June 13. We said goodbye to Jim and Deb and headed out for tonight’s anchorage. We’d like to get as close as possible to the western end of the C&D Canal as we can.
We plan to try the Bohemia River but the charts are calling it fairly shallow and the guides all talk of extensive shoaling. On our way down in the fall we had stopped in the Sassafras River which was very protected.
The winds are light and just off the nose so we’re motor sailing against the tidal flow. As the early afternoon wears on the skies are becoming more and more ominus in front of us. We’re listening to NOAA weather radio and their talking about severe thunderstorms and big rain in front of us. Right after that the Coast Guard gets on the VHF and broadcasts a Notice to Mariners about a thunderstorm with 40 to 50 knot winds just to the north of us.
So in our continuing tradition of “safety first” we decide to head up into the Sassafras River. I would have rather continued on to the Bohemia River but I was planning to poke around slowly while looking for a good spot to anchor there. If the weather is going to fall apart I don’t want to be “exploring” when it happens.
We head up the Sassafras, dropping the sail as we go as the winds are steadily building and the sky is becoming quite dark. We pick out a spot that offers the most protection and drop the anchor and 120 feet of chain. Christy feeds the dogs while I lower the dinghy to take the dogs ashore before the storm hits.
Once back on the boat the “storm” hit. All we got was some gusts to 30 knots and a smattering of rain. We’ll have to add the 8 miles that we didn’t cover today to tomorrow’s already long day. I feel a little foolish for dropping the hook so quickly but who knows how it would have turned out in the Bohemia so “safety first”.