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Old 26-06-2014, 11:40   #16
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

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Originally Posted by AnchorageGuy View Post
Sorry pete but I don't agree that there are few marinas to use if you sail. For 17 years we cruised both coasts of Florida on our Mariner 40 Ketch with a 6 foot draft. And there are very, very few marinas we could not get into. Chuck
I'm sure you know lots more than me, but I have looked at this many times for my normal sailing area (E to S from Miami), and I can start in Key Largo and count marinas heading south with a controlling depth of 5', and MOST of them do not. If you want to sit and wait for high tide, there are a lot more, but not many. Compared to anchorages, which are basically everywhere. pete
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Old 26-06-2014, 16:14   #17
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

Gray,
You have the perfect boat for gunkholing anywhere. If you want to explore and be in a natural environment away from the crowds, may I suggest Cape Romano Island to Little Shark River on the mainland West Coast and Big Spanish to Johnston Key on the Gulf side of the Keys. You could spend 6 months and never be bored. In regards to gators . . . generally not a problem but the anacondas . . . now that is a different matter as witnessed in the following example: Anaconda Best Scene - YouTube Good luck, good sailing and may your journey be less than primordial.
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Old 26-06-2014, 17:19   #18
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

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I'm sure you know lots more than me, but I have looked at this many times for my normal sailing area (E to S from Miami), and I can start in Key Largo and count marinas heading south with a controlling depth of 5', and MOST of them do not. If you want to sit and wait for high tide, there are a lot more, but not many. Compared to anchorages, which are basically everywhere. pete
Heck, once you get past Key Largo on the Gulf side, it starts getting dicey to sail with more than 5 feet of draft, never mind getting into a marina. I've had many readings under 5 feet in the channel off Islamorada over the years and occasional readings in other places. No way would I travel on the Gulf side of the Keys with 6 feet of draft.

On the Hawk Channel side, while it's deeper, you do have a problem with many marinas that have very shallow approaches. Pennekamp Park is another problem for that draft, as are many of the cuts that allow you to travel between the Gulf and Hawk Channel.

Channel Five is one of the few reliable cuts for a deep-draft boat.

Basically, with a deep-draft boat, you miss out on many of the coolest places in the Keys on the Gulf side.

You can stop at No Name Harbor and Crandon Park Marina on Key Biscayne, maybe anchor off Boca Chita and probably get to Jewish Creek if you're willing to turn around and head back north to Miami when you want to leave.

This is why my sailboat draws 3 feet, 6 inches with the board up.
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Old 26-06-2014, 22:56   #19
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

You've got a great boat to play in Biscayne Bay and the Keys. Don't miss the conch fritters at Alabama Jacks at the western end of the Card Sound bridge. Just anchor off and dinghy in. Don't let the bikers scare you, they're tame.

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Blue Crab, That's just going to annoy him, better go back to hollow points.

You had to mention the G word.
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Old 27-06-2014, 02:36   #20
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Anchorages are not hard to find in Florida. What's hard to find is dinghy docks or even just places you can go to shore. getting water, rid of trash. If you're going anywhere in the Everglades in the summertime make sure you have no seeum netting preferably to cover the whole cockpit. at sunset they will eat you alive. One time I believe it was in marathon I hopped into my dinghy to be face to face with a five foot iguana. Now more than half his length was tail but I was still glad when he decided to go for a swim. I've also encountered water moccasins mostly in the mangroves where I landed my dinghy. And they just sit there motionless. almost put my hand on one on more than one occasion.
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Old 27-06-2014, 05:08   #21
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Yep, cruisers would have to be crazy to go into the Shark Python River. Add in the water mocs, and gators and crocs, and millions of noseeums per diem ... man you got trouble with a capital T. Here's a pic I shot yesterday in the Python River area while you guys were on the internet:

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Old 27-06-2014, 06:17   #22
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

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Anchorages are not hard to find in Florida. What's hard to find is dinghy docks or even just places you can go to shore. getting water, rid of trash.

SNIP
Lots of folks get a shock when they find out water is five cents a gallon (or more) in the Keys. The FWC can issue very expensive tickets if you run aground in the wrong place and damage the bottom. Trash disposal even if you get ashore can be a problem.

Still it is cheaper than the Bahamas.
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Old 27-06-2014, 06:20   #23
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

"You can go out there for days and days and days and not see one python," snake hunter Justin Matthews said last month. "I don't care how much experience you have. It is going to take some luck."

The source of this blurb.

