Oswego Waterway to Canada

We have crossed the Gulf of Mexico, the ocean, sounds and Chesapeake Bay.  Today we cross Lake Oneida and get ready to  leave the Erie for the Oswego Canal Water way.

First a few signs we need to figure out…
Erie Canal loopers Erie Canal loopers

and sometimes we are people watching; other times people are watchin us!
Erie Canal loopers


Anticipation and weather watching takes planning.  Our next jump is to cross Lake Oneida- if there are any high winds predicted, we would stay put.   It turned out to be a beautiful day, so the 25 mile lake crossing was a breeze.  Five hours on the move, we covered 36.8 miles  plus two locks and arrived at Brewerton, NY at 1:30.  We are still westbound on the Erie Canal, the turn off to Oswego is not too far ahead. (we will be doing half the Erie Canal, then turn North towards Canada)>

The scenery is gradually changing

: Leaving the erie

Leaving the erie Leaving the erie


There were about 6-7 looper boats in the marina.   Sanctuary had planned a wine / potluck for the evening. The tasting featured a variety of New York wines plus homemade wine provided by SeaQuest crew.   

  Its amazing the various stories shared by so many loopers.

Leaving the erie Leaving the erie

The marina provided a free courtesy van for a couple hours at a time; this allowed us to go get groceries and stock up for our trip to Canada.



Phoenix , NY City wall June 24

The rainy days are beginning to subside, today is mostly sunny.     We departed Brewerton with Sanctuary and Southern Cross.  

The fork in the road,   either continue east to Buffalo New York on the Erie Canal, or turn North towards Oswego and Lake Ontario!
Phoenix NY canal Phoenix NY canal

Phoenix NY canal

Our group is headed for Canada so we took a right and stopped at the city wall in Phoenix, NY.  This was a short 11 mile day; there aren’t too many places to stop, and we picked Phoenix.     There was plenty of room on the wall, and free electric!   The new waterfront deck had picnic tables, and a park setting. Leaving the Phoenix NY wall, lead us into a canal and under a lift bridge.   

Phoenix NY canal


Last stop on the Oswego Waterway canal is Oswego.   The city wall provided a good place to plan our crossing of Lake Ontario.   There is one more lock that will lead us into Lake Ontario.

Updated miles- 5687 miles since we left Mackinaw City in June 2016.


June 27 cross Lake Ontario to CANADA

Dave topped off the fuel before leaving Oswego, New York – added 42 gallons.  We anticipate high fuel prices in Canada, so plan to leave USA with a full tank.

7 hours on the move today; we did 52 miles and tied to a  mooring ball in Prinyers Cove on the north shore of Lake Ontario.  The mooring ball fee was $25, with high winds predicted it gave us peace of mind to be tied up rather than anchored.


Clearing customs is often a topic of discussion. It went smooth for our group- we each called in to customs, answered a few questions and received our customs clearance code.   

  Next stop is Picton Marina- 16 miles.

Its cloudy and rainy again, but everyone is excited to be cruising in Canada waters.


crossing lake ontario crossing lake ontario

crossing lake ontario crossing lake ontario
Some days are rougher than others.  Thanks for reading and stay tuned as we share our Canada travels with you.
Leaving the erie

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Erie Canal; Waterford to Amsterdam to Rome Locks

A federal lock on the Hudson River is just a taste of locks to come.  Leaving the Hudson River behind us, our first stop is the Waterford city wall.   Walls will be our new friend as we cruise along the water ways.  Not really a marina, most often a concrete wall we parallel park and tie to cleats.   Prices range from free to about $30 per night.

Waterford is the beginning of the Erie Canal and the fee is $10 per night to cover electric hook ups.


Troy and Erie


The first set of six locks are all close together.   By 1:30 we had done 6 locks over 22 miles and stopped for the night at anchor near Scotia (we pulled in behind an island on the Mohawk river).


Soon we are already approaching lock 13 and will spend  the next night on the wall at Amsterdam, NY.
Erie canal loopers Erie canal loopers

Erie canal loopers

The wall is separated from the city by a pedestrian bridge.  To reach the bridge, we take an elevator up to the bridge.   This was an interesting Father’s Day spot, as It involved a trip to the ER and some R&R before continuing on the Erie.   Our group broke up into two going ahead, and Moon Shadow and Southern Cross spending the night on the wall at Amsterdam.

Near the park you will find a 9/11 memorial honoring a local first responder.

Erie canal loopers  Erie canal loopers


Today we cruised from Amsterdam to Canajoharie New York  It is 75 degrees with a light haze as we leave Amsterdam.  There are three locks to go through, each one takes about 20 minutes from arrival to departure.  We logged 22.6 miles , travel time of 4 hours.  

The wall with electric was full, so we pulled in to the wall overflow with no services.  Shortly after we arrived, a familiar boat pulled in-   Julie and Dan  on Gavidae. They are in our boating club in Minneapolis and are moving the boat they purchased in New York back to lake Superior.

here we are at the wall relaxing:
Erie canal loopers

In Canajoharie we visited the Beach Nut Museum at the library.



