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Old 27-01-2016, 12:56   #1
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Barry

My wife and I, and 75 lb doodle plan a cruising vacation in the Florida Keys for this April. We have a self built 27' motor cruiser which draws 3'. When we cruise in our usual home waters, inside passage off British Columbia, our style is to anchor some and be in marinas. Is it feasible to put in maybe Ft. Myers and cruise south taking 2-3 days to Key Largo? Are there places along the way to avoid bad weather that aren't too shallow for us? Do I need to invest in mosquito netting? When we are in the keys will we find places to dingy ashore with a dog?
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Old 27-01-2016, 13:07   #2
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Re: Barry

Plenty of places. With your draft you have lots of too!
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Old 27-01-2016, 13:55   #3
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Re: Barry

Hi Adagio and welcome to the nuthouse forum.

Like Cheechako said, with 3' draft you have lots of places you'll fit. Yes there is plenty of shallow water as well so bring good charts, your sharpest eyeball and polaroid sunglasses.

And yes also to places for the dog although be aware that some of the islands and Keys are home to endangered species like the Key Deer, nesting birds and such so keep your dog close if he/she might want to sample the local wildlife.

2-3 days will get you to Key Largo, depending on your cruising speed and how much you want to stop and smell the roses. I would budget extra time just in case.

Finally YES!!!, bring mosquito repellant, bug screens and whatever else will keep the critters at bay. In warm weather (even warm days in winter) mosquitoes and noseeums can make miserable an understatement. Noseeums are particularly bad since they can fit through screens.
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Old 27-01-2016, 15:05   #4
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Re: Barry

One easy way for screens is to get no see um small mesh screen, make a big rectangle of it for the forward hatch and one for the companionway. Sew, glue or tape a weighted perimeter around the edge. large lead fishing weight (on a spool) used to work good but now expensive. Probably some big rope remnants would work too ..3/4" or so. Just lay them over the opening.
Frankly we didn't have a huge mosquito issue in Florida, but weren't there in summer. The keys may be at times though.
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