Saturday, June 6, 2015
Cape May, NJ
We had a pretty smooth crossing of the Delaware Bay to Cape May on June 5. The current was with us for much of the way which lifted our speed to a whopping 11 mph on the Delaware River. This is a 2.5 to 3 mph lift over our regular speed. When we got into the bay we had 1 – 2 foot seas. All in all, an easy passage on a foggy overcast day.
The marinas in Cape May were mostly full because boats were waiting for the weather to clear. We tried to get into Utsch’s but were unable to so we stayed at South Jersey Marina which wins the prize for the nicest restrooms we’ve seen thus far. We generally use the showers in the marinas as they have a lot more room than the little shower on our boat. As we approached our assigned dock space, we were enthusiastically welcomed by Mark and Denise on Island Office, who we had met at the Rendezvous. We were also joined by Alice and Cornell on their little tug, Red Ranger, who had been following us out of Delaware City.
Cape May is designated as a national historic landmark. It has been in existence since the 1600’s but it didn’t become a big tourist destination until the 18th century. Cape May became one of the first resorts in America. It’s a charming town that has a “throwback” feel to it. We rode our bikes through the historic parts of town and passed many gaily colored “painted lady” homes. We also rode along the beach and saw all the old-fashioned hotels and big historic homes that have been converted to quaint bed and breakfasts. We strolled along a pedestrian only street that reminded us a bit of Lincoln Rd. in Miami Beach. Fortunately, it wasn’t swarming with tourists during our stay. Somehow Cape May has been able to preserve its unique ambiance as the the advent of the automobile made other towns along the Jersey coast like Wildwood and Ocean City more popular.
For dinner, we joined the two couples mentioned earlier and walked to the Lobster House, a famous seafood restaurant on the waterfront just five minutes from our marina. Alice and Cornell are finishing up the Great Loop which they’ve done over the last three summers. They will “cross their wake” in Hyde Park, NY which we look forward to visiting. Mark and Denise are from Orlando and are still in the early stages of their Great Loop adventure. They are frequently interrupted by that pesky thing called “work” with which they are still engaged.
The big decision for the day was whether to take the intracoastal route or the Atlantic Ocean route to our next stop, Atlantic City. New Jersey’s intracoastal is notoriously shallow with lots of shoaling. We weren’t sure if the ocean was going to be calm enough for the passage but as it turned out, the seas on Saturday morning were calm with light winds and 1 to 2 foot swells. This proved to be an easier, less stressful route. We left Cape May at 7: 45 a.m. and arrived in Atlantic City at 2 p.m. We’ll leave the boat here for five nights while we fly home to Ponte Vedra to finish packing and moving out of our lovely home there!