June 19;    The first lock was just past our dock – this started our day of locking. Lock 14, then 15,16,17 and finally lock 18 before we pulled in to the wall at Ilion.  Sanctuary and The Lower Place were here ahead of us, so it was a good chance to catch up.  We filled with fuel, and later learned the fuel price would have been less if we had waited 100 miles. 

Homes were built literally on the canal wall! Erie canal loopers

Our group rejoined at Ilion.   The guys could catch up on stories until dusk!
Erie canal loopers

Even our mascots got together for some fun:

Erie canal loopers    Erie canal loopers

Lock 17- example of massive structure:

Erie canal loopers

Some locks are crumbling!

Erie Canal loopers Erie canal loopers      Erie canal loopers     Erie canal loopers Erie canal loopers We just kept cruising along the canal from lock to lock. Erie canal loopers      Erie canal loopers

The main attraction at Ilion is the Remington factory and museum. Erie Canal loopers

Erie Canal loopers Erie Canal loopers

And we appreciate the view and the rainbow after the rain!

Erie Canal loopers Erie Canal loopers


Looking back at our travels up the Atlantic Coast, there were periods that we covered several states with in days, Delaware, New Jersey flew by. Then we entered New York on June 5.    Here we are in the Erie Canal on June 21 and still in New York!  This state has a lot more to it than NYC.
Erie Canal loopers

The city employee that helped us in recommended a few Italian restaurants.  He said with a city name of ROME we could expect good Italian food.     Our choice was the SAVOY, and it was a good time. The town was in better shape than the free dock wall would lead you to believe. Erie Canal We also found a neat Italian Market place that felt like we stepped back in time.    Came away with fresh pasta, sun dried tomatoes, sweet sausage and lots of good photos.



Erie Canal Erie Canal Erie Canal

Just for fun, Colleen did a photo shoot with our mascots;
Erie Canal loopers Erie Canal loopers
Our pot of gold at the end of the rainbow!
Erie Canal loopers

If you are reading this along with our facebook, note that I am catching up slowly.  We are in Canada at the moment; and my posts are still in New York!   Too much fun, too little time for computers!    Enjoy, and read on.

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Family at Croton On Hudson, then cruise up the Hudson

How fun to have my aunt and cousins on board in New York!   On Sunday June 13 we were excited to have Colleen’s cousins come to visit.  As a bonus, they also brought Aunt Pauline along.   Not often can you entertain your 95 year old Aunt on your boat!

There were mixed views on how it might feel to be on a boat for a year.  Both Pros and Cons were discussed as they looked out from our flybridge!


Discussions continued over lunch at the local BBQ diner.




What fun to see everyone and catch up.


The scenery is just beautiful as we head north.  The trains run right along both sides of the river.   In places the tracks and bridges our just along the water line!


Hudson River cruise

Hudson River cruise

Hudson River cruise

As we cruise along there are peaks at castles up on the hill.  We cruise past West Point and the Culinary Institute- both spots would have been good tours.

Hudson River cruise Hudson River cruise Hudson River cruise Hudson River cruise

There are the occasional ocean going ships- they call out their positions to let boats know they are coming down the river.

We traveled this section by our selves as our boat buddies had left the previous day.  We had such perfect water conditions , and were riding with the current.   It turned out to be a 90 mile day before we pulled in to an anchorage for the night.   Looks like we will catch up with the other boats tomorrow.  We anchored at Hough tailing River and had a very pleasant evening.


What a welcoming feeling to arrive in time for a pot luck dinner on the deck!   We also get to borrow a car to go for provisions and that makes for a great day too!

We took our turn after Steve and Teresa returned from Walmart!
Hudson Hudson


hudson river

hudson river

Next up- one federal lock on the Hudson, then we stop at Waterford on June 15th, this will be the beginning of the Erie Canal!! We have traveled 5,499 miles     Stay tuned.  More to come.

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Statue of Liberty, Half Moon Marina and NYC day 3

Leaving Great Kills Marina , are destination is Croton On Hudson.  Lots of discussion on pros and cons of stopping for a night at anchor behind the Statue of Liberty.  As good as it sounded in theory, the higher winds and waves predicted made our choice to move on to the next marina.

With four boats traveling together we planned to get plenty of photos of each other in front of the Statue of Liberty!    Mission accomplished.

NYC statue of Liberty

SANCTUARY NYC statue of Liberty

NYC statue of Liberty ENTERPRISE NYC statue of Liberty

Next up, lets take each others picture in front of the NYC skyline!    (thanks to Steve Lasher on Sanctuary for photo of Moon Shadow)

NYC statue of Liberty

It was starting to get more turbulent with the increased winds, so timing was perfect as we headed up the Hudson.  The boat traffic wasn’t too bad- a few tourist boats or ferry boats to watch for; and of course the large Staten Island Ferry, but she has a set route and is easy to avoid.

NYC statue of Liberty


Located about 50 miles north of NYC on the Hudson river, this marina is still considered “convenient” to getting downtown by train.   There were a few more sights we wanted to see, so on Saturday we hopped on the commuter train with the Lashers and headed to Manhattan.

tIMES SQUARE CENTRAL PARK NYC Teresa always has Froggy along, and he posed for a few pictures.  He is hoping to be featured in a future children’s book, and likes to ham it up to build his portfolio.


