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Old 09-13-2010   #1
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Boston -> Florida winter escape?

I suspect this may not be the right forum for this question, alas I'm not sure where else it would belong. My apologies, in advance.

In short, cooler days are here, and I am intrigued by the idea of setting sails in late october and hopping down the coast to warmer climates (Florida?) to escape the New England winter. I am out of work, have a decent boat (32' Ericson) in reasonably good shape, a few seasons of RI-to-ME coastal cruising experience, some savings to keep me afloat, and precious little reason to stay in Boston. I am not fully committed to this yet ... simply evaluating the idea, at the moment.

I would mostly be single-handing, hence prefer to take it easy and harbor-hop down the coast in 20-50nm increments, instead of going for distance off-shore. I prefer to anchor at night and sleep, and I prefer to wait for weather/wind instead of motor.

Surely, I'm not the first to do this trip ... I was searching the web for accounts and guidance, but have not found much ... any pointers, or your personal experiences and guidance would be very welcome. For a start,

1. what books (guides, pilots, charts etc) would I need?
2. suggestions on routes (& stops) given my 20-50nm/day style?
3. suggestions on destinations where to spend the winter in Fla?
4. miscellaneous DOs, DONTs, etc?

Many thanks to all in advance,

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