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Old 09-11-2013, 08:39   #1
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Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

I have done all of my cruising from the Chesapeake Bay to Maine and mostly in the Maine coastal waters. Now, I am preparing to depart the Chesapeake and head south for the first time. I'm on a power boat - Bertram 54 ... an older classic 1984.

I have never crossed the Gulf Stream and I'm looking forward to the entire clear water/white sands experience.

From what I have read, it sounds like Green Turtle Cay is a good place to clear customs and that I want to choose a crossing time when the wind is not blowing heavy from the north.

How does this routing look? Leaving Lake Worth Inlet FL and just moving up and around Little Bahama Bank to Green Turtle Cay.

I have lots of charts and cruising guides coming.
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:03   #2
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

Suggest you do all of your navigating in a mirror reflection... Heading West to get to Green Turtle will take you a LONG time....
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:24   #3
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

ok ... fixed that.

Mike
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:29   #4
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

For you it is much easier to go over the Banks rather than around them.
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:34   #5
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

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ok ... fixed that.

Mike
Whew!

That's better! I was hoping it wasn't me who didn't have enough coffee yet!

There are tons of peeps here familiar with the best routing... WaterwayGuy etc.... Imma lefty coast guy... They'll chime in soon enough!

PS: Nice boat... I skippered one (58) for a bit
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:38   #6
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

You'll want to avoid winds from the N and NE. Waiting for them to go south of E is usually best.
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Old 09-11-2013, 09:40   #7
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

A couple of thoughts and a question.

First, what speed to you plan to run? Keep at displacement speed or does your Bertram have power to semiplane?

Your draft will certainly get you across the banks which is usually a calmer passage. You can enter at a couple of places on the western edge of the bank and route around the north tip of Sale Cay.

If you're keeping a slower speed Sale Cay is an excellent overnight anchorage. However if you are planning not to clear in until Green Turtle I have heard some complaints a year or so back of cruisers being hassled for not clearing in at the first/closest port even if they didn't leave the boat or even stop in transit to the place they cleared.
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Old 09-11-2013, 18:56   #8
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

Get a copy of Explorer Charts. It will tell you how to do it.

David
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Old 10-11-2013, 06:19   #9
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Bert, when are you planing on going? We are waiting for weather window to open.
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Old 10-11-2013, 07:07   #10
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

Why not get on the bank at Memory Rock, then around Great Sale, Little Sale and on to Green Turtle.
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Old 10-11-2013, 08:05   #11
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

Get a copy of the Explorer Charts and download ActiveCaptain, wait until the forecast is for L&V for 24 hours or out of a southerly direction under 15kts. At 7 knots its approx. 27 hours to Green Turtle from LW. There have been reports of the Defense Force making cruisers return to the closest customs which in your case would be West End. I would make a overnight trip straight to GT with the possibility of resting at Great Sail Cay (not good if wind is out of the south) departing prior to sunrise, giving you the Gulfstream crossing in the day and across the Banks at night. For weather check the SSB each morning as Chris Parker broadcasts on various frequencies, it would be worth becoming a vessel sponsor with him, (863-248-2702, chris@mwxc.com)

Cheers
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Old 10-11-2013, 08:31   #12
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

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Get a copy of Explorer Charts. It will tell you how to do it.

David
best advice, second the recommendation.
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Old 10-11-2013, 15:11   #13
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

OK - Explorer Chartbooks are coming.

I don't expect to be at Lake Worth Inlet until around 12-15. A friend just talked me through the ICW choices on the way down. It's going to be a great time doing all this for the first time.
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Old 10-11-2013, 17:58   #14
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

Hi, Mike,
Glad to see your going to the Bahamas this winter. I plan to depart JAX for the Bahamas in January. Hopefully we can hook up some time over there.
I think you will be best served by crossing to the little Bahama Bank entering at Memory Rock or the White Sand Ridge. There is no reason go as far south as Lake Worth. With your speed you could go out at Ft. Pierce or St. Lucie. You should be able to make the run across the bank to the Sea of Abaco without a stop although that will require making at least part of that run at night. You might find it more convenient to clear in a Spanish Cay as that will be the closest port of entry on that route, and should avoid any issues with the officials.
If you plan your departure to arrive on the Bank shortly before dawn you should be able to cross the bank to Spanish Cay during the daylight (100nm at 15+ kts). Also Spanish Cay is very friendly to sport fish. The owner sells large motor yachts.
The route you plotted would avoid that check in issue as you would be entering the Bahamas very close to GTC.

Haven't heard from Duval in a while. Hope Typhoon Haiyan doesn't affect him.

John Stevenson
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Old 10-11-2013, 20:00   #15
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Re: Lake Worth to Green Turtle (1st time)

John - Your timing is perfect! This is the triumphant return of the big ol Bertram to the South. I have really enjoyed Maine with the boat but was unable to figure when I might be able to bring the boat south to the Caribbean.

And ... with time ... things change Time to go south baby

Don thinks the storm will miss him but he is in Laos.
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