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Old 15-12-2017, 13:08   #1
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Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

If all goes well a new to me Gemini 105M is in the works. It is presently located in Daytona Beach and I am looking at going through the Okeechobee as opposed to around the horn to Naples. I would really appreciate any suggestions or advice, I been looking through active captain getting information, but as this is going to be the 1st trip with this boat any information and tips are greatly appreciated.
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Old 15-12-2017, 13:36   #2
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

You would be just fine. 48’ is the max air draft allowed at the train bridge. Once in the lake go straight across to clewiston and stay the night at Roland Martin marina. Then go to fort Myers, anchor out. Next day you are in Naples.
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Old 17-12-2017, 06:25   #3
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

Clearance changes with Lake O level, check latest data here:

USACE Jacksonville District
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Old 17-12-2017, 06:57   #4
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

Check the current level, but 46’ should make it fine anytime over the winter.

If you have the time, the longer route is much better sailing in clearer water.
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Old 17-12-2017, 08:23   #5
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

Did it with 47 plus antenna.
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Old 17-12-2017, 08:50   #6
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

In addition to knowing the clearances which are published and don’t change, what does change is the depth of the lake. The lake is pretty shallow and can be as low as 4-5’ in some spots. The depths vary seasonally and are largely dependent on rainfall. The Corps of Engineers publishes current depths. Check their website
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Old 17-12-2017, 09:30   #7
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

Have done that route in my Gemini. No issues. Indian Town and LaBelle are good stops. Labelle is free and quick walk to town.
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Old 17-12-2017, 10:24   #8
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

The information you are giving me is very useful, along with active captain. Could I typically plan on about a 3 day trip from one end to the other?
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Old 17-12-2017, 10:32   #9
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

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The information you are giving me is very useful, along with active captain. Could I typically plan on about a 3 day trip from one end to the other?
Three days is a comfortable trip through the ditch.
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Old 17-12-2017, 10:46   #10
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

I think the biggest challenge is just arriving at the locks and the bridges at the correct times
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Old 17-12-2017, 11:05   #11
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

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I think the biggest challenge is just arriving at the locks and the bridges at the correct times
I found that the lock and bridge tenders are more than accommodating and nice.
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Old 17-12-2017, 16:44   #12
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

Make sure you got good mosquito control whether it be screens for the windows or closed up at night with AC. My understanding is the bugs are pretty hungry. In my humble opinion I think going around long ways much nicer ride if you have the time but I haven't been through the ditch so I really can't say for sure from personal experience just from what others have said. But the Gemini can motor through 3 ft depth with no problems.
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Old 17-12-2017, 18:43   #13
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

Bug spray...screens...Thx
I would much rather go around but the admiral is too nervous to do that on our 1st trip...
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Old 17-12-2017, 18:47   #14
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

I’ve done both and reccomend going around. The ditch is boring and buggy and some barges use it and don’t mind staying in the center, making you hug the wall. But both ways are an experience!
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Old 18-12-2017, 07:32   #15
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Re: Okeechobee Route... 46' Height

When we relocated from the east to the west coast of Florida, I made that trip in our (then) Cal 2-29. We stayed the first night in Indiantown, the second in La Belle and the last night in Ft. Myers Muni. All were relatively inexpensive but one did need screens and lots of insect repellent. (These days I'd suggest a couple of Thermacell Insect Repellers, one each for the cabin and the cockpit.) Other than sailing across the Lake, it was a motoring trip and the ditch got crushingly boring after awhile. Patience is the watchword. The run down to Naples from Sanibel isn't bad although the River from Ft. Myers to Punta Rasa can really be a pip with all the traffic. Also, brush up on your Inland Rules for marks or you'll end up aground at least once!

FWIW...
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