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Old 11-15-2019, 01:20 PM   #1
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Mid-Florida Eastcoast longterm tie-up requested

We are considering hunting for a trawler-type vessel with a queen-size bed to use as a winter apartment in FL. A little cruising would make a real bonus. For me, the first question; Is there somewhere comfortable to establish a home port?

We are quiet but friendly. A party venue or Yacht Club atmosphere is not desirable. Clean, not overly fancy, would suit. I suspect many of you have seen them all. I'd appreciate suggestions. Thanks.

Jim

(I was in the boat business in the 70' - worked for one of the magazines ...' most recently, cut up a 27' PennYan FBC and hauled the bits to the landfill as the cost to re-fit exceeded the value by 4X)
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:07 PM   #2
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We are considering hunting for a trawler-type vessel with a queen-size bed to use as a winter apartment in FL. A little cruising would make a real bonus. For me, the first question; Is there somewhere comfortable to establish a home port?

We are quiet but friendly. A party venue or Yacht Club atmosphere is not desirable. Clean, not overly fancy, would suit. I suspect many of you have seen them all. I'd appreciate suggestions. Thanks.

Jim

(I was in the boat business in the 70' - worked for one of the magazines ...' most recently, cut up a 27' PennYan FBC and hauled the bits to the landfill as the cost to re-fit exceeded the value by 4X)

Jim,

Check out Fort Pierce City Marina and Sunnset Harbor in Stuart.

Don
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Old 11-15-2019, 02:14 PM   #3
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Thanks, Don... I've added them to the list. I figure I'd drive down with a surfboard and check out both sides of the barrier island!

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Old 11-15-2019, 03:27 PM   #4
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Harbortown on Merritt Island might also be a candidate but the Fort Pierce City Marina would be my first choice.
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Old 11-15-2019, 04:01 PM   #5
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Cool, Donsan... Thanks for the help.

Jim
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Old 11-15-2019, 04:29 PM   #6
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Keep in mind the farther south you can get, the better access to nicer cruising grounds.
We spent most of a winter once in Hollywood FL, and took several weekend anchoring jaunts to places like Elliot Key, Boca Chica, and northern Key Largo.

Ft. Pierce City is a nice place, and pretty good launching spot for the Bahamas, and a great inlet, but a schlep to funner stateside destinations.
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Old 11-15-2019, 05:45 PM   #7
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Good thought, George... Friends from Cape Breton just passed thru a day ago on the way to Indiantown ..inland from Stuart. They have a Pearson 365 Yawl and typically winter around Man O War Cay.

Last winter, just before they left, the wife had a melanoma removed from her eyelid in Halifax and they had to carve on it a bit more so they never made it down. Their boat was typically kept near Marsh Harbour (I think there..) because it's half the price of FL and plane tickets are cheaper Halifax/Nassau ...but, they needed engine work - not available in the Bahamas.

She told us none of her friends have a boat left. Many only had liability because no hull insurance was offered. One guy they knew with a steel schooner (pic) had the all the rigging blown off. The hull was Ok ..until it got rolled onto a bank and was flooded.

They are headed back but have to go South - I gather it is a lot hotter in the Abacos and there's more open water to cross. (I've not been)

Jim
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Old 11-15-2019, 09:10 PM   #8
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Hi Jim,

Salisbury MD? I've lived there or spent summers there for the last 30 years.

Ted
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Old 11-16-2019, 09:10 AM   #9
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If eligible, Manatee Cove on Patrick AFB.
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Old 11-16-2019, 10:23 AM   #10
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Cool, Ted. We came down from Annapolis years ago. The cost of commercial property up there was waaay too high for a self-funder. We're on a creek off the Nanticoke River: 2-3' of water - 6' of mud.

Cool boat - good for you.

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Friz, I'm ex-Army enlisted, the AF guys probably don't want us mudders around, but worth a polite ask. Thanks.



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Old 11-16-2019, 11:16 AM   #11
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I am currently in the Harborage in Stuart. After being here a week we find it quiet, clean and reasonably priced - for Florida. It features a great gym and ready access to downtown, about a kilometer.

Gordon
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Old 11-16-2019, 03:19 PM   #12
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Thanks, Gordon... I've always been partial to that section of Florida: Vero Beach–Stuart.

