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The Salty Southeast
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Archive For: EASTERN FLORIDA – All Cruising News

  • New Banana River Anchorage (north of Canaveral Barge Canal Lock) And Recent Shuttle Launch

    Captains Mel and Jean are quite right. The anchorage they describe below is not in the Net’s “Eastern Florida Anchorage Directory.” I’ve certainly never tried to drop the hook here. However, I took at look at chart 11476, and it looks as this this cruising duo found a side channel, which I (and I suspect most other cruisers) have always missed. No guarantees on depths, but what an interesting place to watch the shuttle launch!

    Dear Claiborne,
    I don’t see a spot for this on the website. We are anchored on the Banana River north of the Port Canaveral Lock in position 28 degrees 25.151 N and 080 degrees 38.208W, with the idea of watching the launch of Space Shuttle Discovery on Monday. We really don’t know that we’re in the best spot; just going on what we’ve read that space launches seen from the Banana River are most spectacular. This is definitely not a protected position and we’re hoping that the forecast holds for light winds. Will let you know how it works out. Boats are no longer permitted north of the powerlines (less than a mile north of the Barge Canal) during launches (according to the Coast Guard whom I called.) I expected a lot of boats here but most seem to be partying on the small spoil islands. We’ll see what tomorrow brings. The launch is Monday at 6:21 AM.
    Mel and Jean Thomason

    Dear Claiborne,
    After two days of speculating which of the structures might be the shuttle, we finally had a clear view of the shuttle on the back of that big rocket on Sunday. Sunday night it was illuminated – beautiful! Though visible to the naked eye from our anchorage, it was very clear with binoculars. The Launch went off without a hitch. Seeing that big rocket rise slowly at first and then more rapidly into the sky was about what we expected from years of seeing launches on TV. What we weren’t prepared for (and what made it all the more real) was the rumble and vibration which shook us a minute after blast off. Then I could imagine how it must feel to be in that shuttle headed out into the wild blue yonder (except it was still dark and what we mostly saw was the flame of the rocket). Was it worth waiting three days? You bet. Was the Banana river anchorage a good place? I can’t imagine a better place, both for seeing the shuttle beforehand and for the launch. It’s probably the closest unobstructed view if the shuttle is launching from pad 39 A.

  • Amelia Island Yacht Basin (Statute Mile 720.5)

    The entrance to Amelia Island Yacht Basin lies just off the AICW, immediately north of the Kingsley Creek Bridges.

    Sanctuary and crew did not care for Amelia Island Yacht Basin. It is well protected, but the basin is very shallow. We stayed there Sunday, 3/29/2010, and we were in the mud at the tee head at low tide. They charge $1.60/ft for the boat, which is competitive for the area, and $20 for 50A electric, which is theft. Anyway, we couldn’t use the heat pump because of the low water levels, and they griped but finally gave back $5.36 for that. And, you’re a very long walk from the office, too.
    Net is, for comfort and convenience, you’re better off at Fernandina Beach.
    Just Jim’s opinion…
    Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary

    Amelia is very protected, but you are a distance from town. Fernandina is not as protected, especially if you are on the outside dock, but you are right in the middle of town with many great restaurants and quaint shops.
    Glen Moore
    Last Dance

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Amelia Island Yacht Basin

  • Fernandina Harbor Marina (Statute Mile 716.5)

    I’m glad that Captain Arnold had such a good experience at Fernandina Harbor Marina. We’ve always enjoyed our time spent here.

    Spent a happy three days at Fernandida Harbor Marina – only $1 a ft per day including power – at first class slips with excellent facilities – including a great new Captains Lounge with wide screen tv and a computer with WiFi. Freds – not the best grocery store in town – is within walking distance but with luck you can hitch a ride to Publix from friendly locals.
    Captain Arnold

    Click Here For The Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Fernandina Harbor Marina

  • GREAT List of “Friendly” Mooring Places

    Captain Jim Quince has done the cruising community a HUGE favor by putting together a list of “Friendly Mooring Places,” which are usually, but not always, free. Of course, Captain Jim’s list goes beyond the Southeastern USA waters we deal with here on the Cruisers’ Net, but there’s plenty of info here concerning “friendly” places from North Carolina to New Orleans.

