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    • 28. Blackwater Sound–Cross Key Anchorage

      28. Blackwater Sound–Cross Key Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1134.5
      Lat/Lon: near 25 10.906 North/080 24.135 West
      Location: on the charted 7-foot waters west-northwest of flashing daybeacon #38
      Minimum depth: 5-feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: fair to poor, protected ONLY from northern and northeastern winds

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    • 29. Blackwater Sound–Sexton Cove Anchorage

      29. Blackwater Sound–Sexton Cove Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1135
      Lat/Lon: near 25 09.957 North/080 23.598 West
      Location: Sexton Cove indents the shores of northeastern Blackwater Sound, immediately south of charted Lake Surprise
      Minimum depth: 5 to 6-feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: good, but open to western southwestern and northwestern winds

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    • 30. Blackwater Sound–Stellrecht Point Anchorage

      30. Blackwater Sound–Stellrecht Point Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1136
      Lat/Lon: near 25 09.335 North/080 23.862 West
      Location: on the east side waters of Blackwater Sound, south of charted Stellrecht Point
      Minimum depth: 6-feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: fair, open to western, southwestern and northwestern winds

      Rating:

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    • 31. Blackwater Sound–Bush Point Anchorage

      31. Blackwater Sound–Bush Point Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1136.5
      Lat/Lon: near 25 09.064 North/080 26.206 West
      Location: resides on the charted tongue of 6 1/2%f-foot waters west-northwest of Bush Point, and west of unlighted daybeacon #40
      Minimum depth: 6 ½ – foot depths in the anchorage, but during the approach, it’s easy to wander into 5-foot soundings
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Protection: fair to poor, sheltered ONLY from southern, southwestern and southeastern winds

      Rating:

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    • 32. Tarpon Basin Northern Anchorage

      32. Tarpon Basin Northern Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1139.5
      Lat/Lon: 25 07.856 North/080 25.954 West
      Location: on the waters of Tarpon Bay, north of unlighted daybeacon #48A and west of flashing daybeacon #48
      Minimum depth: 6 to 7 feet
      Swing Room: sufficient room for vessels as large as 45 feet
      Foul Weather Shelter: Good
      Waste Pump-out Availability: Monroe County provides a free pump-out boat at Tarpon Basin anchorage. It services the area from North Key Largo to Matecumbe Bight. Call (305)747-2388 or Ch-9. For more information go to
      http://www.monroecounty-fl.gov/index.aspx?NID=442

      Rating:

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      Comments from Cruisers (8)

      1. Sonny Reeves -  June 28, 2014 - 10:12 pm

        On our cruise North to Jekyll Island from Marathon we used several anchorages and found some interesting free city docks. Tarpon Basin is a good stop over anchorage with a free dingy dock. Going North exit the creek and head for marker R48. Turn in to basin before R48A stay near north side of basin. Close to shore we found 5-7 ft. On in towards anchored boats we found 7-9 ft and stayed to the north of city docks.
        Sonny Reeves

        Reply to Sonny
      2. Captain John -  March 9, 2012 - 10:17 am

        When entering Tarpon Basin from the north it is important to hug the channel along the red markers as the channel turrns sw and then west. There are no green markers and we wandered into very shallow water just se of the channel near red “46”as it turns. We wound up anchoring out on the north side of red 48A in 8 feet with good holding.

        Reply to Captain
      3. Don and Mango -  November 24, 2011 - 11:52 pm

        There’s no pump out boat this season [2011].
        Don and Mango

        Reply to Don
      4. Dan -  February 23, 2011 - 11:31 am

        This is a good spot…..just use a plow and get a good set before your sundowner.
        Dan

        Reply to Dan
      5. Stein A. Holtbakk -  January 10, 2010 - 12:39 am

        A pump-out boat comes to Tarpon Basin once a week. They had some problems with the boat March 2009, but were supposed to go by every thursday. Try them on Ch 16.
        Stein A. Holtbakk

        Reply to Stein
      6. David S. Power -  December 30, 2009 - 9:57 pm

        We used the northern anchorage last May for several days due to weather. Good protection and holding. Also used the docks at the government facility for our dinghy.
        No problems.

