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

  • Holland Marine Recommended As Service Yard on St. Johns River (Green Cove Springs, FL)

    The series of messages below were copied from the MTOA List-Serve. All of us at the Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net continue to recommend membership in the MTOA to ALL cruisers.
    Anyway, the info below will prove to be invaluable to ALL captains cruising the waters of delight St. Johns River, who find their vessels in need of repair. Green Cove Spring lies along the western shores of the St. Johns River, south of Jacksonville, and north of Palatka.

    Because the St. Johns have been my local waters for about 24 years, I made every one on the cruise who would listen, both by e-mail and in person that if they needed any help what so ever with their vessel, to contact either me personally or HOLLAND MARINE in Green Cove Springs. I’ve used them for about 15 years with excellent work and fair prices. In fact, I stopped there myself on the return trip to have a 9 year old leaking raw water pump replaced. Stayed, no charge at their docks with power and water for the overnights needed to complete the job.
    Les Rothman

    I agree with Leslie, Holland Marine gives great service at a reasonable price.
    George Miller

    I agree with Leslie, Holland Marine gives great service at a reasonable price..”
    I also have had great service from Holland Marine, however have heard mixed results on the diesel mechanic they use. One point is to make sure your boat is secure in the yard and insurance is paid up. A good friend had $7000 worth of equipment stolen from his boat overnight last year when it was on the hard in the yard. Holland’s did not cover the loss so my friend had to file a claim with his insurance.

  • GREAT Chocolate Shop Found in St. Augustine – Captain Jane Reports

    Every December, I seem to get at least one email with purported scientific evidence that chocolate is good for you. Yet, I promise, we weren’t looking for chocolate, we were just waiting for the Red Coats Are Coming parade the other night in St. Augustine … And there was the sign: Claude’s Chocolates. Hand made Belgian chocolate. Oh.
    So, here’s my theory. If you’re going to have sweets and other things good cruising yogis and yoginis are supposed to avoid, I say, do it right, with intention, focus and complete commitment to the present moment. Make indulgence an art form.
    Claude’s Chocolates in St. Augustine is here to help. In the name of yogic science, infused with the holiday spirit of historical reenactment parades, and out of abiding respect and love for our editor Claiborne Young and his first rate first mate Karen, I sampled the following items at Claude’s and pronounce them worthy of chocolate yoga:
    1. Dark chocolate bark with hazelnuts and almonds.
    2. Dark chocolate covered orange peel dusted with ancho chili powder.
    3. Dark chocolate covered almonds dusted with cocoa.
    4. Dark chocolate bark with nuts and fruit.
    I’m allergic to milk, but my first rate first mate Michael tried — twice — the soft serve chocolate ice cream.
    I asked the lovely lady who served us whether the chocolate is really made here and she said, not here but in our other store on US 1 in St. Augustine. She added: “He buys the chocolate from Belgium, but it is all made here.” Close enough for “here”; note to self-rationalizing self: Locavore virtue added to it tastes ridiculously good.
    Is he nice? I asked. “We’ve been married for 35 years,” she replied with a wink. “I think so.” Note to self-rationalizing self: Nice chocolatier, nice chocolatier’s wife, this really is hand-made.
    I have two words for you: Go there.
    Claude’s Chocolates. 51 King Street, St. Augustine (short walk from Municipal Marina). Phone: (904) 808-8395.
    Captain Jane
    S/V Lady Jane

  • St. Augustine’s New Recession-Friendly ($10 and under!) and First Rate Greek Restaurant “Gyro House” (St. M. 778)

    Wow, sounds like our fearless, roving reporter, Captain Jane Tigar, has come up with a real cuisine find in St. Augustine. See you at the Gyro House!!!

