Pirates of the Chesapeake

Piracies are CPA’s local mid-week evening paddling venues organized by volunteers at locations around the Chesapeake Bay area.  Pirates convene after work, paddle for a few hours and socialize to break up the work week.  Check out a Piracy near you.

All piracies require a signed CPA waiver. If you’re interested in starting a Piracy, please contact the Steering Committee

Pirates of ALGONKIAN

Algonkian Regional Park, Sterling, VA The Pirates of Algonkian are captained by James Higgins, formerly captain of the Sugarloaf piracy. Congregating Tuesdays 6:00 pm at the Algonkian Regional Park boat ramp. As a group we paddle upstream to the third Potomac island called Van Deventer. This is about 2 miles from the launch. Often we take a break or paddle either farther upstream before returning with the river current. Paddlers must be off the water at or near Sunset due to Park Regulations! The launch fee is $4 for non motorized watercraft.

In addition to paddling for fun and exercise, the piracy spends time practicing edging, sculling, rescues, radio communication, as well as nature photography.

Requirements: PFD, spray skirt, bilge pump, paddle float, drinking water, headlamp/flashlight, and appropriate protection for the elements.

Optional: snacks, camera, VHF Radio, and a big friendly smile to share with all. Prepare for the paddle by listening to the latest weather reports and monitoring the Pirates of Algonkian forum for late breaking news.

Visit: Discussion Forum, Email
When: 6:00 PM until Sunset Tuesdays
Where: Algonkian Regional Park: From the Beltway (I-495), take Route 7 west 11 miles to Cascades Parkway north, and drive 3 miles to the park entrance.


Pirates of ARUNDELL

Anne Arundel County (Annapolis Area), Maryland We are the Pirates of Arundell, named for Anne Calvert, Baroness Baltimore (née Arundell), an English noblewoman, daughter of Thomas Arundell, 1st Baron Arundell of Wardour and wife of Lord Baltimore, who founded the Province of Maryland colony.  She is said to have been a most beautiful and accomplished woman.

Wednesday evenings – Paddle time is 5:00-6:00 First launch aim for 4 -4:30 PM with later arrivals departing around 5 PM to return by 7 – 7:30 PM (see Discussion Forum link below). As the Parks do close at dusk – so your paddling time may be shorter in the fall season, which is one reason we try get some good paddling time earlier. Please do consider joining us – just look for Bela’s orange kayak with other folks arriving around 5 PM – launching by 5:30 PM. 

Volunteer to cook or bring snacks! Post-paddling snacks, cookies and appetizer fare fit for Pirates are mightily appreciated. Occasional group suppers may pop up on our calendar depending on our launch location.  The Pirates may re-convene at  a nearby restaurant to eat. These are some of the places we may visit.  If you find  a good spot, please pass the location to our Piracy Committee. More info on this week’s launch location will be posted on the CPA Pirates of ARUNDELL  Forum see link below.