    The list of free docks, etc. is now the Friendly Moorings List online at :

    Thanks to all of you that have provided input to the list. It has been updated almost daily since I first posted it and has had many additions and revisions. If I already have sent you a copy of the list, I suggest you delete that list as an out of date list and use this one. You can cut and paste it into a new document if you prefer….no strings attached!
    I will continue to add to the list as new information is provided and as we are lucky enough to visit many more places on the list. Please do send any information you think is valuable to other cruisers. I am also including good value stops with relatively low costs like some FL State Parks and Mooring Fields. (Note that we rarely eat at restaurants due to Vaughn’s food allergies. If you know of restaurants with dock space, tell me so I can include them too.)
    This Friendly Mooring List will hopefully be a good outcome from the change of status for the Venice “free” (overnight) dock!!
    Thanks, Jim

  • St. Johns River Cruising Notes

    As always, Captain Arnold gives a world of good cruising info!

    Subject: St Johns River
    Cruising News: 1) After spending a tough 4 weeks or so repainting ‘Pisces’ at Green Cove Springs Marina, my TOTAL bill (including liveaboard on the hard and 3 gallons of good bottom paint) was $806. I defy anyone to find a lower priced DIY yard on the ICW.
    2) Spent a night at Ortega Yacht Club Marina just south of Jacksonville – very nice – 90c per ft. Grocery and large marine store nearby, nice showers etc. Nearby – the famous Huckins yard with some splendid boats docked.
    3) Spent 2 nights – FOC – at Jacksonville Landing. No power or fuel but adjacent to several good restaurants and stores with a long boardwalk. Be warned – the river current is high at this point which churns up a nasty foam which left an equally nasty stain on my fresh painted hull! Took a fair amount of scrubbing to get it off. You can catch the Skyride to the bus depot which will get you to Walmart and other such stores.
    4) Spent a pleasant night at Seafarers Marina – ($1 a ft including power) – nice hospitable owners. No shops nearby but kind liveaboards will take you to a grocery store.
    5) Coastguard and Police boats are everywhere on the St Johns often pulling over and boarding boats for no good reason. We can all say it’s in our safety interests – but I find it both annoying and an infringement on our privacy rights. I don’t like their guns either.
    Onwards to Fernandina Beach – which I like – and the Georgia border which I like even better.
    Captain Arnold

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Ortega Yacht Club Marina

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Seafarers Marina

  • Sailfish Marina (Manatee Pocket, near Stuart, Florida – near St. M. 988)

    Sailfish Marina of Stuart is the first facility that will come abeam to the west, after entering Manatee Pocket!

    We are staying a couple nights at Sailfish Marina, just off the ICW, in the Manatee Pocket, near Stuart, Fla. They give a Boat US discount off on fuel. They give 25% off their slips, making it only $1.50 per foot, very reasonable for Fla. The washer and dryer are only $1.00 each. For reservations, call 772-283-1122 for Kay, the office manager. The owners Jan and Butch Bayley are very helpful too.
    Cindy Shue

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Sailfish Marina of Stuart

  • Eau Gallie Yacht Club (Melbourne, FL, near Statute Mile 914)

    Eau Gallie Yacht Club is located behind Dragon Point, off the Indian River section of the AICW. They are also just south of Telemar Bay Marina.
    Eau Gallie Yacht Club is a member of the Florida Council of Yacht Clubs, and. like all the members of this FINE organization, they readily accept visitors from other FCYC member clubs. Check with the club in advance to see if reciprocal arrangements are available from a yacht club to which you happen to belong. If you are not o a yacht club member, guest dockage is probably not in the offing for you here.

