Mississippi Barrier Islands - Page 2 - SailNet Community
Gulf of Mexico US Coastlines, excluding Florida

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post #11 of 28 Old 06-17-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

Resurrecting this old thread because I really have the same question as the original poster. I also draw 4.5 feet fixed keel and am seeking info on the status of anchorages at Cat Island for a trip this weekend. Forecast is for SE shifting ESE winds 9 knots. Best advice for reasonable protection and easy access to shore by dingy? Coming from Lake Pontchartrain.
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post #12 of 28 Old 06-17-2013
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I Spoke with another sailor who anchored in Smugglers Cove recently, it was shallow and ok for his 2.5' draft. Not so close in to shore for a 4.5' draft though-- couple hundred yards? He Also said the "flies" were bad on shore. he backed off shore for the night and caught the breezes to escape the flies.

See Loose Diamonds comments in this thread on Little Bend for deeper boats. Report back what you find this weekend.

Good luck!
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MS Gulf Coast
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post #13 of 28 Old 06-18-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

IRead previous posts. If the wind predictions are accurate and maintain an easterly component, Smugglers Cove would be my choice. The South spit has eroded such that it is almost completely submerged at high tide. There is I lighted buoy at the southernmost tip. Still, you can get in close enough to protect from all but a westerly wind. Enter the cove avoiding the south spit as well as the very shallow area of Good Scotch Point. North side would protect from that wind but very shallow. Longer rides to shore. Finally in the water last weekend after pulling for hurricane Isaac. If I work out some electrical issues, I may be out there Sat and Sun. If you see a small boat with a yellow flag, it is probably me. Hail Loose Diamond or dinghy over for a cold drink! Good luck.

Last edited by LooseDiamond; 06-18-2013 at 08:36 AM.
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post #14 of 28 Old 06-18-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

Thank you both for this good information. I'll watch the wind forecast and decide. Since low tide is at night, Smuggler's might offer more protection than I anticipated. I will have more crew than anticipated and a small dinghy so it would be helpful to be a bit closer in than on the north side. I'm surprised to see a three foot tidal range this weekend.

Greg

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Slidell, LA
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post #15 of 28 Old 06-18-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

Please post an update after your visit. I too am hoping to get out of Lake Pontchartrain to the Mississippi Barrier Islands this summer, but based on earlier posts to this thread I wondered where I'd be able to anchor with 4 1/2 feet of draft.

Forecast I saw seems to include SE winds this weekend. If you try Little Bend instead of Smuggler's Cove, please report what you find about the depth and wind protection there.

Wish I was sailing this weekend myself. Have a great trip.

Mark
S/V Reality
New Orleans, LA
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post #16 of 28 Old 06-24-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

We did end up at Smuggler's. We saw Loose Diamonds with his yellow flag and swing keel getting really close in to shore, but for us with a fixed keel out in the cheap seats, it would have been a long dinghy ride to shore. We started out in 7.5 feet and had 6.5 feet as tide went out or we swung around. It was a calm and comfortable night; flies were annoying in the evening but mercifully left us after dark. In hindsight we could have gone shallower but too much faith in forecasts did not seem wise. Next time we make the trip we will make a three day weekend of it so that there's a whole day to screw around.
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post #17 of 28 Old 06-24-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

Yep. Saw you out there. You guys left out quite early. I fished a little that next morning and sailed along the south side west to east then back to harbor. A whole day without having to leave does let one relax.
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post #18 of 28 Old 06-24-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

We had a crew member with a dialysis appointment Sunday evening, thus the early start. However we made great speed getting back, with tailwinds and currents in our favor, so perhaps we could have lingered. Do you think we were unnecessarily conservative in where we anchored, including an appropriate margin for the unexpected? With the calm conditions we had later that evening, a Seatow membership, and someone manning the boat on anchor watch, perhaps I could be tempted to close in on those five foot charted (mean low water) depths right up next to the spit for easy shore access during the day, moving to deeper water at night? Or is that just stupid with a four foot draft. I have very little experience with this problem, my prior boat had 15 inch draft. I didn't worry about running aground; I could always get out and push.
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post #19 of 28 Old 06-25-2013
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

Definitely made the right decision, especially on a hard schedule. I have spent an extra night out there more than once when I got in too close and the tide stranded me. Given that and the forecast unusually high tidal range, good call. Anywhere on the N side would be shoaled worse. I have become more conservative over time. Now I will anchor out in the evening in 8 ft with the keel down for stability and peace of mind when on the N side. (a little more familiar with some deep holes in Smugglers).
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post #20 of 28 Old 02-02-2014
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Re: Mississippi Barrier Islands

I know this is a bit old, but be advised that the shoaling in Smuggler's Cove has progressed and the charts are certainly incorrect.

As per my ActiveCaptain review:
"Update 10/2013: the sandbar is very washed out, and the embayment has shallowed. We saw 3 feet at high tide and didn't try to go up inside. Very little east protection now that the bar has eroded. I would now describe this as a north or fair weather stop. Compare the chart to the satellite, you'll see."
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