You should go via the sound. I personally would not risk it, especially to take an inferior route
Check on your own, but I think you'll have the water you need through the channel at Roanoke island. The sound should afford an opportunity to sail if you're needing to shake things down.
Also allows you to call on Ocracoke
They dredged up Roanoke way not too long ago, so you could be just fine. For me, it really is a much better route. The other is boring, but id rather be there now than bustin rocks here today.
If the wind is steady out of the N, then yes, you can count on some water drop. Can't say how much, and hardly matters, I think you're just too tall for that Wilkerson bridge. Should not cause much,of an issue getting through channel at manteo. Call the tow,operator on the phone
ahead of time to get the latest, or at least via radio
when arrive. Might be able to have them escort you through,if it's skinny or you're new at nailing channels, or both.
Good luck and have fun! There is a lot to enjoy around you over the next few days
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