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Old 02-16-2019, 06:58 AM   #1
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Black Creek off St Johns South of Jacksonville FL

Looking for local knowledge on Black Creek off the St Johns river south of Jacksonville FL. Considering property purchase and would like to learn more about the creek and area boating environment. Is the creek a busy high wake environment, is annual flooding a concern, really looking to get a boaters perspective of all season boating / dockage in the area.

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Tim
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Old 02-16-2019, 09:59 AM   #2
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You are talking about the creek that flows from Asbury Lake into the St Johns, right?


I believe that the lower part of that creek is tidal and is more influenced by hurricane flooding than rain runoff. Although as we saw from Florence the combination of rain floodwaters and high hurricane surge is a bad combination.


Here is an excerpt from Active Captain discussing an anchorage near the St Johns. Further upstream may not be so bad.


"We anchored here in 2012 and loved it. We anchored here again in June 2015 on a Sunday and it was a zoo of wakeboarders and jet skis. We went up to the first creek where we went in 2012 but the traffic was soo bad that we retreated to a wide spot a short distance upstream from the entrance. It seemed some folks intentionally came close just to throw a wake. Once it got dark it was fine."


David



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Old 02-16-2019, 11:35 AM   #3
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We had a home on the St Johns river in Tocoi area south of Black Creek for years. It seemed like Black Creek flooded on regular occasions like heavy rains and of course hurricanes or tropical depressions. The ability of the creek to flow into the river is some times hampered by winds that back up the rivers flow to the ocean.
The St Johns river however is great boating all the way south to Lake Sanford. The river narrows south of Palatka with great places to anchor and easy access restaurants.
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Old 02-16-2019, 04:42 PM   #4
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HidHo,
Did you mean Lake Monroe. Lake Sanford shows up on Google Maps as a landlocked pond next to the interstate in Sanford, FL. Have always been interested in going up the St. Johns to the uppermost navigable point. Is Lake Monroe that point?
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Old 02-16-2019, 05:26 PM   #5
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Black creek flooded terribly during last 2 hurricanes. Some homes that had never flooded previously, got hid hard. Be careful
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Old 02-16-2019, 06:21 PM   #6
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Just left there this morning. Took a short side trip on our way up the St Johns to see family. In the short run we took up the creek, we were passed by 6 boats going flat out. Creek is pretty, but did not feel it was particularly special. Saw one house for sale, but haven't looed it up yet. Had an American Tug sitting next to it in a cut out of some sort. Some shallow water getting into the creek; deep most of the way up to RR bridge. 30' vertical clearance at hwy 17 bridge; 20' at RR bridge.
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Old 02-16-2019, 09:43 PM   #7
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Yes I meant Lake Monroe in Sanford. Years ago we alway stopped at High Banks Marina for fuel, and headed back north instead of continuing to the lake. Lake Monroe is the end of navigational water, I think the lake channel is 7’ to the marina on the lake.
I’ve also read reports that diesel fuel is difficult to find on the lower St Johns river now due to the hurricanes and or few diesel boats in that area.
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Old 02-17-2019, 08:35 AM   #8
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Are you talking about the lower St John’s or the southern St John’s? Given that it’s one of the few rivers that flows from south to north, the upper river is south of JAX......
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Old 02-17-2019, 10:12 AM   #9
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I have a family member who has lived on Black Creek near Middleburg for decades. The house is built on poles and is a couple stories above ground. He has been flooded out a couple of times. Hurricane Irma really flooded him out as well as his neighborhood.

Later,
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Old 02-17-2019, 05:53 PM   #10
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Thanks for the feedback everyone. We're looking at a home on the lower part of Black Creek. Home has never flooded but water did come over property during Irma but no damage and 1st time in 20+ years creek breached bulkhead.

Although flooding only occurred once it is concerning.
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Old 02-18-2019, 12:22 PM   #11
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Well the first post was about annual flooding, but now we are talking about flooding from hurricanes.

Check with FEMA to see the latest Flood Insurance Rate Maps. You can google "make a FIRMette"

The maps are from 2014 which means the local code office may have some flood info updates. Actually I wouldn't worry too much if you are close to the St. John's, but I would call the local building code jurisdiction as they would have a revised or provisional base flood elevation. (upstream on Black Creek is another matter.)

Black Creek has decent water quality. Itís a nice spot, which means traffic.