The train stopped at Grand Central Station ( go figure) and we had a chance to see the refurbished terminal.  It was almost slated for destruction in the 1960s. Jackie Kennedy was instrumental in raising awareness to preserve it, finally it was declared a National Historic Landmark in 1976.   The terminal was run down , bankrupt and had a high rate of crime  –  by the 90’s it was in the process of restoration.  in addition to renovation, the area was cleaned up to reduce crime so it is a safe tourist destination as well as a busy train station.  Part of the restoration was to restore light by unblocking the high windows.  they had been covered over with billboards!.   The  mural on the ceiling was hidden under a layer of black grime- thought to be from diesel smoke;  later inspection revealed it to be from tar and nicotine from tobacco. A single dark patch was left untouched to show the contrast.       .   By 2000 it was once again in its glory.   The clock over the intormation desk is iconic .   This terminal has been the backdrop for numerous  Hollywood films. grand central




Low ceramic arches create acoustic that can make a quiet noise sound much louder. speaking into the corner so your partner hears you across the room!  We though we had a discovered a secret room- yet found a line of couples waiting to whisper into the corner!

high line nyc


We took the subway to Central Park and entered near the John Lennon Memorial of   Strawberry Fields.  Since we had limited time, we took a bike carriage guided tour and it was an awesome choice.   In a couple hours we had seen so many highlights! Here are a few:


FRIENDS FOUNTAIN (featured in the opening scene of Friends )






BIKE TOUR GUIDE stopped to  take our pictures too.



Once we figured out the correct stop on the subway we were back at Times Square to met Steve and Teresa.  They had chosen to go see Phantom of the Opera and would meet us at Times Square after the show.

tIMES SQUARE CENTRAL PARK NYC tIMES SQUARE CENTRAL PARK NYC Dave getting local knowledge- I hope he didn’t ask where to get free beer. tIMES SQUARE CENTRAL PARK NYC


This is a fairly recent addition to the park system.  It is a converted El station (train in the air).  you go up the steps and walk along the paths created and landscaped over the railroads !





Later I tried to capture the day in my journal:

art nyc

So Impressed with the green spaces of NYC
high line nyc high line nyc

and they have creative parking:
high line nyc

We can see why the public transportion is used by everyone.  I would not want to drive in the city; we had good luck and a quick learing curve with taxi, subway, and train stations.

Thanks for reading; one more day to report on before we head up the Hudson.

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New York City; Today Show and Day 2

Who wants to go to NYC at 4:30 AM? By morning there were only six takers, but we had our looper posters  in hand, Teresa had her book to promote, and the guys were supportive if not excited to be going to NYC at 5 AM.

NYC day 2


Our driver did an excellent job maneuvering traffic (yes rush hour starts early here) and even pointed out a few hot spots for us to visit along the way. We arrived and were second in line for the show!

The show provided a free food truck serving coffee and snacks with donations going towards a good cause.

Teresa was our ring leader.   While doing the loop on Sanctuary, she is also promoting her book “Life is Good, Fragile and Precious”, along the way.  We are hoping to help her get a book to the on-air talent!

It was exciting to get a front row view of the show, although I hadn’t thought it through that we would be standing there for 3 hours hoping for a good camera shot!
NYC day 2
What a good time, we visited with the talent, and were entertained by  all the behind the scenes activity.     We were so confident our story would get us on the air; but didn’t factor in the appeal of a cute red headed 12 year old celebrating a birthday with aspirations to be a tv personality – he stole our air time!!



After the show we checked out the NBC gift shop and found a few recognizable features:
NYC day 2 NYC day 2



By 9am our moment of fame had passed, and time for breakfast!    heading down the street, The towering St Patrick Cathedral caught our attention.  A quick walk through on the way to a recommended eatery and good to go, and its FREE.

NYC statue of Liberty

cathedral nyc


Dave and I opted out of the tour to the top of the Empire State building, those that took it reported more time spent on  escalators, stairs and lines than actually viewing; but no complaints of the view!  With a price tag starting at $35 plus a bit more to get to the upper Observation towers, we felt we could spend $100 in another spot.
NYC statue of Liberty

While the rest of the group was in the Empire State Building, we walked down 5th avenue towards the Flat Iron Building.  This building has a unique shape and has been featured in various movies.

NYC statue of Liberty  TODAY SHOW LOOPERS

The Library – another Free spot worth visiting for its architecture, large reading room, gift shop and café.


TODAY SHOW LOOPERS   It is a great spot for photos, as the Madison Square Garden Plaza and people watching. Other sites along the way kept our cameras busy! NYC day 2NYC day 2 TODAY SHOW LOOPERS

Once the group gathered it was time to eat again-   just down the street was Eataly.  At first on enterting the front door, it appeared to be small deli,  as we walked in more, it was an Italian Market.
NYC day 2 NYC day 2

A little further it turned into a arge loft and warehouse building contining six open air restaurants!     A variety includes vegetarian, high end steaks, one specializes in  seafood, and one is Italian.

more people watching and traffic watching… bikes weaving in and out, cars honking, taxis speeding by and no one looking at crosswalks.   Its sensory overload!
NYC statue of Liberty NYC statue of Liberty

NYC statue of Liberty

Any thoughts of new York night life is dashed, we have been up since 4am; and ready to catch the next train to Staten Island by 4 PM.
Moon Shadow
Its been a good day.

