By: Helen Woods
Searey N128SR 5/28/17
Decided to head south to scope out some of the good splash-in crab houses along the Patuxent ahead of the Bernie Fowler Day meet-up. High on the list of places to check out was the Drift Inn Crab House in Mechanicsville, Maryland. Some Google Earth recon and a quick phone call to the owner confirmed there was not only a beach but a yard suitable for parking.
Winds were from the east and the crab house was on the western shoreline. While calm on the main bay, the sea state did increase to that of a reasonable chop and small white caps as we made our way down the Patuxent so, since the owners knew we were coming, we opted for a short field landing skimming low over the restaurant and dropping in as near to the beach as possible reducing the need to plow taxi back against a tailwind.
I've attached a map for planning purposes. The house with the blue roof belongs to the same family that owns the crab house and they are happy to have you park in the yard. It easily accommodates one Searey with ample room turn turn around. You could probably fit up to three in the yard if you pushed two back into some corners. The beach is of medium softness so I'd recommend wheel's up beaching for other types of aircraft.
What a great little place! This is a family owned restaurant and a genuine Maryland crab house with brown paper on all of the tables. The menu offers a choice of crab or crab. My co-pilot went for the crab cake sandwich while I enjoyed the soft crab. I must say that was probably the best soft crab I've ever had and anyone who knows me will tell you I am quite a soft crab snob! Definitely need to plan time for hard crabs here next time!
After lunch we climbed back into the plane planning to explore several other crab houses but were quite surprised by an extremely colorful and unforecasted nexrad overlay on the GPS. We opted to work our way home which we thankfully did before the heavens really opened up.
Definitely worth a return trip!