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I would appreciate feedback on the best coastal sailing areas in Florida. In general, we enjoy coastal and island-area cruising (no offshore passages). We are eventually planning to relocate to a Florida area where sailing is predominant and where there are many sailboat-oriented marinas as I have dabbled in selling sailboats (in the midwest) in the past and would like to pursue it there. We are more familiar with the Gulf coast than the Atlantic side but are open to either. Opinions are appreciated!
 

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Have lived on the westcoast of florida for 45 years, sailing for 30 years, so I am partial to the westcoast. If you like coastal cruising our coast is by far better than the eastcoast. I can sail to the keys in 2 days, bahamas in 4 to 5 and plenty of anchorages along the way that are some of the most beautiful in the state. The westcoast is more layed back compared to the eastcoast, if you like it slow and easy stay west if you like lights and glitter and fast pase go east. Good Luck, Fairwinds & Following Seas

Ron
 

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I hear the southern half of the west coast of Florida is a great area to explore by sail. However, a stern word of caution is given. If you sail the waters around Sanibel Island or Pine Island, be aware that those waters are infested with PIRATES. You will most likely be boarded and will have to surrender all the rum and any women on board to avoid being "run thru" by the blade of Big Red56. You may can avoid this by paying a tarriff beforehand, but even then, sailing in these waters would still be considered risky. Enter at your own risk.
 

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And by contrast. The east coast has deeper water, no danger of grounding 4 miles off shore. No crab traps to dodge constantly. And as far as big city lights.....I believe Tampa vs Miami is a draw. The east coast is much qucker to both the bahama''s and cumberland island may not rival sanibel for condo''s and expensive homes....it has none....but certainly outshines sanibel in unspoiled beauty. Whereas the west coast/gulf has choppy waves built by storms, the east has the gentler deeper water rollers.
The west has mexico within 2-3 days. The east has the entire intra-coastal waterway (if you like that sort of gunk holing) to parts north. Winds predominatly in Florida come from the west more than than the east......so the east faces lee shores if hugging the shallow draft water for more than a day of leisure...a major problem. As in anything....got good and bad.
 

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Hi,
My wife and I are considering movkng to west Fla. for living and sailing. This might sound rather strange, but I was reading your post on pirates around Sanibel and was wondering if you''re speaking literally or just joking? I don''t want to give up my beautiful wife to some ragtag lunatic during our sunset anchorage! Thanks! Bob P.
 

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808state,

If you were reading this BB over the past year or so, you would know about BigRed56, a once-frequent and usually entertaining contributor. He has not posted (except once, I believe) in quite a few months now. [For those interested, I tried to email him a few weeks ago with both the addresses I had for him; both addresses were no longer valid.]

While BigRed may challenge me on this if he ever returns, I dare say that you should have no fear of pirates near Sanibel and Pine Island, FL.

Bottom line: he was just joking!
 

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Bob,

Yes, the pirate thing is a joke. As Duane says, it all revolves around BigRed56, who currently is MIA. Duane, thanks for the info on his email addresses. I do miss the old cuss!

Bob, for more thoughts/opinions on BigRed56 than you probably care to know, check out the General Discussion section and find a string titled something like "When does BigRed56 get out of jail?" Skip over the posts complaining about Jeff H., but the others about BR56 might be of interest.

Maybe BR56 is now in the witness protection program?????
 
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