In This Issue
I. Nervously Awaiting Hurricane Sandy
II. Boat/US Releases Updated "2013 Florida Anchoring Information Sheet"
III. Good News and New Ownership at Fort McAllister Marina (on the Ogeechee River, off the AICW at St. M. 603.5)
IV. Marker #24 Destroyed On Indian Key to Everglades City/Barron River Channel, Southwestern Florida
V. Missing Marker at Northern Fields Cut AICW Problem Stretch, Statute Mile 573.
VI. Lots and Lots of Superb Information About St. Augustine Inlet and the City of St. Augustine
VII. Renewed Shoaling Reported at AICW/ Shallotte Inlet Intersection Problem Stretch, Statute Mile 330
VIII. Information on Naples Bay and Gordon Pass, Southwestern Florida Coastline
IX. Photo Shows Exactly What Cruisers Will Encounter at the Partial Okeechobee Waterway Obstruction Between Clewiston and Moore Haven, Statute Mile 75
X. Unhappy Report from Sunset Cove Anchorage, Buttonwood Sound - Florida Keys Inside Route
XI. A Good Visit to Darien, GA via the Darien River, departing the AICW at Statute Mile 653
XII. Lock Opening Times Verified, Dismal Swamp Canal, AICW Alternate Route
XIII. VERY Interesting Newspaper Story about Depths on AICW/Jekyll Creek Problem Stretch and Jekyll Harbor Marina
XIV. Dade County Nautical Flea Market and Boat Sale, December 1-2
XV. Change of RR Bridge Opening Schedule, AICW Statute 203.8, Morehead City, NC
XVI. Anchoring Rights Trouble Brewing in Stuart, Florida (Statute Mile 988)
Regatta Pointe Marina I. Nervously Awaiting Hurricane Sandy

I have long-ago lost count of the times yours truly has sat aboard over the last 35 years, nervously awaiting the latest news on one of those tropical giants we call hurricanes. As this "Alert" is being tapped out on the keyboard, the entire cruising community is playing that game with Hurricane Sandy, currently roaring north from the tropics.

McCotters Marina As of this hour, it seems likely (though, NO promises), that this storm will miss the SSECN's geographic focus waters here in the Southeastern USA. That does not mean, however, that we are not thinking of all boat owners and cruisers still in Northeastern USA waters. Please know that the thoughts and prayers of the entire cruising community are with you.

Should things change, we will be back in touch with all of you immediately. For now, though, it's a nervous wait for one and all who take to the water!
Shores at Spooners Creek Eastern Florida, Florida Keys, Western Florida

II. Boat/US Releases Updated "2013 Florida Anchoring Information Sheet"

Let me be very, very clear about this. The wonderful folks at Boat/US are working just as hard as we are here at the Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net to guard the rights and interests of the cruising community. If you are not a member of Boat Owners Association of the United States (Boat/US), may we strongly suggest you correct that oversight right now by going to:
R. E. Mayo Seafood Docks
https://www.boatus.com/MembershipWeb_Main/Membership/personal.aspx

A few years ago, the political arm of Boat/US released a simply wonderful broadsheet which stated, in understandable English, what rights cruisers enjoyed in Floridian waters when it came time to drop the hook. Now, we are PLEASED to report that Boat/US has updated this document, and made it available to the cruising community without charge!!!

Anchorage Marina We cannot urge strongly enough that ALL who plan on cruising the waters of the Sunshine State print-out the below linked document, and keep it aboard at all times! If you are requested not to anchor, or move on from an anchorage, just haul out this baby. It may make the difference!

Of course, as you will see when reading the text, there are now exceptions, so check the language carefully, AND BECOME AN INFORMED CRUISER!!!
Deep Point Marina
Please visit:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99828
Fort McAllister Marina Georgia

 

III. Good News and New Ownership at Fort McAllister Marina (on the Ogeechee River, off the AICW at St. M. 603.5)

 

We are very pleased to report that we have just heard from Captain Butch Broome, new owner at Georgia's Fort McAllister Marina. Captain Broome has taken over what has already been lauded here on the Cruisers' Net by our fellow mariners as a very good marina, and he is quickly making it even better.

