Stories of Life on the Chesapeake

Outbound for Sea
by William Band

February 5, 2010 held a forecast for a Mid-Atlantic perfect storm that didn't disappoint. At the Port of Baltimore's Atlantic Terminal I boarded the M/V Hoegh Kyoto, which was headed outbound for sea. 
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by Chuck Royster

At 27, I had been boating for only a couple of years; just a "waterbaby." I was new to the sport and fascinated with "go fast" boating. For me, and a collection of other young Potomac river rats, speed was the thing! Charts, course plotting, obstructions and a plan? Who needs a plan? Going fast was the primary requirement for the purchase of my second boat, a 20-foot, Wellcraft cuddy cabin with a 300-hp small-block Chevy pushing a MerCruiser Bravo II with a stainless steel prop. read more »

Crabbing with Unk
by Rick Sylvia

As a young suburban raised boy in the 1960's who had dreams of being the next Robinson Crusoe, wading for blue crabs with a hand net was exciting and adventurous. But a better thrill was building a lifelong admiration for my grandfather. For a few short days each year on the Piankatank River at Virginia's Northern Neck, both became the center of my universe as I visited my grandparents. read more »

On the Annie D.
by Wendy Costa

This is my third summer and my tenth trip on the Annie D., and my eighth as captain. I have always been a sailor and I never thought that I could fall in love with a stinkpot, yet my affection for the Annie D. runs deep. read more »

Bird Onboard
by Ellis W. Merschoff

Sea Gypsy was pulling nicely in a stiff southerly breeze, making close to her hull speed at 6 knots. The early autumn light seemed to carry the shoreline colors out onto the Bay, emphasizing that summer was indeed over. read more »

Three Hulls on the Potomac
by John Robinson

We're beating into the steep chop of the Bay off of Smith Point. Adam is at the tiller. The breeze is stiff out of the northeast and Go-Go Girl's sleek hulls are majestically parting the waves. With our three sons along for the adventure--Adam, 15; Ian, 14; and Taylor, 11--my wife Marybeth and I are exploring the 100 miles or so of navigable Potomac from the Bay to Washington D.C. Eyeballing an imaginary line between Maryland's Point Lookout and Virginia's Smith Point, my Adam yells, "Well, I guess we are officially in the Potomac now!" read more »

A Silver Lining on the Bay
by Katherine Lloyd

Red eye flight from Seattle aside, my September visit to my parents' home in Deltaville, Va., was off to a good start. When I arrived the weather was warm and sunny and the wind was looking good to get us out on my parents' Beneteau 43, Marcnicliz (named for their three grandchildren Marc, Nic, and Elizabeth), which they keep at Deltaville Marina, just a few minutes from their home. My parents suggested we go to Cape Charles, and I quickly got a list of birds that I'd like to photograph ready. I had my cameras and lenses packed and was eager to get out on the water--ready for a wildlife adventure on the Eastern shore. But before we could get out on the water, our good fortune began to change. Storm clouds began to gather on the Bay . . . and in our cozy home. read more »

You've Come a Long Way, Baby
by Cathy Dieter

He'd been there at the beginning. My husband's dad was one of the few ready, willing and able to join us as we made our first big leap from land to sea. Sink or swim--either possibility seemed equally likely as my husband Dave and I tried to make the huge transition from a DC commuter lifestyle to living aboard a 36 foot sailboat. read more »

The Sweet Search for Whistler
by Rod Heckman

It was the fall of 2008, and Cathy and I had finally found the boat we wanted. Her name was Whistler, and she was a sweet little Fortier 26. Unfortunately, when we called the Annapolis broker who had her listed, we learned she was sold. We were a month too late! read more »