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Old 10-07-2015, 05:02 PM   #1
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Clear Lake to Aransas Pass advice-suggestions-etc

I am planning my first trip down the GCICW to Aransas Pass - Conn Brown Harbor from Clear Lake in a few weeks and am looking for advice or guidance from those who have made the trip recently. I hope to make the trip in 3 days, day one CL to Freeport, day two Freeport to Port O' Connor, day three Port O' Connor to Aransas Pass. I am in a 43 Hatteras and generally cruise at 7.5 - 8.0 knots. "IF" weather is cooperative is this plan doable or should I count on an additional day with shorter hops. I do have an extra day available if necessary.

Also, are there any areas in the GCICW that require extra caution at this time?

Thanks in advance - Dave
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Old 10-07-2015, 05:05 PM   #2
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Greetings,
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Old 10-07-2015, 05:27 PM   #3
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http://www.navcen.uscg.gov/pdf/lnms/lnm0840g2015.pdf

Looks like a few things worth noting. Never hurts to call the USCG and one of the tow companies to get local knowledge. I've done that trip in pieces over the years, mostly small boat fishing related. Stay in the channel and look for the yellow squares and triangles on the markers, there are some confusing spots where it branches off and inlets come in.

Not the most scenic trip, IMO. Weather permitting, I'd go outside and do some trolling. But the whole Rockport, Corpus and Port A area is a lot of fun, also IMO. Went down there when we lived in landlocked Dallas.
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Old 10-07-2015, 07:17 PM   #4
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Welcome Aboard!

We made the round trip from Rockport to Galveston this summer and I did the same run from Clear Lake last year as well. Pretty easy trip on the ICW, but not many options for marinas.

We did CL to Matagorda and It's a long day at 8 knots, so I think your idea of getting to Freeport on day 1 is a better idea. We have not stayed in Freeport but got there are several recommendations on this site. I posted a similar question on the forum under the gulf coast section and got several responses. (I don't know how to link to the post otherwise i would include...)

Check in with the lock masters at the Brazos and Colorado ahead of time for delays and closings - they have been very helpful in the past on getting us through in between tows. With little rain the past several months I'm guessing the rivers are down and should not be much of an issue.

Freeport to Port O'Connor is another fairly easy run, recommend Sanctuary Marina it is very quiet, clean and easy in and out. Honor system for payment, nice showers and ice machine. We are probably headed there back for a couple days for Thanksgiving break.

PO to Aransas Pass will take less than 1/2 day, so your 3 days should be fine. Have a great time!
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Old 10-07-2015, 07:20 PM   #5
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PM John Baker, he will be back in South Shore tonight after a round trip to Port A. You don't get more u to date than that
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Old 10-09-2015, 07:34 AM   #6
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Clear Lake to Aransas Pass advice-suggestions-etc

I'm down here in Rockport and we make the run to Port Aransas pretty often. It's all pretty straightforward-- ICW is well marked. I assume you are going to Port Aransas not Aransas Pass. Port A is the barrier island party town where the fun is.

I did the trip from Galveston to Rockport this summer down the ICW. Don't remember anything tricky at all during that trip. We had no problems with the river lock.

We stayed the night at the marina in Matagorda, which was nothing fancy but fine for one night. I've been to the Sanctuary marina/housing development in my fishing boat but not the big boat. It gets a little shallow in there but maybe they have dredged since I've been.
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Old 10-09-2015, 08:09 AM   #7
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Old 10-09-2015, 09:11 AM   #8
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In Freeport, I suggest the Freeport Municipal Marina. Easy walk to decent restaurants. People are very friendly and helpful. Every time we've been there we found ouselves in the middle of a friendly dock party. Hunt up Crazy Jack.

If you have time, take a side trip up the San Bernard River. We haven't been there in several years, but it's beautiful (by Texas Gulf Coast standards). I have some recent local details from a captain who lives on the river. PM me you're interested.

Call ahead to the Brazos and Colorado locks to be sure there are no delays.

It's worth going a little further and spending some time at Corpus Christi. The marina is in the middle of town, with lots to see and do.

Let us know how it goes. We're planning to make the same trip in December.
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Old 10-09-2015, 11:25 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by cardude01 View Post
I'm down here in Rockport and we make the run to Port Aransas pretty often. It's all pretty straightforward-- ICW is well marked. I assume you are going to Port Aransas not Aransas Pass. Port A is the barrier island party town where the fun is.

I did the trip from Galveston to Rockport this summer down the ICW. Don't remember anything tricky at all during that trip. We had no problems with the river lock.

We stayed the night at the marina in Matagorda, which was nothing fancy but fine for one night. I've been to the Sanctuary marina/housing development in my fishing boat but not the big boat. It gets a little shallow in there but maybe they have dredged since I've been.
Aransas Pass is where we are going, we have family and friends in Bay Harbor so we will stay in Conn Brown at Redfish Bay Marina. Thanks for the information, I'll report back what the depth in Sanctuary Marina is like, that's the stop for day two.
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Old 10-09-2015, 03:20 PM   #10
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Originally Posted by dkasprzak View Post
Aransas Pass is where we are going, we have family and friends in Bay Harbor so we will stay in Conn Brown at Redfish Bay Marina. Thanks for the information, I'll report back what the depth in Sanctuary Marina is like, that's the stop for day two.

Gotcha. Sounds like a fun trip!
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