• A view from the water line – from Orleans to Chatham

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    We asked Captain Rob Wissmann of Blue Claw Boat Tours to share his view of the Cape with us

    After traveling miles by car negotiating road rage and traffic jams it is with much anticipation that a visit to Cape Cod will bring tranquility to a hectic world. To explore old Cape Cod and see it thru the eyes of Native Americans and early colonists you must get out of your car and view the Lower Cape by boat.

    Centuries ago settlers were awestruck by waterways full of fish and waterfowl that unfolded before their eyes. This waterfront provided them with food, clothing and shelter; all needed to survive in a tough world. Experience their world by enjoying a boat journey that will get you to the waterline level enabling you to see the wonders of old Cape Cod from the perspective of an Indian canoe or pilgrim’s shallop.

    A guided boat tour opens up this world of wonder to visitors and residents alike that otherwise would never see the natural world of Cape Cod from this vantage point. Every mile traveled peels back centuries of time as you see less modern architecture and more pristine views. Osprey, heron, turtles and leaping fish guide the way. History and nature begin to be revealed.

    Little Pleasant Bay has uninhabited islands within the National Seashore that look the same as they did to the founding fathers of Cape Cod. The Sparrowhawk, the second pilgrim ship, shipwrecked here in 1621. Nearby, Money Head bears legend of Capt. William Kidd and his yet unfound treasure buried here in 1699. Remnants of ancient Indian home sites of Monomoyick and Quanset surround Big Pleasant Bay.

    The April 2007 break through Nauset Beach in Chatham created a passageway for boats that allows one to see whales on the Atlantic’s horizon. This severing of our barrier beach created North beach Island; home to a handful of rustic beach camps from a long ago era, now accessible only by boat. Here you begin to see groups of grey seals as Chatham harbor is home to 1500.They will popup all around and view you face to face with curiosity. Keep a sharp lookout for great white sharks; seals are on their menu. Chatham lighthouse flashes abeam as Lobstermen hauling traps ply their trade. In 1602 Bartholomew Gosnold dropped anchor here naming this land Cape Cod for all the codfish his crew had just hauled aboard.

    Gliding back to the dock in Orleans you will have traversed centuries of time. As the journey ends you will understand what this area meant to the early Americans. The bounty of the water to these early people cannot be underestimated. The waterfronts importance is just as strong today as it was centuries ago. It was not the view from a carriage passing through deep woods on a sandy trail that inspired our forebears to settle here.It was the timeless view of nature and history that you can see from the deck of a boat today. It was the view from the waterline.

    April 27, 2014