I'd call the 6-7 hours way overoptimistic. I checked the route
with plotting software
, I'm showing 54 nautical miles (without knowing your precise end points) and without knowing your cruiding speed, I can't think you'll make over 5 knots consistantly. That makes it a very firm 10 hour trip--not allowing for current
and timing across the inlet, other traffic in the ICW
, or *any* kind of incident. Running an engine for ten hours gives it more opportunities to have a probem than just taking it out for an hour or so. For instance, the system clogging from gunk in the fuel tank
that works loose after five or six hours. That's when you find out you'd better have at least one spare fuel filter
on board, and know how to bleed the engine. (And some need new crush washers when you bleed them, too.) Tusting an unknown, not-in-use, diesel
to make a ten-hour run without delay? Optimistic.
Motoring down makes sense if you haven't sailed the boat, but ten hours with the last five spent VERY carefully following channel markers will be a long day, assuming the weather
co-operates. Leaving at 8AM, which gives you just two hours of "just in case" en route
, would be a better idea.
(And leave a float plan with someone.)
A Type5 PFD
...welll...great, if you are familiar with them and check them out. (I use what would be a Type5 today but it predates their legal
issue.<G>) But if you plan to have any friends on board? Get a couple of Type3's. Even those aren't worth much if you are in the water
, but they don't require maintenance
, they're reliable and inexpensive.
You probably also want charts
for the trip, because even if all the markers are in the right place, they won't tell you water depth
and there are some places--and some potential wrong turns<G>--where the water is thinner than you might think.
Too many hours on the road for me to daytrip with you, even without the gas costs these days, much as I'd otherwise like to. I think the "pros" probably are afraid to hit you with a number, since it could be a long day or two, and getting back and forth from Forked River and AC would only add to that. (The long day and the costs.)
If you at all can, I'd suggest taking the boat out for a couple of hours first to make sure of how reliable it will be, or at leaast taking notes about where you can put it to break the day if it acts up.