Key West to Marathon via Hawks Channel in Late JulyEarly August - SailNet Community

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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Destinations > Florida & SE US East Coast > Florida - Keys
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Old 06-23-2011
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Key West to Marathon via Hawks Channel in Late JulyEarly August

Hey everyone, I am new to the site and relatively new to sailing. My father and I brought my 23' Ranger down on the inside (bay side) from Coconut Grove to Key West, taking the northern route "above" the keys to the Northwest Channel entrance to Key West. Still in key west and headed back to CG on or abouts July 31/Aug1 and thinking about taking Hawks Channel to at least Moser Channel before cutting back inside. I have no problem motoring to get there if the wind is in my face, but would also like to sail some if the wind is in a good position. Motor is a 6hp outboard, fin keel, 3'6" draft. My question(s) are,

1) Anyone familiar with that stretch during the summer months?

2) What kind of wave action am I looking at in Hawks

3) Is there a helpful (headed east then north) current inside Hawks?

Thanks in advance

Adam
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Old 06-24-2011
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No current to help you along that close in. As long as the wind isn't strong from the ENE to SSE wave size shouldn't be much of a problem.
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Old 06-24-2011
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At that time of year the winds vary from easterly to southeasterly at around 15 knots about 75% of the time (check the Pilot Charts). Southeasterly would be no problem. Easterlies not so great. Considering you're only looking at about 40 miles, you should be able to make that decision on the evening before your departure. Just pull up PassageWeather.com or SailFlow.com and see what the winds are expected to do for the following 24 hours. With that close a time period the predictions are usually very good. However, why stay in Hawk Channel? If the winds are southeasterly, get out in the stream and get a lift.

FWIW...
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Thanks much to both of you. That bump does sound enticing; I'll have to monitor the weather and buoys and make a call at that time. I have yet to sail in open water with any wind approaching 15+ and I am still getting comfortable with my boat. Great info and much appreciated.

Adam
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Quote:
Originally Posted by 23Ranger View Post
Thanks much to both of you. That bump does sound enticing; I'll have to monitor the weather and buoys and make a call at that time. I have yet to sail in open water with any wind approaching 15+ and I am still getting comfortable with my boat. Great info and much appreciated.

Adam
Adam--

For lists of anchorages and details on the Keys, click over to ActiveCaptain.com and sign up (it's free). There is a wealth of information contributed by other cruisers and sailors on the Keys. It's an excellent site.
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