Pizza at Nonna’s on Staten Island

And time to eat again!     We have loved every spot we choose to eat at , here is one more.

large pizza    feeds 8

and to unwind, we meet at the Great Kills Yacht club to relive our glory with the local bartender.   All smiles as we get another picture with our poster!!

Moon Shadow

After a long day, what better than a 1.5 mile walk back to the marina!   As we waived good night to the others, we caught a ride out too our mooring ball to call it a night.  with three nights under our belt on Staten Island, we are ready to move north, post the Statue of Liberty towards our next marina at Croton on Hudson.

More on our adventures to follow.  Thanks for reading.

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New York City: Great Kills to Manhattan Day 1

With only a day to spare to prepare for our trip to the Today Show, we pulled into Great Kills Marina on Staten Island ready for a whirlwind week.   The marina had room for all but one boat; so Moon Shadow opted to stay on a mooring ball in the harbor.  The mooring balls are managed by a neighboring yacht club, includes  a Tender on call for rides to shore, and the daily fee only $30- we were quite happy with the choice.  The local members at both yacht clubs was appreciated.   The hospitality extended by John C. as AGLCA harbor host made the stay more enjoyable.  He even arranged to give our group a ride to the train station the following morning.

Day one New York City

The commuter train ride was just over an hour and dropped us off  at the Staten Island Ferry.  The train ticket is $3.95 and the ferry is FREE- great start to our travel day. Bonus – the ferry goes right by the Statue of Liberty and skyline so we were all pretty excited!
Financial District NYC IMG_6711 Our group includes Sanctuary (Steve and Teresa) from Michigan; Enterprise (Kurt and Patty) from Detroit, Southern Cross ( Pat and Cathy) from Oklahoma and us , Moon Shadow from Minnesota- so no east coast or NYC folks here. We arrived in Manhattan early; and found this early morning traveling builds an appetite-  our group  split between a New York Deli and a Food Truck for a quick early lunch stop . nEW YORK CITY 1 nEW YORK CITY 1 nEW YORK CITY 1 It was a nice surprise to find how walkable the city is for us “first timers”.   Financial District NYC
Next we will explore the Financial district, visit Wall street and  see the charging Bull sculpture.



Federal Hall National Monument – Birthplace of American Government.
Financial District NYC


The bull sculpture was so popular it was difficult to get a good picture. It represents the symbol of Financial power,  yet we noticed the  most popular photo was from behind-   We learned it brings good fortune to rub his bronze cojones.  Each is the size of a small soccer ball.  .

Financial District NYC
This seemed most popular with visitors from South America and Asian but everyone was looking for a chance for good luck.   nEW YORK CITY 1


We continued toward the Freedom Tower and  to see the 9/11 memorial ponds.

The Freedom Tower is the rebuilt World Trade Center. It is the tallest building the western Hemisphere.

The two reflecting pools with water falls dropping into the centers  are on the footprints of the two buildings.  The names of those who lost their lives are inscribed on the granite surrounding the pools.   The names of each person are arranged in a “meaningful algorithm”  based on relationships, proximity at the time of the attacks. as quoted from the executive director of the Cantor Fitzgerald Relief Fund:     “a loved ones name is surrounded by the names of those they sat with, those they worked with, those they lived with and very possibly, those they died with”.




Both Kurt and Patty then Pat and Cathy opted for a street dog with all the fixings!


Exploring continued, as we walked toward Battery Park to get a glimpse of the statue from that angle. The Battery Park features a large globe  The Sphere, that had been displayed near the world trade center and had been damaged.  It was recovered from the rubble, and is  now is a memorial and installed at Battery Park. It is displayed with out any repairs honoring the victims of 9/11.       It is a popular tourist attraction as it survived the terrorist attacks with only dents and holes.

The statue honoring all soldiers is impressive too.


We wondered toward the Sea Glass Carousel and looked at the natural gardens- the next garden everyone was interested in stopping at was the Beer Garden. We regrouped and felt very happy with the day’s sightseeing.  It was already 4 o’clock and time to board the ferry, the train and then a 1.5 mile walk back to the marina so we could catch a tender ride out to Moon Shadow on the mooring ball.
and later I had a time to draw a collage map of our time in NYC:

art nyc

The group had plans for dinner near the marina with several other loopers that had arrived at Great Kills.  Plus we needed to finalize plans for doing this same trip at 4:30 in the morning to get in line at the Today Show on Rockefeller Plaza.


We had also made plans to meet several boaters at Coles Restaurant in Great Kills. Great Kills Marina is a favorite spot for loopers.  tonight we reunited with 22 other boaters for dinner.

Kudos to the restaurant for serving a fine meal, and keeping us all in order.    So many looper stories flying around it was a great night.  In a way , it feels like a reunion of the outer dock from the Fall AGLCA Rendezvous.   By chance several of those present met either in Chicago, or were on the same dock at the Rendezvous.   Sanctuary, Last Call, Songlines,  Moon Shadow, plus Southern Cross, Lower Place, Aquafennatic and  Enterprise, I know I’m missing a few more.

