Panama City to Apalachicola
We are planning to cruise from Panama City to Apalachicola next month. If anyone has done this trip I'd appreciate any information. We will be on my Pearson 10M with 49 feet vertical clearance.
We are going ICW first then staying a couple of days and going outside back to PC.
If you know about any potential issues to watch out for, marinas or and preferences to dockage/anchorage please let me know.
We made that trip last summer but stayed outside both ways, We have a 56 foot air draft, The pass going into the bay is all but closed off on the bay side.
stay as close to the range markers as you can I mean close enough to almost touch them. The bay is really shallow so you have to be careful.
All of the marinas there are also very shallow we ended up going to three differnt ones trying to find a slip deep enough for the boat ,we draw almost six feet, And still ended up touching in the slip we did take. I suggest you call ahead.
This info is a year old so it may be completely different by now.
It is a nice place to hang out. Eat at verandes if you get a chance its a little pricey but the food is excellant.
Try to avoid the ICW at night. I used to do Galveston to Miami via the ditch. One of the parts I was uncomfortable in was that part going toward Apalachicola if it was dark. More freaking crab pots than I've seen anywhere and they'll be right in the middle just as they are on the sides. Many of them are dark colored (some even black - illeagle) and almost impossible to spot.
My two cents worth of advice - don't let the sun go down on you there and if you do have a good spotlight with somebody on the bow looking out for those pots.
It's a beautiful stretch! I wish I could do it again sometime. Have fun!!!
My brother is a motor yacht captain based out of PC and he does deliveries in the area a lot. PM me if you want contact info; I am sure he would be happy to answer questions or point you toward someone who can. He cruises with someone else paying expenses and has to be responsible for some very expensive boats, so his choice in marinas tends toward the high end. But he knows where the water is deep and what areas are dicey.
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