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Old 01-19-2015, 09:51 AM   #21
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Hi Larry -
We bought our boat in Solomons. On April 20th, 2010, I fired up the engine at 4am to pull out and promptly stopped in the Patuxent River because it was my first time with the new boat, dark, unknown waters, and unfortunately enthusiasm does not trump lack-of-experience! (I was really excited)

That said,
Day one: 5:00am to 8:00pm Solomons to Norfolk (Hospital Point anchorage) with a fuel stop in Smith Point. 15 hours. Clear weather.

Day two: 5:00am to 7:00pm Norfolk to Tuckahoe Point (anchorage), lower end of Alligator River. 14 hours. Fuel stop in Coinjock NC. Clear weather.

Day three: 6:00am to 3:00pm Tuckahoe Point to Havelock NC, berthing port. Rain and Wind. Ugh!

With my 35 Marine Trader and single Lehman, I plan for 7 knots and always manage slightly better. 15 hours = 105 miles. A full day, rarely repeated.

I study Active Captain and look for words like "obstruction", "haul out", and "bent shaft" and such. I make a paper "pre-log" of times I think it's going to take and predicted obstacles (shoals/obstructions/bridge schedules).

Then I just follow down my pre-log as I go through new waters. I check fluids and my bilge quite a bit. And I run a bit paranoid on engine noise but I've not been let down by the Lehman in 5 years.

Here you can see my Admiral suffering as she is chained to the autopilot on day one.
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Old 01-19-2015, 11:58 AM   #22
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Here's a good video log running the opposite way from the west coast of FL to the Chesapeake. It should give you a good idea of some trip detals..

Final Voyage Of The Mischief
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:19 PM   #23
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Have done the ICW several times, always from South East Mass. to Cape Canaveral,Fl. Have done it in fast and slow boats. You have some very good advise here.


You are one a delivery schedule, if you want to maintain that schedule, do not fool yourself by thinking you are not on a delivery schedule. Your schedule is doable but you have to be active in your daily planning as well as your long term planning. You may fall behind, if so, and weather permits go offshore. The ocean is not a thing to fear, just bad decisions.


Good luck, keep us posted. Next time plan a slower trip there is so much to see and do.


John
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Old 01-19-2015, 10:51 PM   #24
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Hello,
I just did that trip but we left from Baltimore and crossed FLA to the west coast. We lost 3 days due to weather between Baltimore and Charleston and three days to weather and sickness between Charleston and Punta Gorda. We fueled at TopRack in Norfolk - at the time, the cost was $2.98. What is the draft on your boat? The further you go south, we ran into 6knot zones and slow-no wake zones that "adjusted" our timing. We had to time our transit of several low spots with inflowing tides.
We found using Skipper Bob ICW manuals were a big help, along with Active Captain. We topped our fuel at the Vero Beach Municipal marina - $2.82 (included all taxes).
Enjoy the trip but it most certainly is a delivery run.


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Old 01-19-2015, 11:23 PM   #25
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You don't wait for weather to jump outside with a slow boat. You take advantage of the opportunity if it presents itself. That said, your nuts if you don't jump out and bypass Georgia if you can. :-)

If you're scared to run a few miles or so offshore then that is your choice. But I would not hesitate to do it in a reasonably well founded single engine vessel in good weather. Just check the engine space every hour.
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Old 01-20-2015, 08:01 PM   #26
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Sounds like every trip is it's own trip and ours will be, too. Lots of good advice and every bit of it will be considered. Will be happy to post our progress.
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Old 01-28-2015, 09:13 AM   #27
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I have done that trip four times in the 34 foot marine trader. You will save time if you anchor out and do not go into the Marinas. your speed and your time estimate is a bit optimistic.running from sunup to sundown, in December it was a 21 day trip, heading north in the spring it was a 15 day trip. That is time for no fun just go go go. I think my average speed on a total of ten thousand miles was just over 6 miles an hour
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Old 01-28-2015, 12:34 PM   #28
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A lot of great information, I will only add; all the best for safe passage!
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Old 02-06-2015, 10:05 PM   #29
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Hey larrybud49 we have traveled the east coast ICW six times in the past eight years.
As mentioned by HenryD the best advice I can give you is to purchase Skipper Bob's Anchorage Guide.
By the title is sounds like just anchorages, that is not the case.
It takes you along the ICW with information and advice on every hazard and shallow spot.
It also includes information on anchorages. But the real value in the publication is all the other information it contains. Like a series of way points to build a short 200 yard route that bypasses a shoal in the middle of the ICW.
If you are interested in marinas then you can also pick up Skipper Bob's Marina Guide.
But the Skipper Bob's Anchorage guide is the real life saver for your ICW transient.
Don't be fooled that it is only a 1/2" thick publication. The author was an engineer.
Lots of information in an organized fashion.
We lost the man Skipper Bob a few years ago. His publication is being updated now by another company.
He is missed.
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Old 02-08-2015, 09:51 AM   #30
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We do have the current Skipper Bob's Anchorage Guide and we have been using it in addition to the Waterway Guide. Very different publications, both very handy and they complement each other. I do find Bob's easier to use and it will most likely be our primary planning aid.
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Old 03-24-2015, 07:58 PM   #31
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We are on our way. Left Solomons on Friday and are now in Oriental, NC. Had some issues with fuel filters and batteries, but we have ironed those out. Have lost 1 day due to maintenance issues, but moving good. Nice smooth sections, but Ablemare Sound was a rocking and rolling ride, but with wind from north it wasn't too bad, glad we weren't headed north.
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Old 03-24-2015, 09:05 PM   #32
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Enjoy the trip. And remember to smell the roses.
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Old 03-26-2015, 06:22 PM   #33
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OC, am looking at a boat in Fort Myers but will have to get it up to Baltimore.You think a 18-20 day window is doable. It will be in late May so we should have long days. Seeing that you have done pretty much the same trip was wondering your thoughts.
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Old 03-26-2015, 07:48 PM   #34
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It's about 1, 200 statute miles from Ft Myers to Norfolk. From Norfolk to Baltimore is about 140 nautical miles. The first section averaging 75 statute miles a day will take 16 days. The Chesapeake could be done in 2 days. So running every day and no weather days, 18 would be the bare minimum going inside the whole way.

