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Old 21-06-2010, 09:12   #1
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Best Way to Cruise from Maine to Lake Erie

I need to get a 37' sailboat (under 5' draft) from Boothbay Harbor Maine (NE of Portland) to Lake Erie, and have 2 basic questions:

1. Which is the best route a) via the St Lawrance Seaway or b) Hudson river and through the canal system?
2. How long do you think it would take to make the trip?

Anything else you feel is appropriate...please comment.

Thanks much,
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Old 22-06-2010, 09:43   #2
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It depends on what you mean by "best" route. You can make NYC in three days from Boothbay and you will be halfway to Erie. I would pack an extra sandwich going the St. Lawrence route...
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Old 22-06-2010, 09:51   #3
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We took our 48 footer from Rockport up the St. Lawrence. Great trip. (and we didn't have to pull the sticks)

Quebec city was a great stop. (but I have no desire to go to NYC)

I'd guess it's be about 2 weeks taking it easy.
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Old 22-06-2010, 09:53   #4
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Three days from Boothbay to NYC? Yes, I guess it's possible, but only assuming really good weather, optimal tides, a strong engine, a crew or two, and long days.
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Old 22-06-2010, 10:10   #5
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I'm assuming overnight sailing on the outside and not dickering with Cape Cod Canal or Hell's Gate. I like to stop and smell the roses myself, but you can do the trip in three days with, yes, weather permitting.
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Old 22-06-2010, 10:56   #6
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Best Way

By best way, I was thinking more about time savings more than anything else. I didn't do a trip plan, but it looks like the St Lawrence is a longer distance? I wish I had the luxury of time because I would love to check out the spots along the way, but time could be an issue. I would at least favor day sailing and stopping at night.

Hopefully that frames the question better.

Can it still be done in 2 weeks?
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Old 22-06-2010, 11:34   #7
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I don't have the answer but I will ask the question as to whether day sailing and stopping at night is feasible on the St. Lawrence route - you will be subject to long ocean sailing days with entry into unkown harbors (before dark) every day. Someone else here will know.

The southen route will very easily accomodate that approach, though. Two weeks should do it without a visit from Mother Nature or Mr. Murphy and we all know how that goes...
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Old 22-06-2010, 12:04   #8
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Thoe only overnight is across the Gilf of Maine to Port Hawksbury (Straits of Canso) and if you go north of PEI it's overnight to Gaspe. if you take the channel south of PEI there are several places to pull in. On the St.Lawrence it's easy to find a place to stop nightly.

The canal is neat but you have to pull the mast and motor. Too much hassle for us.
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Old 22-06-2010, 12:50   #9
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Cruising Guide

S&S, can you recommend a good cruising guide(s) for making the St Lawrance route?

Thanks very much.
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Old 22-06-2010, 14:52   #10
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The quickest way is to hire a truck to carry her to Erie!
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Old 22-06-2010, 15:27   #11
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaptainBW View Post
S&S, can you recommend a good cruising guide(s) for making the St Lawrance route?

Thanks very much.
Here's one from the CCA:
http://www.puffin-press.com/Gulf_of_St.Lawrence3-06.doc.
and update:
Pilot Press - Cruising Guide to The Gulf of St. Lawrence Updates

We did it without one but the chart book of St. Lawrence currents is helpful. (Tidal atlas of the St.lawrence)

There's another circulating (landfall has it) but I haven't seen it.

A great place to stop is Riviere au Renaud at the edge of Gaspe. Nice little hotel: Auberge Caribou. People were really friendly as well.
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Old 22-06-2010, 18:24   #12
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St Lawrence River

Have made the trip up river many times .very interesting
There is a good guide called "The down east circle route"
It is written from an east going trip but can be used up bound going west.
Available at most marine book outlets or from the publisher. Yachtpilot.ca
The toughest part is locking up in the seaway. Need good fendering.
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Old 23-06-2010, 08:15   #13
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The toughest part is locking up in the seaway. Need good fendering.
The Welland also requires good fenders. We used grain sacks filled with straw.
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Old 23-06-2010, 14:26   #14
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Thanks to everyone for the info.
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