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Old 30-09-2012, 15:14   #16
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumner View Post
We have our trip down Florida's west coast and over to Marathon and up the keys on the Gulf side here....

Macgregor Trips-1 Index

... the last trip at the bottom of the index.

We really liked the...



..... upper keys on the Gulf side from Shell north. Your draft is probably ok, but getting inside there with your mast height might make it impossible. I for sure wouldn't take your friend's boat on the Gulf side there.

Our next trip down we really want to explore from Marathon south towards Key West on the Gulf side taking our time. But before we get there we need more time in the 10,000 Islands.

As far as traveling with a friend....if you have done it with them before and liked the same type schedule it might be great. If not, it might not be so good for either of you. Ruth and I like people, but really can't see ourselves cruising with anyone else since we are so laid-back with our schedule time wise and location wise. I could see us making crossings with others possibly and/or meeting someone some place.

Anyway have a great trip,

Sum

----------------------------

Double-check the Marathon - north route, because it's not all that deep. If you should get caught in a storm that could make significant problems for one or both of you. You'll also want to monitor the weather very carefully, because fronts can and do make it that far south and can give you foul weather for a couple of days in a time. Be ready to lay over if need be.
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Old 01-10-2012, 05:42   #17
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Many of those marked protected areas with free mooring balls id be afraid to bring a 7' draft vessel into. I've seen some at hens and chickens and a few others that come close to 6' to the surface. The seascouts stay all the tine but they are drafting around 4.5' in oi 42s
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Old 01-10-2012, 13:02   #18
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Quote:
Originally Posted by FruiVita
Maybe a silly question and hopefully your friend has accounted for this but is his 6'8" draft fully laden (fuel, water, provisions, gear) for long distance cruising?
Not a silly question - he is closer to 6'11" fully loaded - I didn't realize that when I initially posted, but he just confirmed. Getting worried for him now based on what I've seen from everyone.
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Old 01-10-2012, 13:05   #19
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Thanks to everyone for the pointers! As a newbie to these forums, I'm loving the responses so far! I'm definitely checking out all the other sites I've seen recommended in the thread.
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Old 01-10-2012, 13:08   #20
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

I'll add in case you do not use it, check out https://activecaptain.com/ . Once registered
there is very good info there with tips about getting in and out of certain areas, depths etc. It's a free service, basically a online guide.
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Old 01-10-2012, 13:49   #21
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

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Originally Posted by Three Sheets View Post
Not a silly question - he is closer to 6'11" fully loaded - I didn't realize that when I initially posted, but he just confirmed. Getting worried for him now based on what I've seen from everyone.
I checked and...




... the bridge at Jew Fish Creek (south end of Barnes Sound) has 67 feet of clearance. That would mean that you (not your friend ) could make it down the ICW on the Gulf side of the Keys. You would have to be diligent with your depth but I've read of a number of boats drawing 5+ feet making that passage.



We love the Keys on the Gulf side from Jew Fish Creek south.

If you stay with your friend this trip consider it for another,

Sum

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Old 01-10-2012, 14:06   #22
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

I've done Hawks channel and outside of the reef several times. I always wanted to try the ICW as well, but was too paranoid about grounding to attempt it. Also once you are in there, there are not many places to get out.

If someone does it in a 5'+ draft boat I would love to hear about there experience.
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Old 01-10-2012, 14:29   #23
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

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I've done Hawks channel and outside of the reef several times. I always wanted to try the ICW as well, but was too paranoid about grounding to attempt it. Also once you are in there, there are not many places to get out.

If someone does it in a 5'+ draft boat I would love to hear about there experience.

Here is a source...

Cruiser's Net Keys4 Inside/Florida Bay Cross Bank to Channel Five

...that should keep you busy reading for a while .

You will read where some people have not had problems and others won't do it again. Not all of the route is touchy, but where it is the key is slowing down, being very careful to not drift out of the channel, do that section at higher tides (or at least on a rising tide) and being observant of wind direction and if it is pushing water out or in.

The main key is not being on a set schedule so that you can make the above work for you. We liked the area so much that we will be taking the Endeavour back. Its draft is 4'6" not 5', but we will still be cautious,

Sum

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Old 01-10-2012, 14:55   #24
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

I think this one statement will keep me on the outside.

