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Old 14-04-2011, 07:53   #1
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Galveston to Mobile--how??

Just joined, what a great site. Overwhelmed with information. Looking at a 38 ft. cruiser in Galveston tomorrow and if purchased will want to bring it back to Mobile, either ICW, off shore or combination of both. Has about a 300 mile range but only 6 degree deadrise so not the greatest off shore boat. I started looking for charts and ended up on this forum with one of the links. Found out charts aren't cheap and I need a bunch of them according to the 2011 Waterways Guide that i just purchased. Looking for suggestions. Boat has very old depth finder and chart plotter. I have a Garmin 2010 that I could probably get rigged up somehow for gps but not depth, but haven't used it in a couple of years--been sitting on a shelf--so know it wouldn't be current. I would really like paper, but hate to invest that much for a one time trip. Your thoughts? Thanks

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Old 14-04-2011, 17:19   #2
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Re: Galveston to Mobile--how??

You can download them in PDF format for free:

==> Office of Coast Survey

and just print the ones you want on a color printer. B&W might be acceptable, as well.

If you have a laptop, you can also download all the electronic versions for free and get a free navigation package (like OpenCPN).

The above link, and the links to free electronic charts can be found in the second link in my signature.


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Old 14-04-2011, 17:29   #3
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Re: Galveston to Mobile--how??

Appreciate the information. I have bookmarked links for future use. Will look at the boat Saturday and hopefully get it out for a sea trial. Because of the size of that model boat we have resigned outself to bringing it home on the bottom and are limiting out search to the Gulf States and east coast of Florida. I am impress by all the Ipad type action on this site but I like paper too. Thanks
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Old 14-04-2011, 17:36   #4
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Re: Galveston to Mobile--how??

If you decide to do the ICW, you really need a reliable depth meter.

If you pick a decent weather window, offshore should be just fine. You should be able to rig a GPS plotter - and download the charts for ALL of the inlets you might possibly ever use.
Bill Streep
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Old 14-04-2011, 20:03   #5
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Re: Galveston to Mobile--how??

Thanks for the reply. We are favoring the off shore route. The boat is 38 foot cruiser but only 6 degree dead rise so will have to watch the weather going off shore. Has 300 mile range so should be able to pick a couple of refueling stops and stay off shore for the most part. I just bought the 2011 waterways guide and I can see from reading that what you mean about having a good depth finder. The locks, traffic, and the tricky channels sort of convinced us we could run off shore better. Only about a 14 knot boat but still will get up on plane at that speed and we have upper and lower helm to work from. Actually going past Mobile to Pensacola but we know we can run off shore there since we are familiar with that area. Thanks
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Old 14-04-2011, 20:24   #6
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Re: Galveston to Mobile--how??

The trip across the GIWW isn't a bad trip for a power boat, sucks for a sailboat because of draft and anchorages are far apart.

Stop at Intercoastal City, La for fuel, Cheapest on the GIWW.
Few locks and swing bridges and tugs with barges so make sure you have VHF on. You will be running channels 13 and 14. When I came across last April, some of the locks just had us proceed slowly and was open before we got to the other end. Nice bridge and lock tenders all the way...

Formerly Santana
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Everyday is a good day for SAILING!!!!
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