Wednesday, June 14, 2017

6/9-6/14 Up the Choptank, St. Michaels and Georgetown

6/9 We cruised out of Rock Hall back into the Chesapeake and down to the Choptank River.  As one heads into the Choptaank, there is a lighthouse that is their own leaning tower of Pisa.  In 1977, it was tilted due the ice and snow that year, and remains tilted to this day.
We had been told of an excellent anchorage on the north side of the Choptank, San Domingo Creek.  It is called the back door to St. Michaels.  From this pleasant anchorage, it is only a short dinghy ride to a free town dock, where the locals put in their kayaks, and paddle boards, and a few watermen keep their boats.  After we dropped the anchor, we took the dinghy to investigate and plan the next day.  After dinner, the full moon hung over the anchorage.  We knew we had made a good choice.

St. Michaels is known as a very upscale town and is well known for the Chesapeake Maritime Museum.  So Saturday 6/10, we dinghied in to begin exploring.  We hadn't gone far up the street from the dock, when I saw two homes with a beautiful connecting garden.  The sign on the gate beckoned me to enter.
There were paths around the houses with nooks and crannies filled with flowers, greens, and items that added to the enjoyment.
A sign towards the street said one word, "calm".  An engraved piece of granite offered the observation, "One never crosses a canyon in two small leaps". 

We hadn't gone 100 yards and I was already in love with St. Michaels.  We meandered up Taylor St. which was lined with unique shops and eateries.  A farmers market was being held.  John thought the Amish lemonade was terrific.  I bought fresh radishes that I enjoyed the next several days.

The Maritime Museum was the best of all the ones that I have toured.  In addition to being a museum, it is a working boatyard where they are restoring examples of all sorts of boats that have worked the Chesapeake.  A former screwpile lighthouse was moved to the site for display when it was going to be dismantled.  I thought it was neat that a troop of Girl Scouts were able to sleep in the lighthouse the night before.
The view from the top of the lighthouse was neat.  In one direction, one could see all the boats entering the channel.  Saturdays are busy in St. Michaels.
Looking in other directions, one could see the docks and the boats that were being worked on. 

The exhibits included being able to catch crab.  I learned about a crab catching technique I have seen here many times now, a trot line.  The watermen drop long lines, usually a mile or two long, to the bottom.  On the line, they have periodically tied in chicken necks and cow lips.  Once they complete putting out the line, they go back and forth collecting the crab.  There were buildings that used to belong to the Navy that are now part of the museum.
On the porch of one is this huge figurehead that was removed from a Navy ship because it was so heavy.

We strolled back to the dinghy but not before stopping at Awful Arthurs for some lobster mac 'n cheese.  It was even better than it looked.  The waitress told me their secret. They use lobster bisque to make the cheese sauce instead of milk.  Oh, yum!
We stopped at a Village Grocer and got wonderful sandwiches for supper.  The sunset that night was spectacular too.  Sleeping on the hook is always so restful.

Sunday morning we headed up to church.  The sun was strong and it had gotten really hot.  The google map directions took us along a short cut using the St. Michaels Nature and Art Trail.  There was this heron piece, Seeking Refuge.
This piece entitled Fisher King was made from recycled steel. 
The church was very nice, welcoming and air conditioned.  After church, we were walking towards town.  A lovely couple stopped.  They had seen us at church and would be happy to give us a ride uptown.  We welcomed their kindness and were thankful for them.  We ate a late lunch uptown and headed back to the boat.

The forecast for the next few days actually said, "VERY HOT".  We were headed to Georgetown, Maryland further up the Choptank River.  John did some research and found the Hyatt Golf and River Marsh Marina.  On our way up the Choptank, we saw this very famous boat, Redhead.  It is owned by Jeffery Seigel, who founded and just sold Active Captain.  We called on the radio and congratulated him on the sale.

We arrived at River Marsh Marina.  The floating docks are very nice and wide.  The staff were terrific.  We are living the life of the rich and famous.  The Hyatt has 3 pools, a hot tub, mini golf, lifesize chess, in room service delivers to the pool and so much more.  Our favorite pool was the adult infinity pool.   Look at the view across the Choptank River!!  John found an infinity monster in the pool too.

We sat under umbrellas to stay out of the sun.  I managed to get 4 loads of laundry too.  I had crab bisque for dinner last night that was chock full of crab.  Tomorrow, we will be leaving but have had a great three days here.  We liked it so much that we sent the information to AGLCA for them to consider having a rendezvous here.

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