

03-Manhattan-Skyline

03-Manhattan-Skyline

04-Jersey-City-Skyline

04-Jersey-City-Skyline

05-Hoboken-Skyline

05-Hoboken-Skyline

06-Looking-Back-At-Jersey-City

06-Looking-Back-At-Jersey-City

07-Veranzanno-Narrows-And-Bridge-In-Distance

07-Veranzanno-Narrows-And-Bridge-In-Distance

08-Brooklyn-Skyline

08-Brooklyn-Skyline

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09-Ferry-Terminal-In-New-Jersey

10-Half-Moon-Bay-At-Croton-On-Hudson

10-Half-Moon-Bay-At-Croton-On-Hudson

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11-Half-moon-Bay-Marina

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12-Sunset-Over-The-Hudson-River

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13-Early-Morning-At-Half-moon-Bay

After several nice days in New York, docktails with friends and celebratory Loop completion dinner with Humbug, Carol Anne and Off Leash, it was time to move north.  The rain of yesterday was over and the sky was clear.

Humbug and Carol Anne were leaving today after us.  Humbug is headed back to Mystic, CT and Carol Anne to New Rochelle, NY.  We did hear them on the VHF radio for awhile.

We started late because of the tide and also we had a problem with a starting battery.  We finally got underway and the 1st 8 miles of the Hudson River is very lumpy because of all the ferry traffic.  We stayed to the west side of the river to get out of the current as much as we could and it helped somewhat with the ferry wake.

The view again was spectacular as we motored up from the Financial Center in Manhattan, past the Bronx.  Once past the George Washington Bridge the water was relatively smooth. The train from points north that brings the daily commuters into NYC runs right along the East bank of the Hudson.  There seems to be a constant stream of trains going by.

We did see some barge traffic on the river.  Most of the pleasure boats were headed North.  We saw Adagio 1, that is a large DeFever trawler headed north.  We had followed Adagio 1 in the Chesapeake-Delaware Canal and he was in front of us on the dock in Delaware City.

We are staying at Half Moon Bay Marina tonight.  It is located by Croton on Hudson, NY.  The reviews are mostly good for the marina.  It was easy getting into the marina and the staff is very helpful.  The big downside was that the wind was out of the northwest and this part of the Hudson River is about 3 miles wide and the outer seawall configuration did not quiet all the waves. we rocked most of the afternoon and evening before the wind quieted down and shifted direction.

Another downer is that the marina is locate immediately adjacent to a large condo complex that does not allow dogs on their grounds.  Some of the marina docks exit on to the condo property and then you walk north to get to the marina office.  We were assigned to their north dock which does not exit onto the condo property.  There is a nice river walk with a city park about 1/2 mile up but they do not allow dogs into the park.  Seems to be a pretty unfriendly place for dogs.

The Marina is pretty well located with all the town amenities reasonably close by. Cab rides into town are not expensive so that helps.  We are going to stay here 2 days before heading North on the Hudson River.

Liberty Landing and New York City — June 3 to June 6, 2014

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01-New-York-Skyline-From-Liberty-Landing-Park

02-Financial-District-In-Manhattan-From-Ferry-Boat

02-Financial-District-In-Manhattan-From-Ferry-Boat

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03-Twilight-View-From-Reaurant-Note-Giant-Chess-Pieces-and-Fire-Table

04-New-York-Ferry-from-Liberty-Landing

04-New-York-Ferry-from-Liberty-Landing

05-Gold-Looper-Gathering-For-Dinner

05-Gold-Looper-Gathering-For-Dinner

This is a little different.  We did not travel on the water but I am posting about New York City.  We made 2 trips into the City on the ferry. The ferry runs every half hour so it is pretty convenient.

Liberty Landing Marina is Located in the Liberty Landing Park in Jersey City, New Jersey.  Lots of wide open spaces and lots of grass for Candy. Only Founders Park in Islamorada is better than this park.

The 1st day we visited several stores that were on Lenore’s NYC list.  We took cabs everywhere because they were to far to walk. The last shop was a trimmings store with all types of ribbons and decorations to be added to whatever you had in mind.  This was in mid-town on 6th Ave. The pedestrian traffic was incredible but maybe not for a city with 7 million people.

