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HomeChesapeake thru New Jersey Overview

Norfolk to Brielle, NJ

Great Loop Segment: Chesapeake through New Jersey
The segment of the Great Loop from Norfolk, VA to Brielle, NJ is 510 miles from the Chesapeake Bay to the NJ ICW. 

Chesapeake Bay general cruising information: You will find generally good weather for cruising in the bay, but storms can come up fast, so keep an eye on weather to the West. Also keep in mind the conditions can be vastly different from the lower Bay to the upper Bay. Tides move up and down the Bay, which is a bit different than you found in Georgia and South Carolina. Know that if it’s low tide in Virginia, it’s going to be high tide in the middle of the Bay and low tide in the upper Bay. Most of the Bay has a sandy bottom, but you will find some muck in the upper Bay. The Chesapeake Operational Forecast System is a great source for Bay conditions.


The Bay is quite busy with commercial traffic and you will want to keep your eyes open for crab pots/line and fish nets/traps. The water will be brackish until you reach Annapolis and you will need to be alert to the possibilities of jelly fish during the summer months in the lower bay.

Leaving Cape May and heading North, you have two options: the New Jersey ICW or the ocean route. Generally speaking, if you draft less than 3’, you should have no problems taking the NJ ICW. If you draft over 4’, you’ll need to take the ocean route because the NJ ICW can be less than 5’ deep in spots.
On the NJ ICW, do not just follow the magenta line ~ buoys are moved as needed, depending on water conditions.

Members-Only Content for this Segment
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Forum Posts
Forum Posts

Marina Suggestions Lower Chesapeake
Winter Layup on the Western Chesapeake
Boat Storage Near Norfolk
Boat Yard Near Norfolk
Craft Breweries and Vineyards Around the Chesapeake
Recommendations for Boat Yards: Mid-Chesapeake
+Chesapeake Repair Yards
Cruising the Potomac to DC
Marine Electrician on the Potomac?
Smith Island, worth it and if so, where to dock?
Chesapeake-Janes Island
Traveling from St. Michaels to Alexandria
Chesapeake Highlights
Detailing Service in Chesapeake
AC & H2O Heater Help in Annapolis Region
Chesapeake Repair Yards & Props
Overnight in C & D Canal
Heading South from NYC
NJ ICW versus Offshore
Diesel Fuel in the Upper Chesapeake
Where to Stop in the NJ ICW?
Deciding When to Do the Run Up NJ
Heading South on the Outside of DE and MD
Cape Charles VA to Erie Canal
NJ ICW Bridges
NJ ICW Not for the Faint Hearted but Doable
Chesapeake Highlights 
Chesapeake Summer
Cruising the Chesapeake
Cruising the Chesapeake (Foster & Susan)
The Chesapeake 
Chesapeake Marine Weather Forecast
Weather on the Chesapeake 2019
Navigation Threats Upper and Middle Chesapeake
Chesapeake Bay Operational Forecast System
Winter Storage Lower Chesapeake
Reliable Maintenance Facility Chesapeake Bay
Covered Slip in North Chesapeake Bay
Chesapeake Bay Harbor Hosts
Yorktown City Docks 
Recommendations in South VA
Washington DC Side Trip
Marina Recommendations for a Week in Washington, DC
Norfolk to New York
Surveyor in Deltaville
Surveyor Recommendations on the Chesapeake
Solomons Island Yacht Club, Solomons, MD
Solomons Island, MD
New Jersey ICW
New Jersey Intracoastal Waterway
New Jersey ICW from Cape May 2019
Navigation Alert--NJ ICW at Stone Harbor
Currents and Tides in Delaware Bay
Cape May to NYC
Some Anchorages and Places to Stay in NJ and NY
Segment from Norfolk to New York
Washington DC
Canvas work in the Kent Narrows area
Docktails in Cape May, NJ
Cape May Information
Recommendations in South VA
Liberty Landing Marina, New York City
New Jersey Intracoastal Waterway (NJICW) update
Chesapeake Bay Operational Forecast System
Optimal conditions for offshore New Jersey
Cape May area questions
Regent Point Marina, VA 
Barnegat Bay Inlet
Ocean City Md 
Question on doing the C&D canal down to Cape May
NJ ICW - AC to Manasquan
Solomon Island Yacht Club and Harbor Hosts Doug & Susan Smith.
Inside Waterway from Cape May Heading North 
Cape May Diesel repair
Electronics Work Recommendation Norfolk VA
Non-ethanol gas in Tidewater VA and Chesapeake Bay
Chesapeake this Summer
Perkin's mechanic in Annapolis area?
Marinas for short stay-overs
Looking for broker and storage location
Marine HVAC expertise
Slip for a month in the Chesapeake Bay
Chesapeake this Summer – who’s in?
Urgently looking for delivery Captain from Norfolk
Harbor Hosts and mail
Memorial Day Weekend – Chesapeake Bay Edition
Rocket Launch – Wallops Island VA
A little safety on the water
Annapolis Doings
Cruise from New Orleans to Lake Michigan
Marinas for short stay-overs
Canvas work in the Kent Narrows area
Chesapeake Bay – 2018 Spring Presentation
Along the Way
Segment from Norfolk to New York
Favorite flavors and where to find them on the loop
Barnegat Bay Inlet
Cape May Shark Tournament
Caution at Reedy Island anchorage
Cape May Loopers
Great Looper support in Cape May
Cape May area questions
Optimal conditions for offshore New Jersey
New Jersey Intracoastal Waterway (NJICW) update
Cape May USCG anchorage
C&D Canal to Waterford Notes Corrections
Atlantic City NJ
C&D Canal
The Chesapeake
NJ Intracoastal
New Jersey ICW
New Jersey Coast – Attention: All Loopers in Transit
Inside run of New Jersey ICW from Atlantic City
Currents and Tides
Optimal conditions for offshore New Jersey
Chesapeake Bay Operational Forecast System
ICW to Boston
Go/No Go Criteria for Ocean Crossing from Manesquan
New Jersey Coast
Cape May Canal

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Captains' Notes
Captains' Notes
Click Here for notes from Loopers on this segment.

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Great Loop Link Articles
Great Loop Link Articles
Links below are for entire newsletter issues.  Once you open the link for an article, go to the indicated page number to read that article.

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Sample Itinerary
Sample Itinerary
All Loopers have their own cruising style and preferences on miles to travel per day, cruising speed, number of nights per week in a marina, etc. This Chesapeake through New Jersey Itinerary, based on a preferred distance of 50 miles per day, was developed to give you an idea of the types of places and things you will see during your Great Loop adventure.

Additional Useful Information about this Segment
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AGLCA Great Loop Radio Podcast Episodes
AGLCA Great Loop Radio Podcast Episodes
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Other Useful Sites
Other Useful Sites