Sailing Afternoons
I build and use wooden boats.  I build them with non powered hand tools, without formal plans, and no epoxy. My favorite boats to build are the old time flat iron skiffs I grew up with.  They are simple, inexpensive and forgiving.  I like kayaks, canoes and small sailboats too. My journeys begin at my small boat shop near the Potomac River. The distance traveled is small, the enjoyment immense. Most us will never own a yacht, cross oceans, or travel far off shore. That fact should not diminish our enjoyment of being on the water. The majority of active boat owners use craft less than twenty feet and length. My tiny voyages are a day or so and close to home.  Sometimes I will put my boat on a trailer and take it to a new place. I am never without my binoculars, bird and wildlife books, a few bags for collecting shells and fossils.  Good waterproof boots are great for the colder months and water shoes for the warmer ones.  Appropriate clothing for the season is important as well.  Never let a little rain, or chilly day keep you from the water. You can always walk the shoreline,and just sit and observe if you don’t feel like getting out on the boat.   I have nothing against motorboats; however, my boats are not powered with motors.  I prefer a pole or a paddle, oars and sails, and a drift on the tide. You cannot hurry in this fashion.  Speedy travel between destinations will never happen; however, you will see and hear much, and you may discover the slow way is satisfactory. My boat shed is on a little hill with woods all around.  Down a short path runs Neabsco Creek.  The creek is about fourteen miles in length, as it drops in elevation its water picks up speed until it empties into a marsh and then the Potomac River. The creek was first mapped by Captain John Smith in 1608.  The name comes from the Indian residents from the Monohoac tribe. The translation of Neabsco is “at a point of rock”. The outcrop is now referred to as “”Freestone Point”. In colonial times the area was a source for building stone.  The point can be accessed at Leesylvania State Park, VA.