Plenty more where those came from -- final take in Fla. snake hunt is 68 pythons - CNN.com
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Old 28-06-2014, 09:39   #24
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

The tragedy of the establishment of an invasive species is that they change the habitat forever. Native animals perish as the invaders multiply. One such tragedy, in this case, is the Florida Bobcat. The snakes have no natural predators and reproduce prolifically. Florida has lost the battle and as one can easily see from the above videos-- a snake hunt that produces 60 plus snakes has little impact on a population that exceeds 100,000. Sadly, the problem originated when pea-brained pet owners in Miami, who purchased them for all the wrong reasons, released them in the wild when they were too difficult to handle or the fad had run its course. The impact on boaters who frequent these areas is yet to be seen ,but I cannot believe the final outcome will be positive.

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For they shall inherit the earth."
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Old 28-06-2014, 10:21   #25
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

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The tragedy of the establishment of an invasive species is that they change the habitat forever. Native animals perish as the invaders multiply. One such tragedy, in this case, is the Florida Bobcat. The snakes have no natural predators and reproduce prolifically. Florida has lost the battle and as one can easily see from the above videos-- a snake hunt that produces 60 plus snakes has little impact on a population that exceeds 100,000. Sadly, the problem originated when pea-brained pet owners in Miami, who purchased them for all the wrong reasons, released them in the wild when they were too difficult to handle or the fad had run its course. The impact on boaters who frequent these areas is yet to be seen ,but I cannot believe the final outcome will be positive.
In most ways I agree with you, but there will always be people who, for one reason or another (usually stupidity or, at the very least, ignorance or naivety), think it's a good idea to have a wild animal as a pet. Frankly, I don't think most of the blame sits with them. Much of the blame should sit with the people who bred and sold these exotic/invasive wild animals for the purpose of profit, but it was legal to do so, so you can't really blame them. The bulk of the blame sits with politicians and state/federal bureaucrats who do nothing about these problems (in the past or going forward), because it will alienate some of their voters or otherwise represent a disadvantage to them or their livelihood. No one wants to take the blame. So who suffers? The pythons/snails/mussels/etc that are exterminated at will in a futile and ridiculous effort to turn back time, or the parrots/tigers/leopards/etc that are denied their freedom or access to their natural environment and forced to live in miserable captivity. Personally, I think we should feed the decision makers to the pythons so that they won't be so hungry as to eat a boater or any local wildlife. But that's just me. pete
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Old 28-06-2014, 18:17   #26
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As they eat and reproduce their way out of Miami, from as>hole pet owners dumping them, and the abandoned Serpentarium, and the hurricane-damaged zoo, and probably a few legitimate escapees, they likely already have hit water in every direction except north. They can't go north much due to the temps. Although evolutionary genetics has an AP for that too.

I don't see it as a big stretch to imagine an enormous buildup of pythons along the edges of the mangroves sending the hungriest snakes into the water to see what they can find. As athletic as they are, climbing aboard a boat will be simple.

That said, let's now hear from the bleeding hearts against guns and killing. I generally try to make a joke out of this situation but it really is no laughing matter. 100,000 in 2013 means ... ch ch ch ... uh... carry the two uh what? 200,000 in 2015 ,,,, a million more pythons all too soon, multiplying exponentially which means really FAST for slow readers.

The Burmese has already crossed some genetic material with the even badder-ass Rock Python, and I think it safe to say this marriage made in heaven or hell will not be good for things that walk, swim, or fly.

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Old 28-06-2014, 20:10   #27
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

I think a bigger problem is little green men snatching you off your boat and performing weird sexual experiments on you than pythons eating you
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Old 28-06-2014, 23:28   #28
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I think a bigger problem is little green men snatching you off your boat and performing weird sexual experiments on you than pythons eating you
I truly hope you are correct about that. I'd toss out some rebuttal facts but it's tough enough to sleep already. Perhaps a bounty on them is one answer to keep populations in line and possibly provide an income source for South Florida fishing families driven out of business by all-wise government resource managers.

As others have noted, the Little Snake River is a beautiful spot to anchor. The noseeums alone will probably be enough to keep most folks away.
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Old 29-06-2014, 00:07   #29
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

What the heck!! Python is good eating !! Even a 5 ftr is good for a few meals! Get with it folks !! our daddys ate off the land ! and eating them will help to control the population!!
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Old 29-06-2014, 04:36   #30
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Re: Cruising In South Florida

All I can add is that we lived in Port of The Everglades for over a year while we refitted the boat. This is in the heart of the Thousand islands. We did a lot of cruising in the area, Indian Key, Panther Key, Everglades City, Little Shark River and many other areas. Spent a lot of time enjoying the sights of the Everglades ashore. Never saw a Python or met anyone else that had. There are lots of gators, but we don't swim with gators so don't consider them a threat. Chuck
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