Tantalizing descriptions of the bay’s intricate waterways—word pictures of how they are transformed over the four seasons of the year—and an informative discussion of the bay’s geology, ecology, and human history will entice the reader to get out and poke around in and on the water. Author John Page Williams, director of special field programs for the Chesapeake Bay Foundation and author of the Naturalist’s Almanac in Chesapeake Bay Magazine, writes in a lucid, easygoing style as he introduces these waterways that he has been exploring for over thirty years. He fills readers in on all they need to know about water safety, boat selection, and seamanship, including discussions on the various ways to propel their boats—motoring, rowing, paddling, and poling. In addition, there is a chapter on natural history gear, such as binoculars, field guides, cast nets, books, and maps.
In the second section, the author focuses attention on a single example of each of a wide range of waterways that represent the varied ecological niches that ring the bay. These trip descriptions include information on access points, a short historical overview, physical characteristics of each watercourse and its banks, and remarks on the flora and fauna to be found there, in a narrative that at once stimulates and inspires.