        Reply to David
      7. Capt. Sterling -  December 28, 2009 - 9:42 am

        Subject: Tarpon Basin
        Cruising News: Seems the newly constructed Government center in Tarpon Basin, bayside Key Largo, is allowing cruisers to use the docks for their dinghys for shore access.
        THis is close to Publix and KLI hardware Store, and Kmart.
        Let’s hope they continue to allow this.
        Capt. Sterling

        Reply to Capt.
      8. Laura Bender -  August 14, 2009 - 9:45 am

        Subject: Dinghy Dock Key Largo
        Cruising News: The new Government center on Tarpon Basin is open and some cruisers have been using the docks for
        shore access! Don’t know if it’s official yet, however, it is a place to go ashore bayside Key Largo in Tarpon Basin, walkable to the Hardware store (north) and Pulix Groceries (south) Will keep you informed of any changes I hear about this.
        Capt. Sterling

        Hi, Claiborne,
        We just negotiated our way into Tarpon Basin, uneventfully, thanks to your explicit directions in your guide. We’re anchored at almost the exact coordinates that you gave near the microwave tower. I’ve called 5 different city/county phone numbers trying to find where the dinghy dock is at the new government building and nobody has a clue. Google mapped the building and it’s inland on the highway and that’s a long way to drag a dink. We’re really eager to go ashore and hope you or Capt. Sterling can offer some help.
        Many thanks,
        Laura Bender

        Sure Claiborne,
        Just south of the Microwave tower you will see a canal, next to that a hotel. Just south of the hotel is the Government center basin. Its on active captain at Tarpon Basin at 25 07 279 North/80 25 108 West
        See you on the Waterways!
        Capt. Sterling
        MV Sterling Lady

        Hi, Claiborne
        I emailed Capt. Sterling, also, and he responded right away with an email and phone call. He told us about a mangrove tunnel nearby that is a dinghy or kayak trip. We’re looking forward to that—he said it’s magnificent. The dinghy dock’s right under our nose. Am attaching a picture because I thought it was a firefighter training tower. On one side is a dolphin rehab and the other, a hotel. It’s about a ½ mile walk south to a strip center with numerous retail-Publix, Radio Shack, Kmart, Payless Shoes, Bealls, Dollar General, Quizno’s, and even the public library.
        Thanks for all your help.
        Laura Bender

        Reply to Laura
    • 33. Tarpon Basin Southern Anchorage

      33. Tarpon Basin Southern Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1139.5
      Lat/Lon: 25 07.438 North/080 25.937 West
      Location: on the waters of Tarpon Bay, south of unlighted daybeacon #48A and west of flashing daybeacon #48
      Minimum depth: 6 feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: fair to good
      Waste Pump-out Availability: Monroe County provides a free pump-out boat at Tarpon Basin anchorage. It services the area from North Key Largo to Matecumbe Bight. Call (305)747-2388 or Ch-9. For more information go to
      http://www.monroecounty-fl.gov/index.aspx?NID=442

      Rating:

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      Comments from Cruisers (4)

      1. ron -  May 26, 2010 - 10:51 am

        The northern anchorage is a solid grass mat with limited holding. We motored through this anchorage and couldn’t find a sand spit to drop the hook and decided to move on to another anchorage. There were other boats there but I wouldn’t trust it in a blow.

        Reply to ron
      2. Claiborne -  January 10, 2010 - 12:40 am

        A pump-out boat comes to Tarpon Basin once a week. They had some problems with the boat March 2009, but were supposed to go by every thursday. Try them on Ch 16.
        Stein A. Holtbakk

        Reply to Claiborne
      3. Claiborne -  December 28, 2009 - 9:42 am

        Subject: Tarpon Basin
        Cruising News: Seems the newly constructed Government center in Tarpon Basin, bayside Key Largo, is allowing cruisers to use the docks for their dinghys for shore access.
        THis is close to Publix and KLI hardware Store, and Kmart.
        Let’s hope they continue to allow this.
        Capt. Sterling

