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Old 12-21-2018, 05:13 PM   #21
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Regarding anchoring before clearing, it is perfectly fine. In fact I am just completing a short article for the DeFever Winter Magazine and this is an extract:

When traveling to the Bahamas by boat you may anchor out prior to clearing customs. Usually when running from Lake Worth Inlet to West End this is not necessary. However when running from Fort Pierce to the northern Abacos or from points further south to the Berries or Exumas for example, this may be necessary for slower vessels. While I have not personally heard of any issues with boats anchoring for two nights before clearing I would not recommend it as it is hard to justify. BE AWARE that no one from the boat should go ashore if you chose to anchor prior to clearing customs.
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Old 12-21-2018, 06:13 PM   #22
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Why not split the difference and drop the anchor inside Crab Cay? Gives you an easy run the next day.
Fotxtrown or Crab will be the backup plan.
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Old 12-22-2018, 07:51 AM   #23
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Any suggestions from the group as to a route?

I have always done Memory Rocks to Mangrove to Great Sale and then on from there.

It looks like if I went White Sand Ridge over I might not have to buck the stream as much.

From the Dodge book, there is not a direct connection from White Sand Ridge to Little Sale. The routing takes you up to Triangle Rocks.

Any reason why I couldn't just run straight to Little Sale?
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Old 12-22-2018, 09:17 AM   #24
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Yeah, I would NEVER Go into Grand Cay/Rosies at night!
locals took us in there in the dead of nite in a 20kt small boat from walkers. My life flashed before my eyes...
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Old 12-28-2018, 02:20 PM   #25
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Gulfstream seas might switch you to the 8 knots crossing and gofast on the bank, in that case you'll reach memory rock about 1pm and then to allens pensacola at sunset.
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Old 12-28-2018, 02:34 PM   #26
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We crossed over a month ago. Lake worth to great sale, ckeared.In at Abaco Beach Resort in Marsh Harbor. Customs and imigration came to the boat, all arrangef by resort staff.
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Old 12-28-2018, 02:36 PM   #27
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Coming into great sale at night should not give you cause for alarm. Follow the explorer charts and you will have no problem.
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Old 12-28-2018, 03:00 PM   #28
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White Sand Ridge Route

Two sailboats at our marina crossed from Ft Pierce to White Sand Ridge and Great Sale with good depth. Dodges 2018 edition shows a course of 098 and 51.3nm from St Lucie inlet to WSR and course 107m and 52.1nm onto the nw anchorage at Great Sale.
I plan on using this route returning to the States from GTC except landing at Ft Pierce.
John and CC on Eleven Eleven.
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Old 12-28-2018, 03:24 PM   #29
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I'm moving my big boat over to the Bahamas in March and keeping it there until August.

I will be towing a second boat behind me and have been weighing the merits of stopping at Great Sale Cay versus continuing all the way.

I have some concerns that haven't been expressed.



What are you towing? Size? Engine on that boat or off on the tow boat? 16 kts if pretty fast for towing. You might want to talk to your local TowboatUS or SeaTow tower for advice.



Stuart to Great Sale Cay means crabbing against the Gulf Stream. Never a great idea that puts you more at the mercy of weather, especially wind.



If you can go fast across the Gulf Stream you can go fast on the banks unless the weather lands on your head.



Stay off the Explorer Charts routes to avoid those heading the opposite way with a poor watch. 1/2 a mile is plenty.
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Old 12-28-2018, 08:21 PM   #30
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I am reading this thread as a person that has NEVER sailed these waters in anything less than 700 feet long and filtering it through the brain of an aircraft pilot.

Nothing is more important than taking your time and doing it right AND SAFE. Pilots in a hurry usually have short lives. Need I mention John Kennedy Jr?

Also, is the thing you are hurrying to and will miss if things go wrong, be worth the cost of fixing the error AND missing the appointment?
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Old 12-28-2018, 08:35 PM   #31
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700 ft on the bank must be some kind of flat bottomed thing!
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Old 12-28-2018, 10:01 PM   #32
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Jeez

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Originally Posted by jimisbell View Post
I am reading this thread as a person that has NEVER sailed these waters in anything less than 700 feet long and filtering it through the brain of an aircraft pilot.

Nothing is more important than taking your time and doing it right AND SAFE. Pilots in a hurry usually have short lives. Need I mention John Kennedy Jr?

Also, is the thing you are hurrying to and will miss if things go wrong, be worth the cost of fixing the error AND missing the appointment?
What does any of his have to do with routing? The charts of the bank are generally accurate. He can figure or whether the sea state is good enough. Let's not over think this.
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Old 12-28-2018, 11:16 PM   #33
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We went from Ft. Pierce to the Bank and entered just a little south of Mantanilla (?) shoal. Right on the NW corner of the bank. That went well.

To the OP, are you going to tow a skiff at 16kt offshore? That can really be a problem. Skiffs can go NUTS in an offshore tow at that speed.
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Old 12-29-2018, 12:29 AM   #34
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Towed a 10' RIB with a 9.9 outboard with a 43' cruiser.
8kts. looked back, all fine.
10kts same.
12kts same.
14kts same.
16kts looked over my shoulder and dink was 30' in the air spinning like a top. My 9.9 is on the bottom of Lake Ontario.

