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Old 16-03-2013, 07:02   #1
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Destin Harbor

Does anyone know if a mooring can be picked up in Destin harbor? I see boats anchored there. Also, controlling depth for Old Pass Lagoon getting in there says 5.5 feet. Anyone know for sure how much water there is going in there? Thanks very much and please be patient with me I'm a newbie!
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Old 16-03-2013, 08:04   #2
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Re: Destin Harbor

Here are some things to remember about Destin. One, the bridge only has a clearance of 48 or so feet. I had a friend who knows for sure a Tartan 34 won't pass under it. Of course, you don't have to pass under it when coming from the Gulf to Destin Harbor.

The other thing is that the Destin Pass shoals in unpredictable ways. I would not take a sailboat draft vessel in there without having sounded my route in a shallow draft vessel first, no matter what the charts or buoys say.

Once you get in the Harbor, it is mostly sportfisherman. Last time I was there, I saw a few sailboats anchored but I don't remember how many were on moorings (if any).

Pensacola and Panama City are much better for sailboats. And, with an air draft of less than 55 feet you can ICW it pretty much then entire way, if you want, with the only place you can't get in or out being Destin (and Orange Beach, another shoaly pass with a low bridge).
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Old 16-03-2013, 08:17   #3
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Re: Destin Harbor

I don't think there are any public moorings there. There are a few places in Choctawhatchee Bay where you occasionally see sailboats anchored.
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Old 28-03-2013, 20:07   #4
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Lived and rowed Choctawhatchee Bay thru Destin Pass from 1996 to 2000, rarely saw anything more than beach cats and Corsairs inside Hwy. 98.
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Old 22-05-2013, 11:15   #5
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Re: Destin Harbor

There are 35-50 foot boats that race on the bay on Wednesdays and Saturdays, out of both Fort Walton Beach and Bluewater Bay.

The 50 foot bridge clearance at Destin pass is an issue, but with planning there is a way into the bay for up to 65 feet above the waterline.
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Old 22-05-2013, 11:28   #6
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Re: Destin Harbor

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
There are 35-50 foot boats that race on the bay on Wednesdays and Saturdays, out of both Fort Walton Beach and Bluewater Bay.

The 50 foot bridge clearance at Destin pass is an issue, but with planning there is a way into the bay for up to 65 feet above the waterline.
Please let me know your route. I understand there is a 50 bridge just West of Port St Joe on the ICW?
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Old 22-05-2013, 12:20   #7
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Re: Destin Harbor

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Originally Posted by letsgetsailing3 View Post
The 50 foot bridge clearance at Destin pass is an issue, but with planning there is a way into the bay for up to 65 feet above the waterline.
It's 49 feet at Destin bridge, and I'd be damned interested to hear how a 65' foot clearance can access the bay.
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Old 22-05-2013, 13:50   #8
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Re: Destin Harbor

What is your air draft and/or what boat.Been there several times,possible can help.Also where are you coming from?marc
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Old 22-05-2013, 14:28   #9
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Re: Destin Harbor

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It's 49 feet at Destin bridge, and I'd be damned interested to hear how a 65' foot clearance can access the bay.

Unless I'm mistaken, that's the bridge clearance coming from PCB.

You're limited to 49' at Destin.

http://cruisersnet.net/category/bridges-northern-gulf/
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Old 22-05-2013, 14:46   #10
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Re: Destin Harbor

The Dupont bridge at GIWW 295 is 50'. It looks like one could go in at the St Andrew Inlet and then get to the Choctawhatchee to avoid that. Fine if coming from the eastward, not so much if coming from west, as it's about 44nm east from Destin Pass.
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Old 22-05-2013, 14:48   #11
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Re: Destin Harbor

Yep, that's the route I was referring to.

Doesn't help much if you're coming from the Pensacola direction.
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Old 22-05-2013, 19:36   #12
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Re: Destin Harbor

I am posting while anchored in Destin Harbor and have been here since Monday May 20th. The entrance to the Harbor is was being dredged until Tuesday the 21st. when they suspended operations (presumably because of the busy Memorial day weekend). The entrance markers have been moved significantly to the north, very near and parallel to the bridge. The large boats taking tourists are coming and going at will following the markers. One large fake pirate ship has sounding markers on the hull and draws 6.5 feet. He just left and came back at mid-tide.

Once inside the depths are fine and you can anchor in a number of places if you can stand the loud music at night and the other tourist distractions.

As others have said, the bridges are at 49 feet or so coming into the bay and going west in the ICW toward Pensacola.

There are no moorings but you can anchor. Unlike previous years, there are are spaces for landing a dink between the jet ski and party barge rental places.
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Old 23-05-2013, 05:31   #13
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Re: Destin Harbor

It is beautiful there. I will be close by in a couple of weeks.
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Old 23-05-2013, 05:35   #14
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Re: Destin Harbor

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It's 49 feet at Destin bridge, and I'd be damned interested to hear how a 65' foot clearance can access the bay.

You know, just a couple of years ago, you couldn't. And, I haven't actually tried to go down it (I've always had to go offshore with a 62 foot air draft). But, it looks like you can get in from the east now. They are swapping out bridges left and right to get the 65' clearance all the way on the ICW. I keep hoping a hurricane will take out the Navarre bridge where it can get rebuilt.
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Old 23-05-2013, 05:46   #15
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Re: Destin Harbor

the entrance to the channel into destin has a very fast current with tides. there is a narrowing at the opening jetties--we stayed away from the right hand side, as there was obvious shoaling at low tide. keep engine runnng in high rpms or you will be affected badly by the current. hard left into this channel behind the jetty.
to gain access to bay--hard right hand turn into bay, stay closer to the restaurants as the shoal will grab ye.
we went in for a few days in 2009--was lovely and there was difficulty provisioning as there are no readily available markets. is purely tourist and party life there--pretty and lots of places to eat and drink. lovely homes with docks and some small marinas with schooners and other nice boat porn to see when you dinghy around inside the bay.
no moorings, tho--we anchored. there were 3 boats of us--one 37 seidelmann, one 45 hunter, and one 55 hunter.
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