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Old 06-10-2009, 16:45   #1
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Boca Grande Inlet - Local Info Please

Hello,

I'll be coming down from the north and looking at the chart there seems to be a tempting little shortcut to Boca Grande Inlet. Just north of the "elbow"(by G "7" and R "8" in the channel there seems to be 7'-9' charted waters, just wondering if it's shoaled over or a reasonable passage.

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Old 06-10-2009, 17:41   #2
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Looking on active captain, it is suggested that the small channel directly off the coast from Port Boca Grande is passable using the old dock as a reference.

Any local info would help

Thanks
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Old 06-10-2009, 18:40   #3
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Looking on active captain, it is suggested that the small channel directly off the coast from Port Boca Grande is passable using the old dock as a reference.

Any local info would help

Thanks
That little area on the North side of the channel going by the dock is good. The part that threw me 3 years ago (but not this year in May) was to stay right close to the dock. The closer the better.

Be warned that North and West of that area are several large bars that can go to 3-4 feet. Pick a way between them and get close to the beach and you can run right along it to the dock. The water is deep at the beach then shoals further away before dropping off again.

edit:

Just to be clear "close to the beach" means 30-50 yards. 100-200 is where some of the shoals are.

And I just looked at the chart and it looks like there is a large wide approach to the dock from the gulf. I don't think the opening toward the dock is nearly that wide any more. At least it seemed that way when we went in and out in May.

Also, a near perfect anchorage is Pelican Pass just around the corner of Cayo Costa to the South. When you enter there, going just about due West of R 74 stay North and hug the beach side. Follow it around past the dock and then a little left toward the middle and you are in the center of a wonderful place.
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Old 06-10-2009, 18:45   #4
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I haven't a clue where this particular Boca is. Trinidad?
Please advise for the rest of us.
thanks John A
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Old 06-10-2009, 18:58   #5
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Old 06-10-2009, 20:04   #6
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Old 06-10-2009, 20:04   #7
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That little area on the North side of the channel going by the dock is good. The part that threw me 3 years ago (but not this year in May) was to stay right close to the dock. The closer the better.

Be warned that North and West of that area are several large bars that can go to 3-4 feet. Pick a way between them and get close to the beach and you can run right along it to the dock. The water is deep at the beach then shoals further away before dropping off again.

edit:

Just to be clear "close to the beach" means 30-50 yards. 100-200 is where some of the shoals are.

And I just looked at the chart and it looks like there is a large wide approach to the dock from the gulf. I don't think the opening toward the dock is nearly that wide any more. At least it seemed that way when we went in and out in May.

Also, a near perfect anchorage is Pelican Pass just around the corner of Cayo Costa to the South. When you enter there, going just about due West of R 74 stay North and hug the beach side. Follow it around past the dock and then a little left toward the middle and you are in the center of a wonderful place.
Therapy, Thanks for the sailing directions thru the "swash channel." Last time we used it (heading north) we got some very low soundings, 4.5', well after passing the old dock. Apparently, we were angling out toward the Gulf instead of paralleling the beach at 30-50 yards. Chart showed good water, but I agree the real channel is narrower than indicated. I like to do that channel on a rising tide just in case.
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Old 06-10-2009, 20:36   #8
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I like to do that channel on a rising tide just in case.
Like all channels "new to me" if possible.

Another way is to buy a boat like I did (knowing it's issues) and not worry too much about "feeling your way".

The first time a few years ago we followed the chart (which I don't think has been changed since a few hurricanes ago) with 5'5" draft and could not get to the deep part. We "felt around" and ended going all the way around and through the pass. Loooonng. So we got there late, tired and hungry like average sailors.

PS, we also radioed for local help and no one answered us - not sure about the radio at the time though.
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Old 06-10-2009, 21:15   #9
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Yep, I second that info FWIW. The swash channel, or "the slough" as a lot of people call it, is fine. Coming from the North, cut in towards the beach pretty early (mile or mile and a half short of pass), those shoals continue northward from the slough for quite a ways. Parallel the beach for a ways, about 30-50 yards off as mentioned. this will take you through the channel, just (20-30') off the end of the old pier. Tide can get moving pretty fast right in the area of the old pier, so keep that in mind. Preferably good light and favorable tide, and you'll be in good shape.

Pelican is def. a great anchorage. Follow someone in if you can, just to be sure. Info above sounds right to me, too. Cabbage Key is a pretty good stop right there in that area. If you happen to go there for dinner, try the charcoal shrimp. When I pass through, I eat 'em til I'm sick ...well, OK, I exaggerate a bit, but I would if I could justify the $$

Cheers,

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Old 07-10-2009, 09:22   #10
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Thanks for a the great info!!

Pelican Bay will be our destination for the night and looking forward to it. Depending on the conditions when we get there we might venture through. Our eta for the pass should leave us with a few hours of daylight to poke around. There will be a rising tide but only problem is it will start rising after sunset, could make for an interesting evening.

I will post if we encounter something different than what was posted here.

Thanks,
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Old 07-10-2009, 12:22   #11
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What is the draft of your boat? Ours was 4'11", and I got spooked so I went around. I still got stuck on the sandbar about 3 miles offshore!, but it was only for a minute, and Pelican bay was great, as was the beach on the island. Good Luck!
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Old 07-10-2009, 13:34   #12
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Draft is roughly the same as your at 5'.

So you followed the same route as described above and bumped a few times? Very Tempting as it would shave over an hour to get to pelican bay. At the same time it would be no fun stuck on a bar.

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Old 07-10-2009, 17:32   #13
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You guys are more balsy than I....... in my 4ft8in draft I would not even consider that channel inbound for the first time. For me it's the long way around BG Inlet. Then I'll slowly EXIT via the slough at slack tide.

But hey - I sit to pee also..... at least aboard that is....
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Old 07-10-2009, 17:40   #14
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For me it's the long way around BG Inlet. Then I'll slowly EXIT via the slough at slack tide.

What is the difference if you have the tide you want?
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Old 07-10-2009, 18:34   #15
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But hey - I sit to pee also..... at least aboard that is....
Mark, Nothing wrong with sitting to pee. My aim isn't what it used to be so I often sit too. The "Admiral" does it all the time!
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