In This Issue
I. Lots and Lots of Cruising News
II. Marker/Charting Confusion and Increased Shoaling on AICW's Passage Through Georgia's St. Andrew Sound
III. Two Excellent Repair Recommendations for the Tampa Bay Region
IV. AICW Dredging Project at the Vilano Beach Bridge Begins 8/24/12
V. Shoaling in Teaches Hole Channel, Pamlico Sound/Ocracoke, NC
VI. Good Words for Mangrove Marina, FL Keys Inside Route, near Statute Mile 1150
VII. Captains Mark and Diana Doyle Supply A WEALTH of Quality Cruising Information
IX. Venice Water Cop Issues His Last Ticket
X. Two Western Florida Navigational Concerns
XI. Report from Sunset Cove Anchorage, Fl. Keys Inside Route, Buttonwood Sound - Key Largo
XII. Proposed Change of Carolina Coastal RR Bridge Opening Schedule Would Close AICW During Nighttime Hours For 12 Months, (Statute Mile 203.8, Near Morehead City, NC)
XIII. Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net Presents a New McClellanville, South Carolina Photo Gallery
XIV. Great Ocrocoake, NC Dining Recommendations And Other News
Charleston City Marina Winter, 2012 Dockage Specials I. Lots and Lots of Cruising News   

There is sooooo much cruising news to present in this Alert, we are going to try something new. In the upper left hand corner of each article below, an easy to read heading Panama City Marina will quickly identify which coastline the article in question is centered upon. By so doing, we sincerely hope all our visitors will be able to quickly determine whether the adjacent article concerns your waters of interest.

Let's get started. We have a LOT to cover!

Inlet Marina
Bucksport Marina


II. Marker/Charting Confusion and Increased Shoaling on AICW's Passage Through Georgia's St. Andrew Sound (St. M. 690)   


St. Johns Yacht Harbor OK, ALL AICW cruisers bound through southern Georgia within the next six months (at least), LISTEN UP! It appears we have a serious problem on the AICW's passage through often ROUGH St. Andrew Sound, south of Jekyll Creek/Island. This past week we received data concerning these waters from fellow cruising guide author, and my good friend, Captain John Kettlewell.


Captain John and I have been in close touch about this St. Andrew Sound situation, and compared notes. There were still unanswered questions, so a few days ago I put up a posting on the Cruisers' Net's Home Page (and other places on our site), and asked for input from the cruising community.


Osprey Marina And, as usual, our fellow cruisers who have recently traversed this stretch of the AICW have come through with a wealth of knowledge and advice about how best to navigate these waters.


If you are a year round southern Georgia cruiser, or if your vessel is bound south this fall, run, don't walk to:   

Longboat Key Club Marina Western Florida 

III. Two Excellent Repair Recommendations for the Tampa Bay Region

Today, we had the good fortune to publish two gold plated recommendations for quality repair personnel in the Tampa Bay region. As I've often said, tips by fellow cruisers pointed towards talented and fair service professionals are worth several times their weight in gold!

Harbour Town Yacht Basin 2012 So, even if your vessel does not need any repair work at the moment, keep these names and numbers for future reference!

Check out:
Myrtle Beach Yacht Club Eastern Florida/AICW

IV. AICW Dredging Project at the Vilano Beach Bridge Begins 8/24/12, Running to 11/1/12 (Statute Mile 776, near St. Augustine, FL)

Isle of Palms Marina Now, here is an IMPORTANT item of interest to all St. Augustine area cruisers, AND all those mariners who will be wending their way south via the AICW through northeastern Florida this fall. We have just published an article describing a dredging project which will be ongoing through a goodly part of the fall, 2012 transient season. The waters north and south of the Vilano Beach Bridge are encompassed by this project.

All mariners visiting St. Augustine's waters prior to 11/1/12 should take CAREFUL notice of the article linked below. Though this dredging will not completely close the AICW, nor St. Augustine Inlet, navigating both bodies of Isle of Hope Marina water is going to call for more than usual caution!

Go to:
North Carolina

V. Shoaling in Teaches Hole Channel, Pamlico Sound/Ocracoke, NC

Tar Heel state cruisers will want to check out a recently published article on the SSECN which describes shoaling along Teaches Hole Channel. This passage leads from Ocracoke's Silver Lake Harbor entrance to historic Ocracoke Inlet, once (in Colonial times) the most important seaward passage on the North Carolina coastline.

Sunbury Crab Company Today, only locals with very specific, up-to-date knowledge should try and make use of this inlet. And, according to the report linked below, the passage from Silver Lake to the inlet is shoaling as well!

Please visit:

Jekyll Harbor Marina Florida Keys

VI. Good Words for Mangrove Marina, FL Keys Inside Route, near Statute Mile 1150

Amelia Island Yacht Basin There are currently only three, that's right, count them, "three," marinas along the Florida Keys inside route, between Jewfish Creek and Marathon, which offer readily available transient dockage. Arguably one of the best of the bunch is Mangrove Marina, which guards the inside route's eastern flank, a short hop north of Tavernier Creek, in Key Largo.