  • Galesville Wharf Kayak launch4847 Riverside Drive, Galesville, MD From Annapolis, take Route 2 (Solomon’s Island Road) south and turn left onto Route 214 (Central Ave.). Turn right onto Route 468 (Muddy Creek Road). Turn left onto Route 255 (Galesville Road). Continue on Galesville Road until it ends and turn left. The parking lot is located on the right. Parking may be limited.
  • Beverly-Triton Beach Park1202 Triton Beach Road, Edgewater, MD 21037 From Annapolis, take Route 2  (Solomon’s Island Road) south (4.5 miles) to Route 214 (Central Ave.). Continue on Route 214 (Central Ave.) and turn left onto Shoreham Beach Road, then continue onto Triton Beach Road. 100-yard cartable carry to the water from unloading zone, then park in lot.
  •  Jonas Green Park1997 Baltimore Annapolis Blvd., Annapolis, MD 21409 From Pasadena, take Route 2 (Governor Ritchie Highway) south to the Route 50 east exit. From that exit, bear right onto the Route 450 exit making a left at the stop sign onto Route 450. Continue on Route 450 to the traffic light at the base of the Naval Academy Bridge. Make a left onto Route 648 (Baltimore & Annapolis Boulevard) then an immediate right into Jonas Green Park. Beach is 20 yards from parking lot. 
  • Homeport Farm Park11 Homeport Drive, Edgewater, MD 21037 From Annapolis, take Route 2 (Solomon’s Island Road) south of (Aris T. Allen Boulevard) and make a U-turn after you pass Tarragon Lane and head back north on Route 2. Turn right onto Homeport Farm Drive and follow the signs to the park. 150 yard cartable carry to launch on Church Creek. 
  • Shady Side Park: 1355 East West Shady Side Road, Shady Side, MD 20764 From Annapolis: Take Solomons Island Road (Route 2) south to Central Avenue (Route 214). Make left onto Central Avenue (Route 214), go 1.5 miles, turn right onto Muddy Creek Road (Route 468). Go about 12 miles to Shadyside. After passing the Shady Side Post Office make no turns. Turn right onto East West Shady Side Road. 200 yard cartable carry to launch on Parish Creek. 
  • Smithsonian Environmental Research Center647 Contees Wharf Road Edgewater, Maryland 21037 Directions: Take the Maryland 2 S/Solomons Island Rd ramp to Edgewater (3.3 mi), Turn left onto MD-214 E/Central Ave E (1.4 mi), Turn right onto MD-468 E(1.0 mi), Turn left onto Contees Wharf Ln and continue to end.

Weekly launch locations will change!  Visit the Discussion Forum below.

Visit: Discussion Forum, Email 

When: 4:30-6:00 PM Wednesdays

Rich Stevens


Pirates of BALTIMORE

meet every Tuesday evening, launching from various sites around Baltimore City and County. Some favorites include Dundee Creek, Rocky Point State Park, Wilson Point, Mariner Point State Park, Island View Waterfront Café, Turner Station Park, and more. Our paddles will be a time to destress, socialize, explore the natural environment of the upper Chesapeake bay area, and from time to time practice basic rescues and specific paddle strokes. Our routine is to paddle till dusk and then go grab a bite to eat at a local restaurant.

On the water time is at 6 pm sharp so please arrive by 5:30 to have enough time to unload your kayak and gear. Required gear for these events includes: sea kayak (14’ recommended for open water paddles, with flotation both bow and stern), paddle, PFD, whistle, spray skirt, paddle float and bilge pump, and kayak deck lights, drinking water, and if you have these: Marine radio, spare paddle, tow rig, and snacks.

The schedule of events with exact locations and dates can be found on the CPA Meetup website (FYI: Please indicate your attendance on the Meetup site, and please change your RSVP if your plans change. It is very helpful if we know who is coming). We will begin the season on May 7th and paddle through to early October.

You must compete one CPA waiver that will cover all the Tuesday evening paddles and an additional CPA waiver each time you participate in a posted skills session. Waivers must be handed in prior to when you launch.

Visit: Discussion Forum, Email
When: Usually meet at 5:30 to paddle at 6:00 PM Tuesday
Where: TBA


Pirate Captain
(410) 939-0269



Pirates of the EASTERN SHORE

Kent County, Maryland This piracy will provide you with opportunities for skills practice as well as general paddling. the Captain may also set up some clinics where the focus will be on specific skills similar to the Piracy of Baltimore. Join us at one of the two location listed below as we start this new Piracy on the Eastern Shore for the 2012 Season!

Visit: Discussion Forum,  Email
When: meet at 5:00 PM Wednesday
Where: Launch points

  • Turner Creek (Turner’s Creek Road Kennedyville, MD 21645):This location has a boat ramp launch and a small somewhat rocky beach area. From the launch, we can paddle out of Turner Creek into the Sassafras and go either up or down river. Turner Creek has limited parking at the ramp, but a large overflow parking lot close by.
    From Chesapeake Bay Bridge: head east on route 50 E to 301 N. In 6 miles take route 213 N to Chestertown (19 miles). Continue through Chestertown on route 213 N for 10 miles and turn left on MD route 298. Travel approximately 2 miles and turn right on Turner’s Creek Road. Drive approximately 1.5 miles to Sassafras (on left) or 3 miles to Turner’s Creek parking lot on left immediately before the wharf.
  • Buckingham (Buckingham Road, Chestertown, MD 21620): is a sand ramp on the Chester River about 4 miles upriver from Chestertown. Directions: Proceed east on MD Route 291 for about 1.2 miles beyond the Morgnec site. Turn right onto Buckingham Road and proceed to the end.

