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Old 20-04-2016, 06:22   #1
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Stuck need help to get to Key West

Been stuck trying to bring our new to us sailboat back to Key West. Weather has not been cooperating finally got to Miami. taking Hawks Channel to Key West looks like the wind and seas calm down Saturday & Sunday would like to make the run in 2 days suggestions on where we can stay Half way without night time sailing average 5 kts I know they will be long days
Thanks
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Old 20-04-2016, 06:40   #2
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

Always good idea to put your sailboat make/model/size to the left with your avatar/posting name. For instance, if your boat doesn't have too much draft someone might suggest you go down the inside as far as Marathon to avoid weather, which would give you numerous options to stop overnight.
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Old 20-04-2016, 07:03   #3
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

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Originally Posted by FSMike View Post
Always good idea to put your sailboat make/model/size to the left with your avatar/posting name. For instance, if your boat doesn't have too much draft someone might suggest you go down the inside as far as Marathon to avoid weather, which would give you numerous options to stop overnight.
Thanks trying to set it up little avatar challenged. Working on it
37 Eandeavour draw 4-6 52 mast. Plan was Key Biscayne Key -Key Largo -Marathon suggestions for Marina or mooring balls Key Largo realized it's gonna be a 3 day trip no matter what
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Old 20-04-2016, 07:23   #4
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

As far as the Key Largo area goes I've anchored at Rodriguez Key a couple of times. There's also a well protected marina just a little north of there but can't remember the name, you might try ActiveCaptain.com.
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Old 20-04-2016, 08:43   #5
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

There are two sailing clubs in the Keys that you can contact for information. The Marathon Sailing Club has an email address for the Commodore, and the Key Lime Sailing Club ( Key Largo) has a listed telephone number on the website.
Both can be found via a google search.
Fair winds...........
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Old 20-04-2016, 08:44   #6
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

I can highly recommend Marathon Marina & Resort. Do call ahead for availability.
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Old 20-04-2016, 08:52   #7
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

If you sail half a day (12 hours) at 5 kts that is 60 miles. Sunrise is around 7am which means you can get underway easy at 6:30, Sunset is around 8pm. If you are in MIA and you can get down to Noname, it is an easy departure point. 61 miles from there is Alligator Reef, if the wind is light, or out of the north or west, you can anchor behind Indian key. If it is out of the east or NE (which it probably will be) you can continue along a short way to Channel 5 and anchor inside behind Lower Matecumbe.

From there, it is about 65 miles to Key West. Leave early and be there in time for sunset.
Easy 2 day sail, unless the wind comes up out of the SW.

Michael
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Old 20-04-2016, 09:14   #8
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

I've sailed that area extensively in a Hunter 36 (5' draft). The suggestions you've had already are good.

If it was me, a 3 day trip (which will be longish, but not too long, 50 nm or so per day) would be Miami to Port Largo (4.5' controlling depth, nominally, I think it is actually more), a couple of good marinas there (Marina del Mar or Pilot House Marina). Then to Boot Key, which is always a crap shoot but there are anchorages if you can't get in the marina. Then to Key West.

For a 2 day trip, which will be two pretty long days (depending on conditions) and may result in marinas being unmanned when you arrive, I guess I would try to get as far as Whale Harbor (there are a few decent marinas there, I can't remember the names), and then finish the next day.

But I think the 3 day option is a better bet, it gives you some flexibility. Pete
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Old 20-04-2016, 09:30   #9
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

Do you have to have a "marina" to stop for the night? 4' 6" draft? sailing day time only? sail down biscayn bay to Angel fish creek...top of key largo. you can anchor by Bamboo key there on the bay side or anchor inside the creek near the ocean side. go out side to hawks channel...you can sail to rodreques key or if making good time to channel 5 by long key. It's a short sail to Marathon from there if you like or go on down to Bahia honda...which isn't all that good holding with strong tidal current...better a little further in thhe mouth of New found harbor. from there at 5 knot average it's about ten hours to KW bight. Sailing day time only at 5 knots it's a minimum of three days. you can figure the distance as the crow flies or even as some do the mile markers on the ICW. but for instance, according to the mile markers it's 50 miles from Marathon to Key west. in actual travel it's 58 to 60. At 5 knots there is one to two hours of travel difference. If you only want to sail in daylight I would give myself 4 days. the actual miles traveled from say dinner key to key west anchoring daily is about 180 miles. 180 miles/ 5 knots/ 8 hrs/daysailing = 4.5 days that is cutting 2 to 3 hrs of daylight anchoring and weighing anchor, in real time.

