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Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Cruising & Liveaboard Forum > Living Aboard
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  #1  
Old 10-06-2006
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Florida Panhandle - Floating For Free?

Okay, I got a wild idea.

When driving highway 98 in Destin, Fort Walton Beach, or when passing by Pensacola Beach across the bridge, I see sailboats anchored offshore - SOME of them have been there a really long time. So, I figure they must be avoiding the costs of a marina.

Now, I've reached into The Force and can see myself in the future jumping in a dingy each morning, rowing into shore, and taking my car to work. After work, park, jump back in the dingy, and paddle back out to relax with a nice beer and watch the sun go down.

Is anybody familiar with the way things work on the Florida Panhandle waterways, whether those boats are actually liveaboards, and what the rules might be regarding such matters?

~Terral~
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Old 10-13-2006
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Living your dream

CapnT,

I live in the Port St Joe area, a day sail from PAnama City. There are alot of anchor outs here. Yes, it can be a free (or at least fairly cheep) way to live. Most of the marinas around here do not allow live aboards. Ours lets you stay on board for pretty muchas long as you want. The Bay County Council is trying to establish mooring fields that they can charge you for. I guess they abhor the thought of someone living for free. Some of their arguments do hold water. Some of these boats have been there for years and are in a sorry state. Some have even sunk. We choose to keep our boat in a marina (about $1900/year). The extra security is worth it to us.
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Old 10-13-2006
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1900/yr - wow! I've been considering the whole anchor-out thing as a wau of saving cash, but that's only $158/mo - that's really cheap. Do you have access to water, elec or other amenities at that arena?

I also have been wondering - where exactly do you anchor out? Only in bays or inlets, right? No one anchors out in front of a beach, right? I'd assume you wouldn't be allowed. And if in bays or inlets - where exactly do you drop anchor so that you will not be in the path of any boat entering/exiting? You would have to be out of the lane of traffic - would you have to leave your lights on over night? How does t hat work?

But for 1900/yr with security, water and elec - maybe that's the way to go. Only thing is I intend to constantly keep moving
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