    Eau Gallie Yacht Club?
    We stayed there last Sunday, because of a line of strong t’storms that blew thru. The dockmaster’s name is John Gourmley. He requires 24 hr advance notice for advance reservations, ESPECIALLY for weekends. The reciprocity docks are generally tee heads, so side ties. It’s little exposed to west winds, but generally not too bad. The reciprocity fee is quite high; $2.00/ft of actual LOA (anchor to swim platform or dinghy) and $12 for 50A (or 2 x 30A) electric. The facility is very nice. There’s a nice pool that guests may use. Showers are excellent! There’s a formal dining room which requires jackets and ties, but also a lounge and bar that is completely casual. It’s a two city avenue walk to Publix (abt 3/4 mile, one way).
    John is a curmudgeon, but you can “yes, sir” him to death successfully.
    Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary
    Currently at St. Augustine, FL

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Eau Gallie Yacht Club

  • New Eastern Florida AICW Anchorage (near Statute Mile 947)

    The new (at least to yours truly) anchorage described below by Captains John and Angie will be found just south of the old Jones Fruit Dock location (for Waterway veterans that remember this venerable stopover). This is one of the new overnight havens for which we have had input here on the Net, with which I am completely unfamiliar. Anyone else dropped the hook here. If so, please click the “Comment on This Posting/Marina/Anchorage/Bridge” link below, and share your experiences.

    You missed the best anchorage in this area, at about MM 947 behind the small spoil islet. We went in just N of flashing red marker “112″ and never saw less than 8 ft. We were there recently in March on a Sat. with 6 other boats, four left late in the day. The ICW was busy and noisy during the day, but no wakes reached us. Protected from most directions of wind except S.
    John and Angie

    I e-mailed Captains John and Angie, and asked for more details on the location of this anchorage. They were kind enough to forward the reply below:

    Hi Claiborne
    The “spoil islet” is on the W side of the ICW and the anchorage is on the W side of it.
    N 27deg 43.3min W 80deg 23.9min
    Thanks for all that you do to share good cruising info.
    John and Angie
    m/v Snow Bird
    Leopard 37 powercat

  • Cruising Dog Owners Beware in Fort Lauderdale

    If you happen to berth at the City of Fort Lauderdale Las Olas piers, or stay at one of the other nearby private marinas such as Bahia Mar or Hall Of Fame Marina, be sure NOT to walk your dog on nearby Beach Avenue! Read on.

    Can’t say that I enjoyed my stay in Lauderdale last time I visited. I stayed on my 40 foot boat at the City Marina right near the beach, and took my three dogs walking on the main drag along the sand. I saw the signs banning dogs from the beach, so I kept them on the sidewalk. About 3/4 of the way through the walk, a cop stopped me, demanded to see ID, and told me that I was violating the dog walk ordinance since the beach included the street and sidewalks. I asked him how I was supposed to know that, and he gave me the ignorance is no excuse lecture.
    I wouldn’t have minded if he politely asked me to move over a couple of streets, but the cop held me up for 15 minutes as he did a record check, and thorough interrogation. FYI, I looked like a clean-cut, educated 40 y/o who gave him no lip or attitude.
    When he finally finished with me, I abandoned plans to find a restaurant and do some shopping, returned to the boat, and made plans to continue north the next day. I spent nothing during my stay aside from marina rates for one night’s berthing.
    Amazing difference between Lauderdale and most other places along my trip.
    On the plus side, when I came through the next time, I anchored for a week in Lake Sylvia, and had no problem from neighbors, cops, Natural resource officers or other boaters. Kept a low profile, and had a nicely maintained boat. Must depend on how many dirt dwellers complain to the city as to whether you get bothered or not.
    Bob Martinson

  • Sunset Bay Marina (Stuart, on the South Fork St. Lucie River)

    Seldom have we gotten just a quantity of good messages concerning a newly minted marina facility as those we have received over the last six months for Sunset Bay Marina. If you don’t already know, this facility has risen on the site of the old City of Stuart pier, later a mooring field known as Southpointe Anchorage. Sunset Bay is found just upstream of the old Roosevelt Bridges, on the South Fork of St. Lucie River.

