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As soon as I purchased my new skiff some three years ago, I had to have the latest and greatest fish-finder/GPS machine. I got it installed, but once I turned it on, problems followed. The software on my machine had some initial problems that were later corrected. Still, I needed to load a new version of the operating software.

It wasn’t so long ago that boating shifted from a way to earn a ­living to a sport and pastime

With sailing the rage all over the Chesapeake, waterfront communities organized sailing clubs, fleets and regattas for sport and competition.     The Annapolis Yacht Club — in our times embarking on a $10 million expansion — reorganized in the late 1930s, after World War I and the Great Depression nearly put the venerable club out of business. The club was founded in 1886 and thrived in the first decade of the new century with races and regattas for small sailboats, canoes and shells.

Three boys in the summer of 1940 try to salvage an abandoned skipjack

Around and about the Sailing Capital of America, pleasure sailing is a way of life.     Yet it’s a recent invention, relatively speaking.     It took hold in one community in the summer of 1940, when Paul McDonald was an admiring 10-year-old summering on the Chesapeake in Fairhaven, way down south in Anne Arundel County. The late McDonald’s memoir, written 69 years later, takes us back to that summer. *   *   *

Almost 100 years ago, peolpe were astounded to find such large fish

When Lester Trott, 95 years old this year, was born in Annapolis, the capital city had scarcely 9,000 residents.     Les and his family, which included two older brothers, lived for a time in Eastport on Duvall’s Cove (or Well’s Cove), swimming in the clear waters of Spa Creek and trapping muskrats to sell their hides for pocket money. They netted big eight-inch-plus blue crabs — called channel crabs because of their size — that had molted and were hiding in the thick grass growing in the shallows in front of their house.

How to get the most from the U.S. Boat Shows

Annapolis may call itself the Sailing Capital of the World, but the United States Boat Shows make it the Boating Capital.     The Sailboat Show came first, introducing Chesapeake Country to in-the-water boat shows in 1970. The Powerboat Show came in 1972. For 40 years, the Sailboat Show has traditionally led, with the boats arriving the first full week of October.     This year the Sailboat Show takes second billing, at least on the calendar.

The last place in the world you want to take your boat

by Sandra Olivetti Martin with Doug Roberts September 7, 2012     Guess we had another one. Heard it hit Saturday night. Around 10:45pm, a 24- to 25-foot boat hit the Rockhold Creek jetty on its way in. No moon, apparently traveling too fast without using a spotlight and apparently missed the channel entrance light marking the end of the jetty and entrance to the creek. Seems it was moving along at a good rate of speed to get this high on the wall.

Study safe boating — online and free

Every voyage can lead to Scylla and Charbydis. Mariners have always known that monsters of the sea are both real and hungry. Smart — and lucky — mariners live to tell the tale.     That’s the kind of boater you want to be.     Boating safety courses — offered by the wise mariners of the Coast Guard Auxiliary and Power Squadron — improve your odds for steering safely around rocks, whirlpools and other monsters of the deep.

Head to a new place, and the fishing gets better

It was in the middle of the week and we had our Norfolk spot for live lining caught by 7am. Jumping up on plane, we headed toward the Bay Bridge. It was already too late. The concrete supports where we had had such great luck a day earlier had two skiffs anchored at each, and our third and fourth choices were being eyeballed by a couple of approaching charter boats.

Dee of St. Mary’s is your one chance on the Western Shore

Shanghaied into labor, two able-bodied passengers grapple a stout line hand over hand to hoist the 2,000-square-foot Dacron mainsail of the skipjack Dee of St. Mary’s up her 72-foot tree-trunk mast. Then First Mate John Fulchiron crawls out on the 19-foot bowsprit to raise the smaller jib. And off Dee goes.

Six destinations to remind you we are not meant to live on land alone

These are six of 99 stops in Simarski and husband Guy Guthridge’s six-year voyage of Chesapeake discovery aboard Bright Pleiades. Other journeys appeared in Bay Weekly between 2007 and 2008 under the title Voyages of Discovery.