Michaels, nestled into a quiet inlet at the mid-section of the Bay is within a few hours drive from Washington DC.

It’s a very good place in which to begin an exploration of Chesapeake's less developed side.

An ignominious end sped along by rampant, unchecked over-development of tidal marshes, the last refuges for fish hatcheries and water birds, was a real possibility.

au dating plus game clip 6-78

Strict controls are now in place regarding urban development, safeguarding wildlife breeding habitats and preventing further agricultural runoff into the Bay.

[caption id="attachment_2623" align="alignnone" width="170"] Chesapeake Bay Bridge & Tunnel connects sleepy Cape Charles to crowded Norfolk/Virginia Beach.[/caption] For the casual traveller interested in exploring a part of America that is too often overlooked by international visitors, Chesapeake offers an intriguing insight into the heart of the nation.

St Michael's Chesapeake Bay Maritime Museum’s quirky displays help in understanding the Bay’s emergence as the nation’s first waterway. [caption id="attachment_2626" align="alignnone" width="177"] Tilghman Island waterway scene[/caption] Tilghman Island, connected to the mainland by an historic drawbridge, is quintessentially Chesapeake. A small fleet of skipjacks, a Chesapeake invention that replaced the barge-like 'Bugeye' oyster boat as the best means in which to dredge for oysters, operates from Tilghman Island’s main harbour.

If children are involved, they will certainly enjoy being a sailor for a day. Skipjacks occupy a special place in Chesapeake’s maritime history.

Far too large an area to explore in only one visit, I suggest that new visitors concentrate their time on the eastern shores of Maryland and Virginia with a side trip into Delaware to comprehend Chesapeake’s unique character.

[caption id="attachment_2624" align="alignnone" width="147"] Chesapeake Bay sunset[/caption] St.

[caption id="attachment_2627" align="alignnone" width="163"] Tilghman Island skipjack bows and ducks[/caption] The other place in which to see skipjacks at work is at Deal Island’s Wenona town harbour, where I inquire casually about sailing on one. 'You can just hire one at the wharf over there (pointing gruffly over his right shoulder) if you ask nicely. I’d take you out myself but you’d have to work hard or just pay me a lot of money.' This is typical Chesa-speak: direct, no-nonsense and to the point, very humorous too if you’re patient and have no expectations.

[caption id="attachment_2628" align="alignnone" width="187"] Deal Island town street scene[/caption] Deal Island is also a notable Wildlife Management Area famed for its water bird population.

Captain John Smith followed in 1608 while he thoroughly explored the vastness of Chesapeake Bay, charting its shallow waters to establish a permanent colony at Jamestown in 1608.