    Unless you are an aficionado of “hole in the wall” restaurants, don’t let this unassuming-looking little storefront style restaurant fool you. Gyro House of St. Augustine offers truly fine and truly home-made authentic Greek and Middle Eastern food — with a touch of Sicilian thrown in.
    It’s hard not to make a fuss over the reasonable prices, but please trust us on this — this is great food at any price. This is artisanal real food made by someone who knows food and cares about feeding you well.
    Gyro House’s short yet varied menu offers the best gyro (bearing no resemblance to the ubiquitous salty mystery meat that goes by the same name) we have ever tasted. Actually, everything we tried was the best version we’d ever tasted.
    Almost everything is house-made and the short yet varied menu of this little restaurant reveals the owner’s and his wife’s combined ethnic heritages — Greek, Middle Eastern and Sicilian. Adam, the half-Greek and half-Jordanian owner, says the Gyro is the crown jewel of his sandwiches. He chops, spices and compresses the gyro meat on premises before cooking it on the rotisserie. Grape leaves are also house-made using Jasmine rice from Egypt — I don’t think I’ve ever eaten a fresher or more tender stuffed grape leaf, ever.
    The falafel — this ranks right up there with the falafel on the Rue des Rosiers in Paris. That’s not some kind of inside joke, until this week, that was our favorite falafel on the planet. Fresh, full of cumin (I love that spice!), not over-cooked, perfect balance of crunchy outside and tender inside. Kibbee — pine nuts and I frankly don’t remember what else, but again, best version I’ve ever had. The tortellini feature a Sicilian pesto; the pita mini-pizzas feature a Genovese pesto. The other sandwich offerings include Chicken Shawarma, Chicken Caesar and Mediterranean Veggie.
    Sandwiches are $6.99 and for $9.99 you can upgrade to a platter with a choice of two sides including tortellini, jasmine rice, kibbee, falafel, olives from Jerusalem, spanakopita, house-marinated artichokes. There are also salads, including Greek Salad, Tomato Salad with mozzarella pearls and basil, Caesar Salad and Tortellini Salad at $4.99 for a small and $6.99 for large. If the salad that was tucked in our gyros is any indication — fresh, crisp romaine, shaved onion and fresh chopped parsley — then the salads will be excellent, too.
    We were too full for dessert but reports are that the home-made baklava is, yes, you guessed it, the best ever. Based on the other offerings, I’m willing to bet it’s true.
    If you’re lucky, you will happen upon Gyro House just when you’re running out of olive oil on board. Organic olive oil from Genoa is for sale by the liter for $20.
    Gyro House is a moderate-to-short walk from the St. Augustine Municipal Marina, located at 210 St. George Street; that’s on the left side of the central park (facing in-land). Hours are 11 AM to 7 PM, 7 days a week, except major holidays such as Thanksgiving and Christmas Day.
    Captain Jane
    S/V Lady Jane

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of The St. Augustine Downtown Waterfront

  • Praise for Pelican Yacht Club, AICW Statute Mile 965.5

    Pelican Yacht Club is located on the southern shores of the Fort Pierce Inlet, east-southeast of flashing buoy #13.

    Spent the last couple of nights here and wanted to mention that it’s a little slice of “Old Florida” here just off the Fort Pierce Inlet. Nice folks, well kept (fixed) docks, a little tight for maneuvering in and out but plenty of water for our 5′6″ draft. Two good restaurant finds within a five minute walk: Dave’s Diner, for what we might argue is the best of several very good breakfast places that we have found along the Waterway, and the “Tiki” like bar and grill On the Edge – great setting, very good food, welcoming service, mix of locals and visitors.
    Captain Leigh Hough

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

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Pelican Yacht Club

  • High Praise for Hammock Beach Resort – Marina at Yacht Harbor Village, AICW Statute Mile 802

    Hammock Beach Resort Marina flanks the eastern banks of the AICW immediately north of the Palm Coast Parkway high-rise bridge in Palm Coast, FL.

    We stayed here over the long Thanksgiving weekend; checked in on Wednesday the 24th and out on Saturday the 27th. Paid $2.60/foot, including service charge and Florida tax, and were BLOWN AWAY by the place. For that price, you get a great spot at top of the line floating docks, excellent service (from Suzanne and Neil), the most beautiful shower/bathroom facility we have ever seen, a gorgeous pool on the marina side, free pump-out, AND full access to the resort amenities. You can use the resort pools and beach – towels provided – by using the (no extra charge) 24X7 shuttle service; you can dine at any of several restaurants, all very good, at several price points. Not a “bargain” spot, but worth every penny of the charge if you are looking for a little slice of paradise from the comfort of your very own boat.
    Captain Leigh Hough

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Hammock Beach Resort Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Hammock Beach Resort Marina

  • Report on Addison Point Bridge Anchorages, AICW Statute Mile 885

    These anchorages lie north and south of the NASA Causeway near Titusville, FL

    On a night of blustery (gusting to 25+) winds from the east, we set the hook on the SE corner of the Addison Point Bridge, and the holding (in about 7′ or so) was outstanding. We had only one other boat with us, but felt quite secure even as we had a middle-of-the-night squall. Nice spot, too – nothing really there, no place to land, but pleasant for watching the sun set across the water – and if there had been a shuttle launch as planned for 30 November, it would have been a sweet spot to view it, too!

