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Old 12-03-2006, 15:50   #1
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Maximum draught for Cruising - 7'6" too deep ?


We have been looking at yachts to buy for cruising. One particular yacht that we like has a very deep keel that gives a draft of 7' 6".

We have cruised a little bit of the NSW Australian coastline and that draft would be a problem for many places where we went in our 4'6" vessel. Not haveing cruised overseas we are wondering if this deep draft will be a problem getting into good anchorages and some ports ?

WOuld like to go across the Pacific and cruise down the W coast of South America into the inland passages of Chille.

Thanks Michael

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Old 12-03-2006, 16:15   #2

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As many will tell you... it depens on where you will go. Take a look at the depths you plan to cruise in, check out anchorage you'd like to stay at, then decide if that draft will limit you.

Off the cuff, my personal opinion is that it's too much a draft and would limit you in some ways. I am in a different area (North East and South East USA) and I even find I have to say "no" to many places with my 5'5" draft. Of course... you can always time the tides, but... less fun.

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Old 12-03-2006, 17:42   #3
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I know nothing about South America, but in the eastern and especially the Gulf Coast in the US, you start to run into trouble beyond about 6 feet of draft. Lots of channels are dredged to 6 feet, but the ones deeper than that tend to be commercial ports rather than the recreational and yacht-oriented harbors.

The rocky coasts of the northeast US will be okay for you, but the sandier Chesepeake, southeast/Florida, and the Gulf Coast tend to be more shoal-draft territory.
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Old 12-03-2006, 19:31   #4
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Michael - as Sean said it really depends on where you want to cruise and how much 'gunkholing' you plan to do. I don't see 7'6" as particularly deep - but I've spent most of my time taking ships with seven plus metres of draught around the world. Most marinas are geared towards keelboats, so I wouldn't think that draught would be problematic.

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Old 13-03-2006, 19:11   #5
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In French Polynesia, you will find some anchorages inside the reef that are 6' or less. The one at the resort on Moorea directly across from Tahiti comes to mind. In most cases draft isn't a problem in FP though it could be an inconvenience in having to anchor further out on inside the reef anchorages.

Peter O.
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