Sunday, Delaware City DL to Cape May NJ

June 7th, 2009 john Posted in The Loop (Ft Myers to Winter Harbor NY) | No Comments »

Day: 232  Miles: 61   Total Miles: 2810  Locks: 23

The plan was to wait until 8:45 so that we could leave Delaware City on a rising tide to get out of the canal.  Again we had a 2 knot current but we made it off the dock and down the narrow channel with no problem.  Once we cleared the last buoy going into the Delaware River, there was an audible sigh of relief by both the captain and mate.  Then we looked up and here comes two ocean going cargo ships coming down the river behind us from Philadelphia.  Here goes the tension again.

I had been careful enough to plot our route to stay out of the shipping channel as much as possible so it really was no problem.  That is until the one ship came out of the shipping channel cutting a corner.  Ok, so we gave him more room.

Crisis passed we were on our way down the Delaware River against a flood tide.  That is the tide was coming in and we were going out.  That slowed us down by about 1 ½ knots, but that had been part of the plan.   At this rate our GPS told us we would arrive at 9:00 PM.  However I had planned to go against the flood for four hours and then it would swing to an Ebb (going out) and I would pick up an extra 1 ½ knots.   At that point we were running at just under 10 mph and making great time.  

We entered into the Delaware Bay, now with the tide ebbing and the wind blowing out of the south southeast.   That means the winds and waves against the outgoing tide which means waves 2-4 feet.  The Emery El did fine.  In fact we were making such good time that we were going to arrive at the Cape May canal too early, just before low tide.  I had heard that the entrance to the canal was shallow on the right side due to big car-ferries backing out and departing for Delaware across the Bay.   So we slowed down to 6 mph, which was an effort with the ebb tide behind us.  That caused the boat to be a little more active in the high waves but we did fine. 

Just after low tide we entered the Cape May canal.  I hugged the ferry side of the entrance going in and all was fine.  It is a very short canal across the cape and soon we were in Cape May harbor on the East side.  We pulled into Utsch’s Marine (you try to pronounce that over a marine radio), pulled into the gas dock,  added 330 gallons of diesel, and then moved to an overnight slip.  I wanted to top up my fuel tanks before entering the high tax state of NY. 

It had been a long stressful day, so Barbara and I walked two blocks to the Lobster House restaurant and had a first class meal.  We could not believe it but we were in New Jersey.  We now can state that we are half way around our trip.  Another milestone!

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