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post #2 of Old 11-23-2012
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Re: Sailing Hawk Channel at night?

It's a bit of a risk, for sure... Particularly the northern section down to around Key Largo, the channel gets pretty narrow in spots thru there, and is defined largely by unlit daybeacons on steel girders, with the lighted aids spaced pretty far apart... You'll be relying heavily on your chartplotter, for certain...

Further on down, the channel widens considerably, there's considerably more margin for error... I'd certainly try to begin the trip in daylight, however, if possible... And, I wouldn't want to try the upper portion without a 2 or 3 million candlepower searchlight handy...

Another risk, which is not inconsiderable, is the likelihood of snagging a crab pot... Depending upon the season, the Hawk Channel in places can be infested with them...

Bottom line, however, it's certainly do-able... However, I'd be much more comfortable suggesting it can be done at night to those who have at least done the Hawk Channel previously... Doing it for the first time, at night, most definitely increases the risk...

What's the rush?

Well, I know the answer to that one, of course... Only times I've run the Hawk Channel at night were in an effort to meet a schedule, or race a forecast change in the weather...

Last edited by JonEisberg; 11-23-2012 at 11:07 AM.
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