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post #7 of Old 09-11-2013
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Re: Sailing from Tampa to Key West

I went through the Big (?) Sarasota Pass at low tide in a Catalina 30 with 4 foot draft. We asked the Boat US captain who was docked at Marina Jacks for some local knowledge. He warned us not to rely on the markers out at the entrance, and to keep going for another 1/2 mile at least before turning. The houses were so close to us in the Pass I thought we'd able to reach out and shake hands with the people, but there was enough water in the very narrow channel. We didn't hit, but we went slow and kept a good watch. It depends on your draft and the tide. Sarasota Bay is great, you could go down the ICW after you leave the Manatee River, motor to Marina Jack's, then motor out through the Pass. I'm planning this trip myself this fall, maybe Thanksgiving, my current boat is a C&C 32, with 5 - 8 draft, so the we might pass the Pass. We'll see...there is a lot of good stuff online about this trip, a lot of people do it from Tampa Bay area.
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