It was a short 25mile trip and I was too lazy to hike the dink up in the davits.
Lesson learned.
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Old 12-29-2018, 08:36 AM   #35
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Tingum,

Molly already has a slip set up for me so I won't be on the fuel dock. The big "push" is so that I have time to get back for a commitment on two days later. If I push through that gives me some wiggle room with a day extra if I get delayed. My business partner is going to fly our plane down and pick me up the following day, whatever day that is (You replied on another forum about our airplane purchase.)

Maybe I'll just crash at your place! I think I scared one of the renters there when we went by there back in November.

If we split up the trip that means one of two things -

1. Stuart to Great Sale, which gets us there around 1530, leaving a lot of daylight on the table, then the next morning another 8 hour ride.

2. Stuart to somewhere east of Great Sale, stopping around 1830 around Foxtown, then the next morning a 3 to 4 hour ride.
Schedules while boating - always a bad idea, always.
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Old 12-29-2018, 08:38 AM   #36
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All Iíve got to add to the good advice thatís already been given is to no longer trust the new garmin/ navionics nav apps. We just arrived in the abacos and several of the known skinny areas are now showing more than adequate depth. You mentioned donít rock so you are probably already aware of the fact that itís 3.5í at low tide. Previously the navionics charts were accurate here but the new updates show 8í 4Ē which is dangerously off. To the south they average over 4í higher as well. Odd thing is the garmin on our dink plotter and the old blue chart app still have this area right.
Have you shared your experience with Navionics?
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Old 12-29-2018, 09:05 AM   #37
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Wow, a lot of stuff going on here, along with a long of info that was missed from the initial post.

Quote:
From Stuart until we get on the bank, we will run fast and the smaller boat will fall in behind me. This will be a 16kt crossing so if we leave around 0530 we should get to White Sand Ridge by 0900. From there we still have another 100nm to go to our destination.

The plan is to slow down to 8kts or so and tow the smaller boat the rest of the way.
I will have somebody driving the "tow boat" over when we cross to the banks, from there I will tow it. It's a 19' boat and there is no way I would pull it over 8 kts.


Stuart to Great Sale is the only route. You either come on the banks at White Sand or at Memory Rocks. Either way you are going to have a little bit of an interaction with the stream. I have done Stuart to Memory Rocks to Great Sale a few times. Just never Stuart to White Sand to Great Sale.

As for the schedule, I agree 100%. This is more of a plan written in pencil and set in jello. You have to start somewhere and if preferred, I would rather do it all in one day. Due to fuel burns, I do not want to run at 16kts. the entire way. Additionally, since I can't tow that fast anyway, the tow boat does not have enough fuel to do the same so I would have to tanker fuel.

In a perfect world, going fast across the stream allows us to limit our exposure for weather and lumpy seas. If we left at 0530 or so, we would be on the banks before 0900. Typically that is before wind and waves start to pick up.

I'm on a weekend trip right now where we pulled a 16' whaler behind us the entire way at 8kts. Seas were 2-3 with 15kt winds.


I have plans A, B and C already mapped out along with D in the works...
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Old 12-29-2018, 09:27 AM   #38
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You are overthinking this. Chances are any plan you make you will change once you get out and see what the stream is doing. You may decide to tow the smaller boat right from the beginning once you see how it behaves. Make sure it's auto bilge pump works! Rig a radar reflector on it just in case you have to go looking for it! Don't ask! As for Memory or White ridges that call can be made once you see the conditions. Stay flexible! I don't think Foxtown after dark is a good idea. Rocky entrance.
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Old 12-29-2018, 06:24 PM   #39
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I am reading this thread as a person that has NEVER sailed these waters in anything less than 700 feet long and filtering it through the brain of an aircraft pilot.

Nothing is more important than taking your time and doing it right AND SAFE. Pilots in a hurry usually have short lives. Need I mention John Kennedy Jr?

Also, is the thing you are hurrying to and will miss if things go wrong, be worth the cost of fixing the error AND missing the appointment?
There are old pilots, and there are bold pilots, but few old bold pilots.
substitute pilots for captains at your own risk.
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Old 12-29-2018, 07:44 PM   #40
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I always cross from Stuart to White Sand Ridge, and then up to Grand where we clear in and spend the night. We are a 14 to 15 knot boat.


Just my two cents, but if it were me and I was trying to get as far as I could in one day, as long as I didn't have a west wind, I would look at pulling into Allen's to spend the night. Get up early the next day and it's an easy three hour run to GTC, you could be there by 9:00. Allen's is easy to enter and exit. Only issue is that the holding there sucks if you don't get a sand spot, which could be tough to find in the dark.


Great Sale is a little out of the way as the anchorage is a little south of the ideal route.


As far as the banks at night, just give the various banks (especially Stranger's and Carter's) a wide berth and you should be fine.


No matter what you do though that is going to be a long day, it's tiring pulling/dealing with two boats. Sounds fun though!
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