Pirate Captain
Volunteer Needed!



Washington, DC We paddle from the Columbia Island Marina. We meet Thursday evenings at 6:00 pm, paddle away at 6:30 pm, and will typically stay on the water for about an hour-and-a-half. We meet every week once the water warms up in the Spring until late October (see Meetup for exact dates). We meet regardless of weather and make a safety-oriented decision whether to paddle based on real-time weather conditions (any exceptions will be posted on the forum). In the summer the marina sometimes has food and live music on Thursday nights, which we take advantage of after paddling. Other times we’ve gone out for a quick meal at a nearby restaurant.

Visit: Discussion Forum,  Email
When: 6:00 PM Thursdays
Where:  We launch from Columbia Island Marina. Columbia Island Marina is off of the George Washington Parkway Southbound, near the Pentagon. Visit the Columbia Island Marina Directions page.

Tom Heneghan
Rob Pearlman


Pirates of the NORTH

Havre de Grace, MD You are invited to join the PON on our weekly Thursday evening paddles. We think we have some of the best paddling in the Chesapeake. Our home base is Havre de Grace (HdG), where we have multiple interesting paddles to include the Susquehanna River, Garrett Island, the Fishing Battery, Furnace Bay and more. We also launch from other sites to include the Elk River and the Northeast River. In 2022, our home base in HdG will be the Tydings Park boat ramp, also known as the HdG City Marina. Our long time home launch, Roberts Park, is out of commission until late summer as they construct a living shore line project there. Our regular launch time is 6PM, but this is subject to change as is our location so please check the CPA Meetup. Please come join us.

Visit: Discussion Forum, Email
When: Meet at 530, launch at 6:00 PM Thursdays
Where: Roberts Park – At the junction of Otsego St, Union Ave N, and Water St. below the Amtrak bridge


Pirates of OCCOQUAN

Upper Potomac A Group of dedicated paddlers from Northern Virginia who meet weekly to paddle various Northern Virginia Regional Parks during the evenings. The Pirates will launch every other Wednesday evening at Fountainhead Regional Park. On alternate weeks subgroups of the Pirates will set up peer paddles at other locations in Fairfax County along the Occoquan Water Trail. Other locations will include Bull Run Marina, Pohick Bay Regional Park, and Mason Neck State Park.

Check out the Pirates of the Occoquan Discussion Forum for weekly paddling plans. Decisions on locations will be made Sunday night and posted in the Forum and via the Pirates of the Occoquan mailing list.

Visit: Discussion Forum,  Email
When: 6:00 PM Wednesdays
Where: Directions to Launch Sites

  • Fountainhead Regional Park: To reach Fountainhead, take I-95 south of the Beltway, exit at Occoquan and travel north on Rt. 123 approximately 5 miles. Turn left onto Hampton Road and drive 3 miles to the entrance on the left.
  • Bull Run Marina: To reach Bull Run Marina, take I-66 west, exit at Fairfax, continue south on Route 123 to Clifton Road, turn right on Clifton Road, then left on Henderson Road to a right turn on Old Yates Ford Road.
  • Mason Neck State Park: Access to the park is via U.S. 1, then five miles east on Route 242 (Gunston Road) to the park entrance.
  • Pohick Bay Regional Park: To reach Pohick Bay, take I-95 south of the Beltway, exit at Lorton. Turn left on Lorton Rd., right on Armistead Rd., right on Rt. 1 and left on Gunston Rd. Continue 1 mile to golf course on left; 3 miles to main park.


