Jim, Kaite, and others on this thread:
I have no dog in this fight. If it works for you, go for it.
But sailboat access sounds better than what it is. You need UNRESTRICTED SAILBOAT ACCESS. About 1/2 of the cape is shut off by a 55' powerline across the enterance to bimini
canal (I think it is Bimini
, just east of Tarpoon Point). That is where my house was... on the river side of the powerlines. It has been a few years since I lived there, but I hung up with 5'4 coming in off the entrance from the ICW
. To tell you the truth, I have hung up IN THE ICW
But forgetting the mast
height, I will tell you from many years of experience that the water
there is "a mile wide and a foot deep."
Punta Gorda is really no different. FYI, the Technical Editor for Catalina
(before me) SOLD HIS BOAT ONLY BECAUSE HE LIVED IN PUNTA GORDA ON A DEEP WATER
CANAL (unrestricted acess) AND COULD HARDLY GET OUT!!! His boat drew 5'10. 7 feet in SW Florida is the kiss of death.
I was there in January. I was on a a V-42 that drew about 6. We hung up twice and got within inches more than I can tell you.
I am not trying to doubt Jim or his advice. As a mortgage broker, I assume he knows more than me. But what he is talking about is competely different from the reality that I lived for years and different than anything I have ever heard.
I had to back out of three houses because of draft
(before my final house). All three of them were UNRESTRICTED, DEEP WATER, SAILBOAT ACCESS. By the way, unrestricted is what you want... not sailboat access. Sailboat access will be 55 if you are lucky. THere are not a lot of unrestricted. The issue was not the water sitting off the dock
. The issue was the approach and silting in a the mouth of the enterance. The bridge at Ft. Myers Beach is 65, so I assume that would be ok for you?? That is deep water draft on the mooring
balls (many of them, at least). If you head
up the east side of the split after the bridge and go by the shrimp boats, you will have a lot of water... but be careful.
If Jim can find you an unrestricted, deep water, sailboat access canal and apartment with over 7 all the way in for less than $1,000 - go for it. Sounds like the deal of the century. But make sure before you sign on that dotted line that you put in a disclaimer that you have to get your boat in there. THen hop in your dink and grab a handheld depth
finder and spend a Sunday on your approach. You will likely be suprised. I honestly hope I am wrong... honestly. But I just got a call last week from very, very well known realtor in SW Florida wanting to buy a Catalina
400, and she was worried about 5 1/2 (that is actually 5'10). Forget 7. And did I tell you that in a northern (winter) those canals have a real tendency to get low (the locals say empty)?
I am not trying to be a jerk or cause problems. I am just being honest and giving my first hand experience. SW FL is a beautiful place to live, and a horrible place to keep a large (deep draft) sailboat.