Jim
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Old 11-26-2019, 07:41 AM   #13
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Definitely have a look at Cocoa Village Marina. Well protected, and steps to a decent small town feel historical area. Short Uber to nice beaches as well. And close by Orlando and Daytona as well if you want to do day trips.
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Old 11-26-2019, 11:13 AM   #14
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Mid-Florida Eastcoast longterm tie-up requested

I've stayed at Harbortown Marina in Ft Pierce. Great management, nice neighbors, many live-a-boards. They have an adjacent boat yard for hurricane storage w/tie downs (although now require a 6 month agreement) plus a hurricane haul out reservation program. (Costly if you never use it) Prices are lower for an 12 month lease than daily or monthly.
Grocery store is just up the street, free internet, monthly BBQ and pot-luck dinners. Pool and adjacent restaurant. Waste oil tank for DIYers. Marina parts department on-site. Is at the end of a fresh water canal, so bottom cleaning is easier as less growth. Overall a pretty nice place. Bathrooms/showers are impeccably clean with laundry on-site. Cheaper than Ft Pierce City Marina and just as nice IMHO.

Find a Rate Card here. Home - Harbortown Marina

If you do your own repairs and need a haul-out there is another boat yard north up the ICW about 1 mile that is less expensive. Riverside Marina. You could even leave it there for hurricane season if you can get in.

Regardless of where you end up, I'd suggest a 30 day stay 1st. See if you like it. Then sign up for a longer term. The closer you get to bigger cities, the more costly. Also you can tell a lot about how a marina is managed by how nice everything looks. If it looks run-down, it probably has poor management.


Hope this helps.
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Old 12-01-2019, 06:39 AM   #15
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East coast is crowded , West less so , Central almost empty .

Stuck in traffic is no delight , even with air cond.
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Old 12-01-2019, 09:50 AM   #16
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If eligible, Manatee Cove on Patrick AFB.
Depending on the length boat you are looking at, Manatee Cove maxes out at I believe 44' including bowsprit and swim step. Except for a few 50'+ boats that are apparently grandfathered in.

Nice marina though, and lots of covered storage for 36' and below boats. Live aboards allowed for an additional fee as well.
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Old 12-01-2019, 03:21 PM   #17
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FF, I have some backup to support your statement. My 36' Yawl friends, who were fortunate to miss the hurricane disaster in Marsh Harbor are 'up river' from Jupiter in the Indiantown area. They found a new yard with lower prices, but from what I hear, a very nice environment to boot.

Sadly for us, my first mate, nixed the trawler idea. I think we could have likely been happy in about a 40' Europa-style boat. I found a few seemingly nicely priced.

But: I'm kind of a 'Do it' Polish/German mule - she a 97lb Tai Chi practitioner. 'Man Overboard' is an image she cannot get out of her head.

I appreciate all that responded. I hope the question is beneficial to someone else. Fair winds.

Jim
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Old 12-02-2019, 06:28 AM   #18
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"Sadly for us, my first mate, nixed the trawler idea. I think we could have likely been happy in about a 40' Europa-style boat. I found a few seemingly nicely priced."

My suggestion would be to rent a canal boat for a week or so at Watertown NY on the Erie barge canal.

Great vacation , no navigation hassles , and tied up for free every night within walking distance to a few dining spots.

In many places you could walk ashore.

No danger or fears ,little effort it might prime her for coastal cruising.

https://midlakesnav.com/canalboat-rentals is one company , there are multiple others.

This is also a recommendation I make to folks BEFORE going to see any boats or to a boat show.

Once she is happy and comfortable in a boat with 8 ft beam , the Roomarans where the toilet echos is less attractive.

As cruising is a secondary goal a houseboat , not a trawler would perhaps be a better choice.Their shallow draft makes slip space easier and cheaper to locate.and the investment maybe 10% of a "trawler".


Good Luck!
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Old 12-02-2019, 09:37 AM   #19
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When you consider where to tie up, in my mind the things to consider are, how many bridges must you clear, how far away is the nearest cut.
The Stuart area has a nice cut to the bay but also easy access to the cross FL canal.
Plus, if you have a car or uber, some nice family owned seafood places....
AND a BIG West Marine and a small BOW. When the folks at BOW says, "We will have it tomorrow.", they mean it!!
In my feeble failing mind, Stuart would be the best. Alas, I have 2 slips in the Aventura area of FL, so I will stay right here.
There is a rumor that the Stuart cut can be dangerous. I have been in and out of that cut maybe 6 times, nothing exciting. Use common sense.
Now, the Haulover cut can be very exciting. There are youtube video on Haulover.
Remember, there is a delta. Stay close to the side until you get to the bridge.
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Old 12-02-2019, 10:56 AM   #20
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FF, Thanks for that. Funny you mentioned 'Barge rental'. We watched a number of those short productions 'Travels by Narrow Boat' (now, 3-seasons on Amazon Prime) that take place in the UK. You can do one of those for ~$1500-2k.wk. If I fell overboard on the right side - I'd land on the bank. They were serious when saying; 'Narrow'. Thanks again.

Jim

I failed to upload a pic taken on Thanksgiving Day at my friend's new layover near Indiantown, FL (the file was too large). The yard thru 'Thanksgiving' including a band.
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