Bridge Clearance_How little is too little.... - SailNet Community

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Old 04-25-2014
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Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

Obviously when you hit... its to little. There was a newly constructed bridge just up river from where I keep my new boat (Mount Hope Bay which is on the MA/RI border). It has a bridge clearance of 65 feet at average high tide, I calculated the total height from the water height and got 61 feet which includes the wind instrument/antennas aloft.

What is your comfort level?
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Old 04-25-2014
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

I'm uncomfortable just reading your post! Aren't bridges listed at mean high tide?
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

Yes the clearance is MHW or Mean High Water in tidal areas. They often mark the heights at the base of the bridge.

If you're sure about your height, 4 ft clearance is not too little. I'd make sure I knew when tides were higher than normal and watch any big wake machines.

There's a low bridge and a power cable in Cape May canal that I cleared with inches helping a friend move his boat. We waited for low tide. Inches were nerve-racking..
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

It's too low when you have to pole out people on the boom to heel the boat over while you are going under it.
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

Ever notice that no matter how high a bridge is, when you look up just before passing under it seems like you're gonna hit

Seriously, I'd probably go but my first trip under would probably be at 1/2 tide or less.

Put a notch in a piling at your home marina before you go under, if you make it, keep pushing the notch a little higher

(are you talking about the new Sakonnet River bridge)
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

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Originally Posted by capecodda View Post
Ever notice that no matter how high a bridge is, when you look up just before passing under it seems like you're gonna hit
I know the 2 bridges here where we are on the Delaware river. (turnpike and Burlington/Bristol bridges are 60+ft my boat is 44 tom (top of mast)

I still get an uneasy feeling that I can' dismiss when going under. No matter how many times I've done this! Same "feeling" you get when not used to heeling, which doesn't bother me anymore.

The only bridge on the Delaware River that's low is the old DelAire bridge 47 MLT just on the south side of the Newer Betsy Ross bridge. Channel 14 on the vhf. the operator is always reluctant but does lift the bridge if there are no trains scheduled. I've never heard from the Bridge OP first. (guess that never happens)



I've wondered a few times.. if I could match speed against current and creep mere inches at a time to crawl under a bridge with my boat... don't think it's possible, is it?
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Last edited by deniseO30; 04-25-2014 at 07:43 PM.
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Old 04-25-2014
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

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Originally Posted by capecodda View Post
Ever notice that no matter how high a bridge is, when you look up just before passing under it seems like you're gonna hit...
That's how I feel sailing under the Bay Bridge even though I'm more than sure my mast is less than 184 feet.
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

I t has something to do with depth perception, speed of approach and diminishing angle.. or sumting like dat! LOL
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

Check this out.

Boat Balls 2 - YouTube
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Re: Bridge Clearance_How little is too little....

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Originally Posted by Lucky dog 2 View Post
Check this out.

Boat Balls 2 - YouTube
Yes thanks.. it's been around forever now. I've posted it at least 6 times in various places.
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