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ccriders 04-06-2011 09:12 PM

Circle Tour Gulf of Mexico
I have been thinking about circumnavigating the Gulf of Mexico and have some questions that some of you might be able to help me with. Assume start point is Port Aransas, Tx. I sail a Pearson 28, 5' draft, 45' air draft. Plain and simple equipment. Will need some time in marinas and some time on the hook. I will probably have to do it solo.
1. It seems the rotation should be clock wise. Is that correct?
2. It seems the season should be late October to June, or is that too early/late?
3. Can it be done allowing for plenty of lay-over days in 200 or so days? (I'm in my late 60s and need what seems to me an inordinate amount of rest after a big energy exertion)
4. What are the must see ports/islands/bays/rivers?
5. What are the must avoid places?
6. What part of the ICW is fun and sailable?
7. What part of the ICW is best avoided?
8. What about sailing from Key West/Dry Totugas to Cuba? (In terms of routes and sea conditions, not the politics)
9. If time allows, is Belize worth it?
10. Has anyone done this and put it in a blog somewhere?
I will appreciate any input you have.

travlineasy 04-06-2011 11:03 PM

Great questions, John. I'll be very interested in reading the answers.

Gary :cool:

lickingcardboard 04-06-2011 11:47 PM

Don't Let the Ms see this Post she will think it is mine, Waiting on the replays myself, sound like a fun trip, altho i would see about going Tortugas to Tx, or other way round.

L02314564 04-07-2011 12:37 AM

I'm with you on this one John. I've been contemplating selling everything (before the government taxes it all away) and making a go of it doing the circle full time. Your questions are right on the money.

Does peanut butter and jelly have a shelf life?

MARC2012 04-07-2011 07:39 AM

Not so sure about winter sailing.Northren gulf northers in winter are NO FUN.marc

Allanbc 04-07-2011 08:53 AM

I would like to point out that Cuba and Belize are not part of the Gulf! ;)

When you say circumnavigate the Gulf, are you including the Mexican coast too?

ccriders 04-07-2011 09:31 AM


Originally Posted by L02314564 (Post 717550)
Does peanut butter and jelly have a shelf life?

Nah, it's inert. Only problem is that PB turns to plastic after long exposure to heat.

gulfcoastcruiser 04-07-2011 09:33 AM

I am planning just such a trip now.

Send me a PM if you would like some more information.

ccriders 04-07-2011 09:43 AM


Originally Posted by Allanbc (Post 717604)
I would like to point out that Cuba and Belize are not part of the Gulf! ;)

When you say circumnavigate the Gulf, are you including the Mexican coast too?

I understand that Belize is not in the gulf, however wouldn't the line from Key West to the western tip of Cuba to the Yucatan Peninsula mark the boundary of the gulf? And yes, including the Mexican coast as otherwise it would be too long a span with out rest stops. I know that at my age and condition, more than two days and one night of continuous sailing would be too much.

nolatom 04-07-2011 10:01 AM

I don't know the whole circle. But east of Galveston, it's commercial harbors with *long* in/out distances, and the ICW in western Louisiana is pretty boring, plus you have to watch out for the barge traffic. Better to make a long hop offshore to Tiger Pass and Venice as a lay-over (check the Miss River height and current first)? Then the ICW in Mississippi Sound is pretty, wide and fun. East of Mobile it's narrower, pretty, and fun, but so's "going outside" depending on weather. Orange Beach and Destin, pretty, easy access, and short in-out.

That's the section I sorta know. You ought to ask CrazyRU (Vlad) on this board, he did the Houston to Tampa trip on a shoestring and went 'coastal" in west/central Louisiana with all the oilfield boat boys, where sailboats hardly ever go. Get some advice form him maybe? Here's his thread from back then, reads like a good, quirky, adventure novel....

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