After dinner, the owner of the restaurant mentioned he had overheard us talking about arranging an early morning  ride to the city for the Today Show- he gave us the number of a friend who has a 10 passenger van for hire.  This worked out perfectly and we arranged for him to meet us in the morning and take us right to Rockefeller Plaza .

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Rock Hall anchorage, C and D Canal to Delaware then New Jersey!

Every boat doing the loop may travel slightly different paths at slightly different speeds. Leaving Annapolis we have teamed up with boats that we met last September in  Chicago and may not have seen since we landed in Florida!   As we left Annapolis Landing on May 31, some boats stopped at the fuel dock or pump out station and then we all  headed East to spend a few nights at anchor.   Two places kept popping up as destinations to “not miss” on the Chesapeake- Rock Hall and St Michael.   We chose Rock Hall.

We found a nice little bay  on Swan Creek to drop anchor and took the dinghy to a marina.  The dock master  at haven Harbor Marina was happy to let us tie our dinghys to her dock; and even offered us use of the marina’s free courtesy bikes!
C and D canal area

A loopers dream- free transportation! Here we are posing for a photo as we return from a quick tour of the town.     A few chores such as haircuts, groceries, prescription refills were mingled with some window shopping.   (It’s easier to resist purchasing when we live on a 35 foot boat). We followed Sanctuary crew back to the boats, C and D canal area

Dave took good shots of a boat that wasn’t in our group.   He took the dinghy over to introduce himself and get an email so we can send them photos of the boat at the end of the rainbow!

C and D canal area

A quick storm blew through, and we were rewarded with a beautiful rainbow at the end of the day.


Next up in our journey, is the C and D Canal.  The “Chesapeake and Delaware” canal provides a short cut to the ocean between these two bodies of water.   It is known for being narrow in spots, turbulent in areas, and shallow if outside the channel.   Our intent was to hit the entrance on flood tide so the current would give us a push through the  canal.   Worked nicely, at times we were cruising at 11 mph.  ( our average is 8.5) . By late afternoon, we headed into Delaware Bay and our anchorage behind Reedy Island.
our friends on Fins passed us near the canal and headed for a marina in Delaware City.
c and d canal Next challenge- how to get in behind Reedy Island?    The charts explain to follow the shore line then make a 90degree turn between a rock pile and the island to short through a narrow passage.  Chart Note:  do not miss the turn as it is bordered by rock jetties that may be just under the surface at high tide.   yikes. Worth the effort as Dave led the little flotilla and each boat made the turn and safely popped into the bay to drop anchor for the night.  Another beautiful sunset and sunrise made for great photos to share with each other! Moon Shadow Thanks Steve on Sanctuary for great photos. Moon Shadow Moon Shadow We were taking phtos of Sanctuary at the same time: C and D canal area C and D canal area DELAWARE BAY

We are now in another potentially challenging body of water.   Often the winds come up in the middle of the day blowing waves from the ocean westerly up the channel.   Hope our homework on the weather window pays off.   The run down the bay from Reedy Island is timed for the outgoing tide- again planning to ride the extra 2.5 mph current to cruise the 55 miles in a timely manner.   We plot our course just outside the main shipping channel to give the big boys all the room they need. c and d canal
c and d canal C and D canal area Here we are looking back at Southern Cross and you can also see Enterprise scooting past the ship! C and D canal area There is plenty of water depth, just slight maneuvering around any fish net stakes, ship wrecks or odd obstacles, including large light house channel markers. C and D canal area


A short cut across Cape May cuts inland to the city of Cape May.   At the mouth of the canal is a terminal for large Ferry boats. cape may canal
Once we pass them, the channel is straightforward. Or so we thought. The rumor of New Jersey having the most aggressive boaters is now proving true.  As we slowly work our way into the channel local fishing boats and power boats are continually speeding past us in very narrow conditions.
IMG_0168 Each wave of wakes causes us to heave side to side – we turn into the wakes but then all the boats seem to be topsy turvy.   At one point we approached a narrow bridge with turbulent currents making steering a challenge.  c and d canal
A quick look back, and here comes a large cruiser trying to pass us!      Is this going to be the new normal!    Apparently, New Jersey is the highest concentration of population per square mile, and also the highest concentration of boaters.  Where is the Minnesota Nice when you need it?

Without further venting, we arrive at our destination- Canyon Marina.  Happy to get a looper discount and the AGLCA bonus of free electric hook up!   The pool looks inviting, yet we pile into the courtesy van to head downtown for look at the shops, and a peak at the beach. First came across another group of boaters down town and took this group shot. We visited with Seaquest as we had two things in common- we both have a Mainship boat, and are both from Minnesota! (they are south west Minnesota near Worthington, and we are in Buffalo near Minneapolis) Small world. With an eye on the weather, we opt to stay an extra day to relax and regroup. The next few days will be on the open ocean.  The option of following the New Jersey Intercostal water way has mixed reviews.   At places it is very shallow and many spots have shoaled in to where the channel markers can’t be trusted to be in the correct place.   Our choice is to find a good calm weather window and go the “outside route” up the Atlantic coast line- staying within a mile or so of shore.    There are three inlets considered A class to come back in for the night.   The first one is at Atlantic City so that is our destination.  We are not traveling with Enterprise, Southern Cross, The Lower Place, and Sanctuary. Also touched base with Aquafennatic for a pot luck on the dock; Last Call is anchored is in the bay, and our friends on Fins went ahead. C and D canal area

