Cambridge Creek Inlet is located on the Choptank River about 16 miles east of the main Chesapeake Bay Channel. Passage up the Choptank River is easy and straightforward if you follow all the aids to navigation precisely. Those aids to navigation typically mark long-reaching shoals that extend north or south from the respective shorelines with two- to three-foot depths just outside the marked channel.
The image above is a view from the southeast looking northwest over the opening of Cambridge Creek at the Choptank River. Off to the right (east southeast) is the state Route 50 Bridge (50-foot fixed vertical clearance), which carries travellers to and from the beach resorts in Ocean City to the southeast. Just up river from the bridge is the Hyatt Regency Chesapeake Bay Golf Resort and Spa and Hyatt Rivermarsh Marina, a magnificent resort set in natural surroundings. Transient and annual slip holders are welcome, and enjoy all the amenities the resort has to offer.
On the left (west) side of the inlet opening is the Cambridge Municipal Marina, while the expansive Yacht Maintenance facility can be seen on the right (east) side just across the creek. Farther in is the Maryland Avenue Bascule Bridge (eight-foot closed vertical clearance), which opens on a restricted schedule mornings, evenings and weekends.
Cambridge was settled in the late 1600’s and is one of the oldest towns in Maryland. Originally grounded on oystering and fishing, with workboats so thick in Cambridge Creek “you could walk across them from one side of the creek to the other” it now is enjoying an historic renaissance, with stately old storefronts, vacant until recently, now home to one-of-a-kind shops, boutiques, and galleries. Downtown's new restaurants feature the work of award-winning chefs. The streets have been redone with period lighting and fresh paintings. Classic old buildings are being returned to their former glory.
Cambridge is the ONLY Eastern Shore town to make the list of “Top 10 Fun Riverfront Towns” in the Maryland-Virginia-D.C. area. Cambridge has lots of great restaurants and live music, and fun festivals galore–the crab-picking competition at the Taste of Cambridge Crab Cook-Off and Festival, tricycle races at Summer Send-Off, day sails and dock tours at the Schooner Rendezvous, the Sailwinds Kite Festival, the Crawfish and Muskrat Stew Festival, and more.
Use NOAA Chart 12266 and 12268.
To reach Cambridge Creek from the Choptank River, first navigate to green nun buoy “23” north of Hambrooks Bar. Green nun buoy “23” is located near waypoint N38 36.033 W76 05.082. Once you have picked up green nun buoy “23,” set an approximate course of 152 degrees magnetic to intercept red nun “24,” which is about .8 mile away (mind the flashing white light at Hambrooks Bar along the way).
From red nun buoy “24,” you can start your turn south toward the Cambridge area. If you want to head to the Cambridge Municipal Marina, which is located outside of Cambridge Creek, set an approximate course of 173 degrees magnetic for about one mile. This course will put you just north of the municipal marina channel. Mind the two-foot-deep shoal to the west along the way - the aforementioned course should keep you well out of trouble, though.
Alternatively, from red nun buoy “24,” you can set an approximate course of 151 degrees magnetic for about a mile to pick up flashing green buoy “1” and red nun buoy “2” at the beginning of the Cambridge Creek approach channel. After you have cleared flashing green buoy “1” and red nun buoy “2,” head southwest and follow in green nun buoy “3,” red nun buoy “4,” and finally red nun buoy “6” just outside the creek entrance. Keeping to the center as you head upstream from here will keep you in the deepest water (11-foot depths all the way upstream).
There are six marinas on Cambridge Creek, but only thee of them accept transient guests. Many of the marinas here are set up to mainly handle repairs. If you want luxury accommodations, the Hyatt Regency just upriver from the state Route 50 Bridge has 150 transient slips in a resort-style atmosphere.