Hidden Harbor We are pleased to have just posted a quick, but enticing review of this facility on the Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net. Give it a look at:
On-The_Water Chartguides South Carolina, Georgia, Eastern Florida, North Carolina 

VII. Captains Mark and Diana Doyle Supply A WEALTH of Quality Cruising Information

Titusville City Marina My good buddies, Captains Diana and Mark Doyle, have been busy boys and girls of late. Not only have they just released an exciting, two-volume set of paper AICW anchorage guides (see for more details), but over the past week, they are provided our web site with five high quality, in-depth articles centered on the coastal waters from Eastern Florida to North Carolina.  

Below, we give a brief description of each posting, and links to check out the full versions. DON'T MISS THIS SUPER INPUT FROM A VETERAN CRUISING DUO! Your own time on the water will be far richer and safer for the effort of just a little reading!

Cammachee Cove Marina A. "Don't Even Think About Anchoring In The Charted "Oxbow" Off the AICW/Dawho River (Statute Mile 500)" 
There are actually three "oxbows" which intersect the South Carolina AICW's run through Dawho River (between the North and South Edisto Rivers). All are cheats and blinds, in spite of what is pictured on the NOAA charts. Captains Diana and Mark show you the evidence. Please visit:

North Palm Beach Marina B. "FORGET THE CHARTS! AICW and Brickhill River (South) Anchorage Breadcrumbs (St. M. 704) - Captains Mark and Diana Report" 
The intersection of the Georgia AICW and Brickhill River can be a source of confusion, and using the southern waters of the Brickhill as an overnight anchorage can be a real navigational challenge. Mark and Diana sift though all the conflicting data and make sense of these complicated waters. Check out:

Palm Cove Marina C. "Sunset Lake Anchorage: Just Avoid the Nut Job - off the AICW, hard by Miami Beach - Captains Mark and Diana Report" 
Sunset Lake Anchorage lies well east of the north - south track of the AICW, as it passes through Biscayne Bay, hard by the city of Miami, Florida and Miami Beach. Once into the lake, cruisers must be sure NOT to anchor abeam of a large, yellow house which you will spy along the eastern banks. The property owner does not like vessels anchored in front of his house and is known for his CRUDE discouraging tactics. Diana and Mark tell all, including how to avoid the "Nut Job" at:

Vero Beach Municipal Marina D. "Marine Stadium Anchorage Review - Captains Mark and Diana Report (Statute Mile 1091.5)" 
The so-called Marina Stadium Anchorage is actually a large cove indenting the northwestern banks of Virgina Key, lying opposite the city of Miami on the eastern flank of Biscayne Bay. For any number of years, we did not recommend anchoring here, as the city of Miami was ticketing vessels who dropped the hook on these waters. Well, those times seem to be past, and this anchor down spot can once again be labeled as a good place to spend the night, within sight of downtown Miami. Captains Mark and Diana give you the full skinny at:

New Smyrna Beach Marina E. "Sign of the Times: The Sunset Beach Pontoon Bridge Becomes a Boat Ramp (Statute Mile 338)" 
Many of us were glad to see the old Sunset Beach Pontoon Bridge replaced by a modern high-rise last year. Between the mechanical problems and shoaling, many cruisers most certainly did NOT have a soft place in their hearts for the old, floating span.

Now that it's gone, though, I cannot help but be a little saddened at this piece of the past that is now long gone forever.

Westland Marina We are pleased to present another superb report from our strategic partners, Captains Diana and Mark Doyle about what's taking place here along the extreme southern section of the North Carolina AICW since the pontoon span's removal. Please check out: 
Harbortown Marina - Merrit Island, FL Western Florida

IX. Venice Water Cop Issues His Last Ticket

Retired FWC "Water Cop," Tim Erickson, passed away recently, and I'm sure he will be missed by family and friends. Many cruisers had another name for this "Venice Water Cop," but with his passing, perhaps we will not recall that moniker now.

Coconut Club Yacht Club For many years Officer Erickson was known for his tenacious, "letter of the law" enforcement of Florida statutes which require state registration of vessels, even though they may be Federally documented.

Several years ago, the SSECN was involved in an e-mail writing campaign to the Venice City Council, protesting Officer Erickson's treatment of visiting cruisers. Turns out he was a state employee, and this protest went for naught.

Adventure Yacht Harbor Erickson retired several years ago, and Venice waters have been free of his presence for some time now. And so, with Office Erickson's passing, it is a sad end to an entirely sad affair.

During this past week, Officer Erickson's death has engendered a LIVELY discussion on the AGLCA (American Great Loop Cruisers' Association) forum. We have combined most of these messages into a single SSECN posting at:

Staniel Cay Club Western Florida

X. Two Western Florida Navigational Concerns

The most recent Local Notice to Mariners has brought to light two navigational concerns for Western Florida mariners. Neither directly impacts well traveled passages, but both need to be taken into account.

