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Old 20-08-2013, 18:44   #1
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Toronto to Florida mid/end October

Dear Cruiser Friends,
I'm new to the forum and I want to say Hi to everyone!
I'm looking forward to learn of your experiences and hope to get some advices regarding my next trip.
A few weeks ago we bought a Hunter Cherubini 33ft sailboat of the year 1981. It is a very well maintained boat.
Currently the boat is in Lake Simcoe and we plan to sail it down towards Toronto, then to New York and further down to Florida.
Our main concern is: is it to late to start mid/end october? are there still open marinas and are all chanals open or do they Close?
We are also discussing about the best rout to take: Which rout would be recommended to take? Is the ICW or an offshore atlantic passage the better decision due to weather, traffic etc?
Thank you very much for taking your time and your help,
Tabaluga
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Old 20-08-2013, 18:58   #2
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Re: Toronto to Florida mid/end October

I would say your scheduled start is a bit late in the year. It would be much like a delivery, pushing miles every day, no matter how cold or rainy the weather is.

It's possible though, the Erie Canal to the Hudson operates to mid November.

Hours of Operation - New York State Canals

Then down the Hudson, wait for weather around NYC and a one nighter to Cape May. Up the Delaware bay down the Chesapeake is the safe and slow route. Outside to Norfolk is faster if weather permits.

Most likely you will be chugging away miles on the ICW from there, thru NC and SC with a hop on the Atlantic when weather permits. Skip the ICW in Georgia (shallow, windy, slow) and have fun in FL.
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Old 20-08-2013, 18:58   #3
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You will be cold leaving that late... Many marinas still open but limited hours as it gets colder. But as you get south things begging to open upbsgain
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Old 20-08-2013, 19:05   #4
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Re: Toronto to Florida mid/end October

This might help. Primer For First Timers Heading South
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Old 21-08-2013, 06:32   #5
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Re: Toronto to Florida mid/end October

Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Tabaluga.
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Old 22-08-2013, 15:54   #6
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Re: Toronto to Florida mid/end October

Quote:
Originally Posted by boatpoker View Post
Thank you very much. This is a very good Website. It is a big help for us!
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Old 23-08-2013, 12:33   #7
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Re: Toronto to Florida mid/end October

It's not late for Lake Ontario, but it's problematic for the canals, etc. You can't travel as far in the reduced hours of daylight, and there will be fewer places to fill up, and maybe longer waits for locks.

Then, once out and down the Hudson, you are still in late hurricane season going down the ICW. If you get a decent weather window, you can go "outside"...but it's not what I would recommend to a first-timer on a 33 footer. You need to be aware of fishing fleets, Gulf Stream counter-currents...and how long it would take you to get back "inside" should conditions crumble in a fall gale.

By the way, that go south primer is pretty good and Wallace Gouk has a good reputation as a surveyor around here. If you pass Toronto, you might wish to commission a "fitness survey" for your Hunter to determine if you've covered all the bases.
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