Do you know where you will be picking up the boat? I am guessing the river, which means you have very limited marinas
for yachts. Basically there isn't anything on the river this far down except for major commercial
docks. You could lock through the industrial canal into the lake, but there isn't a way out except for locking back into the river on your way out of town.
Cruising down the lower Mississippi
River is frankly a pain that locals avoid whenever possible. It's busy with big commercial
traffic, and a lot of current
and floating debris. Shifting sandbars are common, and did I mention the commercial traffic? These guys are pretty much all constrained in draft and maneuverability, so you should just expect to give way to everyone.
Once you are out of the river mouth the rest of the coast is relatively easy to navigate. Your size won't generally be a problem anywhere between New Orleans and the keys. Though you have to pretty much skip everything in the bight of Florida
say everything from Apalachacola east to the south bend.
I am not sure when you are trying to head
to the Keys, but this is a good time to be on the gulf coast
. In about a month is the oldest distance race
in the country, from New Orleans to Gulfport (you are too tall to participate, sorry). The next weekend is called Challenge cup in Gulfport with all the yacht clubs in the GYA sending boats for an inter-club regatta
, then a major race
from Gulfport to Pensacola
, with a huge group of boats (about 100 mile jump).
Pensacola is a great place to spend a week or a month, but you again will have some issues with bridge height in the intercostal headed east from Pensacola bay.