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Old 16-06-2015, 08:45   #1
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offshore passage Louisiana to Mississippi

I am planning a trip from Galveston Bay to the Mississippi coast. I have all GIWW charts, Active Cap, Skipper Bob, 2015 Waterway Guide. The ICW trip will be at least ten hard days with restricted bridge openings, bugs, sketchy anchorages, etc.. I think you can only figure on 8 hrs a day at 5 kts. No fun. I have a new It's a 08 H41 in amazing condition with Genset, Radar, Mechanical autopilot. It looks like I can go offshore and make the trip in 4 days. I would rent a liferaft and install a AIS transponder. I would wait for a solid good 3-4 day forecast with abeam/tail winds. All that said, there is a safety fairway at 28 50' N but its 116 s miles south of the coast. Looking at the charts it appears you could go safely east/west at 29 15' N, about 30 s miles south of coast. Yes, we would have to dodge a few rigs/traffic. Draft is 5'. I would love to hear from anyone who has made this trip at the 29 15' N area. Secondly, there are many wrecks on my paper charts dated 2/15 that are not on the active captain charts. Is active captain's data that old, these wrecks cain't all be new ?...
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Old 16-06-2015, 14:38   #2
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Re: offshore passage Louisiana to Mississippi

A couple of similar threads here already...take a look at those too.

Have done almost all the Gulf Coast both coastal and ICW. The Texas-Louisiana section is HEAVILY industrialized...more than just a few rigs/traffic...loads of both. This can make it a hazardous place for a small boats. But, that said, there are stops that can make it a fun trip too...just be very alert and cautious.

Also services for small boats on this section of the ICW are few and far between...and getting caught out underway at night is even riskier (the commercial traffic runs 24x7). I would plan on fewer hours a day underway to give a better margin of error for getting to a suitable small boat anchorage or marina well before dark.

Once you get to Mississippi Sound, or Lake Ponchatrain, the pressure is off...great mini cruising ground from there thru to Alabama & NW Florida.
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Old 16-06-2015, 14:56   #3
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Re: offshore passage Louisiana to Mississippi

Don't count on being in the ICW as protection from hurricanes. The entire Gulf coastline is vulnerable to strikes, and 'canes do not always follow projected paths. This means any effort you make to avoid one may be inneffective, and being in a canal limits your choices. Still, given the choice between sailing offshore or using the canal this time of year, I think I'd choose the latter.
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mississippi, offshore, passage

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