Should we even do the intercostal en-route south? From what I am reading... - Page 3 - SailNet Community

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  #21  
Old 04-18-2011
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Originally Posted by LarryandSusanMacDonald View Post
..................A lot of people worry about running aground on the inside. We have learned how not to run aground......................
'much good advice here from Larry & Susan and it's true,- there are strategies to prevent running aground. We've first traveled the ICW from the Chesapeake to Florida in 1972 and we ran aground 13 times. Every year since 1972 we have run at least a portion of the ICW and we pretty much stopped running aground before we had our first depth sounder (besides a lead line) around 1992. I agree that the timing and current does require an engine. I had not noticed that the original posters were considering this without any motoring,- very difficult and huge time delays! We've had one short polite boarding by the DNR in Georiga over the span of 39 years! We've always found great anchorages; we don't stress with bridges or wakes; we sometimes take two to three months to cruise from Florida to Maine and we never expect to be anywhere except in the best location for the day's weather. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
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  #22  
Old 04-18-2011
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Originally Posted by CaptainForce View Post
'much good advice here from Larry & Susan and it's true,- there are strategies to prevent running aground. We've first traveled the ICW from the Chesapeake to Florida in 1972 and we ran aground 13 times. Every year since 1972 we have run at least a portion of the ICW and we pretty much stopped running aground before we had our first depth sounder (besides a lead line) around 1992. I agree that the timing and current does require an engine. I had not noticed that the original posters were considering this without any motoring,- very difficult and huge time delays! We've had one short polite boarding by the DNR in Georiga over the span of 39 years! We've always found great anchorages; we don't stress with bridges or wakes; we sometimes take two to three months to cruise from Florida to Maine and we never expect to be anywhere except in the best location for the day's weather. Take care and joy, Aythya crew
Never run the inter-coastal (only a few small sections) but I understand there are a lot of draw bridges- pretty sketchy to go through those without an engine.
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  #23  
Old 04-18-2011
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Originally Posted by LarryandSusanMacDonald View Post
BTW, it's Intra-coastal, not Inter-Coastal. Inter-Coastal would be from one coast to another - so you would likely be traveling to a foreign country. Like, say, New Jersey.
Sorry about last post, grammer is not my forte, I'm an engineer.
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  #24  
Old 04-19-2011
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I thought that there were significant portions of the ICW where it's not even legal to sail, and you had to motor?
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  #25  
Old 04-19-2011
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Originally Posted by chrisncate View Post
Quote:
Originally Posted by casey1999 View Post
Never run the inter-coastal (only a few small sections) but I understand there are a lot of draw bridges- pretty sketchy to go through those without an engine.
Meh, that wouldn't worry me in the least. I'd enjoy the challenge of it I suspect.
Well, good luck with that… Hopefully, you won’t be dealing with one of those ornery bridgetenders in Florida who won’t lower their traffic gates until even a boat under power has rolled up their headsail before approaching their bridge…

Needless to say, when I originally replied to this thread, I had no idea you were going engineless… That changes everything, probably takes the possibility of doing about 98% of the waterway off the table…

You’ll be seriously constrained as to where you can put in along the coast, as well… Between the Chesapeake and Charleston, the only places I’d care to enter without an engine would be Beaufort, Wrightsville, Southport, maybe Murrells Inlet, and Winyah Bay… Still, you’ll need very favorable conditions for any entrance north of Charleston… Some of the sounds between there and the Florida line are certainly do-able, though you’ll really have to play the tides… Once in Florida, your options again become pretty limited – St Mary’s, St Augustine, and Ft. Pierce are about it, Palm Beach would be possible, but pretty nerve-wracking under most conditions… Lauderdale is out of the question, and while Miami might be do-able, I wouldn’t try it…

I certainly admire the pluck of those going engineless, but you certainly pay a price in regards to places you’ll bypass… I love to sail as much as the next guy, but when I think of all the places I’d have never gotten to without my little Perkins, I think I’ll keep it… (grin)
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Old 04-19-2011
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As someone who does not do a lot of sailing outside of racing in which using the motor means you have given up

I can spend a whole day-sail off my mooring in Northport and never make it to the Long island Sound if the tide is in flood and the wind is in its pretty common direction of west

Your not being realistic about which way the wind blows on much of the ICW how narrow it is or the amount of commercial traffic
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  #27  
Old 04-19-2011
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Originally Posted by chrisncate View Post
In any of the places you've been that you feel you could not have visited without your engine, what on earth would you have done had the motor failed you coming in, out, or while you were at those places?

Relying on a motor to go places (you feel) you absolutely could not go without one seems far more risky and dangerous to me...

My 2c..

