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Old 25-10-2015, 00:18   #1
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9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

Hi All
Our quest for an island cruising boat has us currently looking at a Pugh 56...
Huge volume well suited to a family for live aboard but the 9ft draft has me wondering about access through Sth Pacific reef passages.
Could someone advise if this is a legitimate concern.
Thanks in advance.
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Old 25-10-2015, 00:41   #2
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re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

we had no problems with a 10'6" draft using the most common anchorages.
problem comes when off the beaten track in passes/atolls not serviced by the interisland ferrys.
if any thing problems were from lagoons being too deep!,70-100ft

more care was needed in tidal waters of Australia,philipines and se asia where the range of tide can be as big as 20 ft
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Old 26-10-2015, 14:20   #3
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Re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

G'day, Mate. Another thought for you besides the reef passages, is haul out time. I have good mates with a 9 1/2 foot draft (56 feet long also). It always appears to be just a bit harder working from those high scaffolds compared to mine just under 7 feet. Food for thought. Cheers.
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Old 26-10-2015, 14:56   #4
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Re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

You will find that there are some places you will not be able to enter, Suwarrow comes to mind. We couldn't, either, at 7'2" draft. What happens is that you plan around your draft, and miss out on some marinas some interior waterways. For instance, both the Broadwater between Southport and Brisbane and Great Sandy Straits have shallow bits and your proposed draft exceeds their depth. (We are able to squeak by at the top of most tides.) There are some marinas where you couldn't get in, or if you did, you'd be in a mud berth at low water.

Another consideration may be the air draft on a Pugh 56...How tall is that mast? Overhead cables, bridges can be a concern.

Whether these are deal breaker decisions for you, is really a very personal sort of decision. Maybe it would help to consider that these interior routes can save a lot of wear and tear for being shorter and gentler, but the outside routes are quite doable if you just set your mind to it. How much can one miss of not seeing somewhere you don't know about?

You'll be anchoring farther out than most, with somewhat less protection, but most boats that length do.

Ann
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Old 26-10-2015, 15:23   #5
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Re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

Quote:
Originally Posted by Ann T. Cate View Post
You will find that there are some places you will not be able to enter, Suwarrow comes to mind. We couldn't, either, at 7'2" draft. What happens is that you plan around your draft, and miss out on some marinas some interior waterways. For instance, both the Broadwater between Southport and Brisbane and Great Sandy Straits have shallow bits and your proposed draft exceeds their depth. (We are able to squeak by at the top of most tides.) There are some marinas where you couldn't get in, or if you did, you'd be in a mud berth at low water.

Another consideration may be the air draft on a Pugh 56...How tall is that mast? Overhead cables, bridges can be a concern.

Whether these are deal breaker decisions for you, is really a very personal sort of decision. Maybe it would help to consider that these interior routes can save a lot of wear and tear for being shorter and gentler, but the outside routes are quite doable if you just set your mind to it. How much can one miss of not seeing somewhere you don't know about?

You'll be anchoring farther out than most, with somewhat less protection, but most boats that length do.

Ann
anne you must be thinking of the pass in Aitutaki in the cook islands which is a bit less than 6 ft,not suvarov which is deep.

I have been through both passes
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Old 26-10-2015, 16:20   #6
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Re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

Thanks people for your shared perspectives. I take it Vuda Point in Fiji is all good... their Web page states entrance channel of 10 feet. I presume the marina is the same?

Sent from my GT-I9506 using Cruisers Sailing Forum mobile app
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Old 26-10-2015, 16:39   #7
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Re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

Hello,

I can't address the South Pacific specifically, but can address this question a little bit more generally, as we cruise on a boat with a 10' draft.

First, many marinas don't know how deep their marina actually is. We always call ahead regarding the depth at a place we're going, and everyplace that we've ever grounded in a marina has assured us that there's PLENTY of water. We've had the keel in the mud in lots of places which promised more than they actually have. This has happened to us in 3 countries to date.

That's probably the worst part- you're tired and wanting to get in someplace and then find out you can't get in. So, we've learned to be a lot more selective on where we go, making sure that the marina has actually had boats with our draft there before.

Certainly, you will be limiting your options with that draft regardless of where you cruise.

As far as anchoring further out from the pack, we do have to do that in some places as well, but with a bigger boat, we don't mind having a little more chop than our neighbors anyway. Dinghy rides are wetter.

Why do we put up with it? It's all about the zen of sailing. It's the only way to get a lot of righting moment without the weight, having that big torpedo down there that deep. We happily make that compromise. The calculation is different for everyone, but for us it's worth the hassle and missing out on some places.

I hope you don't mind my chiming in only tangentially to your question, it seemed relevant enough.

Good sailing, TJ




EDIT: Yes, haulouts suck royally compared to our previous boats. Sanding the bottom is pretty awful. And we end up renting scaffolding where we can. Hauling where there is cheap labor helps with this...
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Old 26-10-2015, 18:19   #8
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Re: 9ft Draft for Sth Pacific

If the price is right, you can sometimes lessen depth of the keel.
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