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Mitch Copper 12-09-2021 11:13

Overnight Sails from New Orleans
Hello friends! I bought a Pearson 26 a year ago and have spent the last few months learning how to cruise locally around Lake Pontchartrain. Now I would like to made a longer, overnight trip across the lake to Mandeville and, potentially, to Bay St. Louis. While this step-up is likely no big deal to most experienced sailors, I am wondering if there are suggestions or tips anyone can make to a first timer: how to plan a course for a 30+ mile voyage? Safety gear to bring along? Emergency planning? Ideal number of crew? Etc? All suggestions appreciated.

tamicatana 12-09-2021 11:37

Re: Overnight Sails from New Orleans
Safety is the same whether you make a five or five hundred mile trip, and you can Google that pretty easily.

The trip to Madisonville (not Mandeville) involves getting through the causeway, and it is not a demand opening, so have a look at that. But Madisonville is a very fun weekend trip from NOLA.

Going to the Sound involves going through a few bridges: the Hwy 90/railroad bridge open together. The Rigolets can have some strong current. And the last bridge, the CSX Rigolets bridge, may be either open or slow to do so, so you might want to either be able to anchor quickly or be able to hold yourself in current.

Once through the CSX Rigolets, you can go west into the ICW and there is anchorage at Rabbit Island. Or head east towards BSL.

Go to ActiveCaptain where there is a lot of info about the general area, and study your charts.

The MS barrier islands are quite nice, too…

Mitch Copper 12-09-2021 11:39

Re: Overnight Sails from New Orleans
Thanks for this quick response. Much appreciated.

CalebF 01-02-2022 06:37

Re: Overnight Sails from New Orleans
I can second the recommendation for rabbit island/blind rigolets. There is a nice quiet channel about a half mile south of rabbit island to anchor in, getting you out of the icw, just watch tide, wind, and scope, because the current will reverse on you. Stay well up from the piles marking the cable crossing. From New Orleans, it's an easy day sail. Cat Island is a great overnight trip too, and within a day sail In good conditions. I'm in Madisonville. There is a good Anchorage just inside the river mouth across from the bar.

Thedrifter 23-05-2022 18:16

Re: Overnight Sails from New Orleans
Did you make the trip? How was it?

GordMay 24-05-2022 03:51

Re: Overnight Sails from New Orleans
Greetings and welcome aboard the CF, Caleb.

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