        Reply to Claiborne
      4. Claiborne -  August 14, 2009 - 9:46 am

        Subject: Dinghy Dock Key Largo
        Cruising News: The new Government center on Tarpon Basin is open and some cruisers have been using the docks for
        shore access! Don’t know if it’s official yet, however, it is a place to go ashore bayside Key Largo in Tarpon Basin, walkable to the Hardware store (north) and Pulix Groceries (south) Will keep you informed of any changes I hear about this.
        Capt. Sterling

        Hi, Claiborne,
        We just negotiated our way into Tarpon Basin, uneventfully, thanks to your explicit directions in your guide. We’re anchored at almost the exact coordinates that you gave near the microwave tower. I’ve called 5 different city/county phone numbers trying to find where the dinghy dock is at the new government building and nobody has a clue. Google mapped the building and it’s inland on the highway and that’s a long way to drag a dink. We’re really eager to go ashore and hope you or Capt. Sterling can offer some help.
        Many thanks,
        Laura Bender

        Sure Claiborne,
        Just south of the Microwave tower you will see a canal, next to that a hotel. Just south of the hotel is the Government center basin. Its on active captain at Tarpon Basin at 25 07 279 North/80 25 108 West
        See you on the Waterways!
        Capt. Sterling
        MV Sterling Lady

        Hi, Claiborne
        I emailed Capt. Sterling, also, and he responded right away with an email and phone call. He told us about a mangrove tunnel nearby that is a dinghy or kayak trip. We’re looking forward to that—he said it’s magnificent. The dinghy dock’s right under our nose. Am attaching a picture because I thought it was a firefighter training tower. On one side is a dolphin rehab and the other, a hotel. It’s about a ½ mile walk south to a strip center with numerous retail-Publix, Radio Shack, Kmart, Payless Shoes, Bealls, Dollar General, Quizno’s, and even the public library.
        Thanks for all your help.
        Laura Bender

        Reply to Claiborne
    • 34. Tarpon Basin Interior Anchorage

      34. Tarpon Basin Interior Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1139.5
      Lat/Lon: 25 07.439 North/080 25.180 West
      Location: on the waters of Tarpon Bay, off this body of water’s eastern banks, near the charted “Micro Tr”
      Minimum depth: 5 feet, BUT you must successfully follow an unmarked channel into the anchorage
      Swing Room: sufficient room for vessels as large as 45 feet
      Foul Weather Shelter: Good in all but particularly strong western winds
      Waste Pump-out Availability: Monroe County provides a free pump-out boat at Tarpon Basin anchorage. It services the area from North Key Largo to Matecumbe Bight. Call (305)747-2388 or Ch-9. For more information go to
      http://www.monroecounty-fl.gov/index.aspx?NID=442

      Rating:

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      Centered on the Location of This Anchorage:

      Comments from Cruisers (6)

      1. James h. -  January 17, 2018 - 12:05 am

        Search for us on Facebook Tarpon basin Yacht Club made up of six board members we regulate the park do cleanups play games and help each other out great camaraderie and the second family I have found here come join us the tarpon Basin Yacht Club!

        Reply to James
      2. Alan & Jean Lloyd - Ted -  January 16, 2012 - 10:53 am

        Try Tarpon Basin at ICW mile 1140 at red daymark 48A.
        Alan & Jean Lloyd

        There are many options and Alan’s is an excellent recommendation. There is a dinghy dock in the NE section of the [Tarpon Basin] cove. Picnic tables etc. next to the community building.
        Ted

        Reply to Alan
      3. Jean Thomason (DOVEKIE) -  March 19, 2010 - 4:15 pm

        We anchored here March 10. It was easy to get in following the curve of “no wake” markers that lead to the anchorage. Nice quiet spot. Didn’t go ashore but would be interested directions to the “mangrove tunnel” dinghy side trip.

