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Old 23-12-2017, 16:19   #1
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Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

Wondering if someone can tell me if there are any rules associated with the mooring buoys that can be found on the Gulf Coast charts. Can any boat moor on them if they are available? There are a couple of them that are near our route on a short overnight passage (CC to SPI) and I am wondering about their ability to be an alternate plan if we choose to stop while enroute.
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Old 23-12-2017, 17:47   #2
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

These are almost certainly moorings put in by a company working in the oil patch. They are usually large moorings for supply vessels and such...not small yacht sized moorings. Some of these a quite large metal floats that will damage your boat. The oil patch runs 24x7 so these moorings could be needed anytime by a very unhappy supply boat captain.

Got a lat/lon for the moorings in question?
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Old 23-12-2017, 18:00   #3
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

If your looking at the mooring bouts marked on a chart....they’re essentially unusable by a small boat, and placed by a company for their own use.
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Old 23-12-2017, 18:03   #4
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

That was my initial thought but figured I would see if someone could confirm. The mooring I was looking at is N27 22.823' W096 55.941'

Thank you!
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Old 24-12-2017, 09:46   #5
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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Old 24-12-2017, 10:16   #6
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

Just before the storm came through Texas I left Galveston bay heading to FL & had the same thought, but when I seen them it's quite obvious that they are not for pleasure craft..most for tugs or larger barges. .but I wonder why not anchor out? I picked places along the way that I thought were safe & had no trouble...there were a couple nights I wasn't happy where I was but had to rest so did the best I could & took advantage of a very shallow draft to get out of the way of barge traffic as I did that trip solo....some intercoastal till that got old & some offshore... there are spots to accommodate. ... biggest problem I noticed was offshore there are a BUNCH of oil platforms & amazing how many unlit poles there are so nighttime travel was just not for me there...watch the depth
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Old 25-12-2017, 16:19   #7
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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Just before the storm came through Texas I left Galveston bay heading to FL & had the same thought, but when I seen them it's quite obvious that they are not for pleasure craft..most for tugs or larger barges. .but I wonder why not anchor out? I picked places along the way that I thought were safe & had no trouble...there were a couple nights I wasn't happy where I was but had to rest so did the best I could & took advantage of a very shallow draft to get out of the way of barge traffic as I did that trip solo....some intercoastal till that got old & some offshore... there are spots to accommodate. ... biggest problem I noticed was offshore there are a BUNCH of oil platforms & amazing how many unlit poles there are so nighttime travel was just not for me there...watch the depth
Yep, lot of junk out there in the oil patch. Many rigs and well heads are powered by the genset from one in the group...genset goes down and the whole group goes dark!
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Old 26-12-2017, 06:41   #8
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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Old 26-12-2017, 10:09   #9
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

Why not do it the easy way and follow the fairways? No platforms, well heads, pipes sticking out of the water. Set a waypoint to the next intersection or turn and let the ap do its thing while you sit back and enjoy the ride.
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Old 26-12-2017, 12:43   #10
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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Why not do it the easy way and follow the fairways? No platforms, well heads, pipes sticking out of the water. Set a waypoint to the next intersection or turn and let the ap do its thing while you sit back and enjoy the ride.
Your joking I assume? Are we talking about the Same area? Upper gulf Coast? You have a choice of the intercoastal or offshore, there are no channels. ..offshore many obstacles are not marked and are not lit at night. Even very far offshore. And the intercoastal is not something I'd want to do on autopilot because there are a whole lot of barges and that traffic has to be navigated & it's a lot of distance that sometimes goes across an area that has a cross current. ..got to have someone at the wheel ....sometimes a barge will be pined against the bank & the tug will be holding it there in gear & that prop wash will push you around in the intercoastal. ..now offshore I was on autopilot alot but was dodging alot of junk. ...I mean alot! That's an area that you better be paying attention. ..... the Mississippi has a huge amount of traffic coming & going... what I did was about the time I was west of the river I came through New Orleans across the river into the Mississippi sound to avoid the traffic where the river dumps into the Gulf, east of the Mississippi everything changes, west of the river marinas are far apart, east & then it's white sand and marinas everywhere,no oil rigs & nice sailing
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Old 26-12-2017, 12:52   #11
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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Your joking I assume? Are we talking about the Same area? Upper gulf Coast? You have a choice of the intercoastal or offshore, there are no channels. ..offshore many obstacles are not marked and are not lit at night.
The safety fairways are areas that are devoid of fixed structures. the only looking out one would need to do here is for other vessels. It's like a virtual channel.
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Old 26-12-2017, 13:04   #12
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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The safety fairways are areas that are devoid of fixed structures. the only looking out one would need to do here is for other vessels. It's like a virtual channel.
I see you hail from Houston so you must know more about the area than I, & I am quite the rookie & I love to learn when I can so I feel like I am asking a dumb question but here goes..is there an app you are using to show what you are calling a fairway? When I came through I noticed stuff quite far offshore. ...
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Old 26-12-2017, 13:06   #13
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

Maybe if he is not aware of the Fairways he should stay home. We have done the trip from Galveston to Florida several times, both using the ICW and the Fairways. The ICW is fun the first time, the Fairways are way more relaxing and actually allow you to do some sailing.
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Old 26-12-2017, 13:10   #14
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

Yes the fairways are the safest bet. I used the fairway on the passage from Galveston to Corpus and had no concerns during the overnight treks. Of course I had a large enough crew for watches and paid lots of attention to the radar to ensure nothing unexpected and big was in the path. Far as anchoring- I don’t have enough anchor line on board to anchor in 80’ of water and will give me enough scope to be comfortable to sleep- hence the question about the mooring. I am one of those that needs a pretty good piece of mind to doze off. Lastly- no desire at all to travel via Intercoastal for all the reasons mentioned above & more. Thank you all for giving me a better picture of what the moorings on the charts are about. It was very useful info. Safe sailing!
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Old 26-12-2017, 13:12   #15
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Re: Mooring Buoys on the Gulf Coast Question

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Maybe if he is not aware of the Fairways he should stay home. We have done the trip from Galveston to Florida several times, both using the ICW and the Fairways. The ICW is fun the first time, the Fairways are way more relaxing and actually allow you to do some sailing.
Ouch! I guess I deserve that but ya gotta learn sometime. ..staying home wasn't really an option as I live in FL & flew out to pick up a boat & yes not alot of marine navigation experience but I can use a chart plotter now & a gps now! Hahaha
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