Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 24-11-2010, 20:15   #1
Registered User

Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 33
Dry Tortugas

Any one with advice sailing to Dry Tortugas from Charlotte Harbor
__________________

__________________
Seadaddler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 24-11-2010, 20:36   #2
Senior Cruiser
 
skipmac's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: 29 49.16 N 82 25.82 W
Boat: Pearson 422
Posts: 12,374
Well, what kind of advise are you looking for? Where to anchor, where to dive, what time the tours start?

I assume you aren't asking how to get there.
__________________

__________________
The water is always bluer on the other side of the ocean.
skipmac is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25-11-2010, 04:40   #3
Registered User
 
marc2012's Avatar

Join Date: Apr 2008
Location: abbeville la
Boat: seawind II Patience
Posts: 542
Weather probably not suitable right now.Sure wish had your problem.GF has med issues here in la this winter sux,Good luck marc
__________________
marc2012 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-11-2010, 05:30   #4
Registered User

Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 33
Sailing

Just trying to make sure I have the proper info getting into the fort without any bad mistakes,do you have the chart info like marker's to use entering into fort from the north like from FT Myers.
__________________
Seadaddler is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-11-2010, 05:57   #5
Senior Cruiser
 
skipmac's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: 29 49.16 N 82 25.82 W
Boat: Pearson 422
Posts: 12,374
Latest information, rules, restrictions on the park web site.

Dry Tortugas National Park (U.S. National Park Service)

Navigation use NOAA chart 11438. You can view the chart online at

http://www.charts.noaa.gov/OnLineViewer/11438.shtml
__________________
The water is always bluer on the other side of the ocean.
skipmac is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25-11-2010, 10:28   #6
Registered User
 
svHyLyte's Avatar

Join Date: Mar 2006
Location: Tampa Bay area, USA
Boat: Beneteau First 42
Posts: 3,427
Images: 25
For information on this subject, scroll down to the bottom of the page display, to "Similar Threads" and click on the various Threads.

FWIW...
__________________
"It is not so much for its beauty that the Sea makes a claim upon men's hearts, as for that subtle something, that quality of air, that emanation from the waves, that so wonderfully renews a weary spirit."
svHyLyte is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 25-11-2010, 12:50   #7
cruiser

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Tampa to New York
Boat: Morgan 33 OutIsland, Magic and 33' offshore scott design "Cutting Edge"
Posts: 1,594
Been to tortugas every year at least once a year for last 20 yrs.Dont forget the fishing tackle, right now is the best grouper fishing you will probably find anywhere. The channels are marked as according to the charts on the Western entrance , the park was on barebones staff the last couple of times I was there. Beware of the holding and make sure your ground tackle is up to snuff. There is a sand over hard bottom in the anchorage that will seem like your hooked securely then drag in a blow. We often anchor in an area south of the fort between the fort and the channel that has good bottom when the anchorage is crowded. Ive been in some real hectic situations when a blow moved in and there were boats dragging all over each other in the anchorage. Have a great time and enjoy some of the best waters the continental US has to offer.
__________________
forsailbyowner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 25-11-2010, 12:53   #8
cruiser

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Tampa to New York
Boat: Morgan 33 OutIsland, Magic and 33' offshore scott design "Cutting Edge"
Posts: 1,594
ps they werent enforcing the new anchoring and fishing regulations limiting fishing to the line drawn east of loggerhead, the park ranger informed me they had no plans of doing so untill the financing had been given to enforce the laws.
__________________
forsailbyowner is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-11-2010, 11:25   #9
Registered User
 
lannen's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2003
Location: Gulfport Fl
Boat: Endeavour CC 40' AbbyGale
Posts: 177
Images: 9
Here is an excerpt from my cruising blog. We went to the Dry Tortugas towards the end of Oct '10... headed direct from Fort Myers. You will have to go to my blog to see the photos.

Had a great time.