"If you need Sea Tow they are not allowed to move you until the environmental police arrive. The fines are prodigious.."

I'll take the inside when I get myself a 3' or less draft vessel.
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Old 01-10-2012, 15:24   #25
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Re: Crusing the Florida Keys

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I think this one statement will keep me on the outside.

"If you need Sea Tow they are not allowed to move you until the environmental police arrive. The fines are prodigious.."

I'll take the inside when I get myself a 3' or less draft vessel.
I read that also and just now called TowBoatU.S. who we have towing with from BoatU.S. I asked the dispatcher about the above and he said he had never heard of that if you were on the ICW in the Keys.

He said that if you were leaking fuel and it was a hard grounding where they couldn't get you off then a call would be made.

Anyone else have actual experience with the above where they were involved.

There were a number of...





...larger boats on that side,

Sum

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Old 01-10-2012, 16:12   #26
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Re: Cruising the Florida Keys

Next time you go through let me know and I'll follow you at a distance.

I have read about the fines but never heard of anyone actually being fined. But I am sure it happens.

I was in court (for someone else) this past August in the Keys, and let me tell you there were tons of fines, probation and courses given for all kinds of environmental reasons. Most of it was for undersize lobster, but a lot of other stuff as well. The keys seem to take their environment very seriously, and with good reason I would say. It's the only economy they really have.

But I did not see anyone there for a grounding.
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Old 01-10-2012, 17:35   #27
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumner

I read that also and just now called TowBoatU.S. who we have towing with from BoatU.S. I asked the dispatcher about the above and he said he had never heard of that if you were on the ICW in the Keys.

He said that if you were leaking fuel and it was a hard grounding where they couldn't get you off then a call would be made.

Anyone else have actual experience with the above where they were involved.

There were a number of...

...larger boats on that side,

Sum

---------------------------------------------
Yes I have heard......late at night, the admiral navigating while the captain rested!!! Cost him $10,000 for the state and don't ya know he was towed back to St Pete! WOW!
I stay on the outside and have a great time, mostly motoring on the inside anyway.
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Old 01-10-2012, 18:33   #28
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Re: Cruising the Florida Keys

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Yes I have heard......late at night, the admiral navigating while the captain rested!!! Cost him $10,000 for the state and don't ya know he was towed back to St Pete! WOW!
I stay on the outside and have a great time, mostly motoring on the inside anyway.
Where were they that they got towed to St. Pete? That is a very long ways from the Keys. Was it a soft grounding?

I've been told by our insurance that we have some protection there, but wouldn't want to try it out .

It is a lot of motoring in the upper keys, but the small islands and cuts and the shelter if the wind is out of the east is really nice. Even with west wind there are a lot of anchorages from Marathon north on the Gulf side. A couple days at this one and a few more at the next one and ...... on and on,

Sum

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Old 01-10-2012, 19:00   #29
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Sumner

Where were they that they got towed to St. Pete? That is a very long ways from the Keys. Was it a soft grounding?

I've been told by our insurance that we have some protection there, but wouldn't want to try it out .

It is a lot of motoring in the upper keys, but the small islands and cuts and the shelter if the wind is out of the east is really nice. Even with west wind there are a lot of anchorages from Marathon north on the Gulf side. A couple days at this one and a few more at the next one and ...... on and on,

Sum

-----------------------------
He was towed to Saltcreek, this is where he launched only 2 days earlier after a year on the hard! Bummer.! Felt really bad for them. They were headed SE from the gulf to marathon. I forget the name of the pass but it was a hard grounding, cracked his hull!
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Old 01-10-2012, 19:21   #30
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Re: Cruising the Florida Keys

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He was towed to Saltcreek, this is where he launched only 2 days earlier after a year on the hard! Bummer.! Felt really bad for them. They were headed SE from the gulf to marathon. I forget the name of the pass but it was a hard grounding, cracked his hull!
Wow that is a bummer . I'll bet the tow wasn't free all the way back that far. The guy today did tell me that a hard grounding or a fuel spill would result in a call.

I'll take some risk with things I do, but sure try and minimize them and the results. I feel life is to short, especially at Ruth's and my age, to worry about everything that can happen. Heck we could screw up going into Marathon and damage a million dollar boat,

Sum

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