Fort McAllister Marina has always offered very sheltered dockage, and a few years ago the docks were completely rebuilt and brought up to modern standards. There is also a good restaurant on-site.

Before now, the "rub" was getting up the Ogeechee River safely from the AICW. Some FORMER owners were not overly careful to keep the river channel well marked. THAT HAS ALL CHANGED NOW!

River Dunes Marina In the article linked below, Captain Broom has supplied a detailed Google Map/Satellite Photo that accurately depicts the Ogeechee River channel and the various aids to navigation along the way, from the AICW to Fort McAllister Marina. As you will see, the Ogeechee River now sports a very adequate series of aids to navigation.

And, if that does not quite put you at navigational ease, the marina will gladly dispatch a guide boat that you can follow from the channel to the marina docks. Just give the dockmasters an advance call at (912) 727-2632.

Belhaven Waterway Marina Oh yes, and I should also add that Fort McAllister Marina is one of our newest SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS' NET SPONSORS! Welcome aboard!

So, all cruisers bound south (or north) on the Georgia AICW, please check out:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99407
Dowry Creek Marina Western Florida   

IV. Marker #24 Destroyed On Indian Key to Everglades City/Barron River Channel, Southwestern Florida

Indian Key Channel provides access from the popular anchorage hard by Indian Key, to rustic and charming Everglades City, the only real port of call in the entire Ten Thousand Islands region of southwestern Florida, south of Marco Island.

Toucan Grill The missing marker described in the article linked below, cherry picked from the latest Local Notice to Mariners, denotes the southeastern flank of the Indian Key channel as it crosses ultra shallow Chokoloskee Bay, on its way to the mouth of Barron River and Everglades City. The channel is narrow along this stretch, and depths outside of the cut in Chokoloskee Bay can be measured in inches. A missing marker here can spell trouble for ALL vessels bound for Everglades City, or the other way around.

Manteo Waterfront Marina May we be so bold as to strongly suggest that ALL southwestern Florida mariners follow this link, and learn the full story:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99699
Morehead City Yacht Basin South Carolina

V. Missing Marker at Northern Fields Cut AICW Problem Stretch, Statute Mile 573

Man-made Fields Cut bridges the AICW between the Wright and Savannah Rivers in extreme southern South Carolina. This little canal hosts, not one, but two SSECN AICW Problem Stretches.

Southport Marina The northernmost lies at the intersection of the AICW, northern Fields Cut and Wright River. This section was dredged in 2010, and depths have been better since, BUT this is the site of a missing marker reported in a just published article by Captain Cordello, linked below.

The missing aid to navigation in question sits hard by a strategic turn in the AICW, and this ATON will be sorely missed until its replacement. We are establishing an SSECN Navigation Alert for these waters.

Coinjock Marina Before leaving this subject, let me just mention that the more southerly "AICW Problem Stretch" associated with Fields Cut is found on the cut's last southward turn, just before meeting up with Savannah River. Cruisers MUST favor the northwestern and western shores as they pass through this turn, or risk finding themselves in 4-foot waters!

However, back to the missing marker at the northern entrance to Fields Cut, ALL AICW CRUISERS ARE URGED TO VISIT:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99316
Albemarle Plantation Marina Eastern Florida

VI. Lots and Lots of Superb Information About St. Augustine Inlet and the City of the Same Name, Statute Mile 778

During 2011, depths in St. Augustine Inlet (or lack thereof) were a hot topic here on the SSECN. Then, during the early months of 2012, we were happy to report that a significant dredging project had eased, at least for the time being, the earlier reported upon shallow water problems in this seaward cut.

