Please Note That Postings Below From Fellow Cruisers Are Listed in Chronological Order, Based on Publication Date
Yellow Background Denotes Navigation Alert Postings
Please Note That Postings Below From Fellow Cruisers Are Listed in Chronological Order, Based on Publication Date
Yellow Background Denotes Navigation Alert Postings
Our thanks to Skipper Burnham for this helpful information and advice. Go to http://cruisersnet.net/?p=130877 for the referenced posting. With a fixed vertical clearance of 65ft, San Pablo/Atlantic Boulevard Bridge crosses the Waterway at Statute Mile 744.5.
If you go to the http://www.deepzoom.com website you can easily see that the Atlantic Avenue Bridge has the strongest daily currents on the entire US East Coast. Use caution and timing and enjoy the push, but wait out the adverse current if you cannot maintain over 7 kts.
On the morning of 5/16/14, the Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net received a telephone call from Francis aboard “Easy Rider.” She reported that they were northbound on the AICW, and had just observed a larger powercraft hard aground, AT HIGH TIDE, on the charted shoal east and southeast of marker #49. She went on to say that this was the very same spot where they had a grounding problem with their own vessel a year ago.
While we cannot yet confirm this hypothesis, it seems likely that the charted shoal east and southeast of #49 has built out farther towards the AICW channel. Prudent skippers will pass #49 well to its western and southwestern side.
If anyone has any additional information about this hazard, PLEASE use the “Comment” function below and share that information with our fellow cruisers! Our thanks to Skipper Michelle for confirming the advice to favor the west side of the channel.
SeaTow mentioned this area as a problem to our group recently. I went up to check it out yesterday and it is very shallow E and NE of green marker 49. Your suggestion is spot on to stay on the west side of the channel.
We passed 49 about 150 to the West in about 30 ft of water at just about the beginning of a rising tide without a problem on June 3 at 1140am
Diane Jack Toomey
Beach Marine is located south of unlighted daybeacon #34, and just northeast of the B. B. McCormick – Beach Boulevard 65-foot, fixed bridge. The review below comes to us from the AGLCA forum.
We were heading north and stopped at Beach Marina in Jacksonville Beach,Florida on March 5 for a couple of days while a COLD front blew through. While there the dockmaster Bryan told us that he hosts a “Tiki Hut Party” on the last Saturday of every month for slipholders and transients. Food, beer and wine are FREE as well as DOCKAGE (pull in as early as you like on Saturday and you don’t have to leave until 4 PM Sunday). You only have to pay for electricity ($8 for 30 amp, $12 for 50).
Call the Dock Master, Bryan Reid (904.694.2098) a day or two ahead and reserve a spot at the party and the dock. ENJOY!
PS. Great staff; great marina.
Bob & Jon Volkwein
This welcome report comes to us from a member of the St. Augustine Cruisers’ Net’s Facebook page/group (https://www.facebook.com/groups/staugustinecruisersnet/). Just remember, conditions on this seaward cut can change FAST, so take Captain Gundlach’s advice with an eye to changes that may have occurred since his passage.
We came in two months ago, in fairly stiff NE breeze and seas, with an ESE swell. It was difficult to find the second red – and we turned around to start over and have a closer look – but of no issue, other than the green water over our bow on the reverse out, once we’d found the second red.
I came through again a week ago, and the third red had been shifted right (north). Finding the second buoy was again a challenge, but once we had it, it was easy.
TowBoatUS advice, which I verified was the same on the second instance, was to favor the reds on the way in until the turn (into the ICW), and we never had any issues with depth (ours 7′, second one 6′).
Overnight was pretty calm, and what there was came from westerly components, which had been the case all day. From that I deduce that it should be pretty calm, despite the calls for high winds offshore.
Current offshore (40 miles) buoy shows NNW 19G23 with waves same direction 5.9/5seconds. However, early (4AM or so) wind was either calm or under 5N, and now 5-10NNW, near inshore. I’ll be checking with TBUS for a final assessment, but I’m expecting the exit to be benign.
