New England

A century ago, 300 individual communities dotted the islands of Penobscot Bay, Maine, each independently thriving off the land and sea. Today, the town of Rockland is one of 15 remaining communities, and it takes its role of culture-preserver seriously.
We dropped anchor in the lee of an uninhabited island and pulled the dinghy up the sandy beach. Soon we had a campfire blazing and the entire island to ourselves.
These days, instead of sailing on a small boat with college kids playing hooky from their summer jobs, I’m often on a slightly more comfortable boat with friends playing hooky from slightly more stressful jobs. But what hasn’t changed is that Edgartown remains the quintessential summer cruising destination.
The sun shone a milky white. Its weak rays were barely able to drive off the damp chill of the early afternoon as we made our way eastward in the Deer Isle Thorofare, a passage snaking between Deer Isle and the beautiful smaller islands of Merchant Row in Down East Maine. I carefully checked the chart against the red and green buoys marking the channel, mindful that straying off course could mean
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