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For Addison Point Bridge Anchorages

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Addison Point Bridge Anchorages

  • Allenhurst Haulover Bridge, AICW Statute Mile 869

    This bascule bridge crosses the AICW in Haulover Canal at statute mile 869.

    Just a note to say that on Sunday of Thanksgiving weekend we could not raise the bridge tender on Ch 09, but (s)he opened for us on the one long/one short signal in perfect time to our speed. A little nerve racking for a moment, but just a tip in case you can’t make voice contact.
    Captain Leigh Hough

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Bridge Directory Listing For Allenhurst Haulover Bridge

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Allenhurst Haulover Bridge

  • Good Visit to St. Augustine Mooring Field, AICW Statute Mile 778

    Praise for the two new mooring fields near downtown St. Augustine continues to come in. The mooring fields lie just north and south of the Bridge of Lions.

    Had a very nice three day stay (November 21-23) in the new mooring field north of the new Bridge of Lions; this is the “SM” (for San Marco) field that is in front of Bay Street and the Castillo de San Marco. For $20/day, you have access to the dinghy dock and the bathhouse (very nice facility), and to a pump out boat (we didn’t use the service so I don’t know the schedule). The moorings are about a month old at this writing; we had not understood the system, and when the installer came by he told us how to correctly attach ourselves (with the “keyhole” much closer to the boat than we had understood) and even sent his diver to detach us so we could easily make the correction. I know the installation of moorings has been controversial in the cruising community, but given the shallow depths, the proximity of the seawall, the channel and the bridge, and the excellent access to marina services and the attractions of Saint Augustine, I have to say that I think the $20 is a bargain. Discounts for longer stays, I understand. Captain Leigh Hough

    A reader requested an explanation of the term “keyhole” and here is Captain Hough’s response:

    Hi Larry. I was afraid that terminology would be confusing. So there is a yellow “float” attached by a line to the ball itself. It may be sitting down inside the “bowl” on the top of the ball. Above that float is a loop (it is rigid, not a line, therefore my description of it as a “keyhole”) through which you want to pass your line (we attached to something below the float originally, and the installer came along and corrected us, and said they had seen several folks make the same mistake). The office is supposed to be giving people better directions now (so said the installers); the moorings had only been in for a month or so when we were there in November. I am attaching a not-great photo; I may have another more helpful one and will dig it out and send it along. Happy New Year!

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For St. Augustine Northern Anchorage Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For St. Augustine Southern Anchorage Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of St. Augustine Mooring Fields

  • Good Words for Eau Gallie Yacht Basin and Boat Works, AICW Statute Mile 915

    The Eau Gallie Yacht Basin and Boat Works lies north and west of the ICW’s flashing daybeacon #2, and just south of the Eau Gallie high-rise bridge.

    Also a great stop to anchor or dockage is Eau Gallie at MM 915 on Florida¹s ICW. The Eau Gallie Yacht Basin is a friendly place with several restaurants within walking distance. It¹s a well protected harbor and the price was only $1.00 per foot. As spelled out in Skipper Bobs there is also room for two boats to anchor in the basin.
    Jim & Lisa Favors aboard Kismet

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

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Eau Gallie Yacht Basin

  • Cruising Description of the St. Johns River

    Captain Donovan gives us an excellent description of this beautiful river that flows north from central Florida and then east from Jacksonville.

