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Old 01-03-2015, 10:37   #1
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Out running hurricanes in July

Aloha!

My wife and I are in the process of buying a Canadian Sailcraft 27 on the west coast of Florida. We are living in Hawaii and wonít be able to pick the boat up until late June. The boat is on the hard right now and will stay until we put it in the water. Now the question is... do we keep the boat on the hard or do we try to outrun the hurricanes and book it for Road Island were we have a mooring in newport? I know the storms donít typically get really bad until August. Is running north in July a stupid idea? Should we wait it out on the hard? Also i am wondering about going north on the ICW? We have not been able to find ANY info on people going north! Do most people just cruise the coast? Also I am wondering until when is it really safe to sail the Keys? As i said we are arriving in late June. Can we sail the Keys through July, then just put the boat back on the hard until after hurricane season? Any thoughts, info, ideas, criticism welcome.

Mahalo
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Old 01-03-2015, 11:04   #2
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

Lived and sailed in S Florida since 2001 and we have seen a few hurricanes.

I would make my way north using the ICW and going outside when the weather is good. There are lots of boats going north in May/June.

You will get lots of warning of hurricanes and should be able to find a secure spot if one threatens. However, outrunning hurricanes is an oxymoron in a 27 ft boat but you should be able to get north in good time for a late season hurricane like Sandy to catch you in Newport!

Good Luck
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Old 01-03-2015, 11:16   #3
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

I guess "outrunning" was a bad choice of words. I mean simply getting north before any hurricanes enter the area.
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Old 01-03-2015, 11:24   #4
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

We returned from Bimini, Bahamas on the last day of June, 2013. From Lake Worth, we went north to Brunswick, Georgia for hurricane season. We could have kept going north had we not decided to stay in Georgia. The downside was thunderstorms just about every afternoon. Some quite severe. They seem to ease once out of Florida, at least fewer. Maybe because they seem to develop mostly on the Gulf of Mexico side.

Anyway, running or hiding from a named storm is a crapshoot. Just depends on how lucky you feel. With a shallow draft, and not much air draft, you can probably work your way up many rivers if the worst happens. Also, you can cut your trip shorter by going the Okeechobee Waterway, if you don't mind skipping the Keys. Just some thoughts....

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Old 01-03-2015, 11:36   #5
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

Millions of boats stay in the water in Fl, year round.
Just as a guess, It seems more hurricanes make landfall in North Carolina than just about anywhere else.
Hurricanes just don't sneak up anymore, I'm hoping as long as you have a plan, you will be OK, I think the majority of bats that get wrecked, the owners did nothing at all to protect or prepare them.
But, oddly enough it seems that Georgia hasn't been hit in a very long time, a few of us guess it's because of the way Georgia in "indented" , but Savannah or Brunswick may not be a bad place to wait out hurricane season, or maybe a bad place to get to.


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Old 01-03-2015, 12:39   #6
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

Ok we have just reserved a slip in Brunswick GA for the summer! Has anyone had any experience doing the ICW from Stuart FL to Brunswick GA in July? how long did it take? Im thinking this is a MUCH more realistic cruise that time of year. Thank yall so much for your comments.
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Old 01-03-2015, 12:51   #7
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Old 01-03-2015, 13:10   #8
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

You shouldn't have any problem staying out of the path of a hurricane. First, they aren't all that common and ones that impact coastal US are rarer. Forecasting has gotten to be quite good which would give you plenty of warning to run and hide. Biggest problem I see is finding a hurricane hole in unfamiliar territory should you have to run to shore. There is a lot of help available to help you find that hidey hole but nothing is easy trying to get there the first time.

We did it in July from Tampa to Norfolk. Stopped Charleston for two days, and over night at Beaufort, NC. Trip was relatively quick, sailing the whole way, no close hauled sailing, except for the Dismal Swamp canal. You'll have a bit further to go but going outside with occasional breaks for exploring shore side delights should make it a relatively quick trip. Only weather of any significance were the thunder bumpers in the Gulf. IIRC, took us a little over two weeks with a crew of three, no autopilot or self steering in a 26' waterline boat.
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Old 01-03-2015, 21:05   #9
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

Quote:
Originally Posted by jsquared View Post
Ok we have just reserved a slip in Brunswick GA for the summer! Has anyone had any experience doing the ICW from Stuart FL to Brunswick GA in July? how long did it take? Im thinking this is a MUCH more realistic cruise that time of year. Thank yall so much for your comments.
We headed north from Lake Worth on July 2, and made Brunswick on July 26. But we were on cruising mode. We spent 2 or 3 days at Vero. One week at St. Augustine. And 5 or 6 days in Fernandina. All enjoyable stops. Take it at your own pace. It's a nice trip.

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Old 02-03-2015, 11:32   #10
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

Just turn LEFT!
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Old 02-03-2015, 13:07   #11
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

The ICW is easy, safe, dangerous, boring and exciting. Just depends on who you are. I got knocked down while motoring South in Georgia late March by a rogue tornado with no heart. 70 mph gust from somewhere unknown. Anything can happen. If you take the ICW your hull speed will keep you under 5 knots no matter sail or motor. If you go outside there are some pretty long days for you. It is all doable so go for it.


Don't miss the Keys any time of year. Some times the weather is a little more stormy but there are plenty of hide outs. A bad storm makes for good sailing stories. No mercy but fun stories.
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Old 02-03-2015, 13:34   #12
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

A lot of people haul out and sit on the hard when a hurricane actually comes. Would leaving it on the hard until you can use it be safe anyway? Thoughts . . .

Tampa has a hurricane deflector (that is what the liveaboard boater next to me in Safety Harbor always said to me because it has been so long since Tampa has been hit---he was a native Floridian).
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Old 02-03-2015, 14:20   #13
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Re: Out running hurricanes in July

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Originally Posted by jsquared View Post
Ok we have just reserved a slip in Brunswick GA for the summer! Has anyone had any experience doing the ICW from Stuart FL to Brunswick GA in July? how long did it take? Im thinking this is a MUCH more realistic cruise that time of year. Thank yall so much for your comments.
I have done this trip many times as I keep my boat at Brunswick Landing Marina during the off season and sail south in the winter. The trip for the most part is very easy and takes 7 traveling days to complete from Stuart. There are a some areas where strong winds from the direction you are heading will make it just about impossible to make decent headway. Fortunately winds tend to decrease in summer. Unfortunately late afternoon thunderstorms can be frequent.

I hope you booked at Brunswick Landing Marina and not Golden Isles Marina which is far less protected and subject to strong currents.
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