Harborwalk Marina During this past week, we published, not one, not two but three articles about St. Augustine Inlet, all of which impart valuable information for any cruiser planning on making use of this popular seaward cut. Perhaps the most useful is a Satellite Photo sent to the SSECN by our good friend, St. Augustine Port Commissioner, Captain Jay Bliss, showing the current configuration of aids to navigation on the inlet channel, plus Lat/Lon positions for these markers. This is truly welcome data. Check it out at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99939

Port Royal Landing Marina Our second posting goes beyond conditions on the inlet to encompass a vast array of data for anyone visiting the historic community of St. Augustine. Captain Sandy Flowers has put together an entire web site whose sole purpose is to provide ALL the information cruisers will find necessary to fully enjoy a visit to these waters. We can't be complimentary enough of her efforts. Captain Sandy has done the cruising community a HUGE favor. See for yourself at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99782
Harbourgate Marina
And finally, don't miss several on-the-spot reports from fellow cruisers about St. Augustine Inlet, plus some valuable navigational advice, at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=97761
Dolphin Cove Marina North Carolina

VII.  Renewed Shoaling Reported at AICW/ Shallotte Inlet Intersection Problem Stretch, Statute Mile 330

The typically troublesome intersection of the AICW and Shallotte Inlet, in extreme southern North Carolina, required dredging twice in 2011 and, despite the success of those projects, we have just published a report that suggests shoaling may be once again rearing its ugly head here.
Downtown Beaufort Marina
Reading between the tea leaves, it appears as if the AICW channel, as it passes behind Shallotte Inlet, is beginning to shoal on the ocean (southeastern) side. That is usually where shallowing begins at this intersection!

PLEASE READ THE ARTICLE LINKED BELOW, AND THEN LET US KNOW ABOUT YOUR EXPERIENCES IF YOU HAVE RECENTLY TRAVERSED THESE TROUBLESOME WATERS! Send data directly to CruisersNet@triad.twcbc.com, or click the "Click Here to Submit Cruising News" button/link, found on the top right of all (except Chart View) Cruisers' Net pages.
Dataw Island Marina
Full details at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99913
Charleston City Marina Western Florida     

VIII. Information on Naples Bay and Gordon Pass, Southwestern Florida Coastline

The Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net has just been privileged to publish an excellent summary of navigational and cruising conditions on the waters surrounding the city of Naples, southwestern Florida's most popular port of call. In particular, follow the link below to learn the latest on Gordon Pass inlet. This seaward cut is the primary inlet serving the Naples region, and it has to be dredged every so often.
Isle of Palms Marina
Learn all at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99304 
Osprey Marina Okeechobee Waterway

IX. Photo Shows Exactly What Cruisers Will Encounter at the Partial Okeechobee Waterway Obstruction Between Clewiston and Moore Haven, Statute Mile 75

Bucksport Marina We have included links in several past "Alerts" to our ever expanding article about the partial obstruction of the useful Okeechobee Waterway, connecting the two coastlines of the Sunshine State. And, by the way, this construction obstruction (see, I was a poet and you did not know it), will be around until 2015!

Anyway, some 48 hours ago, SSECN Senior Editor, Captain Larry Dorminy, unearthed a photograph which gives more information about what cruisers will face while passing through this troubled St. Johns Yacht Harbor stretch, than all the words ever spoken could impart.

So, if your course is set for the Okeechobee Waterway, run, don't walk to:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=81398
Myrtle Beach Yacht Club Florida Keys

X. Unhappy Report from Sunset Cove Anchorage, Buttonwood Sound - Florida Keys Inside Route, Key Largo

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

Barefoot Marina We consider the report linked below and authored by Captain Bill Nelson, to reflect a very unfortunate situation. It appears as if the local government is doing its best to try and make dinghy access from the Sunset Cove anchorage as difficult as possible. Not exactly a welcoming attitude for the cruising community.