    The St. Johns is a bit of a trip off the ICW, but worth it. You can anchor in several places downstream of Jacksonville, which may be necessary depending on how far you are going the first day and because there is a lot of current in the river at times. In Jacksonville proper, Jacksonville Landing dock downtown on the LDB (north bank) is fun, because it is free and there are several bars and restaurants within a few hundred feet/yards. It can get a little noisy from bands on weekends, but it is all free. We happened to get lucky and go to the Metro Diner for Sunday breakfast. This is a truly classic neighborhood restaurant. We were super lucky to find it, and you will do well to go there, even if you have to use a taxi.
    A little further upstream, under the sometimes problematical railroad bridge, you will get to the Ortega River and the excellent marinas and yards there. It can be shallow, so if you have a deep draft, go slowly. One low drawbridge and you are there.
    Then, go upstream to Six Mile Creek. Feel your way in to the 1000 foot long dock in front of the Outback Crab Shack restaurant. The restaurant is a happening in itself, and if you eat there, the dock is free (no water or electric). Very nice dock, and they never checked to see if we were boaters or if we were docked there. Take the dinghy all the way up the creek for some fun nature viewing.
    If you need a marina by now, check out Palatka. It is about the biggest city until you get to Sanford. Several marinas are here, although we didn’t stay in any. Instead, we continued upstream to Murphy Creek, a delightful anchorage in a winding “creek.” Murphy Creek can be busy with fishermen and small watercraft on weekends, so try to hit it on a weekday. A giant alligator we called “Albert” can be seen sometimes sunning himself on a fallen tree on the bank. It is a deep creek, and good anchoring. There are many, many anchorages and not many marinas until you get past Lake George and toward Astor. Nothing great there either. Anchoring is the way to go.
    There is then a free dock at Welaka, FL that is home to very little except for a marvelous maritime museum, the love of a man named Robert Speas, who is the museum curator and jack-of-all-trades. Meet him.
    A bit further you come to Huntoon Island State Park. Near the north end are several marinas, a few anchorages, great sightseeing, dinghying, and even swimming. Check it all out. It is worth a stop for at least the day. As usual, this place gets very busy on weekends in the winter.
    Then is Lake Monroe, Sanford, and the Monroe Harbor Marina. This is an excellent marina. It is close to town and several restaurants, is full service and even has a courtesy vehicle. Nice folks. Lots of snowbirds stay here for the winter months. It is also close to Orlando, if you are interested in that.
    Then, you reverse your steps and check out the places you missed. Overall, an excellent side trip off the usual beaten path of the ICW.
    I am sorry for the long post, but folks seemed to be asking…
    Captain Bill Donovan

  • Log of a St. Johns River Voyage

    The St. Johns River, the only river in the northern hemisphere that flows north, departs the AICW at Sisters Creek and terminates in central Florida at Sanford.

    Anyone heading up the St. Johns River (Florida) may want to check our blog at: which is a log of our trip to Sanford and back in May/June 2010. It’s a beautiful trip with lots to see and do and great places to anchor or tie up to free (or very inexpensive) docks!
    Captain Bob McLeran and Judy Young aboard MV Sanderling

  • Praise for Huckins Boat Yard, Jacksonville, Fl, off the AICW

    Huckins Boat Yard lies along the northern shores of the mouth of the Ortega River, just upstream of the Roosevelt Boulevard Bridge.

    I wanted to share with the group what a great experience I had with the Huckins Boat Yard up the Ortega River here in Jacksonville, FL! The staff & management were easy to work with, the price was guaranteed, and everybody went out of their way to help you when you needed something! After calling many boat yards between Jacksonville & Port Canaveral about getting our bottom painted we found that Huckins was between 30% & 45% less expensive than any other marina we called. For boats under 44′ the flat price is $27 per foot, for boats 45 to 50 feet the price is $30 per foot. For that price you get:
    * To live aboard your boat while they do the bottom job at no additional charge, must have holding tank
    * Price includes: haul out, power wash, blocking, sanding, painting, put in. The price even includes shaft-zincs!
    * We were hauled on Tuesday morning and were ready to be back in the water on Friday
    * They have scaffolding & planks if you want to wax your boat while on the hard
    * Courtesy Car
    * Publix, West Marine, CVS, and Restaurants all within an easy walk
    This is not a marine with all the bells & whistles, it’s a working boat yard that does quality work. They have a great parts department. woodworking shop, paint & fiberglass team, and engine mechanics. I have no interest in the company but highly recommend them to fellow boaters! It was easily worth our time & money to cruise the extra 22 miles up the St John’s River, and enjoy the free dock at the City Landing for a few days before getting hauled! Call Paul Rogers at Huckins @ 904-389-1125 for more info, tell him Life’s2Short sent you!
    Todd & Brenda Lanning aboard Life’s2Short

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Huckins Boat Yard

  • Excellent Customer Service at Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor, AICW Statute Mile 775.5

    Welcome to Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor! Located in America’s oldest city- St. Augustine, Florida- Camachee Cove is a fully protected marina adjacent to the ICW, and less than a mile from the St. AugusCamachee Cove Yacht Harbor is off the Waterway’s western shoreline, south of unlighted daybeacon #7 and just north of the Vilano Beach Bridge. And, of course, Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor is A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR!