A. First up, we have a report of a semi-sunken vessel north of the official Western Florida ICW route through lower Tampa Bay, near Point Pinellas. Actually, most cruisers do not even realize that this marked channel is part of the WF ICW, as the majority of captains run the "Sunshine Skyway" channel, west of the huge bridge(s) and causeway of the same name, undoubtedly thinking this route is the ICW.

Not so! The official track of the Western Florida ICW cuts east under the central section of the Sunshine Skyway, then eventually loops back north and east, before passing under the northernmost Skyway span, known as the Misner Bridge.

LukFuel I don't know of anyone who actually takes this route, unless they pilot very deep draft vessels. In this instance, the 5-foot MLW depths on the southernmost section of the Sunshine Skyway channel might be a problem.

But, I digress as usual. The sunken boat lies north of the ICW channel, east of the Misner Bridge. Full details at:

Fort Myers Municipal Marina B. Marker Broken Off in Sea Pines Channel, Western Florida Big Bend Region, North of New Port Richey

North of Anclote Key, the Western Florida ICW comes to a screeching, spark throwing halt. Northbound cruisers must take to the waters of the open Gulf of Mexico to cruise past Western Florida's so-called, "Big Bend" region. There is a choice of cutting the corner and heading straight for Carrabelle, Apalachicola or Panama City, or following the Big Bend coastline, keeping well offshore. But, that is another discussion for another day.

St. Petersburg Municipal Marina Our focus now is on the so-called Sea Pines Channel, one of the marked routes serving the community of Hudson, Florida, just a few miles north of Anclote Key. Seems some vessel has cut down one of the channel markers, but there's still enough of the piling left to be a hazard. Check out:

Gulf Harbour Marina Florida Keys

XI. Report from Sunset Cove Anchorage, Fl. Keys Inside Route, Buttonwood Sound - Key Largo, FL

Sunset Cove Anchorage is located on the waters of southeastern Buttonwood Sound, near statute Mile 1143, off the Florida Keys Inside Route. This is one of the most popular anchorages in the northern Florida Keys.

Legacy Harbour Marina A few days ago, we were happy to receive and publish an article authored by a long time anchoring resident of Sunset Cove. This anonymous captain gives all of us some very good advice about dropping the hook here.

Please visit:

Southwest Florida Yachts North Carolina

XII. Proposed Change of Carolina Coastal RR Bridge Opening Schedule Would Close AICW During Nighttime Hours For 12 Months, (Statute Mile 203.8, Near Morehead City, NC)

Twin Dolphin Marina The proposed nighttime closure of this RR bridge would not affect most (sensible!) cruisers, but would have to be kept in mind if you were running behind schedule or planned to get a before-day start.

This span has a closed vertical clearance of only 4ft and crosses the path of the AICW immediately north of the Morehead City Turning Basin/Commercial Port.

Follow the link below for full details AND information on how you can comment on this proposed change, and hopefully inform the North Carolina DOT, it's a BAD idea.

Fort Myers Beach Anchorage Check out:


Rivera Dunes Marina South Carolina

XIII. Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net Presents a New McClellanville, South Carolina Photo Gallery

The SSECN is proud to present our latest photo gallery, this one centered on the charming coastal village of McClellanville, South Carolina. For those of you not familiar with northeastern SC waters, McClellanville lies just off the track of the AICW, about half-way between Winyah Bay and Charleston Harbor.

Port St. Joe Marina This is an idyllic community with many sandy lanes shrouded with great, moss hung trees. Nothing moves very fast here. McClellanville is truly a place that time has forgotten.

The one local marina, Leland Oil Company, has recently installed new floating piers, and there is a single, but excellent dining attraction nearby.

Marina at Factory Bay See for yourself why all of us here at the SSECN have fond memories of McClellanville. Check out:
Marineland Marina North Carolina

XIV. Great Ocrocoake, NC Dining Recommendations And Other News

Historic Ocracoke, NC lies well off the AICW, on the eastern shores of North Carolina's VAST and shoal prone, Pamlico Sound. Ocracoke Island can only be reached by water, though the state operates regular car ferries from Hatteras Village, Cedar Island and Swan Quarter, to facilitate landlubber visits.

Mile Marker 0 Marine Supplies Cruisers will discover well sheltered Silver Lake harbor where you can anchor or take advantage of two dockage facilities. There are some shoaling problems on the channels leading from Pamlico Sound to Silver Lake harbor, which have been reported earlier on the Cruisers' Net.

However you get there, Ocracoke is perhaps the most popular off the AICW summer cruising destination on the North Carolina coastline. And, part of the reason for that popularity is the excellent dining available here. 

Bennett Brothers We have just posted an informative overview of Ocracoke's dining attracting, authored by "Capt Ben and his Motley Crew." So, if your bow is headed towards this charming port of call anytime soon, spare no effort to read:

Dismal Swamp Canal Welcome Center Still up for more, late breaking information concerning Ocracoke, Well then, check out a detailed report of the island and its waters, published just yesterday, from Captains Ann and George, at:

That's all for now, Good luck and good cruising to all!  


Claiborne S. Young   

Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net 

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