If you feel comfortable with the new boat and your experience, going outside from Stuart, FL up to maybe Morehead City, NC will save you a bunch of days. You likely may not be able to run that entire distance outside, but weather in May could give you a 2 day window. Running outside for 36 hours (7am to 7pm) in the gulf stream (2 knot push) could be the equivalent of 5 or 6 days in the ICW. If it were me with a new to me boat, the forecast would have to be near perfect. Size, condition, and how the boat was outfitted would greatly influence my decision.

The days are longer in late May, so you should be able to average more miles per day inside. The tough part is having a place to stop each night. There are long stretches without anchorages that will force you to cut your days short. Wind is only a limiting factor in a few areas such as lake Okeechobee, Chesapeake Bay, and a few of sounds. How comfortable are you boating in heavy rain storms? Fatigue is another issue. 10 to 12 hours a day for 18 days is tough.

Answer to your question without knowing you, your crew, your experience, and of course the boat is a qualified yes it's doable. Post a link to the boat and tell us a bout your experience level.

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Old 03-26-2015, 10:04 PM   #35
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If the weather was perfect and you could run 18 days straight for 75 miles/day, you would be one wore out puppy. I've done 8 straight and had a enough. Count on 50 and if you feel like doing more do it. But to plan on 75 for that long of a period is just crazy. Take time and enjoy the view, anchorages, marina, and etc. It's the journey not the destination. Good Luck!
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Old 03-26-2015, 10:14 PM   #36
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George,
When we bought our boat, we moved it from Burnt Store (a bit above Ft. Myers) to Baltimore in 21 travel days. We broke the trip into three segments because we had to work.
We moved down to Punta Gorda ( a bit above Ft. Myers) from Baltimore this winter, leaving Baltimore in November and arriving in Punta Gorda in January. We stayed in Charleston for the month of December for Christmas. We used 22 days.
We were traveling with 1-2 boats so we ran 7.5 knots when we could (6 Knot zones, Manateee zones, etc will take some time.
Are you planning to cross the Lake or go around?
What kind of boat are you running? Cruise speed?
Are you planning to anchor or do you need a marina each night?
What is your air draft? This can impact waiting for bridge openings or just cruising under them.

Safe travels
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Old 03-29-2015, 09:17 PM   #37
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Pleasure Island just spent Sunday at St. John's Harbor in Charleston, SC, after running 8 1/2 days straight, averaging about 72 SM per day. We had fuel filter problems the first 3 days; trouble shooting and delays cost us a day overall. Engine been running fine since Monday. Weather has been mostly good and currents and winds have been mostly moderate and helping us. Touched the mud in 2 places, but glanced off in both. Almost missed a turn twice, but haven't gotten lost yet. Having some boat system problems, the kind you expect on a boat that has seen little use over the past several years, but we are working through them. There have been some challenges, but the trip so far has been very enjoyable, very good. Not seen much traffic northbound, and I think we are the only ones going south, but I live in Florida; just going home. Keeping close watch on the Waterway Guides, and Skipper Bob has been terrific for getting to good anchorages. Fair winds and following seas to all.
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Old 03-29-2015, 09:46 PM   #38
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Welcome to SC!
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Old 04-03-2015, 06:47 PM   #39
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HenryD, We will be crossing the lake. The boat is a 34 Marine Trader that we just closed on in Punta Gorda. Cruising speed of 7knts with a draft of 3'6".We plan on anchoring out as much as possible with a marina stop here and there.We've had a lot of off shore sailing on our sailboat,as far south as South America but no ICW experience. Nothing to hit in the middle of the ocean and can't run aground. This trip should be interesting.
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