        Reply to Jean
      4. Stein A. Holtbakk -  January 10, 2010 - 12:41 am

        A pump-out boat comes to Tarpon Basin once a week. They had some problems with the boat March 2009, but were supposed to go by every thursday. Try them on Ch 16.
        Stein A. Holtbakk

        Reply to Stein
      5. Capt. Sterling -  December 28, 2009 - 9:42 am

        Subject: Tarpon Basin
        Cruising News: Seems the newly constructed Government center in Tarpon Basin, bayside Key Largo, is allowing cruisers to use the docks for their dinghys for shore access.
        THis is close to Publix and KLI hardware Store, and Kmart.
        Let’s hope they continue to allow this.
        Capt. Sterling

        Reply to Capt.
      6. Laura Bender -  August 14, 2009 - 9:46 am

        Subject: Dinghy Dock Key Largo
        Cruising News: The new Government center on Tarpon Basin is open and some cruisers have been using the docks for
        shore access! Don’t know if it’s official yet, however, it is a place to go ashore bayside Key Largo in Tarpon Basin, walkable to the Hardware store (north) and Pulix Groceries (south) Will keep you informed of any changes I hear about this.
        Capt. Sterling

        Hi, Claiborne,
        We just negotiated our way into Tarpon Basin, uneventfully, thanks to your explicit directions in your guide. We’re anchored at almost the exact coordinates that you gave near the microwave tower. I’ve called 5 different city/county phone numbers trying to find where the dinghy dock is at the new government building and nobody has a clue. Google mapped the building and it’s inland on the highway and that’s a long way to drag a dink. We’re really eager to go ashore and hope you or Capt. Sterling can offer some help.
        Many thanks,
        Laura Bender

        Sure Claiborne,
        Just south of the Microwave tower you will see a canal, next to that a hotel. Just south of the hotel is the Government center basin. Its on active captain at Tarpon Basin at 25 07 279 North/80 25 108 West
        See you on the Waterways!
        Capt. Sterling
        MV Sterling Lady

        Hi, Claiborne
        I emailed Capt. Sterling, also, and he responded right away with an email and phone call. He told us about a mangrove tunnel nearby that is a dinghy or kayak trip. We’re looking forward to that—he said it’s magnificent. The dinghy dock’s right under our nose. Am attaching a picture because I thought it was a firefighter training tower. On one side is a dolphin rehab and the other, a hotel. It’s about a ½ mile walk south to a strip center with numerous retail-Publix, Radio Shack, Kmart, Payless Shoes, Bealls, Dollar General, Quizno’s, and even the public library.
        Thanks for all your help.
        Laura Bender

        Reply to Laura
    • 35. Buttonwood Sound–Northeastern Anchorage

      35. Buttonwood Sound–Northeastern Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1141
      Lat/Lon: near 25 07.116 North/080 26.604 West
      Location: on the waters northeast of flashing daybeacon #54, West
      Minimum depth: 6-feet
      Swing Room: sufficient room for vessels as large as 45 feet
      Foul Weather Shelter: fair to poor, open to all BUT northern, northeastern and northwestern winds

      Rating:

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      Comments from Cruisers (1)

      1. ron -  May 26, 2010 - 12:12 pm

        We hid here once from a strong northerly, but the bottom is all mud. Fortunately, if you drag anchor, you will drag into clean water and eventually sand. If I were caught in Sunset Cove in a pinch I would still use it. But, the cleanup is something else.

        Reply to ron
    • 36. Buttonwood Sound–Central – Western Anchorage

      36. Buttonwood Sound–Central – Western Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1142
      Lat/Lon: near 25 06.540 North/080 27.705 West
      Location: on the band of deep-water buffering the western side of the Waterway as it crosses the midsection of Buttonwood Sound
      Minimum depth: 6-foot depths
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: poor

      Rating:

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      Comments from Cruisers (1)

      1. ron -  May 26, 2010 - 12:14 pm

        Forget it! This is not an anchorage.

