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Old 28-12-2013, 13:38   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Gulfport Florida
Boat: Island Packet 370
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Sailing Saint Petersburg Florida

We have our grand daughters for the week and are wanting to take them on a short trip. Ideally we want a area with in a days sail from Saint Pete. Would like to be able to anchor for a night or so. We have a paddle board on board girls would like to be able to use it. We also have dingy and would like to be able to have a place to dingy to. They are 11 and 13, this is there introduction to our new boat and want to create a positive first experience!

Our draft is 4 ft 6 inch and mast height is 54 feet. Thanks in advance for any ideas you might have.

Bob and Cathy
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Old 28-12-2013, 15:46   #2
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Re: Sailing Saint Petersburg Florida

With preteens on board I wouldn't go more than 25 miles or so. You can go south from St Pete under the Sunshine Bridge and then into the Manatee River toward Bradenton. There are several anchorages there on the N or S shore depending on wind direction. Active Captain gives detailed information on them

David
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Old 28-12-2013, 17:13   #3
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Re: Sailing Saint Petersburg Florida

The anchorages in the Manatee River or Terra Ceia Bay do not offer beaches or really anyplace to dinghy to. Egmont Key can be ok in nice weather but I hate spending the night there, too exposed; if nasty weather moves in there's no place to go.

I would head north to Clearwater Bay; several nice spoil islands and protected water for anchoring. I'd chose an anchorage between the CG Station and the Sailing Center then dinghy to the only spoil island with a tree on it.

OR

Going farther north to 3 Rooker Bar there's good protection from anything westerly and the plus is a very nice beach to dinghy into lots of shells plus Anclote Key is just a few miles north, also nice beaches. If the weather turns snotty you can duck inside the Anclote River and even explore the Sponge Docks in Tarpon Springs.

The good news is that going north you can stay inside on the ICW or sail up the outside. Good all weather inlets about every 5 or 10 miles get you to the inside or outside. Pass-a-Grille, John's Pass, Clearwater Pass and the water between Anclote and 3 Rooker Bar are all passable in the worst weather. On the inside you have to contend with draw bridges and power boat wakes but it can be interesting.

In strong easterly winds you can hug the beach on the outside and sail in fairly flat water from Pass-a-Grille north to Clearwater.

Just pay attention to the charts on the outside and the channel markers on the inside.
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Old 28-12-2013, 17:58   #4
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Starting from downtown st pete - leave early and hit up egmont key for a few hrs. Then 1.5 - 2hr south down the ICW to the anchorage at Mar Vista/Jewfish Key/North end of Longboat. Mar Vista is a beautiful restaraunt on the ICW. Make sure to sit under the buttonwood trees.

Repeat for the return trip.

Such good fun!
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Old 30-12-2013, 18:08   #5
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Re: Sailing Saint Petersburg Florida

Thanks for the great ideas! We are going to stay downtown Saint Petersburg for the New Years eve fireworks ect. Then depending on the weather pick one of your suggestions. Thanks again!

Cathy
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Old 31-12-2013, 23:50   #6
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Re: Sailing Saint Petersburg Florida

Sounds like a good time what ever you pick.. Happy New Year !!
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