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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related)
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  #1  
Old 10-20-2009
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Cape May Canal

Am thinking about a trip that could use Cape May Canal. Does anyone know the bridge clearances?
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Old 10-20-2009
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Both fixed bridges are 55'. The railroad bridge is normally open.
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Old 10-20-2009
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They both have clearance boards on them, so you can see the clearance...

Quote:
Originally Posted by MJBrown View Post
Both fixed bridges are 55'. The railroad bridge is normally open.
at the present tide.

It saves little, compared with going outside, unless it is blowing hard from the east. If you draw over 6' there are issues in 2 areas.
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Old 10-20-2009
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There are reefs to the south of the cape so I think it is worthwhile. We went thorugh in April on a boat that was supposed to be 53 feet as best as we could measure it. We got through the first one OK but the VHF antena scraped on the second bridge girders. There was a very strong west wind all day, that I assume piled up water on the east shore and tried to push it through the canal. Tide was about half and rising.

Good Luck
Gary
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55 ft as said. We transit the canal every year on our way to and from New England. It will save almost 3 hours time if you can do it.

There are no real reef south of Cape May, but definate shoals. They are trasiable, but the waves can build up pretty fiercely and is often much rougher than out in the ocean or in the Delaware Bay, When the tidal Delaware opposes the wind you get the famous square Delware Bay waves all the way up to where the river narrows.

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Thanks to all for your replies, the info will help in the planning.
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Old 10-20-2009
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Be aware that Utsch's Marina has very little in the way of services offered unless you stay there overnight. If you're a transient boat that is just coming in for fuel, you don't have the option of using the bathrooms or showers—just porta-johns. Also, the chances of picking up green-head flies that will feast on you until you kill them all is very high if you pass through the Cape May canal during the season.
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Old 10-21-2009
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If you choose to go outside the shoals in mention are the Prissy Wicks Shoals. There are two ways around them, inside which saves time, or off shore which will cost a couple of hours. The inside route has plenty of water you just need to chart it carefully due to the shoals.

As for the 55' bridge clearances in the canal that's a Mean Higher High Tide.
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