Pirates of PATUXENT

Solomons Island, MarylandPPAX paddles from a NEW LOCATION near Solomons Island, Maryland and is led by Pirate Queen Jenny Plummer-Welker and King Don Polakovics.    Meet at 5:30 PM for a 6 PM launch at the tiny sandy beach next to the kayak/canoe pier and boat ramps under the Thomas Johnson Bridge.  Launching is free for cartop boats. Our trips are
generally six to 10 miles in length and range from open water jaunts to exploring tidal marshes, or sometimes both on the same outing. Although most of our outings are on the beautiful Patuxent River, we sometimes hold “roving nights” on other weekday nights at different locations, so please check the “Pirates of the Patuxent” forum or CPA MeetUp for the latest news of upcoming adventures. In June we hold a skills session covering self and group rescues. Many of our crew built their own boats,
so we hold a fair bit of skin-on-frame, plywood, and cedar strip experience if you want to combine boat building conversation with a leisurely paddle.  See you under the bridge!

Visit: Discussion Forum, Email
Calendar: CPA Meetup Calendar
When: Thursdays, arrive between 5 and 6 PM for a 6 PM launch
Where: Take Rt 2 south to Solomons. There is a tiny sandy beach next to the kayak/canoe pier and boat ramps under the Thomas Johnson Bridge.

Don Polakovics
Don Polakovics
Pirate Captain


Pirates of POTOMAC

Belle Haven Marina, Alexandria, Virginia. Welcome paddlers of all skill levels (including beginners). We are a bit different. We are a small group and are all retired so we almost always go out during the day and some of us go to Primos (informal Italian) for a late lunch afterwards. While we can maintain 3.5 mph when we feel so inclined we are frequently closer to 2.5 mph as we look for eagles, herons, ospreys and turtles, etc and appreciate the flora.

Season begins when the water temp reaches about 70 deg F and we paddle into October until the water temp gets below 70 degrees. This is a casual paddle with distance, destination and pace set by desires of the participants, tides and weather. We go different places—down to, and into, Dyke marsh or up to Alexandria’s port and sometimes as far as the Washington Sailing Marina where we watch the planes land and then paddle back downstream. We sometimes cross to the Maryland side to National Harbor and then go upstream or downstream to and up Broad Creek or Swan Creek.

During the months of summer heat we generally paddle away at 10-10:30 AM, depending on weather. During the spring (generally May) and fall (starting sometime in September) we usually go out at 3 PM.

THESE TIMES CHANGE. We are a small group and can more easily use email rather than the forum or the club email. Please contact us at the email or phone numbers below if you are interested so we can send you a weekly email notice.

$10 launching fee; seasonal passes $100. Season begins when water temp reaches about 70 and we paddle into October until the water temp gets below 70 degrees.

Visit: Discussion Forum, Email
When: Wednesdays. Times change depending on season and forecast. If you contact us we can put you on our email list and send you a weekly notice.
Where: From Alexandria, VA, take the George Washington Memorial Parkway 1.3 miles south of the Beltway, then left and straight into Belle Haven Marina all the way to the end of the road. (Kayaks are not launched from the ramp you see across from the office as soon as you enter the marina.)

John Gibbs
Pirate Co-Captain


Pirates of SUGARLOAF

Montgomery and Howard County launches, Maryland The Pirates of Sugarloaf have two Queens and a King, Marilyn Cooper, Laurie Collins and Ricardo Stewart. We most often will be meeting on Tuesdays between 5:00 and 6:00 pm at one several spots in either Montgomery or Howard County.  Montgomery county locations include: Riley’s Lock , Seneca Lake in Black Hills Regional Park, Tridelphia Reservoir or Brown’s Bridge launch. In Howard County we will paddle out of Scotts Cove on the Rocky Gorge Reservoir (Laurel). Even with longer days,  we may be returning close to dusk so bring lights for you and for your kayak! Some launch spots require a put in fee or permit;  we will post this information along with the location and confirmed time for the paddle on the CPA MeetUp page.

Visit:  Discussion Forum, email
When: 5-6:00 PM until Sunset Tuesdays
Where:  Riley’s Lock, Black Hills Regional Park,  Tridelphia Reservoir, Browns Bridge, Scotts Cove on Rocky Gorge Reservoir.


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