        Reply to ron
    • 37. Buttonwood Sound–Central – Eastern Anchorage

      37. Buttonwood Sound–Central – Eastern Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1142
      Lat/Lon: near 25 06.402 North/080 27.120 West
      Location: on the band of deep-water buffering the eastern side of the Waterway as it crosses the midsection of Buttonwood Sound
      Minimum depth: 6-foot depths
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: poor

      Rating:

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    • 38. Buttonwood Sound–Newport Anchorage

      38. Buttonwood Sound–Newport Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1142
      Lat/Lon: near 25 07.438 North/080 25.937 West
      Location: west of the charted position of Newport
      Minimum depth: 5 ½ feet
      Special Comment: within easy dinghy distance of the Upper Keys Sailing Club
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Shelter: fair, open to western, southwestern and northwestern winds

      Rating:

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    • 39. Buttonwood Sound–Pelican Key Anchorage

      39. Buttonwood Sound–Pelican Key Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1142.5
      Lat/Lon: near 25 05.645 North/080 27.385 West
      Location: lies northwest of tiny Pelican Key
      Minimum depth: 5-feet, but depths rise rapidly as Pelican Key is approached
      Swing Room: sufficient room for vessels as large as 40 feet
      Foul Weather Shelter: fair to poor, good protection only from southeastern winds

      Rating:

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    • 40. Buttonwood Sound–Sunset Cove Anchorage

      40. Buttonwood Sound–Sunset Cove Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1142.5
      Lat/Lon: near 25 05.570 North/080 26.926 West
      Location: on the waters of southeastern Buttonwood Sound, in charted Sunset Cove
      Minimum depth: 5-feet
      Swing Room: sufficient room for vessels as large as 48 feet
      Foul Weather Protection: fair, open to western, northern and northwestern winds

      Rating:

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      Comments from Cruisers (7)

      1. Bill Nelson -  October 20, 2012 - 1:38 pm

        There is a new 6′ fence across the county access so you can’t come ashore unless you go to the hotel or Bayside.

        My last time there will be my last time ever. Seems that some drugged out vagrants live on a few derelict sailboats. One sang and yelled for hours and hours keeping us all up until 3 am. Wish I had my red rider in these situations.

        For now this place is cruiser unfriendly and vagrant friendly.

        Reply to Bill
      2. John Kettlewell -  August 18, 2012 - 8:20 am

        Sunset Cove falls under the new anchoring regulations that are part of the Monroe County Pilot Program. The main one folks there will have to deal with is proof of pumpout. Save your receipts and keep a pumpout log.
        John Kettlewell

        Reply to John
      3. Andree -  August 3, 2012 - 2:52 pm

        Hey if you;re still there! Buttonwood sound is at MM 99.
        I was anchored there for a few years. The dinghy dock was right off Bay side resort but now year 2012 there has been a fence put across the path, part of the “dock” was the resort’s property. You can still dinghy there , it is a small
        space though off the dead end street. Snooks burned down since than and was rebuilt it is now reopened. It is a nice quiet anchorage, first row seat to fabulous sunsets and Snooks’ nice live band music.
        Andree

        Reply to Andree
      4. ron -  May 26, 2010 - 12:21 pm

        This has always been one of our favorite anchorages on the inside passage. In the middle to late 90’s it was often frequented by cruisers. In the last ten years, you hardly see a soul other than some local boats. Snooks has a nice palapa bar and a decent restaurant which is a nice respite if you’ve roughed it all the way from Miami. You have access to shopping, jerry can gasoline, and a drug store. Look for the patches of sand between the grass and drop your hookin 8-10 feet of water. You can get fairly close to shore if you want but the breeze is better further out. Good holding

        Reply to ron
      5. Claiborne -  February 1, 2010 - 2:33 pm

        We usually use the dinghy dock at Snooks restaurant/bar, which is on Buttonwood Sound, between red 54 and green 55. The approximate coordinates of the anchorage are 25 5.7 N – 80 26.733 W. The dock is available to customers if you want to eat or have some drinks (latter recommended, former … not so much). Otherwise there’s a (sort of) boat ramp directly to the right of the dinghy dock where you can tie up to the mangroves and walk in. Nice central location.
        Adam
        “Sea Monkey”
        Miami, Florida

