Portsmouth, VA – Movies and Submarines

We left Deltaville around 7 am this morning and are headed to Portsmouth, VA at the very base of the Chesapeake. Our engine seems to have settled down without the chunk of goo in the fuel line. However, its a nice sailing day, so we have all 3 sails up and flying and have turned the motor off. Here is the sunrise as we left Deltaville this morning.

We got a few nice shots while we were underway. We are traveling with our friends Ed and Evelyn aboard Dutch Wind. Here is their boat flying their spinnaker.

And they got a photo of us underway as well.

All the boat traffic have been sitting around for the last week as hurricane Ian passed through. This is the first really nice day since Ian has passed so the boat traffic has picked up considerably. Lots of people starting to head south. The mass migration has started.

As we were coming into Portsmouth, Ed was ahead of us and called us on the VHF. He said, hey do you see the submarine up ahead? We didn’t see it until he pointed it out and holy cow was that thing was big and close. So very cool!

Then as we got closer into the Naval port area, there was another smaller submarine that was leaving the dock to head out as well. The Navy is very serious about security and getting too close to these vessels. They have police patrol boats that surround the waters so you don’t get too close. They hailed us on the VHF to make sure we moved out of the channel and out of their way.

We came into the Portsmouth free docks right in town at High Street. It’s a nice little basin in there that can hold several boats. When we arrived, no one was there. We had the place all to ourselves. Ed and Evelyn arrived first with us following behind. Here’s a nice little video that shows you the area.

In the evening after we arrived, we headed to the Commodore Theater in town for a showing of Amsterdam. The Commodore Theater is a uniquely restored 1945 art deco theater in the heart of Portsmouth that also has fine dining. The theater is on the National Register of Historic Places. Here’s a cool shot from inside the theater. The curtains over the screen are the original curtains from 1945. It was an awesome experience!

The next morning we had a nice lazy morning with coffee in the cockpit watching the world go by. Since I have my sewing machine aboard the boat and Ed needed his head sail fixed, we broke out the sewing machine and hauled it up on his foredeck and got busy. He had a couple of webbing straps that hold the ring on the clew of the sail that were coming loose and needed to be sew back on. Took about an hour to get it all fixed up.

After that job was done, we headed to the ferry to take us across the Elizabeth River from Portsmouth to Norfolk. We had lunch at the Tap House overlooking the marina at Norfolk. After lunch Evelyn and I went to get a pedicure while we left the guys to wander around town. After our pedicures were complete, we headed back on the ferry and back to our boats. We have a 3rd boat with Dave and Ray coming to meet up with us tonight and they will travel with us to Oriental, NC.

Since we had a crowd and Dave and Ray would be hunger after traveling all day, I made BBQ Beef Sandwiches for all us for dinner. Dave and Ray arrived around 4:30 pm and now the basin was quite full with boats, so Dave rafted up to Dutch Wind since there was no place left to park.

The tide here in Portsmouth is normally around 1 – 1.5 feet, however we are still getting some higher tides from Hurricane Ian. The tide here tonight after dinner was high enough that the docks we were tied to were about 1 foot underwater. The boats sat so high in the water that it was very difficult to get off of Ed and Evelyn’s boat at the end of the evening to head to our boat for the night. We actually had to use a spare halyard to lower us down to the dock. Mark and I took our shoes off and waded through the water back to our boat.

Tomorrow morning we will leave Portsmouth and head south.

2 Comments on “Portsmouth, VA – Movies and Submarines

  1. Thank you so much for documenting and sharing your trip. I love the descriptions and the pictures in particular. The theatre looks like it was a wonderful experience. What a piece of history you saw. Happy sailing.


  2. I’m pretty sure a a big balloon sail out front of a boat is called a divorce sail.


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