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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
We will be going from Annapolis, MD to Marathon Key, FL in Oct. on our 37'' Jeanuea Lagoon Catamaran using the ICW for much of the way but are thinking it would be nice to get out in the open at some point. Is there one place better than another to stay in the ICW or get out of it to avoid any bad locations or bridges?
 

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Discussion Starter · #2 ·
Personally, I avoid the ICW down here in FL at all costs. I always take to the outside.

There are too many "no wake", "slow speed" zones and bridges. Many of the bridges are now opening on schedules depending on the time of day and location, so travelling the ICW can be a major pain. You have to also consider the "looney-tunes" on PWC''s and the rest of the people who think boat ownership is a license to be stooopid!

I enjoy sailing or motoring on the outside.. far more relaxing and enjoyable!
 

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I have done that trip south and have parked my 32foot monohull in Savannah for a month before returning north. The bridges from Ft. Lauderdale and south will drive you crazy...I had 14 in one day, only a few on demand...that''s a good place to go outside.
In many cases it is actually longer to go outside that go ICW because of the very long inlet approaches...check the cruising guides.
Another option is to cut across Florida from Stuart to Ft. Myers via the Okeechobee Waterway, then work south in the Gulf to seven mile bridge and Marathon. Two issues: a railroad bridge makes the controlling mast height 49 feet, and a drought has dropped the level of the lake, so check with Army Engineers at Clewiston, 863-983-8101. Much of this is described in my book, "Sailing to Hemingway''s Cuba", Sheridan House, Oct. 2000.
Have a great time. Dave Schaefer, SV Dream Weaver
 

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Ahoy, I agree with Rob, Your vessel is certianly capable to run outside as long as you are. ICW is tedious at best and at its worst you''d wish you were on I95. Big Red 56
 

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Discussion Starter · #5 ·
While i agree with the previous responses concerning the waterway in Florida, there are places worth seeing inside. The anchorage at Dragon Point, St. Augustine and the Old Port Anchorage in the N Lake Worth area merrit a visit.

You definitely want to go outside from Ft.Lauderdale south.

The ICW from Savannah to Fernandina, FL is beautiful. As is the trip between Annapolis and Beaufort NC. That would be a good place to go out and sail south to Charleston or Savannah. Either way you decide to go you''ve already made the important decission - you''re going
Sid
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
I agree with alot with what was said BUT would never miss doing the ICW- just don"t be in a rush. Its a beautiful, fun trip leaving AGAIN Oct. 1st
 
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