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Old 07-11-2016, 03:45 PM   #21
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I'm with OC Diver. Spring and fall so you escape the bugs. But certainly you can run a generator and AC all the way down. But you will miss a lot if you have to keep the boat closed up.
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Old 07-11-2016, 03:51 PM   #22
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Having done some of both: inside the ICW and outside in the Atlantic, here are my thoughts on a Portsmouth to Charleston trip:


Don't go outside around Hatteras- It is a long way outside, it is more than a daylight trip and weather outside Hatteras can be unpredictable.


Beaufort to Masonboro Inlet- This is about the only daylight leg that makes sense on your route.


All of the other good inlets require a lot of to-ing and fro-ing to get in and out and just aren't worth it.


If you travel further south there are much more opportunities to get in and out to go outside, but not on the trip you are talking about.


David
I definitely agree with your advice on not going out and around Hatteras. Take the Virginia Cut.

Beaufort to Masonboro, I'd do outside unless there was something in between I was just dying to see. So much then to see once you come in at Masonboro from Wrightsville Beach to Bald Head to Wilmington.

From Southport to Myrtle Beach or Charleston becomes a fairly broad question. Do you want to see Myrtle Beach. If so not much difference in the inside and outside routes from Southport. I would choose outside to Little River Inlet but not a strong preference vs. just staying inside. The problem is that Myrtle Beach is well inside so requires ICW cruising either way.

Georgetown is a common stop whether you go to Myrtle Beach or not. From there I'd recommend outside to Charleston. Others might prefer inside but not a lot to see inside that you won't see on the other legs.
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Old 07-11-2016, 06:10 PM   #23
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So the wife and I are pretty close to pulling the trigger on a trawler and we're looking to travel in it. If I wanted to go from Va to say Charleston or Savanah, would you recommend the ICW or go out and around? I was thinking about going out and around, the ICW seems too cramped and shallow. At night I would dive into the ICW or somewhere protected to drop the hook, but that's about all. But reading other people's blogs and comments, they pretty much only go ICW. What say you?
Everyone should go the inside route at least once or twice, and explore the various off-the-magenta-line side trips and destinations. Then decide for themselves what combination of in/out is funnest for them. Not all that much of the ICW is cramped and narrow.

For instance, we found that North Carolina south of Beaufort Inlet was skippable with the outside being preferred. And we liked, weather permitting, to take Pamlico Sound (still "inside" but not ICW) so we could visit Manteo and environs as well as Ocracoke. We also decided almost all of Florida was definitely "outside" territory, but were glad to at least have done the ICW a few times. We really liked dawdling and gunkholing in South Carolina, especially the Waccamaw River area, and thence south of Charleston on through Georgia, with many pretty anchorages and places to explore in the almost entirely undeveloped area therein, which were for us prime destinations in and of themselves. Even then there were a couple of preferred outside stretches, such as taking Wilmington River/Wassaw Sound in/out from Savannah and then back in/out at St. Catharine's to anchor in pretty Walburg Creek and hang out for a few days. We ended up going in and out of most of the inlets along the way, as there are some nice offshoots on the way to them.
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Old 07-11-2016, 06:19 PM   #24
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I definitely agree with your advice on not going out and around Hatteras. Take the Virginia Cut.

Beaufort to Masonboro, I'd do outside unless there was something in between I was just dying to see. So much then to see once you come in at Masonboro from Wrightsville Beach to Bald Head to Wilmington.

From Southport to Myrtle Beach or Charleston becomes a fairly broad question. Do you want to see Myrtle Beach. If so not much difference in the inside and outside routes from Southport. I would choose outside to Little River Inlet but not a strong preference vs. just staying inside. The problem is that Myrtle Beach is well inside so requires ICW cruising either way.

