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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Destinations > Florida & SE US East Coast > Florida - Keys
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Old 02-11-2011
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Marathon vs Stock Island/Key West

We're currently staying on a mooring ball in Marathon FL. We just took the bus to Key West and found that we like that city much more than the town of Marathon. There is a city marina there that has mooring balls for $300 per month, just like here in Marathon.

Does anyone have any opinions or experience with the Stock Island Key West mooring field to compare to the one at Marathon?

We sure do sleep well here in Marathon at night. The mooring field is quiet and calm. There is a definite value to regular good nights sleep! I wonder if the mooring field at stock island is as calm or if it is plagued by big wakes and such.

It would seem that Stock island would be a much better place to be for easy access to Key West, musical events, and performances, etc...

Capt'n K
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We said the heck with the rat race, sold out, got a sturdy small sailboat (Albin Vega 27), and started cruising: New England to Florida via the ICW, and then on to the Caribbean:
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Old 02-11-2011
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I'm on the mooring field in Key West, and I love it EXCEPT that it is unprotected on the North side and truly nasty when a cold front pushes through. Stock Island might be a better bet if you want to be close to Key West but prefer a more protected spot.
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Old 02-12-2011
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Key west anchorage

Thanks for the reply!

I've heard that anchoring west of fleming key is alright, and it protects against the fetch from the north and east, and it's free. Any thoughts on that versus the mooring field?

Capt'n K
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We said the heck with the rat race, sold out, got a sturdy small sailboat (Albin Vega 27), and started cruising: New England to Florida via the ICW, and then on to the Caribbean:
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Old 02-13-2011
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Yes, the West side of Flemming Key is a little more protected. It might be a bit crowded since the Coast Guard began enforcing an exclusion zone around Flemming Key last year, but give it a try. You'll have to get a sticker from the city to use the (also crowded) dinghy dock at Key West bight. I think it's $5/day or $50/month.
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Old 03-24-2012
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Re: Marathon vs Stock Island/Key West

Any recommendations on moorings close to a travel lift in Islamarada or Key largo? $300 a month, I can manage plus trailer storage of course.
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Old 03-27-2012
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Re: Marathon vs Stock Island/Key West

Update on the Mooring field in Key West at the west side of Flemming Island.
First the channel that goes around Flemming Island is charter wrong. Chart shows 7.5' and the reality is greater than 12' around most of the island and 10' when in the mooring field itself.
Second, There is NO pendants on any kind on the mooring balls. None, Zip. We had to launch the dinghy to put our own pendant/docklines on the mooring ball. With just two people and 20 knots of wind this was difficult to say the least.
The Key West City marina was clueless on all this. Go figure. Talked to the harbor master and the two ladies that work the office. CLUELESS. Me and 3 other folks called them on the radio and cell phones. Had no idea other than to collect your money on what is out there nor the depth of Flemming channel.
Third, - Good news is the bathrooms, laundry room and dinghy dock is done. Not the greatest I have seen but very doable.
With the wind blow hard it is a long wet dinghy over to the dinghy dock.
They do have a pump out boat that comes out when the weather is real nice. If there is a small craft advisories out, the city won't let them come out into the bay.
Grocery stores, West Marine and downtown are walkable from the dinghy dock or can take the local bus that picks up one small block for a $1 to $2 each.
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Old 03-28-2012
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Re: Marathon vs Stock Island/Key West

"Chart shows 7.5' and the reality is greater than 12' "
Mel, as long as it isn't the other way around, right? (G)

I've been in 80' of water where the charts said 40'. Scouring happens. Charts are also normally for mean low water, are you comparing same same?

Life is so much simpler in the northeast, where there's often and usually room to literally roll the boat without anything getting stuck in the bottom. Except right ashore.
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Old 04-02-2012
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Re: Marathon vs Stock Island/Key West

i am right on the depth. The channel was dredged and someone forgot to tell the chart folks that. I talked to several harbor master folks about it and depth goes from 12-18' depending on the tide and winds.
Northeast and West Coast folks don't have the depth problem we do down here in paradise. When the snowbirds come down the radio chatter on inquires of depth is most of the topic heard. 7' draft boats have a particular problem down here and must wait for the high tide to get into a lot of places.
I won't do the ICW (inside) down here in the keys with anything less than 5' draft. My charts down here are pretty detailed with my own readings marked on the chart to either verify or update the chart as necessary.
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