When we got back to Liberty Landing we notice that several of the “Around The World” racing sailboats had left and other appeared to be getting ready to leave.  When Candy and I went for our walk I noticed that Off Leash was tied up in the harbor so we went over to congratulate them on their Loop completion. While we were talking Humbug and Carol Anne came into the outer harbor but had to wait for the remaining racing sailboats to leave.  Once they did, they came into the slips on either side of Off Leash. It was ironic that the slowest of the 3 boats was the first to arrive after 2 days on the water from Cape May.

We had docktails with champagne to celebrate the Loop completions.  Loretta from Carol Anne had even written in the Looper Blog that the 3 boats completed their Loops on the same day at the same location which could be a Looper first.

The rain started during the night and rained on and off until late morning.  Lenore and I went into NYC again by ferry today and took a cab to Little Italy.  Mike from Off Leash had mentioned that Little Italy has been pretty much been taken over by the Chinese and he was not wrong. We visited an Italian Market and an Italian Bakery/Restaurant that were nestled in among the Chinese stores.

Impressions of New York are that there are way too many people and you cannot go anywhere without some kind of road reconstruction going on.  Some of this is probably also the utilities under the street but it is still construction. All the cab drivers have a heavy accent and it is hard to understand them. We did not have one American cab driver in the cabs we took. The views from Liberty Landing of the New York skyline were fabulous.

We went to dinner at the Liberty Landing Restaurant with the new Gold Loopers.  It was a lot of fun and the excitement of the Loop completion had not worn off Loretta yet (that is not a bad thing). Everyone had a good time and everybody, except Off Leash, is leaving tomorrow (6-7-14) and headed for their home ports.  Off Leash is technical in their home territory, NYC.  They have friends coming to visit them.

Farley State Marina, The Golden Nugget, Atlantic City, NJ to Liberty Landing Marina, Jersey City, New Jersey — June 3, 2014

01-Leaving-Farley-State-Marina-In-Atlantic-City

01-Leaving-Farley-State-Marina-In-Atlantic-City

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02-Leaving-Farley-State-Marina-In-Atlantic-City

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03-Atlantic-City-Skyline

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04-Fishing-Boats-Along-The-Atlantic-City-Shore

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05-Atlantic-City-Shoreline

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06-Atlantic-City-Coast-Guard-Station

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07-Anchorage-In-Front-Of-Farley-State-Marina

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08-Fishing-Boats-On-The-Atlantic

09-Fishing-Boats-On-The-Atlantic

09-Fishing-Boats-On-The-Atlantic

10-Typical-New-Jersey-Shoreline-North-Of-Atlantic-City

10-Typical-New-Jersey-Shoreline-North-Of-Atlantic-City

11-Passing-A-Freighter-At-The-Veranzanno-Narrows-Bridge

11-Passing-A-Freighter-At-The-Veranzanno-Narrows-Bridge

12-Statue-Of-Liberty-On-Ellis-Island

12-Statue-Of-Liberty-On-Ellis-Island

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13-Brooklyn-Skyline

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14-The-Crew-Is-Resting-For-Docking-At-Liberty-Landing

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15-Financial-Center-On-Manhattan

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17-Raibow-At-Liberty-Landing

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18-Statue-Of-Liberty-Ferry-Boat

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19-Yes-That-Is-Manhattan

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20-Gold-Loopers-At-Liberty-Landing-Carol-Anne-Off-Leash-Humbug

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21-Looking-From-Champ-III-North-Toward-Jersey-City

Another nice day on tap with sunny skies.  I looked at the weather and the swells were down to 2′ to 4′ with a 10 second period. I did not mention it yesterday but the period refers to the time from peak to peak of the swells.  I had looked at doing the inside today but really did not want to do it because the number of shoaling spots was more than we saw yesterday and I did not think we could get to New York.  The North portion of the New Jersey ICW  ends at Manasquan Inlet and there is still 20 miles of Atlantic Ocean to New York City.

