Chesapeake / Delaware Canal (C&D Canal)

The C&D Canal is a man-made canal that is 14 miles long by 450 feet wide. It runs roughly east and west and connects the Delaware River with the Chesapeake Bay. It was completed in 1829 and allowed commercial shipping traffic to transit from Baltimore to Philadelphia and eliminate 300 miles by not having to go around the Delmarva peninsula.

We stopped for the night at Reedy Point which is near the eastern end of the canal so that we could time the tide and current on the C&D to allow for a favorable current to push us along through the canal instead of trying to fight against the current.

We woke up this morning with the intention of leaving around 8:20 am. However, when we woke up, we were fogged in. You couldn’t even see the shoreline in any direction, let alone much past the boat. We couldn’t even see any other boats in the anchorage. We will have to sit tight and wait for the fog to lift before we can get underway.

We calculated that we could leave as late as 12 noon and still hit a favorable tide to transit the canal. However, we are hoping the fog will lift sooner than that so we can be underway. For now, it’s time for coffee!

We didn’t have to wait for too long however and the fog had lifted enough for us to leave about 10 am. Other boats also started to leave the anchorage about the same time. Getting ready to go we flipped on the VHF and heard an announcement that the C&D canal was now open for transit. I guess they closed the canal due to the fog, so we couldn’t have gone if we wanted to.

We were finally underway and dodged the commercial traffic that was headed to the C&D canal as well. Turns out most of the ships. They are big around here.

After turning into the C&D canal we passed under our first bridge at the beginning of the canal.

In total there are 5 bridges that we had to pass under on the C&D canal. 4 of the bridges have plenty of height and we don’t need to worry about. There is one railroad lift bridge that we might need to worry about. If it’s in the closed position we will need to have it raised to pass through. Luckily when we came through that area that bridge was in the open position and we passed through without any issues.

After our boat rage incident on the water yesterday with a boat named Shanti, we ran into Shanti again on the C&D canal. He was going a bit slower than us and we decided to pass him. No way were we passing him between him and the shoreline on the inside, we passed him on the outside and he behaved just fine today.

Before we knew it we were nearing the end of the C&D canal and came upon Chesapeake City. That place with rather full and hopping with a lot of boats. Seemed like a pretty little town. We are heading into the Chesapeake Bay and up the Sassafras River. Here are some views of Chesapeake City as we passed by.

Once we left the C&D canal we were officially in the Chesapeake Bay. Wow! What an accomplishment! We are so excited to be in the Chesapeake and so near Annapolis and looking forward to the boat show. It will be a great experience having our boat here for the boat show. We can hardly believe that we have travelled over 1500 miles by boat through 8 states, 3 of 5 Great Lakes, sailed part of the Atlantic and rivers and canals. We are feeling very accomplished. Officially in the Chesapeake!

We made our way up the Sassafras River and headed toward Skip Jack Marina tucked up the Sassafras River. Once we got settled on the dock, we ate dinner at their restaurant near the marina and called it a night. There was a beautiful sunset over the marina and on the way to dinner we spotted an egret.

That’s Painkiller in the far left side of the photo. We will spend the next couple of night here at Skip Jack. We have some time to explore the Chesapeake Bay area before we make our way to Annapolis for the sailboat show.

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