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Old 03-12-2019, 08:58 PM   #1
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Washington or Chesapeake?

We are planning to take our boat in May from Washington NC to Washington DC or somewhere on the Chesapeake. We would leave it there until late Summer.

We would spend about a week each month cruising around.

Our son will be at Quantico late summer for 6 months so it would be nice to be pretty close to him if possible.

Recommends?
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Old 03-13-2019, 12:51 AM   #2
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We are planning to take our boat in May from Washington NC to Washington DC or somewhere on the Chesapeake. We would leave it there until late Summer.

We would spend about a week each month cruising around.

Our son will be at Quantico late summer for 6 months so it would be nice to be pretty close to him if possible.

Recommends?
If your son is in the Marines, see if your son can get a slip in the Quantico Marina.

https://www.quantico.usmc-mccs.org/r...leFormat=false

https://marinas.com/view/marina/mnc3..._United_States

Otherwise, there are marinas north of Quantico around Occaquan/Woodbridge, and south on Aquia Creek.

If you want on the Bay, might look at Deale or Chesapeake Beach.

Depends if you want live aboard or not and your definition of "close".
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Old 03-13-2019, 06:47 AM   #3
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Lots of good cruising on the Chesapeake. If you stay on the Western shore, there are lots of marinas and interesting towns within an hour or 2 of Washington, DC. Might be worth breaking your stay up between 2 areas such as the Potomac near DC and somewhere on the Bay.

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Old 03-13-2019, 07:26 AM   #4
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I'm in Reedville, VA - that's too far for your purposes. But I think something like Solomons Island would be close enough by road to DC but a world away from the traffic is worth considering. That would also keep you from having to trudge up and down the Potomac to get anywhere in the Bay.
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Old 03-13-2019, 07:47 AM   #5
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DC/Quantico is WAY up the Potomac River. WAY up, as in not close to open waters of the Chesapeake. Folks over there may be able to describe local cruising better, but it wouldn't be a typical Chesapeake experience.

On the Chesapeake, useful options could be Solomons Island, Chesapeake Beach, Herring Bay (Rose Haven and Deale, Galesville (maybe), and Annapolis. From Quantico, probably Solomons Island to Deale could be a slightly easier commute... but for an occasional once/month visit, none of those would be all that onerous. And all could lead to very pleasant week-long Chesapeake cruises.

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Old 03-13-2019, 07:57 AM   #6
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There's a Navy marina at NAS PAX, it's across the river from Solomon's. Not sure if your son has enough pull to get you a slip. Solomon's itself is delightful, great maritime museum at Calvert, great yards. Not such a slog to get to the Bay like it would be in DC, but lots to see in DC. As suggested, perhaps break up the stay in different locales. If you have a vehicle there makes a huge difference. You can spend lots of time playing in DC traffic. True blood sport.
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Old 03-13-2019, 08:01 AM   #7
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DC area marinas will be expensive, except maybe the Marine's marina at Quantico. For reasonably priced marinas on the western shore near DC consider Deal, Solomons and St Mary's City. These will offer quick access to great cruising on the Chesapeake.


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Old 03-13-2019, 11:42 AM   #8
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There's honestly many more sights to see on the Chesapeake.

That and it's a LONG way up the Potomac from the Chesapeake. I've never found there was enough to see on the Potomac to make it worth the trip.

It's a lot easier to get out to the Chesapeake by car than to head up/down the Potomac. Bearing in mind that traffic north/south on that stretch of I-95 can be brutal at rush hour. The only reason I could seeing keeping a boat on the Potomac would be as a liveaboard for a very nearby commute.

The season tends to wrap around here by October, so factor that into your 6 month window too.

So how often do you realistically see your son coming to the boat, or you traveling inland? Because if you're going to be doing a lot of sight-seeing in DC that might change the dynamic and lean back toward a slip on the Potomac.
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Old 03-13-2019, 11:51 AM   #9
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... The season tends to wrap around here by October, so factor that into your 6 month window too.
...
And things are great when it does. If you are more self sufficient, you can manage nicely in the Potomac/Bay area until about Thanksgiving or even early December (depending on when winter actually arrives).

