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Old 07-17-2015, 01:52 PM   #1
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Entering Carabelle inlet in the dark?

Is this a really bad idea?

Reason I ask is due to some weather suggestions I just received from Chris Parker. He recommends leaving Clearwater at 8am for the best ride and to miss some thunderstorms possibly, but that puts me at the inlet at around 5am.

Here is his recommendation:

Let's say you depart Clearwater at 8am. You would steam WNW, toward 28-30N/84W for about 7 hours...then, about 2pm, turn NNW for Carabelle. In this 6 hours you could get 40mi from the Coast, and at that distance from the Coast the seabreeze will have less effect.
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:05 PM   #2
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You could slow down a bit and arrive at 6:30am when it's getting light. Entering inlets in the dark unless you've know the inlet isn't the best idea especially after being under way for 20 plus hours.
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:15 PM   #3
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Is this a really bad idea?

Reason I ask is due to some weather suggestions I just received from Chris Parker. He recommends leaving Clearwater at 8am for the best ride, but that puts me at the inlet at around 5am.

Here is his recommendation:

Let's say you depart Clearwater at 8am. You would steam WNW, toward 28-30N/84W for about 7 hours...then, about 2pm, turn NNW for Carabelle. In this 6 hours you could get 40mi from the Coast, and at that distance from the Coast the seabreeze will have less effect.
If you are referring to the pass at the west end of Dog Island, it is pretty straight forward. Get to the sea buoy well offshore. Don't cut corners. Conditions in the pass will depend on tide and how much southerly wind. I would recommend anchoring behind Dog Island as the channels inside are not as straight forward.
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:20 PM   #4
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Entering Carabelle inlet in the dark?

Yes. West of Dog Island. That's the pass.

Wasn't planning on anchoring. Was planning on continuing on to Apalachacola after crossing. Might get a slip. Eat oysters and drink beer.
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:21 PM   #5
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You could slow down a bit and arrive at 6:30am when it's getting light. Entering inlets in the dark unless you've know the inlet isn't the best idea especially after being under way for 20 plus hours.

Well duh. Why didn't I think of that?

Thanks.
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Old 07-17-2015, 02:57 PM   #6
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In December 2006 I left Tarpon Springs at 2 PM and arrived off Carabelle at 4 AM after a very rough crossing into a cold front. Sunrise was not until 7 AM. I had gotten antsy and left too early.

One of the dumbest things I have ever done. None of the spotlights, hand held or fixed, worked. My buddy who rode across with me was too sick to get out of bed to help so I had to go in on radar and chart plotter because there were no lit markers. We made it but it was scarey. It was a moonless night so I dropped the anchor once inside and it grabbed but it was too rough to stay there. I pulled the anchor and idled down the channel to Government Cut then up to Apalachicola.

If I had not been tied down in the pilothouse of a 42' Nordic Tug it could have been a truly ugly deal.
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Old 07-17-2015, 03:27 PM   #7
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Is this a really bad idea?

.
Um, yeah, if you are not familiar with it. Some shoals to watch out for there. A piece of cake in daylight, but a little tricky at night if it is your first time.
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Old 07-17-2015, 04:21 PM   #8
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carabelle

Be sure to check on Janice on Seaweed.Larry
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Old 07-17-2015, 05:10 PM   #9
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Janice has been transplanted to St. Pete...
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Old 07-17-2015, 05:12 PM   #10
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in december 2006 i left tarpon springs at 2 pm and arrived off carabelle at 4 am after a very rough crossing into a cold front. Sunrise was not until 7 am. I had gotten antsy and left too early.

One of the dumbest things i have ever done. None of the spotlights, hand held or fixed, worked. My buddy who rode across with me was too sick to get out of bed to help so i had to go in on radar and chart plotter because there were no lit markers. We made it but it was scarey. It was a moonless night so i dropped the anchor once inside and it grabbed but it was too rough to stay there. I pulled the anchor and idled down the channel to government cut then up to apalachicola.

If i had not been tied down in the pilothouse of a 42' nordic tug it could have been a truly ugly deal.

😳.
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Old 07-17-2015, 05:53 PM   #11
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😳.
I forgot. It was a Bruce anchor.
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Old 07-17-2015, 06:08 PM   #12
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Or stop in Steinhatchee day one and Apalachacola day two. Should be daylight running only. Lots of crab traps around Dog Island when we went through. Maybe it's seasonal?
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Old 07-17-2015, 06:17 PM   #13
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Sounds good to me. I would slow down when you get 20 - 30 miles out so you arrive at daylight. Do you have crew for this leg? How much do you draw?
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Old 07-17-2015, 07:26 PM   #14
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Or stop in Steinhatchee day one and Apalachacola day two. Should be daylight running only. Lots of crab traps around Dog Island when we went through. Maybe it's seasonal?

We don't have that much time. I'm on a schedule dammit!

😁
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Old 07-17-2015, 08:10 PM   #15
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Then strap a few 55 gallon drums of diesel on the back and head for Houston. 4 days, no locks or bridges and a tale we will all want to hear over a beer when you arrive
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Old 07-17-2015, 08:11 PM   #16
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Schedules always bit you on the butt.
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Old 07-17-2015, 08:21 PM   #17
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We always arrange to enter unfamiliar inlets during daylight. It's easy enough to change start time for the trip or to delay entry. We'll just cruise slowly outside going nowhere if necessary. Often it would be easy, but there's just that off chance it wouldn't be.
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Old 07-17-2015, 08:46 PM   #18
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I think that you are missing something. What speed are you planning on running? You will be running against a very slight current this time of year of about .5 knots. That alone if you had not already figured it in should increase your travel time by about one hour and thirty minutes. Which would be perfect timing for the sweet spot of the day breaking and wind dropping down. My weather wave predictions are from late tonight til early Tuesday seas at less than 2 feet. You should have no problems.
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Old 07-17-2015, 09:43 PM   #19
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I did not figure the current. Thanks.
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Old 07-17-2015, 09:49 PM   #20
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This time of year there is about a 1/2 knot current it runs clockwise in the upper Gulf. I Usually just run a straight line from say Tampa to Carabelle 185 miles or so. Weather window looks very good for you. Enjoy.
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