        Reply to Claiborne
      6. Claiborne -  August 17, 2009 - 11:13 am

        Sunset Cove Weʼve anchored there often. It is rarely crowded. The sailing club no longer welcomes cruisers, but there are a few local restaurants with docks to tie up to. We just make sure to buy a beer at the bar to compensate and so far there has been no problem. Unfortunately, the Cuban market has closed, but Walgreens has some basic supplies.
        Bob and Toni Dorman

        Reply to Claiborne
      7. Claiborne -  August 17, 2009 - 10:00 am

        Sunset Cove gets shallow near shore and if you don’t get close you get the wakes from the ICW
        Pascal

        Reply to Claiborne
    • 41. Rock Harbor Anchorage

      41. Rock Harbor Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1145.5
      Lat/Lon: near 25 03.256 North/080 29.525 West
      Location: found on the waters off the Key Largo shoreline, well south of flashing daybeacon #60
      Minimum depth: 5-feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Protection: poor, protected ONLY from southern and southeastern winds

      Rating:

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    • 42. Pigeon Key Anchorage

      42. Pigeon Key Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1146.5
      Lat/Lon: near 25 03.464 North/080 30.475 West
      Location: off the easterly shores of Pigeon Key, southwest of flashing daybeacon #60
      Minimum depth: 4 ½ feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Protection: poor

      Rating:

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    • 43. Back-country – Butternut Key Anchorage

      43. Back-country – Butternut Key Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1147.5
      Lat/Lon: 25 04.869 North/080 31.208 West
      Location: on the waters southwest of Butternut Key, north of flashing daybeacon #61
      Minimum depth: 5 feet
      Swing Room: unlimited
      Foul Weather Protection: poor, only shelter from northeasterly winds is afforded

      Rating:

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    • 44. Back-country – Bottle Key Anchorage

      44. Back-country – Bottle Key Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1147.5
      Lat/Lon: 25 04.183 North/080 32.687 West
      Location: on the waters well east of Bottle Key, northwest of flashing daybeacon #61
      Minimum depth: 5 feet, but depths rise rapidly as the shores of Bottle Key are approached
      Swing Room: unlimited Foul Weather Protection: poor

      Rating:

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      Comments from Cruisers (2)

      1. Russ -  April 6, 2013 - 3:47 pm

        We anchored here on 4/2/13. We were at least a 1/4 of a mile or more off Bottle Key. No one else around. We were open to a 10 kt East wind that kicked up around 3AM, but we held firm. Very quiet. Mosquito’s were a bit hungry though.

        Reply to Russ
      2. ron -  May 26, 2010 - 12:35 pm

        Bottle Key is a beautiful wildlife anchorage. We anchored there on the way to Key West and without the faint lights of the mainland, you could be anywhere in the world. There were no other boats and we anchored in 6-8 feet of good sand and gravel. When you make your approach, stay clear of the shoal area to port when you’re coming from the intercoastal and work your way around to the other side of the key(Florida Bayside) and drop your hook. We caught a lot of small sharks and because it was blowy, the water was not clear. But, if you like seclusion and draw 5 ft or less, give it a try. Unfortunately, we didn’t visit Butternut since we were meeting friends in Key West, but it is equally as beautiful. I bet it is stunning during the windless days of Summer.

        Reply to ron
    • 45. Back-country – Manatee Keys Anchorage

      45. Back-country – Manatee Keys Anchorage
      Statute Mile:1147.5
      Lat/Lon: 25 04.587 North/080 36.284 West
      Location: on the charted bubble of deep water well east of Manatee Keys
      Minimum depth: 5 feet, but you must follow a long, unmarked channel between the Waterway and the anchorage to maintain these depths
      Special Comment: Accessing this anchorage calls for a long cruise from the Waterway, following a long, unmarked channel – I just couldn’t help giving this haven a two anchor rating anyway, as it is so beautiful and well off the beaten trac
      Swing Room: unlimited Foul Weather Protection: poor
      Foul Weather Shelter: Poor, open to all but southwesterly winds

      Rating:

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