(edit - and regarding the bridge tenders, they all have scheduled openings at some point. Not much they could do if you wait until then I imagine..)
Chris,
This past weekend I anchored over night at Waimea Bay Oahu, Sunday another boat sailed in (in Waimea bay it is illegal to use an engine- must come in anchor and leave under sail only). Sunday evening the other boat and I sailed back to our mooring in Haleiwa. It was a beautiful sail with spinner dolphins riding my bow and my dog keeping lookout (I was single handling the boat) At the enterance to Haleiwa the other boat was well ahead of me and drifted out of the channel and heading towards the reef. There was absolutely no wind with current moving the boat to the reef. The boat hailed me. I asked if one of his crew could go in the water and board my boat to help with the tow line (turned out their engine failed due to fuel problems). I towed them to there dock. At the dock they gave me some beers for my effort (I later gave all but one beer to some fisherman whom caught my run away dog, but that is another story). If I did not come along, they could have dropped anchor and waited for another tow, or call coast guard. I have a Boat US unlimited tow card ($150) a year I will use if I cannot get a tow.

The bottom line to sailing is having back up plans. On a sail boat you should have sail, engine, anchors, radios, epirbs, flares, life jackets, life raft (off-shore) ect ect ect. When one system fails you go to the next, if all fails then your in the water waiting for rescue (you hope). The point is you try to prepare so it does not come to that (being in the water). By ditching your engine you have lost one item on your back up plan.

You know you talk all this about no fear, I know some pro surfers who surf 30foot Hawaiian stlye waves (60 foot face) at Waimea and when they do they have fear of the ocean. It is fear that keeps your keen to your suroundings and it is fear that will allow you, your crew, and your boat to see another day. I think a little fear would do you good. And with fear of the ocean comes respect for the ocean. And with respect comes apreciation.

Aloha
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  #28  
Old 04-19-2011
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Originally Posted by chrisncate View Post
In any of the places you've been that you feel you could not have visited without your engine, what on earth would you have done had the motor failed you coming in, out, or while you were at those places?

Relying on a motor to go places (you feel) you absolutely could not go without one seems far more risky and dangerous to me...

My 2c..

(edit - and regarding the bridge tenders, they all have scheduled openings at some point. Not much they could do if you wait until then I imagine..)
No question, there is a certain degree of logic to such a point of view… But at some point one just have to take one’s chances with the likelihood of an inopportune mechanical failure, the commercial aviation industry, for example, wouldn’t be a viable one if passengers weren’t willing to play those odds…

It's an interesting debate, of course, as to which manner of cruising is "riskier"... I'll stick with having more means of propulsion at my disposal, as opposed to fewer, but that's probably just me...

However, as one who has spent a considerable portion of my life delivering powerboats, that argument doesn’t really fly with me, I'm pretty comfortable with the notion of having no alternative means of propulsion, after all… And, in my experience, I’ve found the amazing creation of Rudolf Diesel to be substantially more reliable than the wind itself… (grin)

Moot point for me, anyway – if I couldn’t rely on my engine to get me going, I’d never make it away from my dock, much less ever get out into the ocean…

I think you may be being a bit optimistic about dealing with the bridges and many of the stretches of the ICW under sail… Obviously, you enjoy the purity of sailing, I would guess you would quickly tire of the exercise, and stay offshore…
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  #29  
Old 04-19-2011
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Chris,

I have done most of the icw from the Chesapeake to Florida and I can tell you unequivocally that a lot of it cannot be done under sail power alone. No you do not need an engine. A guy did it at about the same time I did in a kayak. But a lot of the icw is nothing but a ditch with no tides or wind. So a sailboat of your size will not be able to navigate it without some other means of propulsion than sails.

It will also be very difficult for you to navigate through some of the fixed bridges, let alone the bascule bridges. And you will not be able to propel your boat through any locks. I wouldn't be surprised if one or more of the bridge tenders simply closed the bridge on top of your boat as you tried to pass through under sail.

Quote:
Originally Posted by chrisncate View Post
In any of the places you've been that you feel you could not have visited without your engine, what on earth would you have done had the motor failed you coming in, out, or while you were at those places?

Relying on a motor to go places (you feel) you absolutely could not go without one seems far more risky and dangerous to me...

My 2c..

(edit - and regarding the bridge tenders, they all have scheduled openings at some point. Not much they could do if you wait until then I imagine..)
The safety device many of us rely on when our engines fail is called an anchor. We deploy it and then either fix our engine or wait for conditions conducive for us to sail to our destination where upon we fix our engine. And of course, if the s*** really hits the fan we rely on Boat US and/or the Coast Guard. But with good planning and luck those last ditch options can usually be avoided.

Good luck with your journey. I admire your moxie.

Scott
Gemini Catamaran Split Decision

Last edited by NautiG; 04-19-2011 at 07:08 PM.
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Old 04-19-2011
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Lot of time like this



Lot of time like that

Lot of time right after this between 0 and 25 knots up down up down down

Anchor sail Anchor sail Anchor sail
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