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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest Forums > Chartering
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  • 1 Post By malyea
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  #1  
Old 01-18-2012
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Florida Keys

Does anyone have experience in this area?
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Old 01-18-2012
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I made a trip from Fort Lauderdale to Islamorada over Thanksgiving. Here are my experiences in a thread (I never did make the last post recapping...makes me too sad to think that the trip is over, hehehe).

Here's the thread:

Thanksgiving Cruise To the Keys
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Old 01-18-2012
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Been down there a few times...have your papers and required boating equipment in order...be prepared for a K-9 sniff and don't be shocked if your awakened by horns and boarded at 2 am by any number of "law enforcement agencies. i.e. Coast Guard, Border patrol, etc. " who have taken the post-911 state-of-things a bit too far...and have a certain complement in their commands who appear to be some sort of wanna-be navy seal types....unless you have a boat bigger than 60-feet...then you are probably okay...otherwise...well...stay to the channels in deeper draft boats of 4-feet or more...watch the water and your depth finder...and enjoy the incredible snorkeling/diving and fishing...there's a ton of info online about the histories of the whole length of the Keys and especially the history which has been posted by Monroe County Historical Society which entails the entire history of the Key's island chain since prehistory into the present and is very interesting...

Last edited by souljour2000; 01-18-2012 at 02:41 PM.
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Old 01-18-2012
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Thank you Souljour and NightOwl--looked at all your GREAT pics and read a good bit of your log--still oggling that pink Nautilimo--how did they do that? The tires look like they are on wet pavement--good captures, all, thanks for sharing.
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Old 01-25-2012
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Here's a link to an article I wrote for Southwinds magazine about our bareboat charter out of Key Largo.

ReadOz - Read - Southwinds Magazine - October 2011

The upcoming February issue will another Keys article.

You'll also find others if you search the magazines web site.

I can give you details if you PM me.
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Old 01-26-2012
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Southwinds article

Good Writing, thank you. That works well once you get the hang of it. I enjoyed it. Will look for the Feb article also.
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Old 02-02-2012
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Here's a link to my charter article in the Feb issue of Southwinds magazine; hope it's useful.

ReadOz - Read - Southwinds Magazine - February 2012
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Old 02-02-2012
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Hey HollieMac - I sailed out of Key Largo for several years, first on an Irwin 25 that I kept on the bay side and later with my Endeavour sailing out of Largo Sound on the ocean side.The sailing is spectacular on either side. With a shoal draft boat on the bay side you can enjoy sailing on the calm protected waters of the bay and have access to some of the most beautiful and solitary anchorages anywhere.

On the ocean side you can reef-hop from Carysfort light at the north end of Key Largo all the way down to Key West, with mooring balls available at the reefs all along the way to tie up to for snorkeling, diving, and overnighting when the weather permits. There aren't many really good anchorages on the east side of the Keys, but there are enough places where you can cross over into Florida Bay (Angelfish, Snake Creek, Channel 5, etc.) that it isn't really a problem.

In addition to the sailing and snorkeling, there are lots of interesting things to see, from places like Lignumvitae Key, where you can enjoy the last stand of virgin tropical mahogany forest in north America, to Key West where you can see everything else!

In the 5 years or so I sailed there I did have several encounters with the marine patrol and Everglades National Park rangers, but in every case the officers were courteous and professional - just follow the rules and you won't have any trouble. That ecosystem is so fragile - and with so much boat traffic - that the law enforcement folks can't tolerate boaters that break the rules.

Get a copy of the cruising guides done by Frank Papy or Claiborne Young, take some time to learn the particular navigation skills you need to safely explore the area, and I'm sure you'll have a fine time. (It doesn't hurt to have a SeaTow or Tow Boat US membership, also, in case you have trouble and need help).

If you have any questions about particular areas I'd be glad to help.
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Old 02-05-2012
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Thank you Andy for your great message. I hope you have Many more fine sailing days ahead. Lignumvitae Key would be wonderful to visit, thanks for sharing. Now I need to find a way to get there!
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Old 02-05-2012
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Save your pennies and give the folks at Sunsine Sailing in Tavernier a look.....I bet it will only take a day of sailing in the keys to make a conch out of you!
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