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Old 18-03-2016, 06:04   #16
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Re: Extended Cruising in Florida & SE United States What is it like?

Originally Posted by a64pilot View Post
My read on it is the "Big Bend' area of FL is a no go, think of the area between Apalachicola and Tarpon Springs as not existing, that is not completely true, but there is a lot of shallow water there and even though I grew up there, I avoid it.
My opinion is that the Northern Gulf area is a completely different world than is South Fl, more laid back, much less expensive and just a whole lot less "busy", but full of Rednecks if you will, or simple country people depending on your outlook. Just don't expect much "Society" and sophistication, but do expect simple, honest people if you slow down enough to look.

Watch the movie My Cousin Vinny, it is to a certain extent what the "Old South" is like and N Fl and of course the rest of the Gulf is the Old South.

I think Zee has it right in another thread, avoid the large cities in the middle of the season, and ...
Ah, the "Redneck Riviera"...lots of fond memories along that coast.

I would expand the OPs area to extend as far west as New Orleans. From the Mississippi Sound all the way around the Gulf to the Keys is a great cruising ground. Loads of anchorages and intreresting places to visit.

Agree on the omission of most of the Big Bend due to shoal waters that extend many miles from shore, but its only an overnight hop to transit this area on to more favorable cruising grounds.

There are a few threads here re SW Florida already so the OP should give those a look as well.
Clayborn Youngs cruising guide for West Florida is dated, but has very good coverage of that area. Many years ago an organization named BAIL published a West Florida anchorages guide that I think you can still find scans of online.

Anyone know of guides for the Redneck Riviera area?
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Old 19-03-2016, 08:11   #17
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Re: Extended Cruising in Florida & SE United States What is it like?

TacomaSailor, I cruise the west coast from San Francisco to the Sea of Cortez for about 10 years and have cruised the U.S. east and gulf coast for decades. There is no problem doing what you plan here in Florida and it will fit perfectly with your plans. Options for anchorages are endless. We publish a series of anchorage books that cover the coasts from Mobile to the Chesapeake Bay and the Bahamas. You can anchor as often and as long as you like in too many places to mention. This includes the Florida Big Bend region where we are now. We highly recommend it. You can find lots of detailed posts in our blogs covering much of the places you want to travel. The anchoring restrictions currently are limited to Miami-Dade and Broward Counties. Unless you have a need for nightlife and expensive facilities, that probably isn't someplace you will want to cruise or settle anyway. The rest of the state is a wonderful cruising grounds and our preference is by far the west coast. With your boats draft you will have little problem. I would suggest you start gathering charts and study them well in advance. We have cruised about every mile of those coast many, many times in both our sailboat with a 6 foot draft and our trawler with a 4 foot draft. You're' gonna love it compared to the west coast. Chuck
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cruising, extended cruising, florida

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