As we were exiting the marina there was a sport fisherman boat in front of us and he headed toward the Atlantic.  We followed and once we turned north the water was not too bad.  The swells for the most part to start were about 3′ to 4′ and they caused a rocking because they were on the beam. As we progressed the swells subsided to 2′ or less.

We were about 43 miles north of Atlantic City and we were hailed by the Coast Guard and they boarded us for a safety inspection.  We had never been boarded by the Coast Guard before today. Two Coast Guard personnel came aboard, one to ask questions and the other to record everything on their inspection  form.  I had all our paperwork in order and we had all the equipment they wanted to see so everything went smoothly and it took about 20 minutes total and we were back on out way.

The New Jersey Coastal area is just house after house after house.  The land is pretty narrow between the ICW and the Atlantic so there are minimal trees. I guess everybody wants there place on the water. We watched this for mile after mile.  The total trip to NYC was about 105 miles on the Atlantic.

We did see some dolphins about 30 miles south of New York City.  They did not play in the wake and it was only the dorsal fins that come up out of the water several times. It was nice to see them anyway.

New York entrance harbor is huge.  It must be about 10 miles by 10 miles once you make the turn past Sandy Hook New Jersey.  We did see several freighters and a few pleasure boats. The marked Channels cross in several directions.  The charts showed the water was deep even outside the channel but there is a certain comfort of staying in the marked channels.

The Liberty Landing Marina was pretty busy.  They had probably 6 “Around The World” racing sailboats in the harbor along with some support boats.  We had called from about 10 miles out and after several minutes they said they had a slip for us.  As we entered the harbor area we called on the radio and we drifted around for another 30 minutes or so while they finally found us a slip.  We spent some time listening to the dockhands talk about where they were going to get lunch from even though it was already early afternoon. I had thoughts about trying to find another marina but the proximity to New York City and the location of the ferry to NCY is great not to mention the spectacular vies of Manhattan.

We were going to go to dinner at the Landings Restaurant but the rain started about 5:00 and lasted into the late evening. The forecast was for heavy rain and thunderstorms, but all we had was heavy rain. We ate aboard.  Humbug, Carol Anne and Off Leash were all behind us some distance and will probably show up tomorrow.  They all stayed in Cape May the day we left because they did not want to do the inside and Off Leash couldn’t because of bridge clearance. I called Humbug and found out they were in Atlantic City with Carol Anne and Off Leash was somewhere north of them at an anchorage.

Utsch Marina, Cape May, NJ to Farley State Marina, The Golden Nugget Casino, Atlantic City, NJ — June 2, 2014

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01-Leaving-Cape-May

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02-Leaving-Cape-May

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05-Pretty-Large-Coast-Guard-Vessels-In-Cape-May

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06-A-Man-And-His-Dog-Along-The-ICW

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07-I-Think-They-Put-These-Up-So-The-Osprey-Have-A-Place-To-Nest

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08-Another-Osprey-Nest

09-The-Osprey-Nests-Are-Everywhere

09-The-Osprey-Nests-Are-Everywhere

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10-New-Jersey-ICW-Shoreline

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11-Houses-In-Atlantic-City-Area

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12-Houses-In-Atlantic-City-Area

13-Houses-In-Atlantic-City-Area

13-Houses-In-Atlantic-City-Area

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14-No-Grass-To-Let-The-Dog-Out

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15-Wind-Farm-In-Atlantic-City

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16-Tall-Building-Is-Trump-Plaza

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17-On-ICW-Looking-At-Atlantic-City-Casinos

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18-On-ICW-Looking-At-Atlantic-City-Casinos

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19-Farley-State-Marina-At-The-Golden-Nugget-Casino

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20-Sunset-At-Farley-State-Marina-In-Atlantic-City

We looked at the weather forecast in the morning and the winds were to be 20 knots out of the SSW and there were 4′ to 6′ swells out of the east with a period of 10 seconds.  I had read a lot of reports on the inside New Jersey ICW.  Some were not so good that the water was pretty shallow and others were that if you were careful you could manage it.