    As I traveled the distance up the St. Lucie River to Sunset Bay Marina, I wondered if it was going to be worth the extra mileage – it was! One of the few places with floating docks – which were excellent. CLEAN washrooms/showers/laundry. Store with marine supplies. And yes the restaurant was excellent, both in terms of food and service. And that is one of the two key attractions to this facility – it has everything but it is all about SERVICE. They specialize in that. Assistance with docking and experienced advice. There’s get acquainted parties, bbqs and other activities for both long term and transient boaters to enjoy. I was only there one night but it is definitely a place I would visit again, maybe even for the long term!
    Lois Lipton

    I agree with Lois’s comments and add that the facility includes a large mooring field, with all the amenities available for boaters on the moorings. There are clean showers, new washers & dryers, bikes, cruisers’ lounge with a printer for our laptops, and friendly service. All this for only $10/night. The location in downtown Stuart is another plus: restaurants, shops, Publix, farmers’ market every Sunday, music on the Riverwalk. We stopped for a day or two, but will stay for a couple of weeks.
    Julie and John Stocksdale

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Sunset Bay Marina

  • Peck Lake Anchorage (Statute Mile 992)

    As I’ve said before, Peck Lake is the best anchorage lying near the AICW between the Waterway’s intersection with St. Lucie River/Inlet, and the Palm Beaches. The only trick part, at least for me, has been finding the best spot to leave the AICW, and cruise into the anchorage’s deeper waters. Captain Murtha does a good job of answering that question below.

    We anchored in Peck Lake in early March 2010. Left ICW approximately 100′ South of G19 on a heading of 60. It was dead low tide and we never saw depths below 6.5″. Since the anchorage was a bit crowded, 10 -12 vessels, we approached the small tower and went N about 100 yards till we found readings dropping to upper 5’s. At that point we back tracked S. a bit, dropped 125′ , and had plenty of swing room for our 45IP.
    We had to leave early the next day, but it looks like one of the more interesting anchorages in that area.
    J. Murtha
    IP45, FeelinLucky

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Anchorage Directory Listing For Peck Lake Anchorage

  • Fort Lauderdale Marinas, Dining and Shoreside Transportation – Captain Jane Reports

    I know, I know, we cruisers have plenty of grudges we could hold against Fort Lauderdale’s sometimes lack of hospitality to anchoring cruisers, however…

    Water Taxi "tour" and transportation around Ft. Lauderdale

    You could have a really good visit here at one of the local marinas. Some years ago, we stayed at Bahia Mar, partly because it figured so prominently in John D. MacDonald’s Travis McGee novels… however, it is seriously pricey and after its recent renovation, does not seem to offer any recession appeal. This season, we briefly flirted with Bahia Mar but left it to the mega-yachts for whom the dockage is probably the equivalent of a tip to the fellow who fills their fuel tanks and returned to the more gently priced and very affable Hall of Fame Marina next door.
    Hall of Fame marina is as good as we remembered it, clean, efficient and with friendly staff. The location is excellent — a variety of restaurants and the beach are an easy walk. The heads and showers are clean, but alas, during the brutal winter of 2009/2010 they were not heated — not something usually a concern for Florida cruising. The Hall of Fame Marina is adjacent to the Fort Lauderdale Aquatic Complex. If there are no swim meets going on, the Hall of Fame marina will give you free passes to swim there. So far, we’ve only managed to show up during swim meet times (we are two for two on this), but have enjoyed the sound effects of the swim meets and the excitement of the college students competing there.
    Also in the Aquatic complex is the Museum of Swimming at the International Swimming Hall of Fame. If you have any interest in the sport, this would make a worthy visit. Monitors show memorable moments of Mark Spitz going for and getting the gold medal in the 1968 Olympics in Mexico City and include his commentary on his strategy for those races — I’m not a sports-focused person, so the strategies he employed were news to me.
    We did walk over to Las Olas City Marina, about a fifteen minute walk from Hall of Fame Marina and check it out. It looks good and the rates are competitive with Hall of Fame, except, Boat US members get an impressive 25% off for up to 3 consecutive days and for up to 6 days per calendar year. While you are closer to a water taxi here, it is a much longer, perhaps even deterring, walk to restaurants and the beach.