    November 20, 2010
    I believe most boaters generally feel as though they are at the mercy of yacht yards and marinas, and that they always overpay for most goods and services associated with boat ownership and operations. It is not unusual to read of such dissatisfaction in boat related magazines and web sites. Every now and then however, someone in the marine industry goes above and beyond that which is reasonably expected of someone in any business. When that happens I believe we should make that known as well.
    In my recent case, that someone was one Peter Sabo, President and owner of the Camanchee Yacht Yard located at 3070 Harbor Drive, St. Augustine, FL 32084. The yacht yard is associated with the full service Camanchee Yacht Harbor Marina. Both are just off the ICW and just 2 miles from down town St. Augustine.
    Our story began on the evening of Saturday, October 30, 2010 at around 1800 hrs. Cheryl, the admiral, and wife of the captain, was below preparing dinner. I was lounging in the cockpit with an adult beverage. That is when I heard “Why won’t the stove stay lit?” Well, in the interest of brevity, it was determined rather quickly that the electric solenoid controlling the propane was defunct.
    That was certainly an inconvenience, but did not seem to be a big problem as we would simply delay our departure one day and go to the local West Marine to pick up a solenoid in the morning. I called West Marine first thing Sunday morning to ensure they had the item in stock. Well, “no, we don’t have that item in stock, but I can get one from the warehouse in California and have it here on Wednesday” was the reply.
    We had been underway, from Buzzards Bay, Massachusetts toward home, in Burnt Store Marina, Punta Gorda, Florida, since July. By now we had very itchy feet, and did not relish a delay of three or four days. Based on the advice of another cruiser, I placed a call to the Camanchee Yacht Yard in hopes they might have a solenoid in stock. I heard the fully expected voice recording to “leave a message and we will return your call ASAP”. I was not the least bit surprised, after all, it was Sunday. I didn’t bother to leave a message, as I needed this part today.
    I decided I could by-pass the solenoid with a simple pipe coupling then turn the gas bottle on and off the old fashion way. While I was on the phone, locating a hardware store, another incoming call went to voice mail. Cheryl retrieved the voice mail and told me it was from a fellow named Peter Sabo, from Comanche Yacht Yard and Marina, and that he was apologizing for not getting to the phone in time and missing the call. Huh? It’s Sunday.
    I called Mr. Sabo right back. He again apologized for missing the call. I explained I just took a chance and really hadn’t expected anyone to be in the office on a Sunday. He explained he was not in the office, but at home doing yard work, and, that he has the calls forwarded to his cell phone. I apologized for disturbing him on a Sunday, at home. He assured me it was no problem, explaining he owns the Comanche Yacht Yard, and “how can I help you”? My, oh my. I apologized again further explaining, with some embarrassment, that I was not even staying at his marina. He said cheerfully “that’s OK, how can I help you”?
    I explained my dilemma. He was certain he did not have a solenoid in stock. He agreed that my idea to bypass the solenoid would work as a temporary fix. He thought he might have just what I needed. He then explained he was just on his way to Home Depot, would stop by his shop on the way, and then swing by the city marina to deliver the part. If he did not have the part I needed in the shop, he would pick one up at Home Depot. He just asked for some time as he had been working in the garden. I was in total disbelief, but very grateful, for his most generous offer. We agreed to meet ashore in an hour or so.
    As promised Peter Sabo arrived at the city marina with the piece I needed. The price marked on the piece was $4.95. As I pulled some cash from my pocket, he apologized for not having any change for my five-dollar bill. Obviously, I said that’s no problem. He then refused, very much to my disappointment, to accept any further monetary expressions of my gratitude for his extraordinary customer service to a non-customer.
    Needless to say both Cheryl and I thanked him profusely. He appeared genuinely happy just to have been able to help us out. Needless to say, the next time I pass through St. Augustine, I will stay at the Comanche Yacht Yard and Marina. Simply based on our experience with Mr. Sabo, the Camanchee Yacht Yard and Marina must be a top-notch operation and I would highly recommend it to anyone else.
    Gordon & Cheryl Fogg aboard S/V Foggy Notion

