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  #1  
Old 03-23-2009
M Robinson
 
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Shoal Draft for Barnegat Bay

Hello-
We are seeking some honest advice on determining the appropriate draft for a boat to be sailed in the Barnegat Bay/Toms River region. Or perhpas more specifically, how much draft is too much for these waters? We are in the market for a new (to us) boat and have found one that suits our budget and needs (Sabre 28). However, given the shallow nature of these waters, her 4'8" draft probably isn't ideal...but perhaps acceptable?

We have much experience sailing in these waters on a S2 27' which drew 4'. We had, for the most part, good luck avoiding serious groundings, but depth was always a concern. Does anyone have experience sailing these waters with deep(er) draft keels? say, 5' feet? Any Sabre 28' owners who are in this same position? Is 4'8" ok? The boat would be docked in Toms River or Island Heights and sailed predominantly south of the Rt 37 bridge, with some occasional trips North to NY, CT, MA. The Sabre seems to be an great boat for this type of use but of course the only concern is the draft.

many thanks for your comments
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Old 03-23-2009
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Well

I have Kept a sailboat in a different shallow bay (Great South Bay LI)and the 4' draft was always a very limiting issue as to were i could sail and 5' would have really been a killer

So i guess you have to look at the charts and see how much of the area it puts off limits
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Old 03-23-2009
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While 4' would be ideal, I think the Sabre would be ok. I have seen much bigger boats in the bay. You will need to be careful about staying in the channels while in the toms river. Once you are in BB, you should be alright as long as you stay on the western side (lots of shoals in the east side). Good luck with your search!
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Old 03-23-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by tommays View Post
Well

I have Kept a sailboat in a different shallow bay (Great South Bay LI)and the 4' draft was always a very limiting issue as to were i could sail and 5' would have really been a killer

So i guess you have to look at the charts and see how much of the area it puts off limits

Thanks for your insight--is the Great South Bay that shallow? I've been wanting to sail up to Fire Island at some point.

I found some NOAA charts for the Barnegat Area and it looks like the biggest issue is going between Manasquan Inlet and the Bay. The waters near the inlet and canal are at times marked at 4' in the channel and I do remember this area being dicey when drawing 4 feet. Throughout the bay there are a number of spots that are 5'--I wonder if this will raise any issues at 4'8". Anybody out there experience this?

thanks again
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Old 03-23-2009
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Give It A Try, Sailor

If you sail in waters that cause you to worry about what is below the water line in addition to conditions above, then seriously consider a shoal draft. We have sailed ours for many years around the Apostle Islands on Lake Superior and felt it gave us much more flexiblity as to where we could sail and anchor. We can get "tight" into a cove or shelter on just about any of those islands, if high winds develop day or night. If you know someone with a shoal draft keel, sail it with them, you will be pleasantly impressed with the handling.
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Old 03-23-2009
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if I were sailing ONLY in shallow waters I'd have a Sharpie. I often wonder why they fell out of favor.

"sharpies can sail on a heavy due"

Fast, seaworthy, economical, stable, easy to build, floats on a heavy dew - sharpies superlatives go on and on. Here's the first book devoted to these unique Americans originals, with complete history, design, theory, tradition and modern construction techniques, and plans for 16 sharpies from 14 to 38 feet. parkerlivro
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Old 03-24-2009
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I'd be concerned about depth in the channels. I'm out of Beach Haven on LBI and bumped bottom in the channel behind the water park last summer. I draw four feet.

About three weeks ago I found the channel just below the route 72 bridge was VERY shallow around bouy 72. We were showing only five feet at just about high tide and would have grounded at low tide. The chart shows 6 feet in this area at low. Hopefully they'll be dredging the channel before summer.

Since you're only a few miles north of us I would think you'd have similar conditions. You can access charts for Barnagate Bay online here Chart 12324, they show some shallow waters around the rt 37 bridge.

YMMV
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Old 03-24-2009
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nomchang

Getting in the ocean inlets for the Great South Bay is nasty at best due to the need to do it at the right time and even at the right time if the ocean is doing its thing


Even the big fishboats have to sit and wait it out many times until they can get in safe
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Old 03-26-2009
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thanks

Thanks everyone for your insight...we've decided to hold off on this one and maybe pursue an earlier Sabre 28 with a 4'4" draft.
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Old 05-08-2009
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I realize this post is a few months old but just saw it. I've sailed and kept my '73 Sabre28 on the Cedar Creek for two season. Bought it from someone who sailed it north of the RT. 37 bridge for a several season. Not going to say we haven't bumped bottom, but there's plenty of room from TomsRiver to the Inlet. Shoot me a message if you'd like to see where i've drawn the danger zones on my charts.
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