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Old 14-02-2014, 17:07   #1
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Miami River transit times

Hi all: I'm looking at taking a slip up the Miami River, near NW 17th Ave/Sewell Park/Dolphin Expwy. What I like about it is of course the price, but also the fact that it should make a great hurricane hole. I never daysail, so I'm not concerned about spending an hour or two getting out, but with 7 drawbridges I thought I would see if anyone has any experience regarding how much time it would actually take, on average. I'm already aware that the bridges don't operate during rush hour and lunch, etc.

Thanks for your input. Best, Pete
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Old 14-02-2014, 17:37   #2
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Re: Miami River transit times

About an hour is right, just time it so you meet the last one that opens every half hour.
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Old 14-02-2014, 17:53   #3
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Re: Miami River transit times

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Originally Posted by pete33458 View Post
Hi all: I'm looking at taking a slip up the Miami River, near NW 17th Ave/Sewell Park/Dolphin Expwy. What I like about it is of course the price, but also the fact that it should make a great hurricane hole. I never daysail, so I'm not concerned about spending an hour or two getting out, but with 7 drawbridges I thought I would see if anyone has any experience regarding how much time it would actually take, on average. I'm already aware that the bridges don't operate during rush hour and lunch, etc.

Thanks for your input. Best, Pete
Assuming your height is over 20' and under 35' which gave you seven. So much depends on the time of day and day of week. If it's a weekday morning after rush hour then you will find the bridges each anticipating you sometimes and get out quickly with Brickell being the only one that might make you hold till the hour or half hour. We've only been up there three times. Going in and coming back out to Government Cut. We didn't have a clearance issue but one of those times, but did observe others and one time followed a larger yacht that couldn't even clear the 35 feet of West Flagler. From also talking to others it seems like it can go as quickly as an hour or so in the best of situations. But then we talked to those who have taken as long as 3 hours by getting hung up by not making the 12:00 time. They key is to start as close as possible to 9:00 AM, 1:00 PM or 6:00 PM regardless of which way you're going. During peak times you'll probably be joined by others but if not too many then that actually helps as the bridge tenders are more attentive to keeping you all moving through. Occasionally you'll get held up with boats maneuvering inside. Probably safe is if you're there at 9:00, worst case the tenders will make sure you're through before noon and typically it will be much less time.

Sounds like you have the right perspective and most of the time it will go smoothly. The bridge tenders are very nice and want to make it as smooth as possible. Only occasionally do they get tough and that's when someone doesn't know the schedule or gets upset because a tender lowers the bridge right before they arrive to get rid of a traffic jam of cars.
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Old 15-02-2014, 10:19   #4
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Re: Miami River transit times

Pete,
Time your transits on a slack tide going to an opposing tide depending upon your direction. The river is loaded with debris that can foul your prop(I know from first hand experience) and if you have trouble you can drop your hook and hold against the tide to figure things out. Also, if you are keeping your boat on the river, you will constantly contend with bottom paint sanding dust from the numerous boat yards and diesel soot, so-- keeping your boat clean will be a problem. Otherwise, for Miami, you're well protected. Good luck and good sailing.
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Old 16-02-2014, 18:14   #5
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Re: Miami River transit times

To all: thanks for the great responses and things to think about. Rognvald, sounds like you spent some time there, I was wondering how long ago was it? Just asking because my understanding was that the City and the River Assn had been making serious efforts at cleaning up the river and preventing further pollution, so I was thinking things might have changed since your experience? Thanks again, Pete
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Old 16-02-2014, 18:26   #6
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Re: Miami River transit times

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To all: thanks for the great responses and things to think about. Rognvald, sounds like you spent some time there, I was wondering how long ago was it? Just asking because my understanding was that the City and the River Assn had been making serious efforts at cleaning up the river and preventing further pollution, so I was thinking things might have changed since your experience? Thanks again, Pete
Are you looking at a marina slip or one at a private home?
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Old 16-02-2014, 18:49   #7
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Re: Miami River transit times

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Are you looking at a marina slip or one at a private home?
It's a marina, but I would look at private as well.
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Old 17-02-2014, 09:37   #8
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Re: Miami River transit times

[QUOTE=pete33458;1469894]To all: thanks for the great responses and things to think about. Rognvald, sounds like you spent some time there, I was wondering how long ago was it? Just asking because my understanding was that the City and the River Assn had been making serious efforts at cleaning up the river and preventing further pollution, so I was thinking things might have changed since your experience? Thanks again, Pete[/QUOTE


Pete,
We used to haul our boat at Hurricane Cove on the Miami River for many years. When interpreting the term "cleanup" you must understand it in the context of "Miami"--which definitely has a different spin than in other parts of the country. Currently, we still have many friends in Miami who use the river on a regular basis and although there has been a marketing attempt to "cleanup" the river, it is still a commercial port of call with considerable tanker traffic and its associated ills as well as many working boatyards. The caution that I have mentioned previously is a reasonable one since there is a relatively strong current and substantial debris in the water and along its shores. One could not, for example, even remotely compare it with the New River in Ft. Lauderdale which has limited commercial traffic and many residential properties along its banks. So, no need for paranoia, but exercise due caution(as I have expressed earlier) and be aware that there is a good reason for the lower price as compared to marinas along the coast and on the bay. Good luck, good sailing. And, in my opinion, there's no better base for a boat than Miami.
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Old 17-02-2014, 10:32   #9
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Re: Miami River transit times

Great info, thank you. I lived in Miami before Jupiter, and I certainly understand that it is not like anywhere else in the US (and exactly like everywhere else further south!). I also agree about Miami as a base, even though I've lived in Jupiter for the past 9 years I have always kept my boat there; since I don't daysail, the 90 minute (or 4 hour, depending on traffic) drive is irrelevant, and the sailing destinations are unmatched.

OK, thanks again for the great info and update. Pete
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