There is a local shrimp season on the river.

It's different than the coast.
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Old 02-18-2019, 06:57 PM   #12
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Thanks PMF1984
Checking with FEMA tomorrow on elevation details.
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Old 02-19-2019, 08:25 AM   #13
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Check out this website, http://noaa.maps.arcgis.com/apps/Map...935fad&entry=1 from NOAA regarding storm surge.



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Old 02-19-2019, 10:08 AM   #14
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Thanks Dan - very helpful link

Looks like many many areas would be significantly impacted by Cat3+ storms. Even CAT 1 and 2 seem to present significant risks for many areas.

Is that the threat most folks live under with properties / slips that are near the coast line? It looks like unless you are significantly inland or have a property that's significantly above sea level you live with the threat of significant storm damage or total loss.

Do folks just become accustom to living under such a threat?
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Old 02-19-2019, 10:23 AM   #15
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Thanks Dan - very helpful link
...
Welcome.

I had the link up in a tab for months. I hesitated when I closed the tab because I figured as soon as I closed the tab, I would need the website.

Twas easy to refind though.

We were looking at water front property in eastern NC so I was checking flooding issues. I think you have to live with the flood AND wind risk, carry insurance, or live where it does not flood. There are such places but I think they are out of our price range and water access would also be an issue.

We are well inland but we have seen quite a bit of wind and flooding damage from hurricanes over the years. Thankfully, no damage at our place. Knock on wood. But we do not have to worry about evacuating like down east.

One lot we looked at would flood but I figured we could build a house well above flood levels. But during a flood event we would have to leave or risk vehicles being a total loss. The family member living on Black Creek lost his cars to flooding in Irma and he did not evacuate. Dockage I suppose could be built to have a chance to withstand some flood events. What we never found out was the cost of building floating docks, as well as if permits were required and what that would cost/entail.

We saw a really nice condo along the Cape Fear in Wilmington. It might have had boat access but the website did not really say. The HOA fees, which I assume included flood insurance, was 14,000 a year.
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Old 02-22-2019, 01:53 PM   #16
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Thanks Dan - very helpful link

Looks like many many areas would be significantly impacted by Cat3+ storms. Even CAT 1 and 2 seem to present significant risks for many areas.

Is that the threat most folks live under with properties / slips that are near the coast line? It looks like unless you are significantly inland or have a property that's significantly above sea level you live with the threat of significant storm damage or total loss.

Do folks just become accustom to living under such a threat?

Here in Palatka, most of them do, and while some keep a generator and few bottles of water handy, most take it in stride. Granted, we're almost 30' above sea level, and far enough up the Saint Johns River to expect minimal costal storm surges, and while we do sometimes get quite a bit of water from upstream storms, most of the older riverfront houses such as mine were built well above the high water mark.

All in all, I think you'll be hard-pressed to find a place anywhere (much less near the water) that doesn't have it's potential pitfalls, and all in all, I prefer having to deal with a predictable hurricane here and there, as oppose to the tornados, droughts, land slides, blizzards, fires and earthquakes that seem to plaque other parts of the country.
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Old 02-22-2019, 03:36 PM   #17
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We took the storms in stride for the 14 years we lived at our waterfront home in Tocoi. The only damage was to our bulkhead from other docks that broke lost during one hurricane and acted like a battering ram. Also storm wear and tear to our dock and a large tree hit by lightning had to be taken down. So you enjoy the good with the bad.
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Old 02-22-2019, 04:40 PM   #18
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It looks like unless you are significantly inland or have a property that's significantly above sea level you live with the threat of significant storm damage or total loss.

Do folks just become accustom to living under such a threat?
No and yes. The federal Flood Insurance Rate Maps (FIRMs) will give a base flood elevation for an area. The base flood elevation is given in North American Vertical Datum (NAVD88) which is close enough to mean sea level for looking at property. On Pablo Creek, highest tides are about 4' and the base flood elevation is 5'

Base Flood elevation is the storm surge height that has a 1% chance of occurrence each year. So if you need to elevate on Pablo Creek, it's not such a big deal.

Inland? try looking way up Black Creek. Or read the blogs about flooding in Osprey Marina, or at the Socastee Bridge. That's not s storm surge, that's rain in those spots, takes days to drain.

And yes folks just seem to live with it. Drive down A1A and take a look at the development on the ocean side of the road.
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