It was such a calm night in the marina, hard to believe rough weather is coming.
C and D canal area ATLANTIC CITY

With visions of staying at the Luxurious Golden Nugget Casino, reality set in, and we turned right instead.
atlantic city
Anchoring in a bay across from the city (free).   With the dinghy in the water, it was a quick ride across the channel to the boardwalk. What a fun afternoon listening to the band play on the patio, snacking on humongous pretzels and enjoying a sunny day on shore. C and D canal area

With the weather predicting high winds for 4 days; our group decided to bypass two inlets and head for Sandy Hook.  This would add several hours to the days run, with the advantage of putting the open Atlantic Ocean behind us.  The other option was to stay put in Atlantic City, and expect to stay put for up to 4 days waiting on calm weather.   Off we go- we signed up to be at Rockafeller Plaza on Thursday morning; no way are staying put in Atlantic city for the week!!

Visibility is about half a mile due to incoming fog banks.  The wind is from the east blowing on our beam making for more rolling motion than we like. (honestly- a lot more motion than any of the girls like) A planned 55 mile run to Manasquan Inlet,  grew into a 91.6 mile day as we rounded the tip of Sandy Hook.   Good news, the anchorage is just around the tip near the Coast Guard station, so just as the sun is setting we drop anchor!    Dave promised we would arrive before dark, and we did with about 10 minutes to spare.

Wahoo… We can see a bit of the New York Skyline off in the distance.   This coming week promises to be a highlight of our trip.

We have logged 5316 miles. Our engines have 679 logged hours.   We have been on the boat almost a year.  Its a whirlwind, as we just passed through 3 states in 3  days and will be in New York tomorrow!  Good Bye Maryland, Hello/ goodbye Delaware!!  Welcome to New Jersey!

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Annapolis for Memorial Day; and DC side trip by bus

Memorial Weekend is anticipated as the start of the summer boating season. Having been on our boat for almost a year, we still look forward to “spring boating” ! An advance reservation was made earlier at Annapolis Landing marina anticipating a crowd.    Good plan as a few other friends found marinas were filling up.

Leaving Solomon’s Island on Saturday May 27th, we crossed our fingers for smooth waters to cover the 55 miles to Annapolis.

Our group enjoyed dinner at an Irish Pub- O’Brien’s.  Voted one of the best meals on the loop!

Annapolis Memorial day


We attended Sunday service at the Naval Academy.  The beautiful chapel was filled with music and the parishioners were so friendly.

Annapolis Memorial day

We took a self guided walking tour around the campus before heading into downtown Annapolis.
Annapolis Memorial day

Side Trip to Washington dc

Experiencing Washington DC in a day took some prior planning.  The suggestions we received from Sanctuary crew was valuable in getting an idea of what to include.

Cathy and Colleen spent time browsing the internet and reading guidebooks to come up with a bus schedule and top picks at Washington DC.

Here is our itinerary :  Note, we have passed this itinerary on to several other boaters so if you have any feedback or suggestions please send them my way!

Commuter bus from Annapolis (about $4.00 each way)

1.Bus stops near Library of Congress- visit Jefferson library, courtroom artist gallery)

note- Tips- the commuter bus dropped us near Library of Congress. Later I was told a Dunkin’ Donuts is in lower level of the Madison building.  You can then access the tunnel system over to the Jefferson building. And go from Jefferson over to capital building.  Wish we had checked out the tunnel.
Also self guided tour of Jefferson library building PDF is on line had good info.  I missed the Gutenberg bible display!   Here are a couple links.

https://www.loc.gov/portals/ static/visit/documents/ QuickGuide.pdf

http://untappedcities.com/ 2014/07/25/the-underground- city-beneath-the-u-s-capitol- and-library-of-congress/

2. Cross street to US Capitol. ( Take turns going into visitor center if you have food or beverage in backpacks- no food allowed). Be prepared for Security checks

(-option,  rent a bike and ride to far end then work back-would be less traffic to ride in morning. We did not do this, it seemed a good idea by the end of the day of walking)
3.  Walk past FBI, CIA towards Trump building. (It is oldest post office) and interesting tour to top is offered  on certain days
We ate at a food court, others tried POV or Ebert’s.
4.  White House visitor center then photos at Whitehouse

5.  Smithsonian  American history ( Archie bunker chair, original USA flag display)
6. Washington monument-
7.  WW 2, Vietnam Memorial, nurses memorial
8. Lincoln Monument and reflecting pool (Take elevator to displays on lower level)
Walked toward bus stops about 5.

5.  Arlington cemetery- Uber  optional, we were not able to fit this in on the same day.

Board the bus at various stops. note that alternate buses go downtown Annapolis (some end at the park and ride) note- we found it filled up and we were glad we caught it early in the route- ).