If dealing with markers and patch reefs is the cause of daytime sailing then going outside the reef say off the top of Islamorada and staying in 100 to 200 foot of water would not only give you unobstructed sailing it would also give you the counter current from the Gulf stream, giving you an other 1/2 to 1 knot in the right direction and cutting your passage down to two and a half to three days, anchoring at mid evening for a good 8 to 12 hrs rest. the gulf stream is to close in to go outside further east than Islamorada, the seas could get a little rough on an east wind.

i get a kick out of people saying "oh it's only 92 miles to Ft myers Beach from marathon. I can do 6.5 knots ...only 14 to 15 hrs." but then there is the distance and time getting in and out of the harbors and at 12 hrs they are only off little shark river heading over to anchor in 2 more hrs. It's close to 18 hrs at 6.5 knots cause in actually it's 120+ miles from harbor to harbor.

Good luck and give yourself plenty of time You'll enjoy the trip and probably make better time than you think. 37 footer should make 5.5 to 6 knots on 15 knot winds out of the eastish, comfortably, on that route. in 15 knot east winds I do 8 to 10 hrs from Boot key harbor to christmas tree of KW bight, comfortably outside the reef in 100 to 200 foot of water. Set the sails and enjoy the ride and company.
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Old 20-04-2016, 09:51   #10
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

Do not sail Hawks Channel at night! I did it once between Rodriguez Key and Miami, single handing, about 10 years ago and it still scares me just thinking about it. There are pinch points where there the channel is narrow with poles on either side with lights at only the entrance and exit points. It was a moonless night. Give me a full gale and sea room over the Hawk's Channel at night.
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Old 20-04-2016, 10:29   #11
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

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Originally Posted by BeachbumKW View Post
Been stuck trying to bring our new to us sailboat back to Key West. Weather has not been cooperating finally got to Miami. taking Hawks Channel to Key West looks like the wind and seas calm down Saturday & Sunday would like to make the run in 2 days suggestions on where we can stay Half way without night time sailing average 5 kts I know they will be long days
Thanks
I would suggest Marathon. Burdin's (sp ?) treated me very well. I'm speaking 13 yrs. ago.
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Old 20-04-2016, 11:15   #12
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

I am watching this thread like a hawk.
The plan for this july 4th week is to sail from st pete to an undetermined key.
find a marina for the month then fly down for mini season on the 27th/28th.
then start sailing north Friday morning.
That's the rough outline of the plan - a lot of these comments are very helpful for the planning phase.
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Old 20-04-2016, 11:27   #13
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

Forecast not good. I would not delay. Ignore the weather and ake the inside route down to the Channel Five bridge then go outside to Hawk's channel. On the ICW there are many places to drop anchor. There are many good ICW guides including some online (I think). If you still need help PM me and I'll use my rather old guide.
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Old 20-04-2016, 11:35   #14
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

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Originally Posted by tikirawker View Post
-----
The plan for this july 4th week is to sail from st pete to an undetermined key.
find a marina for the month then fly down for mini season on the 27th/28th.
then start sailing north Friday morning.
-----
If you want a marina slip through the mini lobster season you might consider reserving it ahead of time.
On the other hand, many people avoid the keys for that period so you might not have a problem finding a spot lol, especially for a sailboat sized slip.
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Old 20-04-2016, 11:37   #15
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Re: Stuck need help to get to Key West

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Forecast not good. I would not delay. Ignore the weather and ake the inside route down to the Channel Five bridge then go outside to Hawk's channel. On the ICW there are many places to drop anchor. There are many good ICW guides including some online (I think). If you still need help PM me and I'll use my rather old guide.
We had a cruise down the Northern California coast last week. Our cruise chair started by giving waypoints and directions and all that crap. Many of us responded: "If they can't get their boats there themselves, then they shouldn't be going!" He retracted all the nonsense, and simply said when we were leaving and from where. Great cruise, good times, some heavy weather going down, no issues.

I find it very odd that anyone would ask how to get their own big boat from point A to point B for a two to four day cruise/delivery.

It could be "dangerous" to pm him with details that he should be able to figure out himself.

Asking for "good" marinas and anchorages is a different matter altogether and answered quite easily, by the answers provided already, as well as Active Captain.

These kinda questions remind me of the "how long will it take to sail my boat 50 miles and what course should I take?" things.

I've sailed a bit in Florida, and I usually use charts and guidebooks. Then check the weather.

What's so hard?

PS --- Sorry to come off like a curmudgeon, but if folks can afford and run a 37 foot boat, they should know this stuff. Even if it's a new-to-him boat. If they're asking for good marinas or anchorages, then it's a different story.
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