Georgetown is a common stop whether you go to Myrtle Beach or not. From there I'd recommend outside to Charleston. Others might prefer inside but not a lot to see inside that you won't see on the other legs.
You seem to be entirely focused on visiting towns, which I guess some people are. We went in through Little River and through Myrtle several times, but had no interest in Myrtle itself, our destination was the beautiful Waccamaw and the creeks off of it for anchoring a day or two and exploring with the Whaler. We do like Georgetown, an excellently named burg. But we found the low country to be pretty, and enjoyed visiting McClennanville (mostly to take a nice walk to a great low country meal at TW Graham's, fueling at Leland and then anchoring in the Dewee's Creek area north of Charleston. We stopped in by boat at Charleston itself once. Been there plenty of times and more economically by car.
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Old 07-11-2016, 07:08 PM   #25
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Class A or All weather inlets, I believe are designations for ships. Even class A inlets can be nasty places for boats such as ours with wind against tide.
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Old 07-11-2016, 07:22 PM   #26
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Again, many gross generalizations....to me the one common theme is do inside enough to know whteher you like it or not, skipping it could be a mistake unless you or the boat is incapable of it. So try it or portions at least once.

If totally convinced one way or the other, well that's OK too, but you did ask.
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Old 07-11-2016, 07:26 PM   #27
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Class A or All weather inlets, I believe are designations for ships. Even class A inlets can be nasty places for boats such as ours with wind against tide.
Where do you find a list of these "class A" inlets?
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Old 07-11-2016, 07:38 PM   #28
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You seem to be entirely focused on visiting towns, which I guess some people are. We went in through Little River and through Myrtle several times, but had no interest in Myrtle itself, our destination was the beautiful Waccamaw and the creeks off of it for anchoring a day or two and exploring with the Whaler. We do like Georgetown, an excellently named burg. But we found the low country to be pretty, and enjoyed visiting McClennanville (mostly to take a nice walk to a great low country meal at TW Graham's, fueling at Leland and then anchoring in the Dewee's Creek area north of Charleston. We stopped in by boat at Charleston itself once. Been there plenty of times and more economically by car.
Well, we do visit towns, but also used them as reference points, whether that's where one stops or not. We explore with our RIB. However, we also explore on land. While there's beauty along the water, each town has something special worth seeing too.

We have only been to Charleston by boat, but quite a few times that way. We do differ in that we use marinas.

As to everyone covering the ICW at least once, I agree. Just don't like covering too much of it at one time and some stretches of it don't have us in a hurry to get back to them.
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Old 07-11-2016, 07:59 PM   #29
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Kids on board? I would go inside. Offshore the only things the kids will explore is the inside of their eyelids.
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Old 07-11-2016, 09:07 PM   #30
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Where do you find a list of these "class A" inlets?
They are identified on the charts
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Old 07-11-2016, 09:52 PM   #31
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They are identified on the charts
I saw that in some Canadian pubs...but can't find anything down here for us heathens...
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Old 07-11-2016, 10:19 PM   #32
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I saw that in some Canadian pubs...but can't find anything down here for us heathens...
They are marked on my charts of the US east coast.
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Old 07-11-2016, 10:35 PM   #33
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They are marked on my charts of the US east coast.
OK I will bite...US charts?

If so, can you please show me one?

And this is no pissing contest..I have never seen a classification published for an inlet and I would like to know why I am missing them.
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Old 07-11-2016, 11:04 PM   #34
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OK I will bite...US charts?

If so, can you please show me one?

And this is no pissing contest..I have never seen a classification published for an inlet and I would like to know why I am missing them.
I would be happy to show you but my chart drawer is under one helluva pile of tools at the moment as my entire helm station is torn apart fighting another issue. See my post on another thread about the mess I am dealing with right now
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Old 07-11-2016, 11:08 PM   #35
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Sorry, know the rebuild while living aboard issues...can't find diddly some mornings!

I you ever think of it again.....thank you
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Old 07-11-2016, 11:23 PM   #36
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I would be happy to show you but my chart drawer is under one helluva pile of tools at the moment as my entire helm station is torn apart fighting another issue. See my post on another thread about the mess I am dealing with right now
Is it a regular chart or something like Dodge inlet charts?
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Old 07-11-2016, 11:24 PM   #37
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I'm interested as well. Good to know know these things!
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Old 07-11-2016, 11:58 PM   #38
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OK I will bite...US charts?

If so, can you please show me one?
What he said. ^
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Old 07-12-2016, 12:14 AM   #39
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I'm interested as well. Good to know know these things!
Well I can't find it on this chart. Although I could just be missing it.

Chart 11466
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Old 07-12-2016, 12:16 AM   #40
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You'd think with all the inlets on it the inlet classification would be on it somewhere.
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