Thursday, July 5, 2012


We left our dock at the Hampton Yacht Club near Norfolk to enter the largest estuary in the United States, with twelve large rivers flowing into it, the Chesapeake.  

You know you're in the Chesapeake when the boats start looking like these:

Our first stop was a very small town called Onancock, Virginia, where we joined the town folk for an ice cream social.  This is one of those small towns where everybody knows everybody.  But nobody knew us.  There were lots of old people.  We fit right in.

Onancock sits a few miles up a river in some really beautiful country.

We found a peaceful corner for Moonshadow, dropped the hook, and put up all the flags we have to dress up for the fourth of July.

We met Scott Ripley and Michele Workman aboard their 58' aluminum catamaran motoryacht named Orza. Scott had her built in Bellingham Washington and cruised down the west coast, through the Panama Canal and up to Norfolk.  

Scott brought out his  stainless steel 10 gauge cannon which he let us both fire to celebrate the fourth.

We didn't think there would be any fireworks since the town is so small, but one family had some fireworks they lit on the end of their dock.  Then we heard some booms and turned to see the town had some fireworks going off at the town square.  Finally a nearby  waterfront home very near Moonshadow's anchorage had a private fireworks display complete with aerial skyrockets and the works.  Not to be out done, John fired two of Moonshadow's out of date flares.  This time, no buildings caught fire... but that's another story.  It turned out to be a really memorable 4th of July celebration.  

Happy Birthday Good ole USA!!

Today, we sailed Moonshadow north to Solomans Island, Maryland on the western shore of the Chesapeake.  

Along the way, a ship appeared on the horizon.  It took a long time to figure out which side of Moonshadow this ship would pass.  When we pulled closer it became evident this old relic had no intentions that involved Moonshadow.  

This old wreck sits perfectly upright in 16 feet of water and has been extensively used for bombing practice.

(click images to enlarge)

Here's an aid to navigation you don't see everyday... it reads DANGER BOMBING.

That would be some fireworks on a whole different scale!

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

John and Deb,
Fantastic pictures of Chesapeake which has always fascinated me. Really am enjoying reading your exploits now that I found your site through the SDYC current commodore's email post. James Michener wrote a book titled Chesapeake which is a historical of the Chesapeake (and fictional). As with many of his books, it is lengthy. Maybe there is a used book store in one of the small towns where you can pick up a copy. Our family spent the 4th on my in laws boat watching fireworks in Newport Bay, CA. Quite spectacular. You could even see fireworks as far away as Laguna Beach. Enjoy.
Jim P. (SDYC)

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