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Old 08-05-2019, 15:01   #1
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Help! Sailing from Pensacola to Kemah tx

Ahoy amigos! I'm in a desperate need for some solid advice on traveling the icw from Pensacola to Texas. I have found plenty of footage from Florida to Texas but not vice versa. We have a 39 ft Sealord 5.5 ft draft. Any advice on how we handle the Mississippi River is much appreciated! Thank you! Feel free to pm me here . Or our Instagram :flowwithelements
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Old 08-05-2019, 20:21   #2
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Re: Help! Sailing from Pensacola to Kemah tx

I may not be reading this correctly or it's a typo, but you're trying to go from Pensacola to Texas but the only stuff you found was from Florida to Texas?

If you're heading west the Waterway Guides book for the south goes from west to east so would work for you. We have a copy and think it's alright, not the best in my opinion. Just is lacking bigger picture charts to help with the descriptions. But overall has good docking/anchoring advice and bridge information.

To cross the Mississippi you have to go through a lock in New Orleans east go north to the north lock, Harvey Lock, on the west side. The south lock is for commercial traffic. This means you have to motor up current which right now is running 5-6 knots so if your vessel can't make more than that, you could try to call the south lock, and see if they will let you in. Other than that, you could go around the boot of Louisiana when you leave Mobile, AL, which you will anyway since the "inland" ICW ends there until you get to Louisiana. You can make re-entry to the ICW by way of Barataria Pass, up Dupre cut. I haven't gone that route so I don't know for certain.
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Old 18-05-2019, 11:05   #3
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Re: Help! Sailing from Pensacola to Kemah tx

Sail Redemption, can you possibly give me some coastal marinas in Louisiana. We’re hoping for something around the Grand Isle area that we can get our 6ft draft Catalina 310 to for water and fuel. Thank you for any help you can offer.
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Old 20-05-2019, 07:34   #4
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Re: Help! Sailing from Pensacola to Kemah tx

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Originally Posted by FirstLook View Post
Sail Redemption, can you possibly give me some coastal marinas in Louisiana. We’re hoping for something around the Grand Isle area that we can get our 6ft draft Catalina 310 to for water and fuel. Thank you for any help you can offer.
Sure thing, I'll try to look tonight and reply when I get to my computer.
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Old 22-05-2019, 06:46   #5
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Re: Help! Sailing from Pensacola to Kemah tx

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Sail Redemption, can you possibly give me some coastal marinas in Louisiana. We’re hoping for something around the Grand Isle area that we can get our 6ft draft Catalina 310 to for water and fuel. Thank you for any help you can offer.
Hey Firstlook, I took a look at the chart and Active Captain, I think Port Fourchon Marina is your best bet. Grand Isle I don't think has enough water for most sailboats. Port Fourchon Marina is located just west of Grand Isle up Bayou LaFourche. They have fuel and water and seems to be transient slips. Also, I read there is a small shop for some things, doubt it's a chandlery but it has things for weekenders i'm sure. Unless you are very confident in your navigation skills, I would make my approach in daylight. It's not the actual approach and channel are hard, as jetties are well marked and there should be plenty of water for you all the way to the marina, it's that this is one of the world's busiest ports. I work out of Port Fourchon so I know the depth and channels are good for you 6' draft because it's good for our 300' OSV's draft of 19'. When you get near and inside Belle Pass/Bayou Lafourche, turn on channel 13 for traffic comms, you can monitor 16 if you want but no one will respond on that inside so have 13 on. You have plenty of room on the edges of the channels as the port is plenty deep to move to the side for larger traffic. If you are comfortable/confident to make a night or near night approach it's very doable, just be aware that Port Fourchon has a LOT of back light from the commercial docks so channel markers may be harder to see from a small boat height of eye(I'm 60-70' up in a bridge so looking down on them is a little easier). But like I said, the channels and markers are well charted even on NOAA charts. If you don't need to be in the middle of the channel, don't as the deeper draft vessels will be needing that channel.

If you have AIS that is a huge plus, if not, you will be well within cell range to use a internet based AIS app to see vessels in the port. This will help with passing arrangements. Also note, channel 13 can be VERY busy so don't hop on unless you need to(just for passing arrangements), and if you don't get a response from the person your calling try again as you might have gotten "stepped on" by another caller. You will know within a few minutes what vessels are doing what.

Other than that, if you want a route to the marina, PM me your email address and I can email you a .gpx file with a route. If you have any more questions let me know.

Heres the marina info:

Port Fourchon Marina
282 Flotation Canal Rd
Golden Meadow, LA 70357-5608
US
Home | Moran's Marina
985-396-2792
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Old 26-05-2019, 18:50   #6
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Re: Help! Sailing from Pensacola to Kemah tx

Hope this helps a little. Not too long ago helped a friend take his Endeavor 37 from MOBILE across the Mississippi, through the locks and to the ICW west of NOLA.

The Mississippi is extremely dangerous. Right now it is very high and flowing very fast. It is so high that two spillways are being opened to prevent major flooding in New Orleans.
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