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Old 11-02-2016, 10:43   #16
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

Beaufort Inlet to Masonboro Inlet is one day (85 miles outside) but very good on anything other than SWor W. Masonboro has been fine for us with 5' draft. Going out at Cape Fear to Charleston is a little under 2 days on same wind. You may be south of this by now, but these are great runs outside.
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Old 11-02-2016, 10:46   #17
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

If you want to sail outside some... good. But be aware, that you must be ready and boat capable to do it as if you are staying there, not as a few hour diversion.
-The outlets to the sea can be rough.
-The time to get out (and in) can be a lot more than a 1 hour diversion.
-In florida it can be a glorious day at 12 noon....... and black, windy, thunder and lightening with high wind squalls by 3:30 pm. Often regularly.
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Old 11-02-2016, 11:18   #18
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

I went south from Otown a couple months ago. My only addition to the excellent advise here would be to take it slow and enjoy the places you come across! Lot's of really interesting little out-of-the-way places, esp in SC and GA. Seek out some SC pear mash moonshine from the locals, eat the sweetest freshest shrimp you've ever had, and try not to count the miles!

If you stay inside thru SC and GA, there are places where you will find yourself actually heading north along the winding way, and sometimes against a strong setting current
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Old 11-02-2016, 11:31   #19
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

We enjoy some beautiful scenery and isolation on the ICW:


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Old 11-02-2016, 11:36   #20
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

So it's boring watching scenery go by and dealing with channels, other boats...

How much more boring is it going to be if you are miles offshore with land just a distant smudge on the horizon and all you really have to do is keep the boat pointed in the right general direction.

I'm not saying an offshore run won't be enjoyable in the right situation but you can almost guarantee it will qualify as more boring.
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Old 11-02-2016, 13:26   #21
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

I think the worst part of the Intracoastal is from Palm Beach to Miami.
There's a old Indian word for it, Landofmanybridges lol.
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Old 11-02-2016, 13:44   #22
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

Can you really "sail" the ICW? Is it mostly just motoring? BTW, I have never tried it - just wondering.
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Old 11-02-2016, 13:49   #23
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

For the majority it's all motoring.
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Old 11-02-2016, 13:52   #24
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

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Can you really "sail" the ICW? Is it mostly just motoring? BTW, I have never tried it - just wondering.
There are a few places where you can sail for a couple of hours. Aside from those, it's "just motoring".

You can pretty much tell by looking at your charts.
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Old 11-02-2016, 13:58   #25
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

Do you have competent crew?

An excellent option when you have a settled weather report is to spend one night offshore. Exit at dawn and come back in before sunset the next day. With only one night offshore you don't have to set up a watch schedule but just alternate naps. Spend the next day at anchor catching up on sleep.

In most places it takes longer than an hour getting out and in to deep water. One day hops never seem worth it.
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Old 11-02-2016, 15:43   #26
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

Pasquotank River, Currituck Sound, Albemarle Sound, Alligator River, Pungo River, Pamiico Sound, Pamlico River, Neuse River, the lower Waccamaw, Winyah Bay, Coosaw River, Port Royal Sound, Callibogue Sound, outbound & inbound from Racoon Key (Hell's Gate), any of the Georgia Sounds if the current allows, Indian River and Biscayne Bay... I've saiied in all these places depending upon the conditions. In other sections I sometimes motor with a genoa or smaller jib out along with a mizzen stay sail because I can put these away without turning to windward in a narrow channel. Many people choose to motor because they are on a schedule committed to time, not because you can't sail in the ICW.

I'm sometimes inside from Lake Worth to Biscayne Bay too. This is the section with twenty plus bridges, but I grew up in this area, I enjoy some anchorages and visiting friends. We rarely have a problem with bridges; though we did have to wait three days for a South Carolina bridge to open at one time.

Cruising is different if you are enjoying where you are and not trying to be someplace else at a particular time. We've spent four months cruising from Florida to Maine and could have taken more time.
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Old 11-02-2016, 15:49   #27
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

Seems like Currituck Sound would be too shallow?
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Old 11-02-2016, 16:04   #28
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

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Seems like Currituck Sound would be too shallow?
Very true for the northern half, but you can tack a bit as you approach the Albemarle. This reminds me of the summer of '72 when we were sailing south in Currituck Sound and Nancie was at the helm of our sloop, at that time, with a 5.5' draft. She was on a starboard tack to the east when she suddenly came about after noticing a tree stump at the water level. She couldn't conceive of what she had seen in the water and only explained it as a "floating rock"! We still joke about the "floating rocks", but haven't hit one! Of course, you can always sail in a narrow channel it you're not tacking to windward.
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Old 13-02-2016, 15:14   #29
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

At the south end in Florida:

Port Canaveral to Fort Pierce to Lake Worth (Palm Beach)
to Port Everglades (Fort Lauderdale.)

All are decent inlets, usable in all weathers, and are day
trips at sailboat or trawler speeds.

Lake Worth to Port Everglades outside is highly recommended.
Running the "ditch" between Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale
can be a miserable experience, especially on a busy weekend.
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Old 13-02-2016, 16:13   #30
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Re: Spots Along the ICW To Pop Out/Back In

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............
Lake Worth to Port Everglades outside is highly recommended.
Running the "ditch" between Palm Beach to Fort Lauderdale
can be a miserable experience, especially on a busy weekend.
I guess it could be miserable, but I don't know why. We often have friends with a snack tray in the cockpit; maybe stop for lunch at Veteran's Park in Delray Beach; maybe anchor for the night in Pelican Harbor; and then up the New River to Cooley's Landing the next day.

What's to make someone miserable if you're not due at the office or late to catch a plane?

We also run both ways between Lake Worth and Lauderdale outside and we like that too!
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