First challenge of the day was to arrange  a ride for six people to the bus stop at 5:30 am.  Thanks to Steve for driving, and to Annapolis Landing Marina for letting us borrow the courtesy van!    We are all aboard the Commuter bus by 7am and arrive at DC by 8:30.

The pictures tell the story; so I wont get into details about the history…     of course there are many more Smithsonian museums, monuments and interesting architecture to see- but we are on a one day tour so this is the highlights:
Capitol Building

Good spot to practice a selfie!
washington dc , annapolis   White House

The perfect photo op with the White House in the background was  a very popular spot.  Our group spent a bit of time here! washington dc , annapolis To add some variety to our history filled day, a stop at the History Smithsonian was in order.    A couple featured exhibits included Archie Bunkers Chair, Apollo Ono’s ice skates, and early Muppets puppets.   A few exhibits were cycled out- including Seinfeld’s puffy shirt and the Wizard of Oz Ruby slippers !   washington dc , annapolis Monuments are awe inspiring, reverent, memorials .   A steady flow of people pass by the Vietnam memorial with its reflective granite and lists of names.  washington dc , annapolis

The statistics represented by various war memorials is such an eye opener , appreciation the sacrifices of so many.

washington dc , annapolis

washington dc , annapolis

Being in the presence of the iconic monuments is breathtaking.

Washington DC Loopers  Washington DC Loopers

There were so many more memories from this day, and we could have spent several days here.    Will return again.

To finish off the day, we hop on the bus,   Steve picks us up at the bus stop (with the courtesy van); and we arrive at the marina just in time for a birthday dinner!    Teresa serves up soup and bread with a few extra fixings to celebrate Steve’s birthday with a gathering of about a dozen boaters from various AGLCA  looping boats.
washington dc , annapolis

When I started this blog, my intent was to refrain from focusing on restaurants and eating.  Both topics are an integral part of our travels, so must be included from time to time!!

Annapolis is another must see town- ride the water taxi, explore the hilly streets, shop and eat in historical Annapolis.    We haven’t even touched the other neighborhoods as we were so intent on getting to Washington DC and now its time to say goodbye and move across the bay to check out the east side.   For instance , we got a photo but did not get a chance to experience this restaurant.  They open each day with a pledge of allegiance!

Annapolis Memorial day

Thanks to everyone who sent a suggestion for what to see and do; it really helps as there are so many choices .  You might say we have a lot of time, and we like to say there is no schedule, yet we plan to get to back to the Minnesota by Fall, and must keep moving!   Thanks for reading.

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Chesapeake Bay; Deltaville to Solomon Island May 21 updates

Chesapeake Bay is a large body of water! Reminds us of Lake Superior. There are several container ships on the horizon., many pleasure craft, and good news- plenty of depth. It is May 21, and we are on the way to Deltaville for the night.  For returning readers, you might notice we are catching up on posts, as it has been a busy couple weeks for blogging!
Chesapeake Bay Loopers

Chesapeake Bay Loopers
Chesapeake Bay Loopers

As another looper commented- its so nice that they put spots for the birds to build their nests.

Chesapeake Bay Loopers


Last minute change of plans at Deltaville. First take care of business- we tied up to the fuel dock and took advantage of the free self-service pump out station. This took care of “business” for Moon Shadow, Enterprise and Southern Cross. We noticed several boats were anchored just beyond the marina; and most of the slips were empty. Quick decision- ditch the $75 slip fee and move to the anchorage. Chesapeake Bay LoopersA few reviews of local anchorages note the possible deadheads and debris may foul an anchor.  Its always a relief when the anchor comes up, even if its caked in mud, its better than being twisted and stuck on the bottom.
Chesapeake Bay Loopers With thunderstorms rolling through , the anchor held fine and we happily dropped the dingy and buzzed over to Southern Cross for docktails. Enterprise crew opted to stay another night, we headed north on the Chesapeake with Pat and Cathy of Southern Cross. Turned out to be a lot choppier than we expected, we plugged along hoping a secluded anchorage would overcome bad memories of rocking and rolling on the bay.

Here is quote from Southern Cross our boating buddie:

“I hereby decree that from this day forward the Chesapeake Bay will be hence forth be named Wicked Sister
And like all wickedness she will lure you in with charm and beauty only to suck you in and shake you, roll you and toss you about like a rag doll
She will rain on your parade and she will leave you powerless and like the Jason Alden song says We left our mark on it and it left it’s mark on us
This ain’t no place for snowflake”


With the assistance of Active Captain ( our online guide) we chose an anchorage in Mill Creek. With Binoculars, we picked out the red then the green; then a set of red/green; some crab pots; a danger sign- past shallow shoaling; through a narrow pass and voila! Arrived at Anchorage! Beautiful as promised- we were the only two boats in the area. Other than a bit of rain; we were tucked in and cosy for the night. Chesapeake Bay Loopers

We had crossed from Virginia into Maryland!
Chesapeake Bay Loopers


Both Moon Shadow and Southern Cross tied up at the T-dock at the yacht club.  Easy straight in shot from the bay.  This turned out to be very rolly wave action during the night- the swells came in from Chesapeake Bay directly to the T Dock.    Next nights were better when the wind shifted directions.


