Long Island to Florida West Coast
I am looking to sail my 2007 36 Hunter to west coast florida
in late Oct or Nov 2008.
Any advice on best way to make trip and what equipement
Is your plan to go offshore or ICW and are you single handing?
Not sure yet what or how I will do it,still early thinking stage.
I have never gone off shore and if I did I would need more experienced
I have gone to Block from greenport but need more heavy weather experience
yet,will do more this summer.
I am still thinking of trucking to florida or hiring a captain to help me sail her most of the way.
Given your lack of offshore experience I would suggest you do the traditional coastal route where you can use the ICW and take short coastal hops in good weather outside. A lot depends on your TIME to do the trip. If it is rather unlimited.
1. Go down through the East River and the Jersey shore...stopping at Atlantic Highlands, Manasquan Inlet, Atlantic City and Cape May.
2. Go up the Delaware Bay and to the C&D canal to the Chesapeake Bay
3. Enter the ICW at Norfolk and work your way down to Florida. The Okeechobee canal is closed so you will have to go around southern florida to the keys and then up the west coast.
I would allow 2 months for the complete trip but it probably could be done in 5-6 weeks with good weather and really pushing.
A captain would want to take another crew member beside yourself and head offshore to save time. Probably heading to Bermuda first and then down and probably taking around 10 days.
Maps/Guides: Maptech Chartbooks, Mid-Atlantic and Southern ICW guides, Skipper Bob's GUIDE TO ICW anchorages, Doyles Guide to SE US Inlets.
Going offshore you'll need a life raft and EPIRB and jacklines and harnesses at a minimum and you may wish to rent or buy a sat phone for emergency long distance communication. Obviously...the boat, sails and rig and engine need to be in top shape for going offshore with spares for repairs of critical items underway.
Contact your insurer now! You are planning to take a boat south during hurricane season. Some policies exclude this type of move at that time of the year. Make sure you also have "Coastal endorsement" you will be "off shore" off of Jersey even if you take ICW south of the Manasquin inlet.
and eveything Cam said.
Made this same trip back in 1999 and loved every minute!
Camaraderie gave you excellent advice. I'll add just a bit to his comments.
From Norfolk you have the opportunity to follow the ICW east through the Virginia Cut or take the westerly route through the Dismal Swamp Canal down to Elizabeth City. We chose this route. From EC we followed the ICW all the way down to Miami.
From Miami you have 2 choices. Head south down the Hawk Channel to Marathon, then pass under the 7-Mile Bridge. You can also stay on the ICW, head southwesterly down Biscayne Bay, and follow Jewfish Creek over into Lake Surprise and the Gulf.
I've taken both routes and have used the weather forecast to help me decide which way would be best. I personally prefer the westerly route down the Keys; less traveled, more anchorages, and fewer crab pots to dodge. Also, if a stiff E or NE wind is blowing (common during the fall and winter), you'll appreciate how quiet the waters are on the west side. I draw 4.5 ft and had no problems either way.
Anyway, you've got a great trip to plan. Get good charts, waterway guides, and have a blast!
Thanks for the advice everyone,I have time yet to do
more info for doing this trip.
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