Things will be a lot less crowded boatingwise.
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Old 03-13-2019, 11:57 AM   #10
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If you are more self sufficient, you can manage nicely in the Potomac/Bay area until about Thanksgiving or even early December (depending on when winter actually arrives).
Agreed, but "when winter actually arrives" is a crapshoot around here. I've lamented decommissioning too early and having 70F days in December. Or a bit late and having frost warnings mid-October.

I joke "we get all four Seasons here... sometimes in the same week!"

This week, for example.
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Old 03-14-2019, 07:04 AM   #11
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DC is inland , hot & muggy in the summer , anywhere on the coast would be better.
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Old 03-14-2019, 08:25 AM   #12
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I live here, it's no less muggy anywhere around the Chesapeake when Summer weather hits. But at least on the Chesapeake you can head out across more open water. Unless you're in a sailboat and it's August. Then you sit there, with no wind, baking like a Thanksgiving turkey.
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Old 03-14-2019, 11:01 AM   #13
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I live here, it's no less muggy anywhere around the Chesapeake when Summer weather hits. But at least on the Chesapeake you can head out across more open water. ...
I live there too. In the summer there are times we just stay home because of the heat and humidity. The days when the Bay is best for boating (i.e. flat clam) can also be the worst. Also, the biting black flies when you are near land in some of the less inhabited parts of the Bay.

AC on your boat in the summer is a great thing to have.
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Old 03-14-2019, 03:21 PM   #14
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We've encountered a mix of bugs on the water. It's quite a wide range depending on where you are and at what point in the season. All the tiny little ones that alight on the boat overnight (and die) are annoying to clean up the next day.

I sometimes feel like I have an AIS beacon for the mosquitoes with how readily they'll find me.

Given how short the season is around here, the only thing that keeps us from the boat is thunderstorms. This past year we had so much rain there were almost no jellyfish anywhere north of the Potomac. Of course that also came with a tremendous amount of prop-killing debris too. I'm hoping the Conowingo situation doesn't happen again this season.
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Old 03-21-2019, 07:57 PM   #15
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If you like blue crabs, the Chesapeake is the place to catch them or dock and dine. My favorite spot is pulling into The Crab Claw in St. Michaels MD. Tie up, walk 5 feet, sit down and gorge while watching the harbor traffic. Dock full? No problem. Anchor, short dinghy ride, tie up, walk 5 feet and gorge.
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Old 03-21-2019, 08:31 PM   #16
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The nice part about the area is you can get decent steamed crabs just about anywhere. The supply and price varies, though it's nowhere near as inexpensive as it used to be.
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Old 03-21-2019, 08:55 PM   #17
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Did someone say crabs!!!!

St Michaels, Baltimore, And The Turn For Home | AtAnchor.com
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Old 03-24-2019, 07:42 PM   #18
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Point Lookout Marina is fairly priced, with moderatly priced restaurant an easy walk from the dock - with fabulous crab cakes! North Shore of the Potomac near the mouth.
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Old 03-24-2019, 08:10 PM   #19
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A little more......Point Lookout Marina is 61.5nm from Quantico Creek per Navionics, the restaurant at PLM is Sunset Cove, check for open hours, and when I stopped there, Chef Andy served me my all time favorite crab cakes. Nice folks, good fuel price, pumpout is on the fuel dock, and the marina is well sheltered.

Noting a posting to this link from Reedville, that's a great stop, anchor or find a boatyard. We had a great view of a memorial tower - nicely re-purposed smokestack from Menhaden fishery days, beautifully lit at night. We tied up at a boatyard across the creek from the memorial, paid a reasonable fee at the boatyard for the dock space (not a marina, shower was primitive, but we were glad to be there), and we saw some beautiful hand crafted wooden workboats under construction - wonderful experience at what I feel was as authentic a location off the Chedapeake as one could find. Reedville is a step back in time. Didn't eat near the water, so I can't speak for food, but my fine crew on board said the restaurant at the head of the harbor was good, but closed on the day we were there. Reedville is another well shelterd small harbor, and we were ducking August storm cells - a tornado warning chased us off the bay (early August, 2017).
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Old 03-25-2019, 01:37 PM   #20
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Quantico,VA is an independent town accessible only through USMC base Quantico.
It is my understanding that the very pleasant marina is under town control.
Enjoy your son...SEMPER FI!
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