It was a dark and stormy night…
We were really glad to see Fort Jefferson. The pictures do not do the waves justice. We had spent the night pitching and rolling in the confused seas. We were looking forward to a bit calmer water as we entered the bank that supported the fort.
We followed a surreptitious route into the marked anchorage along the western route. The normal channel had some time ago shoaled over forbidding passage. We arrived to find only one other boat in the anchorage.
I picked the nicest spot I could find according to the charts and tried to set the anchor. After several attempts and failures, we moved a little bit and tried again, this time with success. The bottom is covered in shifting sands and therefore very loose. It takes a bit to find some solid sand to dig into.


The anchorage was rough and rolling as the small shoaled area provided little protection from the open sea. There would be no real relaxing for a while, no matter how tired we were.
As we settled in and cleaned up from last nights passage the National Park Service police force came out into the anchorage and tied up to the only other boat there. Inspection time I guess.
We stayed up as long as we could waiting on our turn to be inspected. Going below and taking a nap we would wait for their knock on the hull. I suppose they felt sorry for our haggard appearance and didn’t disturb us knowing we just completed an all night passage.
It was the fact that we were dragging anchor that awoke us. We were heading out to sea a little at a time. The strong rolling and pitching kept popping the anchor loose of the soft sand on the bottom. We went through our anchor resetting drill and this time let out three times too much anchor rode. Normally you should not need 100’ of chain out in 10’ of water, but I was determined to not drag again.


We rolled and rocked and rocked and rolled all night. The water was the prettiest teal blue we had seen in quite some time. The colors and hues were awesome. Postcard perfect. The visibility was amazing as well. Except for the whitecaps in the anchorage, we should have been able to see the anchor 100 feet away on the bottom.
Sunrise, stunning against the fort. It is a wonder why someone would have picked this place to defend. No water on the tiny island, and no other resources either. Everything you wanted had to be brought in, and eventually taken out. Enemy ships of long ago simply avoided this place once it was built so they made a prison out of it.
We explored the fort and really enjoyed the history lesson. Looking at the millions of bricks… each one hand made, shipped over, carried in and placed. One by one. Wow.
The mortar holding the bricks in place was made from the local sand, and not holding very well. The fort is literally falling apart, and under constant restoration.


Out to the west is a small island called Loggerhead Key. It has a light house and several small buildings on it. The lighthouse is now computer controlled with solar and the buildings unoccupied. Earlier photos show lots of trees.
All the trees, sans a few palms by the lighthouse, were erased by the last hurricane that went through here leaving this a deserted island.
We arrived by dinghy on the one day it did calm to less than 15 knots of wind. I believe it went down to 14 knots for three hours. While taking the dink to the calm side of the island I thought about bringing the AbbyGale over here and conducting an invasion of the island with one of my many Coast Guard inspected flare guns.
Taking over, and renaming the island I would immediately form my own government and declare independence from the US. Any attempt to remove me would be an act of war at which point I would immediately surrender and demand reparations.


Anyhow, we found a rather beautiful reef on the outside of the island. We jumped overboard and we floated along with the dink. I can’t really describe what we saw, and how pretty it was, so just enjoy the photos. Think warm tropical breezes when viewing…
Back on the rolling boat at anchor we met our new friends Barry and Dave.
They sailed down from the west coast of Florida and experienced the same kind of weather. Dave spent all of his spare time fishing from the boat. He would catch a small fish and then just wait a minute. His pole would double over and the reel would smoke.
Turns out they had unofficially adopted a 300 pound Goliath Grouper who called the bottom of his boat home. We pulled up in our dinghy and met the Grouper. He was about the size of the dink, at 9’6” and outweighed us by a couple of hundred pounds. He stayed just out of reach lurking in the shadow of ‘As You Wish’, Berry and Dave’s boat.
When we left a day or so later the grouper was still affixed to his feeding station at Berry and Dave’s boat.
Early in the morning we saw an inflatable approach the fort. It was a green rigid inflatable with a 40hp outboard. The vessel contained 7 Cuban refugees who had just made a night crossing. The fort’s law enforcement team took custody of the new immigrants until the arrival of the U.S. Coast Guard. They were all dressed identical in the common tropical white linen pants and long sleeve shirts. They were happy to be in America and were all smiles as we waved at each other.




