Join Date: Jul 2001
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SW Florida Boat Choices/Advice
We are in somewhat of the same situation since we are relocating to Punta Gorda, FL (just north of you) in two years. We set our max draft at 4.5 ft (although we wouldn''t pass up a dream boat with 4.7 ft, I guess) for the reasons you cited.
Jeff H was extremely helpful with a list of candidate boats and SailorMitch had a great amount of good Pearson info to share. It would be best if they elected to respond to you, since it is "their info", so to speak.
I received great general advice from John Drake, but his boat, a Wauquiez Hood 38 with keel/cb would likely be above your price range.
When you have a draft limit like we do, it sure narrows down the choices. Hopefully we''ll have years of great gunkholing ahead of us. Good luck with your search.