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Old 04-09-2021, 12:18   #1
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Question Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

We are relocating to a marina on Charlotte Harbor and are looking at beaches to sail to for an overnighter or two. We draw 4 1/2í so I know thatís a definitely a determining factor for some spots! Any recommendations?

Thank you!
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Old 04-09-2021, 12:55   #2
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Cayo Costa State Park, protected anchorage and great beaches.
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Old 04-09-2021, 20:33   #3
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Thanks, Richard!
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Old 04-09-2021, 21:36   #4
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Don Padro. Anchorage is just off the icw in a no wake zone. Short dinghy ride to the park dock and beach.
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Old 05-09-2021, 06:22   #5
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

I suggest buying a copy of the Waterway Guide for your area. It will contain everything you want to know about boating in your area.

https://www.waterwayguide.com/ship-store/product-type/1
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Old 05-09-2021, 06:27   #6
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

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Cayo Costa State Park, protected anchorage and great beaches.
This anchorage is great for free button scrapping.
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Old 05-09-2021, 07:08   #7
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Entering Cayo Costa anchorage can be an exercise in nerve. Head from the channel marker to the beach and hold your breath. Stay as close to the beach as you dare.


You'll see readings in the 5-6 foot range, maybe less, depending on the tide and your navigating ability.



Sloowwwwllllyy cruise the anchorage as you look for your place. There are shallow spots.


That said, it's about as nice and peaceful an anchorage as you will find.
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Old 05-09-2021, 08:05   #8
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Graapril View Post
We are relocating to a marina on Charlotte Harbor and are looking at beaches to sail to for an overnighter or two. We draw 4 1/2’ so I know that’s a definitely a determining factor for some spots! Any recommendations?

Thank you!
Pelican Bay on east side of Cao Casta is right off ICW and a local Favorite BUT can 've crowded in season. Also Hog island a bit north is a quiet yb entered anchorage!
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Old 05-09-2021, 08:30   #9
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

We love Cayo Costa.
Take a look at https://activecaptain.garmin.com/Map

This is what we use to find new spots in advance, it's not as much fun as finding them yourself but sometimes you need to know in advance where you can stop.

https://activecaptain.garmin.com/Map
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Old 05-09-2021, 09:11   #10
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Welcome, Study your charts, the Charlotte Harbor estuary is 290 sq miles of beauty, but the deepest place is in the mid 20s feet deep. You will notice the huge round bases left from the "Phosphate Dock" just inside the Boca Grand pass to the north, this and the railroad that ran all the way out there, is because the harbor was too shallow to transit with phosphate steamers... it was actually cheaper to build a railroad than dredge... There are places a mile from "shore" in the harbor that are only 1-2 feet deep. Most of the year the water inside the harbor is stained brown with tannins from the two rivers (Peace and Myaka) that flow through miles of oak and mangroves picking up a tea color from the decaying leaves. This discoloration leaves most of the "good" beaches on the barrier islands, the beaches in the harbor don't have that aqua blue water color many desire. There are great beaches inside the harbor to enjoy complete isolation, on a sandy beach, but the swimming may not be to your liking.

There are three kinds of sailors in Charlotte Harbor, those that HAVE run aground, those that WILL run aground and those that LIE about it. The key in unknown areas is to motor, and go slow.. most of the harbor has a soft silt bottom from the rivers, and operating on a incoming tide means you will have rising water to get you back out... Turn on your chart plotter tracking so you will build up a set of breadcrumb trails that you can use to feel more confident. (oh yeah and pay your SeaTow membership)

The ICW gives you a good north/south way with safe depths, but realize that sometimes the dredged material from the channel was only moved a few feet to the side out of the channel so explore cautiously. A lot of the places you will want to explore are reachable by dingy so that will become your go to mode of exploring.
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Old 05-09-2021, 10:59   #11
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Quote:
Originally Posted by Avionics_Joe View Post
We love Cayo Costa.
Take a look at https://activecaptain.garmin.com/Map

This is what we use to find new spots in advance, it's not as much fun as finding them yourself but sometimes you need to know in advance where you can stop.

https://activecaptain.garmin.com/Map
This is what I use as well, but the waterway Guide book I mentioned above provides a lot more information about the surrounding area. Dining, shopping, provisioning, etc.
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Old 05-09-2021, 11:43   #12
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

We anchor for a week at a time P bay. There are slips available for very little if you don't have a dink to get to shore. There is a "store" with limited items, mostly snacks but they have ice cream bars and ice. There is a tram to take you across the island to the 7 miles of beach but it's only a mile walk. Try here for navigation info https://www.islesyc.com/On_the_Water...on_Information

This is the club I belong to : https://www.pgscweb.com/
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Old 08-09-2021, 15:41   #13
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Re: Anchorages around Charlotte Harbor

Thanks, guys!!
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