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Old 06-04-2010, 04:02   #1
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Carribean to Florida

Hello,

I plan in may to go from St-Martin in the Carribean to Fort Lauderdale. It's not a cruise, i just bring the boat in Fort Lauderdale, I don't plan to stop between St Martin and Fort Lauderdale.

I have two options routes : one from the north of Bahamas and another one along Cuba etc...

What is the best route for this cruise. Thanks a lot
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Old 06-04-2010, 04:36   #2
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I don't think it makes much difference, but my preference would be to head for the SE and NE Providence Channels through the Bahamas to Fort Lauderdale. Less potential complications.

I made a passage a year and a half ago from St Thomas, headed for the Moser Channel in order to pass through the Keys, then up to Tampa Bay. A weather situation developed with a cold front approaching from the west and a tropical wave from the east, both planning to arrive just as we got to the narrowest part of the Old Bahama Channel between Cuba and the Bahamas So we turned north for the open ocean and then went through the SE and NW Providence Channels. The nine hour Gulf Stream crossing from Great Isaac Light to Hollywood, FL was pretty nice even with northerly winds at 15-18 kts. We were able to sail for the entire crossing.

Friends of ours made the passage via the Old Bahama Channel several years ago. They were rather alarmed when a motor vessel approached in the middle of the night, and hit them with a blinding spotlight. It turned out to be the Royal Bahamas Defense Force, who boarded them for an inspection. I don't know if the Cubans do the same.
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Old 06-04-2010, 07:38   #3
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Depends on how much you draw--we draw 8 ft, and will probably go up the old Bahama Channel this year. If you are a US vessel with US crew, and check into St John or Puerto Rico, you don't have to check in again when you get to Florida if you don't stop anywhere.
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Old 06-04-2010, 08:13   #4
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Hud3 View Post
... Friends of ours made the passage via the Old Bahama Channel several years ago. They were rather alarmed when a motor vessel approached in the middle of the night, and hit them with a blinding spotlight. It turned out to be the Royal Bahamas Defense Force, who boarded them for an inspection.
I don't know if the Cubans do the same.
Yes, the Cuban TGF can be expected to display a similar vigilance, within their capabilities, as any other national border/coast guard agency.
Border Guard [ Tropas Guarda Fronteras - TGF]


Not always so harmlessly:

Murphy's Law: Cooperating With The Cuban Coast Guard

1 dead as Cuban Coast Guard opens fire on 3 people smugglers from U.S. - South Florida Sun-Sentinel (Fort Lauderdale, FL) | Encyclopedia.com
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Old 06-04-2010, 11:18   #5
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I agree with HUD, head for the SE channel then over to the NW channel by the Berry's. This is where it may get a bit shallow but you will see 8 to 12 feet in the channel. Head for Gun Key cut and then it will be about 43 mile to cross to Ft Lauderdale.
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