    Dining a short walk away.
    Luckily for us, a professional captain and his partner were aboard the mega-yacht beside us and, in addition to offering us extra heaters (this was early January) gave us better dining advice than we were getting from our iPhone Urban Spoon app. They steered us away from our planned restaurant and recommended Coconuts next door to the marina. For the exercise (and I admit, to see for ourselves,) we walked to the sports bar where we were hoping to get a good fish sandwich, took one look at the seedy crowd and a whiff of the cigarettes and walked back to Coconuts where outside the entrance door a chef was cooking up a fantastic looking paella on an open fire.
    The Captain and partner happened to be sitting at the table adjacent to ours and we followed their good advice to share an order of the paella (plenty and delicious!) and to take advantage of the Monday and Tuesday night half price on any bottle of wine. The paella is a special that was initially supposed to be a once a week or once in a while thing, but customer enthusiasm has made it a several nights a week special. They do sell out — and for good reason — so call ahead and come early if you want some.
    Other dining advice from the Captain, who is of Greek heritage, is Greek Express, a Greek diner by the beach, also only a short walk from the Hall of Fame Marina. We had excellent falafel and souvlaki there for lunch one afternoon. The place doesn’t look like much, but the food really is good.
    One more suggestion — if you like bratwurst, the Biergarten is on the way to the beach. Good, inexpensive and can hit the spot if it’s your thing.

    Getting around without a car.

    Sneak peek at the Museum of Swimming at the International Swimming Hall of Fame

    Friday through Sunday, there is a low-cost and sometimes free trolley that can get you to many places in Lauderdale, including the Publix supermarket. The website says it’s daily, but when we were there, we were told it’s only Friday through Sunday. We were not there on the weekend, so we cannot confirm this.
    We can confirm the Water Taxi, however. From Hall of Fame Marina, two stops are equidistant. One at Las Olas and one near Bahia Mar in the other direction. The water taxi runs daily and at $15 per adult ($11 for Seniors and children and a less expensive evening only rate) we think it’s pricey unless you plan to use it for a whole day’s touring. The driver generally gives entertaining schtick about the houses and megayachts you pass and local lore — my favorite is that we’re not supposed to know which yacht belongs to Mayor Bloomberg of NYC. You can think of it as an entertaining guided tour of Lauderdale that happens to get you to somewhere you’d like to go…
    We managed to get to West Marine by getting out at water taxi stop number 7 via the water taxi. It was a little more walking than we wanted but we got there and snagged a good lunch on our way back to the water taxi stop. We also stumbled upon the International Market & Wine Depot where we did a little provisioning. Proprietor Robert Pastura said he is happy to bring orders or purchases to your boat at Bahia Mar, Hall of Fame Marina and Las Olas City Marina as it’s on the way home for, if I’m remembering correctly, his sister. They have a good selection of nuts, grains, meat, cheeses, wine, etc. Their address is 1428 S. #. 17th Street and the phone number is (954) 523-1400.
    Jane Tigar

    For the latest information on the Fort Lauderdale Sun Trolley go to
    Jane Tigar


    The two messages below from Captain Faughn are very good news indeed. Heretofore,  the city of Fort Lauderdale has consistently ignored Florida state law in regards to anchoring. Now, at least for the moment, they are complying. HOWEVER, there is a new threat to Florida anchoring rights on which we will shortly report!

    Subject: Ft. Lauderdale Anchoring
    Cruising News: Claiborne,
    We are currently anchored, and having a great time anchored in Sunset Lake in Miami Beach. We will be heading up to Ft. Lauderdale in a couple of days. So, I read with great interest your postings about the problems and potential problems with anchoring in Ft. Lauderdale. Since this has been a great stop for us in the past, I called the Ft. Lauderdale Marine Division of the Police Department to ask what they are enforcing right now. The officer told me they are no longer enforcing the 24 hour anchoring rule and you may anchor in Ft. Lauderdale and use your tender to land at a dock, which allows you to do so, and enjoy the town and provision your boat. They are in compliance with the new Florida state law with regards to anchoring and cruising boats. To us this was great news since we do enjoy visiting one of if not the largest West Marine Stores and of course Blue Water books not to mention many of the other attractions. I believe this is new information for you. By the way, thanks for all of the info you have on your website.
    Jim Faughn
    S/V Freedom a Gemini 105M

