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Old 09-01-2016, 14:55   #1
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George Town to Keys

Does anyone have experience sailing from GeorgeTown Bahamas to The Florida Keys? What are the preferred routes? I have a cat with 4' draft.


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Old 09-01-2016, 15:11   #2
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Re: George Town to Keys

We come either east or west of new providence then NW channel to south riding rock then duck inside the reef near angelfish creek and then hawk channel to your destination.


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Old 09-01-2016, 15:21   #3
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Re: George Town to Keys

You can also pass just south of Andros for a short cut but I have not passed this way. If you find yourself further south in the Ragged islands it's a straight shot up the old Bahama channel. I know George at st Francis resort who also regularly sails this way takes NW channel as well. I think the problem with the Andros route is you need to see (daylight) whereas the traditional route can be done at night.


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Old 09-01-2016, 18:14   #4
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Re: George Town to Keys

The south of Andros route is the route I was asking about. I have sailed the northern route around Nassau but then you need to sail south against the current.

Is it better to take the north or south route around Great Exuma?


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Old 09-01-2016, 19:34   #5
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Re: George Town to Keys

Charts might help you. (lol)
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Old 09-01-2016, 19:49   #6
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Re: George Town to Keys

Quote:
Originally Posted by geoleo View Post
Charts might help you. (lol)
That's juvenile.

C'mon, the OP was asking reasonable questions about folks experience. Don't take the OQ literally.

We're supposed to be here to help.

And this is from your respondent who regularly has a great deal of difficulty dealing with answering people asking things like: "I have to go 40 n mi, how long will it take me?"
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Old 09-01-2016, 23:35   #7
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Re: George Town to Keys

First if you have nothing to say, say nothing.

I have sailed from New England to Grenada and most places in between, and as you may know the charts in that area are somewhat sketchy. More so there than anywhere I have sailed in the Caribbean. In my experience I have found more water on the west side of the Exuma chain than the charts generally show. The charts are showing many very shallow areas with no clear route without going around Long Island or up to Nassau. If anyone has sailed across the Exuma Banks around the south side of Andros I am interested in you real life experience.


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Old 10-01-2016, 00:51   #8
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Re: George Town to Keys

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Originally Posted by RunawayC47 View Post
First if you have nothing to say, say nothing.

I have sailed from New England to Grenada and most places in between, and as you may know the charts in that area are somewhat sketchy. More so there than anywhere I have sailed in the Caribbean. In my experience I have found more water on the west side of the Exuma chain than the charts generally show. The charts are showing many very shallow areas with no clear route without going around Long Island or up to Nassau. If anyone has sailed across the Exuma Banks around the south side of Andros I am interested in you real life experience.
===
I have not gone around the south side of Andros but a few other people have and posted to their blog sites. Here's one account by Geof Schultz who took his keel boat west to east on the south end of Andros:

BlueJacket: South...South End of Andros Island, Bahamas

There are two challenges actually, the first being the exit from George Town over to Tongue of the Ocean, and the second is the southerly rounding of Andros as described by Schultz.

To exit George Town you can go south through Hog Cay Cut and then north to Jew Fish Cut or through the pass west of Hawksbill Rock. These areas are not well charted so visual navigation in good overhead sunlight is the order of the day. Either way will give you a clear route to Tongue of the Ocean.
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Old 10-01-2016, 04:51   #9
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Re: George Town to Keys

Been discussed before....

Georgetown Exumas-BELOW Andros-Cay Sal Bank -Cuba- Key West Charts
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Old 10-01-2016, 06:05   #10
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Re: George Town to Keys

Would you consider South Bight? Your draft could make it . . . just.

Reuel Parker wrote a great piece on South Bight.
https://www.woodenboat.com/whiskey_p...ne-south-bight

I think nowadays with Google Earth you could plot out the safest route through, and avoid the trial-and-error approach.

I should add: I've never been through the Bights of Andros. Just always wanted to.
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Old 10-01-2016, 06:12   #11
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Re: George Town to Keys

I thought middle bight was the deeper one?

I will check that article by parker. I plan to depart Marathon the end of this month for the Exumas with a 3' draft. Was looking to go thru Andros if the weather works.
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Old 10-01-2016, 06:42   #12
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Re: George Town to Keys

Thank you. As we are a catamaran with a keel spacing of 20' I am more concerned as it makes it more difficult to transit narrow channels. Good daylight for visual sightings will be critical for a safe transit.


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Old 10-01-2016, 07:06   #13
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Re: George Town to Keys

That other link is to some I assume well insured cat owners that ran the south route at night. They said it was pretty worry free as it was dark so they couldn't see any coral heads!
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Old 10-01-2016, 09:05   #14
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Re: George Town to Keys

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Originally Posted by Boatguy30 View Post
I thought middle bight was the deeper one
I always had it rattling around in my head that Middle Bight was preferable, too. But Reuel Parker states that South is deeper than North or Middle.

If you draw 3 feet you should be fine either way. Please post news here if you go through!

Here's the partner article to that prior link, this one on North and Middle Bights:
The Bights of Andros—Part Two: North & Middle Bights | WoodenBoat Magazine
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Old 10-01-2016, 09:14   #15
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Re: George Town to Keys

With my 13 total horsepower and combined 16' of keel length "plowing through" is not an option so I will perhaps give S Bight a try. It all totally depends on the weather getting out of Marathon.
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