A good size powerboat arrived in the anchorage and we met him and his wife. They were traveling the entire Caribbean. It is really nice how in an anchorage like this everyone stops by to introduce themselves and say hi. What a friendly group of folks.
So, with three whole boats in the anchorage it was time for another inspection. This time the Florida Wildlife Commission decided to stop by and inspect everyone here. (all 3 of us) When we were boarded I showed him all my papers, ID’s, Coast Guard inspection certificates and on and on… he still wanted to go below. He was a nice and polite officer who said, ‘let’s look below’ and headed down the companionway ladder with me in silent trail.
Abby, our Cockatoo, is a bit territorial and came at him with her feathers crowned up and wings poked out. This startled the officer who stepped back and lost his footing and an unseen step in the unfamiliar cockpit.
I’m glad he didn’t fall all the way over, lest the other two officers standing guard thought I started some sort of a fight with this fellow, and then the real problems begin.

I would have locked the boat guard parrot up before he headed below had he said something. I think that the training they received taught them to do the ‘surprise’ go below thing and not let the owner down there unsupervised.
All worked out well and a thorough inspection showed I was very well protected against hurting myself, maybe. Of course if my boat ever starts on fire, I seriously doubt that my inspected fire extinguishers are strong enough to put out all of my inspected safety flares… another story perhaps.
We had seen what this beautiful place had to offer while not getting much sleep and it was becoming time to move on. We would head east in the morning, pointing towards Key West.
Ahoy
__________________
S/V AbbyGale
lannen is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-11-2010, 11:40   #10
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,762
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
wow--we werent inspected while we were there last year-- was a beautiful place to anchor despite having picked up a piece of drift net in our anchor and made us drag allll nite-- in am we found our reason , removed it and sailed on.... i enjoyed the place much--we were allowed to fish in the anchorage as long as we were above water--no diving for conch or other shellfishies there...was peaceful, and we managed to be there in between storms-- most of those passed between tortugas and key west....folks next to us said last time they were there there were 20 boats in htat small anchorage and most were dragging in the wind and surf. might want to make sure your tackle is good in sand and weeds, and that you have enough heavy chain to keep you there. we were there 5 days before the big wind that made us wish we had a set of cutters on the anchor.....
zeehag is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-11-2010, 11:54   #11
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Tampa fl
Boat: Alura 30
Posts: 593
We were there last July,it is safe to use the northern entrance,plenty water so you don't have to go around the fort.We have a Fortress anchor and did not have any problems.If you have calm conditions there is a sand bar about one mile north of the fort,where you can get really close to shore and watch the birds,we spent one night there,it is like beeing in the middle of nowhere.
JC.
__________________
jean1146 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 30-11-2010, 12:12   #12
cat herder, extreme blacksheep
 
zeehag's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: furycame alley , tropics, mexico for now
Boat: 1976 FORMOSA yankee clipper 41
Posts: 17,762
Images: 56
Send a message via Yahoo to zeehag Send a message via Skype™ to zeehag
Quote:
Originally Posted by jean1146 View Post
We were there last July,it is safe to use the northern entrance,plenty water so you don't have to go around the fort.We have a Fortress anchor and did not have any problems.If you have calm conditions there is a sand bar about one mile north of the fort,where you can get really close to shore and watch the birds,we spent one night there,it is like beeing in the middle of nowhere.
JC.
IS being in middleof no where--is awesome-- that sand bar has nurse sharks breeding-- so many different kinds of wildlife and so much beauty. i would love to take my boat there when i finally get her into that part of this planet.
__________________

zeehag is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
dry tortugas

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Dry Tortugas Invite Cruisingdad Families, Kids and Pets Afloat 13 30-03-2010 12:56
May 1st, trip to Dry Tortugas info mudrod Atlantic & the Caribbean 10 25-02-2009 15:10
Fort Jefferson / Dry Tortugas svHyLyte Other 18 16-06-2008 08:06
Tampa to Dry Tortugas next week seajoy Atlantic & the Caribbean 9 03-06-2008 18:01
Dry Tortugas Curtis Atlantic & the Caribbean 5 17-03-2007 08:35



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:50.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.