I’ll post again when I arrive as to what I found, but I trust that the coastal waters are relatively calm, which will make our ride a glorious broad reach.
And, a later report from Captain Gundlach, as of December, 2013
Yes, it was fine. No problems. We had interesting rollers from the north, but no event or difficulty even for smaller boats would be my assessment.
There’s a slight dogleg to the right on the way out but it’s clearly marked. Favor north if you’re nervous; it’s a bit deeper than the greens at not less than 13 (greens) at low tide.
The only conditions I’d be nervous about, if you’re rigid about staying between the buoys, would be the sea state.
So, for my money, avoid rage conditions, favor red, and do it in broad daylight; you’ll be fine.
“One and Only Anchorage” lies on the eastern shore of the Waterway,south of flashing green daybeacon #17, and just north of the San Pablo Bridge. It is considered the only safe anchorage in the Jacksonville Beach area, thus its unusual name.
Anchored here now, Tuesday the 22nd of October. We found the 15′ ish spot that was referenced. It’s on the NE side about 200′ yards away from the bridge near the marsh. We were (well, my husband Mike was) able to walk the dogs for a much needed stop.
Yes, the traffic from the bridge is not serenity but it’s a nice spot. Only one abandoned sailboat here on the other shore near the docks – little Cat 22′ if I’m not mistaken.
Men on the bridge (lower bridge) are fishing for trout after work. Current is quite strong it seems.
That is the report from here. Day two of our adventure on our new boat – a 39′ Allied Mistress who’s been so well maintained it’s insane. God bless the prior owners, the Diechtrich’s from Canada!
Mo & Mike (or Mike & Mo) from S/V Mi Amante
Just be sure not to anchor too close to the marsh – it drops off like a cliff!
Mo and Mike
San Pablo/Atlantic Boulevard Bridge crosses the Waterway at Statute Mile 744.5. Having seen the currents here for myself, I can tell you that Captain Ising isn’t kidding nor relaying inaccurate data. The water movement can be fierce!
In recognition of that fact, we are establishing an SSECN Navigation Alert for these waters!
We just passed through on 16 Sep 2012 at what was likely max ebb and barely made 1.0 kts SOG. Our boat under full power will do about 6.2 kts, so I estimate the current can get as high as 5+ kts. It was scary with boats ahead and astern wondering if we were going to make it.
In all of Jacksonville that bridge has the strongest current first only to the Main Street bridge on the Saint Johns river In downtown Jacksonville. The travel under this bridge must scrutinized according to the tides as it is a truly powerful funneling of water through a narrow gap. Water flow can exceed 6 knots.
My boat is at Harbortown Marina right there at Atlantic Blvd and the ICW, and yea, I can’t go anywhere when she’s running strong. The current is just as dangerous two miles north where the ICW crosses the St.John’s River, stay well away from the jetty and watch your sideways set action.
Keith Blankenship s/v Renasci
We came through this bridge about the 13th of Nov. 2012 and it was horrible !! Outgoing tide and we had all we could do get through – my guess is that we were doing no more than 1 – 1.5 knts; plus the turbulence approaching and under the bridge was like a washing machine. This is an extremely dangerous situation and most expecially when you some idiot approching from the opposite direction with the current, can obviously see that you are having a major control problem and continues to enter the bridge.
Beach Marina flanks the eastern side of the AICW, immediately north of the high-rise McCormick Bridge, in the heart of Jacksonville Beach.
A great stop on our way North. Bryan was very helpful with navigation. Great live music at the restaurants.
Olivia and Bob
Beach Marine guards the Waterway’s eastern banks, immediately north of the new B. B. McCormick high-rise bridge, in the heart of Jacksonville Beach, FL.
Beach Marine is a great stop. There is plenty of depth in an area with lots of skinny water. The restaurants are certainly likeable. Transients are usually put on a easy lay along. Stay safe,
Inlet Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, flanks the eastern shores of the AICW, a short hop north of St. Augustine Inlet, and hard by the southern side of the high-rise Vilano Beach Bridge. There is newly opened restaurant on-site, and a new Publix supermarket within walking distance. You can easily provision while filling up those hungry fuel tanks!