Chesapeake Bay Loopers

With an immediate invitation to join the members for a shimp dinner, we all enjoyed an evening as guests at the yacht club.  They boast a huge collection of burgies from around the country.  Colleen found the The AGLCA, the  Great Lakes Cruising Club burgee, and the MTOA ( Marine Trawlers Owners Association) – we belong to all three  groups.

Chesapeake Bay Loopers

Chesapeake Bay Loopers
Chesapeake Bay Loopers



The fun of traveling with other boaters, includes searching for items on each others wish list.   Today it was Crab Cakes from Maryland and a special dessert created at Smith Island.

Chesapeake Bay Loopers

Who knew a 9 layer coconut cake with frosting and filling could be so good?
Chesapeake Bay Loopers

Its been a while since we had the folding bikes out of their bag.   Dave spent hours on the bikes – they have rusted and the chains seized from the rust.   Welcome to salt water.

Chesapeake Bay Loopers
Colleen’s is still enjoying her Mother’s Day flowers!
Chesapeake Bay Loopers


A quick summer storm blew through at Solomon Island- glad we were back from groceries and snug in the boat. This is Southern Cross secured behind us.

Chesapeake Bay Loopers

The view of sunset from the boardwalk in Solomon Island was beautiful.


Chesapeake Bay Loopers


Chesapeake Bay Loopers
Chesapeake Bay Loopers

Chesapeake Bay Loopers

And that’s it for looking back on Solomon’s Island.

Posted in A year on a boat, Atlantic ICW, Moon Shadow Log | Tagged , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Hampton- Carousel and Colonial Williamsburg

Have you been on a carousel lately?   If you get a chance, I highly recommend it.   Welcome to Hampton Virginia.

carousel horse
Looking for variety?  Hampton is throwing a Reggae Festival block party at the same as hosting the Square Dancing Convention!     Could you pick out who’s who ?
Hampton dancers Hampton dancers

Live like a kid again!    Cathy generously got tickets for all of us to ride the carousel!   ($1 per rider).     Brings back old memories of 4-h at the county fair as the music brought the room to life

Restored and now a feature along the water front.   
Hampton VA looping
Hampton VA looping
Hampton VA looping


Surprise delivery to the boat- Flowers for Mother’s Day along with a box of chocolates and dinner certificates.    My boys done good! It was delayed a few days as we were out in the boonies- no delivery services for flowers at Coinjock on the Alligator river!

    We had dinner at Brown Chicken, Brown Cow.  Craig figured we would be ready for a break from seafood! Good Choice too.      This is a new restaurant- only opened a few weeks ago.   Excellent choice.   We split a BBQ sampler.  Yum.

Hampton VA looping

We walked to the museum and noted that a country concert was tonight.  We joined in for a interesting and entertaining Mason Brown show.
Hampton VA looping


If you are ever in a marina looking to rent a car for six people- allow extra time!    The enterprise in Hampton brings vehicles in as needed; getting us set up almost never happened.   Once situated we all loaded in and went to Walmart for provisions before heading to the Colonial Williamsburg the next day.

Six people and provisions in dodge SUV.    Tight but much nicer shape than recent free loaners!  We appreciate both methods of travel.



We found Colonial Williamsburg to be very entertaining. Many of the reproduction buildings are so authentic you would think them to be original.  The period characters add their stories and make history so interesting.  It is set in 1774- a British Colony , before the American Revolution.


The Gardener

colonial WilliamsburgThe woodworkers shop
colonial Williamsburg

The Tailor- all hand sewn garments.  The sewing machine would not be invented for another 75 years.  The period depicted here is 1774- just before the American Revolution. colonial Williamsburg

colonial Williamsburg

Period wood working tools:

colonial Williamsburg

The guns displayed in the Governors mansion entrance.  All the detailed locks on gates and doors .

colonial Williamsburg             colonial Williamsburg

We met young Thomas Jefferson on the street. Then listened to a guide telling the viewpoint of the enslaved people.
colonial Williamsburg      colonial Williamsburg

The sheep are raised on the property, and sheared to provide wool for the weavers on site.
colonial Williamsburg

So many more photos we could share- The church, cemetery, street scenes and capital buildings.   Recommend this stop if you are traveling through Williamsburg!


With high winds and rain predicted, we stayed an extra day and got caught up on laundry, provisions, and cleaning.  Ready for cruising up Chesapeake Bay.

   We will cover roughly 180 miles before entering the C and D canal (Chesapeake and Delaware) on the northern tip.   This will be a jam packed portion of the trip as we expect to anchor in rivers, explore towns, side trip to Washington DC by bus, visit Annapolis (tour the Naval Academy) and perhaps try some local Crab!!  Some boaters choose to spend a month exploring the Chesapeake Bay area- we only have a week so may have to come back again to boat in this area.

  Colleen has been in touch with a few AGLCA Harbor Hosts along the way to get local knowledge of various towns.  A harbor host is a member of the AGLCA club who has volunteered to be host at their marina for visiting Loopers.   It is a great help if you have questions about local navigation or tides, recommended marinas, things to do or restaurants.    We really appreciate the local knowledge and look forward to meeting the harbor hosts along the way.

Thanks for reading- comments are welcome-  enjoy hearing from you!


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