My wife, Gail, and I bought our first sailboat in 1997, a 1990 Hunter 28 we christened Moondance
, and immediately became obsessed with cruising the Chesapeake Bay. Moondance
, gave us most of what we loved about land camping, but with the freedom to anchor almost anywhere we wanted. The addition of a 9 foot Avon inflatable dinghy with a 5 HP outboard (Moondink
) gave us the ability to both explore and stay out for long periods and we quickly found ourselves spending every weekend and day off cruising somewhere. The lights provided destinations, but were also portals to the past, its people, economy, and ways - when highways didn't exist, steamboat lines were a key form of transportation, and oysters were the foundation of whole communities.
We subscribed to Sail
, Cruising World
, and Practical Sailor
magazines, read Lynn and Larry Pardy, Beth Leonard, and many others, listened to Eileen Quinn, went to the Annapolis Boat Show each year, attended Safety at Sea, learned and dreamed. Eventually, we sold Moondance
and bought a larger, more blue water capable boat, a 2005 Caliber 35 LRC we christened Alisios
. We took her up to New York, around Long Island, and back, studied for our captain's licenses, then, in the Fall of 2007, took a leave of absence from work, and sailed her down the ICW and to the Bahamas and back.
Now, we've come full circle. We're back at work. We continued to sail the Chesapeake for a few years, then sold Alisios
in the Spring of 2015. While I look at the photos of our trip to the Bahamas with some yearning (particularly over the winter or when life has its down-turns), the thought of the Chesapeake always makes me smile and, while we no longer have a boat we can overnight on, we continue our love of the water and the outdoors in general.
This Cruising section of the site is a mix of personal photos, information on the Hunter 28 and Caliber 35 LRC, a "how-to" for Circumnavigating the Delmarva Peninsula
, the journal of our trip to the southern Bahamas and back in the form of a .pdf book titled "Significant Deviation
", and a few related items. Significant Deviation
contains quite a bit of information for someone planning a similar trip, including an appendix with lists of charts and cruising guides, our inventory & checklist, provisions, and stops. Several people have found this section inspiring and/or useful and I hope it continues to be so.