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor

  • Praise and Suggestions for New St. Augustine Mooring Fields, AICW Statute Mile 778

    The new St. Augustine mooring fields are located just off the path of the AICW, north and south of the Bridge of Lions in the heart of St. Augustine.These twin fields have been warmly welcomed by those who cruise those waters.

    Dear Taylor Engineering and St. Augustine Marina,
    First of all, thank you for the new mooring fields!…and for including BIG boats in your plan. Unfortunately, there is a significant design mistake: the painters are too short for larger powerboats…and they end in an eye slice, which, even if the painter were long enough, cannot be dropped over a cleat. In my case, a 58 ft motoryacht, we could not even reach the eye slice from the bow, which is 9 ft off the water. Remember, Auggie almost always has current and wind, so the mooring ball is seldom immediately under the bow (at least this captain is not that good).
    Other well conceived mooring fields (i.e. Newport, Nantucket, even Little Harbour in the Abacos) have long painters which can be snagged with a boat hook and simply pulled aboard and dropped on a cleat. The extra length allows you to snag the painter even if you are not directly over the mooring ball…or, more likely, allows you drift room as you attempt to pull the loop aboard. I suggested to the St. Augustine marina office that a loop extension was needed for the larger boat moorings, but I fear it fell on deaf ears.
    Meanwhile, if you have a tall bow, you must moor from the stern and transfer to the bow after you splash the dinghy, as I did. However, due to the significant Auggie current, the slack created in the transfer needed the power of the windlass to pull aboard.
    A ten-foot loop through the eye slice would solve the issue, which, if brought aboard and dropped on a cleat, would not effect the swing radius of the design. We love moorings…please consider making these more usable. Thanks,
    Captain Robert Calhoun Smith Jr, aboard M/V MARY KATHRYN

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For St. Augustine Northern Anchorage

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For St. Augustine Southern Anchorage

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of St. Augustine Mooring Fields

  • Port of Call Yacht Club Marina, St. Johns River, Astor, FL.

    The old Astor Bridge Marina at the south end of Lake George is now Port of Call Yacht Club Marina. Phone: 386-749-4407. There is a short channel from the river that leads back to a basin.

    There is a small marina with a restaurant at Astor Bridge Marina, just South of the Astor Bridge. We’ve eaten here several times and the food is always good.
    Captain Mike

    Click Here To View An Earlier Article Concerning Port of Call Yacht Club Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Astor Bridge

  • Report of Low Water in Kingsley Creek, AICW Statute Mile 720

    The area Captain Casper references is in Kingsley Creek stretch of the AICW, just out of Amelia River and approximately 3 miles south of Fernandina Beach. Tidal range in this area can exceed 5 feet, so caution most be used as you approach the Twin Highway Amelia Island RR Bridge at Mile 721.

    Cruising News:
    While Northbound At 11:AM Nov/10 2010, we encountered 7 ft depth North of the Green 13. We were near high tide at that time.
    Captain Clarence Casper

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Bridge Directory Listing For Twin Highway Amelia Island RR Bridge

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Kingsley Creek

  • New Coffee Shop in Daytona Beach near Halifax Harbor Marina, AICW Statute Mile 831

    Good coffee, free WIFI and great desserts – what more could one ask? Halifax Harbor Marina is on the western shores of the ICW/Halifax River, south of unlighted daybeacon #39A.

    Cruising News:
    There is a new coffee shop in Daytona Beach on Beach St. called Sweet Marlays’. It is walking distance from the Halifax Marina. The hours are from 7am – 10 pm Mon-Sat and 1pm – 10 pm on Sunday. They have free WIFI for their customers and the coffee and desserts are great!
    Captain Ed Kozinski

    Cruising News:
    Stopped and anchored out near the Halifax Marina. Took my dingy to the north public dock and found a great coffee shop on Beach Street in Dayton Beach called Sweet Marlays. Coffee was excellent, great atmosphere and the food was good also. I had the panini. They also have free WIFI. Make sure you check it out. The owner is also a boater.
    Captain Elwyn Hart

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

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Halifax Harbor Marina

  • Advice to Fellow Snowbirds re MSD Laws in Florida

    Ron’s advice warns and reminds us of the tangled web that Florida weaves in dealing with marine sanitation devices.