We decide on the inside route on the ICW. I had Active Captain on my IPhone so I had access to the reported shoals along the way. It was one of the most taxing days I have spent on the water.  The New Jersey ICW is anything but straight and there is a constant turning and checking the buoys to make sure you are in the channel. Also tracking where the shoaling is so they can be avoided and then the fisherman.  With so much shallow water they want to fish the edge of the channel and they really do not want to move for the boats in the ICW. There was one boat that was did not move and he was only about 50′ from the channel marker and I went thru that 50′.  He did not seem to happy about it.  Some of these guys think you can go anywhere to avoid them.

The ICW scenery in the undeveloped areas looked a lot like the low country from Georgia and South Carolina.  The cities were nice and as we came into Atlantic City we went thru a pretty tight area that was heavily developed with residential along the shores and boats moored in front of the houses.  These were not large houses but more like the smaller homes you would find in a densely populated city. We had to request 4 bridge openings because the streets were about 10′ above the waterway. It was pretty interesting because we had not seen this before.

The Farley State Marina is attached to the Golden Nugget Casino.  The marina office is not what you would call your typical marina office.  You are treated more like a guest at the Casino Hotel than a normal marina.  It is a very large marina and there was some grass for Candy although we had to do some scouting to find it.

We ate dinner in the Casino at Lillie’s.  It is an oriental restaurant and the food was really good.  We were able to sit and have wine and eat our dinner while we watched all these people losing their money at the slot machines. The people watching was quite interesting. They even allow mothers with their strollers into the Casino. We left the Casino without even placing a bet.

Delaware City Marina, Delaware City, DE to Utsch Marina, Cape May, NJ — June 1, 2014

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01-Delaware-City-Marina

01-Delaware-City-Marina

01-Delaware-City-Marina

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03-Leaving-Delaware-City

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04-Delaware-City-Fire-Rescues-Boat

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06-Downtown-Delaware-City

07-Delaware-City-Ferry

07-Delaware-City-Ferry

08-Container-Ship-Headed-Up-Delaware-River

08-Container-Ship-Headed-Up-Delaware-River

09-Coast-Guard-In-Cape-May

09-Coast-Guard-In-Cape-May

10-Sunset-In-Cape-May

10-Sunset-In-Cape-May

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11-Sunset-In-Cape-May

We planned on staying 1 night in Delaware City.  The marina has a weather briefing every evening at 5:15, right after the latest NOAA weather predictions are posted. It is probably one of the better weather briefings we have encountered because they apply local knowledge to the computer generated weather model. Well all that said we ended up staying 1 extra night because of the wind on the Delaware River and Delaware Bay.

We had a nice dinner at Crabby Dick’s restaurant with Humbug and Carol Anne.  We met up with them when we arrived in Cape May.  We will loosely travel with them to New York City to help celebrated the completion of their Loops. Off Leash went ahead to Cape May the day we arrived in Delaware City because the weather was good.

Cape May is about 60 miles down the waterway and the Bay is pretty large.  We started out and the water was really calm and we had an outgoing tide that helped.  We passed a couple of container ships that were headed up to Philadelphia. There were a lot of fishing boats headed out toward the Atlantic and they set up some good wakes but they were far enough away that we were not bothered to much.

The day was sunny and stayed that way for the whole trip.  The approach to Cape May is thru a canal so you do not need to go out on the Atlantic Ocean to enter thru the Cape May inlet.  This canal also has a ferry dock where they shuttle cars from the south shore of the Bay to the north shore.

The canal is about 5 miles long and the local boaters go as fast as they can to reach the other end.  We had caught Humbug and Carol Anne at the bottom of the Bay. They had left Delaware City about an 1 1/2 hours before us.  It had started to get a little lumpy on the Bay so we picked up the speed for the last 45 minutes.

We stayed at a new marina this year, Utsch Marina. Everyone else decide to stay here so we followed suit.  Off Leash was on the docks to greet us when we pulled in. There were quite a few Looper Boats in the marina so Humbug organized a docktails party on the dock between Fruitcakes and Off Leash. Fruitcakes is the trawler we met in Delaware City that is from South Carolina and they have been on the Loop 5 weeks.

Great time at docktails talking with the boats from Canada and a variety of US ports.  Everybody was swapping stories and looking forward to moving north to New York City.