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Old 07-02-2007
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New Jersey Coast to Cape May

We are sailing from NYC to Cape May on a Jeanneau 40.3 draws about 5'5" so from what I have been able to figure out we have to go down the Jersey coast to Cape May Inlet. I need guidance on where to stop on the coast and were there is safe anchorage. Anythoughts on time it takes, marinas etc. would be great. Anchorage in Cape May?

My husband and I are a bit nervous about this trip since we are safely cloisterd most of the time in Long Island Sound.
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Old 07-02-2007
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The only real potential stops before Cape May would be Barnagette and then Atlantic City. Barnagette would be tricky though with the draft and I have never done either.
Cape May will be easy and it has a nice anchorage area right off the Coast Guard base where you will see some other sailboats. Plenty of water there for your draft, you can take your dinghy either across the harbor where there is a marina or farther up the channel to the area around the Lobster House. Stay in the channel unless you are going to the anchorage area and dont go where the boats are on moorings with your draft, as you will most likely be on muddy bottom.
If you need to go to a marina you pretty much have two choices. Two Mile Landing which is to your right under the bridge (Two Mile Bridge opens on request on ch 13 I believe) after you come into Cape May Harbor and then Utch's. I stayed at Two Mile Landing when I brought my boat with 5'7" draft into Cape May and they had tons of water (for NJ) as long as you hug the marina side. A lot of current does rip through that channel and the slips though, so if you are planning on going in there and you have anything besides a spot on the end, I would try to do it at slack tide.
Hope this helps and enjoy Cape May, its a great summer town! I will be making exactly the opposite trip from Cape May to NYC the end of July.
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Old 07-02-2007
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One word of warning... most of the New Jersey coastline can become very dangerous and inhospitable in the case of bad weather. Trying to enter most of the ports along the New Jersey coast, should a storm come in can become very treacherous... so plan your weather window carefully and keep an eye on the sky. If bad weather does pop up, and you can't make it into a port before it gets there—head out to sea... you'll be much better off further offshore than trying to make any of the New Jersey ports in heavy weather IMHO.
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Old 07-02-2007
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Newport marina is a nice stop in New York. Reasonable pricing. Easy access to NYC and Jersey City attractions.

Leonardo State Marina is a good stop near Sandy Hook.
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Old 07-02-2007
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Assuming you just want to do day sailing...work your way down to Sandy Hook to stage for the trip. There is a good anchorage here and marinas as well.
First day...Manasquan inlet has a marina just inside the draw bridge. No problem with the inlet and your boat in good weather.
Second Day...pull into Atlantic City...class A inlet and marinas are available.
Third Day...Cape May Inlet is an all weather inlet that has recently been dredged and several marinas are inside.
If you are going up the Delaware bay...you may me able to use the Cape May Canal to exit the back way if your mast is less than 55 feet. Otherwise you'll need to get a very early start to go back outside and make the turn up the Delaware Bay to the C&D canal.

I agree with SD about paying careful and frequent attention to the weather forecasts and ducking into safety before it becomes a problem. But otherwise it is an easy coastal trip with well spaced accessible inlets that will be no probem for your boat in settled weather.
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Thank you all -- I am a bit nervous about this but I love and adventure!
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Old 07-02-2007
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Cam is right on... we stayed in Manasquan at Brielle Yacht Basin (I believe) and draw 5'10". It's right past the railroad bridge on the right - and YES, you can make it past the bridge - just watch the current. Atlantic City is the next decent stop. The coast can definitely get rough... see Sailing Pelican From Manasquan to NYC
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Old 07-02-2007
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One thing about going this time of year is that the days are really long. Start at Sandy Hook. It's a great anchorage and easy to leave, even just before sunrise. If you get out early, you can make Atlantic City in one long hop. If the weather gets nasty, pully into Manasquan as suggested above.

Anchoring at Atlantic City has always been easy. There are two good anchorages there.

The next hop is Atlantic City to Cape May. That's a nice short one and you shouldn't have any trouble making it.

We draw 6' and usually only stay 3 nm offshore. The wind and waves is almost always on the offshore beam and pretty steady.
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