    Cruising News: I emailed previously that I had called Ft. Lauderdale Marine Police and they said they were in compliance with FL State Law. I am currently anchored in Lake Sylvia along with 8 other boats and everything is just fine except for the rain and front passing. It appears this should go back on the list of places you can anchor.
    Capt. Jim Faughn

  • New AICW Anchorage Just North of St. Lucie River/Inlet – Okeechobee Waterway Intersection

    Below Captain Hardin describes an anchor down spot I’ve never tried before. And, to the best of my recollection, we’ve never had a posting here on the Cruisers’ Net about dropping the hook on these waters. Has anyone else anchored here???????

    I guess the blind pig finds a acorn every once in a while. Went into manatee pocket at St Lucie, wind was blowing out of the south today at 15+. The holding was not great, Ii think that “skippy” gives it a 3. Stayed for a couple of hours and watched the anchor alarm, chartplotter did not show movement but the MKI eyeball said otherwise, pulled anchor with the intention of going to Jensen Beach at (SB) MM 981.8 as the holding was a 4. North on the ICW I turned E just past G233, north of the shoal and then back south to the island. anchored less than 100yds from the island in 7.5+ at low tide. The island blocks the south wind and the shoal 6″ protects from the wakes. Winds in the lee are less than 5. Seems like a great stop, Roxann would love to get off onto the island. Beaches are pure white sand. I think this is a very good stop with south winds and the dog can go ashore. N2711.04/W08010.92.
    Charles Hardin

  • Good Boat Upholsterer in Stuart, FL

    What an interesting business name!

    We had all our upholstery done for our boat at Covergirls Upholstery. Wewere very pleased. They may be able to help you out.
    279 Southeast Monterey Road, Stuart, FL
    (772) 286-5776

  • Unhappy Comment Concerning Melbourne Harbor Marina (Statute Mile 919)

    We were coming north and called in from the Palm Bay area to get a slip for the night and gave them all of the information about the boat and an eta of 6:40 P.M. twenty minutes after sundown. We
    were told they would be closed and there would be nobody there after hours. We asked if we could pull in and tie up to an empty slip and pay them in the morning. we were [told] that we could not
    do that and not to enter the marina after hours and to go someplace else. They advertise their marina to boaters and then turn them down when they need their services the most (it was turning
    dark with small craft warnings from the Coast Guard).
    John Adams

  • Good Review of Dinner Key Mooring Field ( St. M. 1094.5)

    If you’ve been following our fellow cruisers’ postings here on the Cruisers’ Net concerning the waters in and just south of Miami, you already know the city of Miami opened a new, large mooring field just off Dinner Key Marina, a few months ago. While we have had one negative comment here on the Net concerning this facility, all the rest, like Captain account below, have been overwhelmingly positive.

    March 2010. I stayed at the new Dinner Key Mooring Facility from 3/1/10 to 3/6/10 and it was one of the greatest experiences on the water that I have had. The mooring field is located just east of the main Dinner Key Marina. I was greeted by a shuttle boat that took me to shore to square away my paperwork (only $19/day). They have showers and a pumpout boat. It was a great deal.
    A friend asked why did I not just free anchor and sneak onto their facility to use their bathrooms. I answered him that I am not a thief nor do I want to be associated with thieves. Plus, Dinner Key Marina is really serious about their security. I witnessed the Miami Police arrest a tresspasser who thought he was entitled to free everything just because he was sailing.
    Listen, I believe you you should be able to drop anchor in the middle of nowhere, but Miami is a major city and I don’t expect to have access to upland facilities without paying something. It turns out that it’s cheaper to stay overnight at Dinner Key Mooring Facility, with all it has to offer, than to park your car in Coconut Grove over night.
    I almost forgot, the $19/day also includes parking. I LOVE the new Dinner Key Mooring Field!!

