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Old 01-15-2013
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Sailing a boat from New London, CT to NJ

I'm looking at purchasing our second boat after the first was totaled in Hurricane Sandy. I'm doing my best to stay local, but the market is tough when you're on a very limited budget, and when others with much deeper pockets (and bigger insurance checks) are also in the market with you. So, that means I'm looking not only in the immediate Philly/NJ area, but also into the Chessepeake Bay area and even North to Long Island.

As part of my online searching, I've come across a few boats that look interesting, and that I MIGHT be able to get in my price range if some of the aforementioned deeper pockets don't find her first. The problem is, some of them are located in the Eastern parts of Connecticut, such as near New London, CT. That means that the darn island of Long Island is between my preferred home port (somewhere on Barnegat Bay, we think) and the boat. Hiring a trailer isn't entirely out of the question, but I kind of like the idea of sailing the boat home, as long as it can be done safely. Most of the boats I'm considering are in the 28-32' range, and are late 1970's era and early 1980's era production boats (Catalina, Islander, Cherubini Hunters, etc.). I'll be sure to have any boat surveyed/inspected before buying her, and I'll be sure to tell the surveyor about my travel plans so I know what to address beforehand. Like I said, if the boat is a worthwhile purchase, I could always look at having her trailered where I want her.

Assuming the boat is deemed able to make the trip, in looking at the maps and charts, it doesn't seem as though I could head into Gardiner's Bay, taking advantage of the canal that connects Peconic Bay with Shinnecock Bay - there are low, fixed bridges that would get in the way, unless the boat I'm taking has a deck-stepped mast. Even if it does, though, I'm not sure that I want to try dropping and stepping the mast under those kinds of conditions.

So, that means it looks like I either:
1) head south east with an overnight in Montauk. Then hook around Long Island, and hope that I can make it to Shinnecock Bay in a day (may not be so likely), AND hope that it isn't as silted over/shoaled as Google Maps makes it out to be (after Sandy, I'm not so sure that's a safe bet, either). If I can tuck in at Shinnecock, it looks like I can stay in the bays and overnight near Patchogue, and the next day stop in Jones Beach. Another day to make the jump to the Sandy Hook area of NJ, then another to Barnegat Inlet. A final day should get me home. That's about a 7 day trip.

2) head West, probably stopping in Guilford for the night. The next day hopefully takes me to the Bridgeport area, and day 3 should, hopefully, finish near Mamaroneck. Day 4 would be spent getting through NYC, with a probable overnight near Liberty Island. Day 5 is the jump from NYC to Sandy Hook. Day 6 is from Sandy Hook to Barnegat Inlet, and Day 7 takes me home.

The two trips take about the same time (which I'd probably be splitting up over multiple weekends), however, option number 2 seems the safer and more logical. Yes, there's a lot of commercial traffic around NYC, but that also means there's more chance of help if I have problems. I also have easier access to marinas and places to tuck into in the event of an unexpected storm, so that seems the most logical route.

So, that's the way a novice sees the trip - what did I miss?
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Home: Western Philly 'burbs
1980 Allmand 31
1975 Albacore 15


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Last edited by jimgo; 01-15-2013 at 12:45 AM.
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