Then, turning the coin to the other side, Captain Bill's remarks about those aboard what I call, "live aboard hulks," points out the very real problem in Florida involving this type of "vessel" and derelicts (abandoned vessels). By the way, please remember, I define "live aboard hulks" as boats that people are living on, that will probably never move again, except possibly downward to the bottom.
Harbour Town Yacht Basin 2012
All Florida Keys cruisers and those bound for these fascinating waters, will want to check out:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99799
Isle of Hope Marina Georgia  

XI. A Good Visit to Darien, GA via the Darien River, departing the AICW at Statute Mile 653


There are several rivers flowing into the AICW, just north of infamous Little Mud River. Darien River departs westward at marker #183, and runs upstream to an interesting city marina/dock at the charming community of Darien, Georgia. Here you will find free 48-hour dockage and a host of interesting restaurants and other businesses.

Check out a really informative account of this side trip at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=100278
Sunbury Crab Company
North Carolina

XII. Lock Opening Times Verified, Dismal Swamp Canal, AICW Alternate Route

We recently received an inquiry from fellow cruiser, "Wener S," as to whether the two locks on the AICW Dismal Swamp Canal alternate route are currently operating on their usual Amelia Island Yacht Basin schedule. We researched the issue, and she short answer is, they are. Check out lock opening times at:

http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99853 
Jekyll Harbor Marina Georgia

XIII. VERY Interesting Newspaper Story about Depths on AICW/Jekyll Creek Problem Stretch and Jekyll Harbor Marina

We have just been sent a very interesting article from the "Brunswick News" (http://www.thebrunswicknews.com/) about depths both on the AICW passage through Jekyll Creek, a perennial AICW Problem Stretch, and dockside soundings at SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS' NET SPONSOR Jekyll Harbor Marina.
New Smyrna Beach Marina
First, we are pleased to report that Jekyll Harbor plans to dredge in the near future, and that's always good news.

Surprisingly, the second part of this article, plus research the SSECN staff performed by way of conversations with the marina personnel, paint a surprisingly optimistic picture about the Waterway's passage through Jekyll Creek.

LukFuel Southbound "snowbirds" and year round southern Georgia cruisers should spare no pains to read:

Palm Cove Marina Eastern Florida

XIV. Dade County Nautical Flea Market and Boat Sale, December 1-2, 2012, Miami Expo

Having had the good fortune to attend this event in years past, I can tell you without any fear of inaccuracy, a good time is had by all. If you are going to be cruising in Southeastern Florida the first weekend in December, DON'T MISS THIS NAUTICAL FLEA MARKET!
North Palm Beach Marina
Full details at:

Titusville City Marina North Carolina

XV. Change of RR Bridge Opening Schedule, AICW Statute 203.8, Morehead City, NC

The Morehead City Railroad Bridge crosses the Waterway at Statute Mile 204, immediately south of the Newport River Bridge. As the closure period, described in the article linked below, cherry picked from the latest Local Notice to Mariner's, indicates, most AICW mariners will not be inconvenienced by the new, strictly nighttime closure of this low level span.

Cammachee Cove Marina However, should you planning to navigate the Waterway through the Beaufort - Morehead City area after 8:30 pm and before 5:00 am. then it will be necessary to use the far more complicated Russell Slue to Gallant Channel, to Taylor Creek, to Beaufort Inlet route.

Full details at:

Marineland Marina Eastern Florida - Anchoring Rights

XVI. Anchoring Rights Trouble Brewing in Stuart, Florida (Statute Mile 988)

You may already have seen in other nautical publications that the city of Stuart, Florida, which is one of the sites of the Florida Pilot Mooring Field Program, has proposed what has been described by others (and we heartily agree) as the most "ridiculous" plan of all the communities participating in this program. We had hoped to be able to bring you a full report on this developing, dangerous situation in this Alert.

Vero Beach Municipal Marina Alas, it was not to be, as we are still receiving information from our excellent "on the ground" sources in Stuart. Look for a major article/editorial next week on the SSECN's home page, as well as more in our next "Alert."

In the meantime, just GROWL as you pass Stuart on either the AICW or the Okeechobee Waterway!

That's all for now. Good luck and good cruising to all!
 
Claiborne S. Young
Salty Southeast Cruisers' Net
http://www.CruisersNet.net
CruisersNet@triad.twcbc.com
          
 
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