    Click Here For The Cruisers’ Net’s Florida Keys Marina Directory Listing For Dinner Key Marina

  • Sunset Bay Marina (Stuart, FL on the St. Lucie River, South Fork) And the Roosevelt Bridges

    There have already been many postings praising Sunset Bay Marina here on the Cruisers’ Net. For those who don’t know, this facility is the new incarnation of the Stuart City Marina, once known as Southpointe Anchorage. The new version has plentiful slip dockage, plus an extensive mooring field.
    What makes Captain Dave’s note below so valuable, is his advice about the nearby Roosevelt Bridges, which lie between Sunset Bay and the AICW. These old spans were supposed to be removed with the adjacent high-rise span opened, but that’s never happened!

    Ditto to all the good comments. We agree and will be there for the next three months.
    Note of interest: I suggest calling the Roosevelt Bridge for an opening before going under the new 65′ bridge. The bridge tender is very accommodating and will let you know when she is about to open so you can proceed safely. Be prepared to stop and possibly turn around as the railroad bridge closed without warning just after we started to go under the new bridge.
    On weekends with many boaters and a strong tide racing thru there, it can get interesting.
    Capt Dave

  • Green Cove Springs Marina (St. Johns River, between Jacksonville and Palatka)

    When I received the laudatory note below from Captain Arnold, I queried him about the reports we had received here on the Cruisers’ Net a couple of months ago, that the docks at Green Cove Springs Marina had been “condemned.” I know from my own visits to this facility, that their physical plant has never been what I would describe as “Bristol.” Be sure to read Arnold’s reply in the second note below.

    The lowest cost marina for haul out and DIY yard I have found on the entire ICW is Green Cove Springs Marina some 20 miles south of Jacksonville, FL. So much so that they are currently expanding the yard to accommodate 100 more vessels. 25 ton capacity travel lift – and they also step masts and arrange special repairs.
    This is a great marina of the old style. Lots of large bluewater sailboats here – mainly from north USA but also from Canada, Australia, Germany, Denmark, UK, Brazil. The owner types who sail the oceans as if going for a Sunday drive. Very international and friendly people. Even in the cold weather they’re playing bridge and chess on the heated patio. One sailor brought a huge case of fresh picked grapefruit – and another (limit one per person) a big box of yogourt. Not only every possible repair and renovation going on but also a bevy of salty sea stories. They have restrooms, laundry, and a ships store selling stuff at 10% over wholesale cost. Shops and stores are about a mile away – but always many people pleased to give you a ride.
    I highly recommend this marina. Check them out at
    Captain Arnold
    MV Pisces

    Good morning Claiborne.
    My understanding is that the dock issue is more of an insurance battle to raise premiums. It is also because the dock itself is the property of Reynolds Alluminum and getting them to do anything is both difficult and time consuming. There are many much larger ships at the other 11 docks and really the docks are very durable. Politics may also be involved.
    Certainly all boats once tied to the docks have had to leave – but many still store and /or liveaboard either on the hard or on the many mooring balls in 9ft of fresh water. The emphasis of the marina these days is as an excellent vey friendly DIY yard and at prices well below any other marina I have found on the ICW. They have just finished an extra area for another 100 or so boats – with electrical supply and water supply. I would guess there are some 300 boats currenly here on the hard and another 50 at slips (but full).
    It’s another Indiantown though they don’t sell fuel.
    Captain Arnold
    MV Pisces

    Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Green Cove Springs Marina

  • Florida Petroleum Company (Fernandina Beach, FL – near Statute Mile 715.5)

    Any of you who have ever taken a gander at my “Cruising Guide to Eastern Florida” knows already about the HIGH docks at Florida Petroleum Company in Fernandina Beach. Yes, indeed, this fracility often has good diesel fuel prices, and many cruisers fill up here time after time, but the docking accomodations are far from ideal for cruising size craft.

    Subject: FLA Petroleum
    Cruising News: We stopped here last week when the wind was blowing pretty hard from the west. The fuel dock is a commercial dock for larger boats and was about 8 feet above my lower deck. We docked ok but got lucky with that wind shoving us toward the dock. Leaving was another matter. Difficult to get away without scratching or marring something. Not the best place to go in a west wind.
    Capt Dave

    Click Here To View the Current Fuel Prices at Florida Petroleum Company

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