    Perhaps it would be a good idea if Southbound sailors advised their fellow sailors of the laws concerning securing head discharge valves. They should be advised to at least employ nylon wire ties to fix the valves in the position serving the holding tank. You could also advise them that some jurisdictions prefer that the owner use locks to secure these valves where feasible or the owner could modify the handles to possibly accept a lock. Removal of the valve’s handle is also an option under the law. You might share the war stories about areas of strict enforcement and the behavior looked for by law enforcement authorities. Certainly, I would share the idea that one should get one’s act together prior to reach the Florida border. I would assume that all authorities will act courteously until they prove otherwise. Everybody needs to know that all these authorities (rightly or wrongly) have the legal authority to board any vessel with or without the owner’s permission. Personally, I’d offer them a coffee or other beverage.
    Captain Ron Rogers

    I have been sailing from Charlotte Harbor and Miami to Key West and back and forth for the past ten years and my vessel has never been approached by any law enforcement agency for any reason. That’s just my experience.
    Captain Jules Robinson

    We travelled from St Augustine to Daytona Beach and were boarded between the drawbridges before Daytona Municipal Marina. There were 3 officers. One went below with me, 1 stayed in the cockpit with my husband, and 1 remained on their vessel. We were asked how many heads, if they were secured, and our destination. We had both heads tied with plastic zip ties. The officers were polite and quick. The next day we saw them again further south checking vessels travelling south. I would advise everyone to have their heads secured at all times in Florida and you should have no problems.
    Jane Bugg

  • ALERT! Be Aware of Pedestrians on AICW Fixed Bridges

    This warning refers to the Seabreeze Bridge which crosses the AICW at Statute Mile 829, but a similar situation could occur at any fixed bridge!

    Wednesday evening, November 10, 2010, we accompanied another boat southbound into Daytona Beach, FL. North of the city is a 65′, twin span, high rise bridge called “Seabreeze.” Two (apparently teenage) males were on the bridge throwing “lemon sized” rocks at boats passing through. The boat I was traveling with was hit twice. His boat has a fiberglass pilothouse roof, and there was no apparent damage. No one was hurt. Sanctuary has a canvass top, so we stopped short of the bridge. It was getting late, and chilly, and after a few minutes, the “youngsters” lost interest and left. Police were called on both VHF radio and 911, but did not respond in the 15 minutes we were on scene.
    So, just a heads up to those who might be in the area. And, I guess, more generally when traveling. Scan bridge spans with binoculars, and be wary if people appear to be waiting for you to pass through.
    Captains Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Eastern Florida Marina Directory Listing For The Seabrezze Bridge

  • Good Words for Metropolitan Park Marina Jacksonville. FL, off the AICW in Downtown Jacksonville, FL.

    City of Jacksonville Metropolitan Park is 13 miles off the AICW and northwest of St. Johns River flashing red marker #82.

    This has gotta be the best kept secret in NE FL! As many times as we’ve been through Jax, we’ve never stopped here. The concrete floating docks are new, excellently constructed, and sporting healthy-size cleats. There is great wind protection inside the breakwater. For a mere $8/day, slips are available with water and 50 amp power. The only caveat is a limitation of 72 hour visit. Adjacent to the ramps leading to the docks is a lovely park with playground equipment, picnic tables and grills. Nice restrooms are conveniently placed. Showers nor laundry facilities are available on site. We’re walking distance to Winn-Dixie, Jacksonville Landing (which seems to be resurrecting), the Florida Theater, an icon and venue for live performances, and The Times Union Center for the Performing Arts. The Museum of Science and History is just across the Main Street Bridge at Jax Landing. We’re here to begin the St. John’s River Cruise today with the Palm Coast MTOA-ers and are certainly anticipating that, but discovering
    this marina is definitely a serendipity!!!
    Captain Laura Lane Bender aboard Kindred Spirit III

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

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