As promised, we stopped at Inlet Marina in St. Augustine Thursday. We checked out the prices on fuel at Comachee Cove, Conch House and the Municipal Marina. Inlet’s price with the usual discounts was .10 – .20/gal less than the others. They do have the best price of any St. Augustine marina on the ICW. Still, it was .15 higher than the price in Jacksonville.
The fuel dock is located on the east side of the ICW between the Villano bridge and the fishing pier, which makes entering look somewhat intimidating. However, there is deep water all the way in and out to both bridges, so maneuvering with our 54′ boat was relatively easy. Dockmaster Jay and his staff are on hand to assist. I would not hesitate to take anything up to 80′ into the dock, although I would be sure to have adequate help on hand if the tide is running or there is a strong wind with a westerly component.
The Publix supermarket is within walking distance, as is the Villano beach on the ocean. There is a good restaurant with Tiki bar on site, and the entire place is dog friendly, which was very important to us. Although the marina does not have transient slip Jay will allow boats to tie up at the fuel dock overnight for $25. There is no electric. There is water, but it does have a strong sulphur odor. The town of Villano provides a free 100′ floating dock located just south of the fishing pier next to Inlet Marina. There are no services, but boats are allowed to tie up all day to visit the town and the beach. Overnights are not technically allowed, but Jay says it is not enforced.
In my opinion, Inlet Marina and the town of Villano Beach are a good place to stop for a day to take on some fuel, re-provision and relax on the beach or at the restaurant.
On 4/26/13, in a supplementary question to our Wish List of 4/22/13, we posed the following question:
Statute Mile 775.5 – Who has taken on fuel at Inlet Marina, flanking the AICW’s eastern banks, just south of the Vilano Beach Bridge? Did you try out the new restaurant which has opened here? How was the food? Did anybody provision while docked here, by walking to the newly opened, nearby Publix supermarket?
Jay is absolutely the nicest guy we have met in a long time. We stopped there on the way south and got inexpensive fuel. Also, received our complimentary six pack. Stopped again on the way up north. Very good fuel prices. It was a rainy, cold, windy night and we finished fueling around 3:30. I asked jay if we might stay on the gas dock instead of moving to an anchorage nearby. He agreed and we stayed.
Have not tried the restaurant. Susan borrowed Jay’s truck and shopped at Publix. I walked down there later. It’s close by and a fully stocked market. The beach is another block or so.
I would recommend checking with Jay on fuel prices and stopping at Inlet Marine.
Visited this marina while northbound in April, 2012. Tied up at face dock/fuel dock and took on diesel for our S/V Carolina. Did not pump very much, but the operator was happy to accommodate us anyway. While taking on the fuel, my wife walked the short walk to the Publix grocery for bread, milk, some salmon and ground turkey, and some salad fixings. She was very enthusiastic about the trip and what the village is doing to encourage visitors.
While able to take our 38 footer alongside, if we had made an overnight stay we would have seriously cut into the fuel sales, as we could not have gone inside the face dock to a “transient” slip due to draft and length.
We took on 200 gallons of diesel on April 13, on the north to the MTOA Rendezvous in Fernandina Beach. We’d never been at Inlet before, but their price looked good. Their 20 cent discount for mentioning Cruisernet or MTOA and another nickel for 200 gallons or more made it even better. Easy in, easy out, plenty of water at the fuel dock, and they have us a 6 pack of beer as a thank you. We didn’t stop at the restaurant, but on a Saturday afternoon, it was filled with people. We’ll be back.
We just stopped at Inlet Marina this morning (5/9/2013). They do not open until 7:30 AM. This was only a minor problem because we had left St. Augustine on the early Bridge of Lions 7:00 AM opening to work the tidal flow heading North.
The owner was very nice and very helpful. He even loaned his pickup to my wife to run up to the Publix which certainly got us on our way quicker (no grocery store within walking distance to the St. Augustine mooring field). Very nice gesture! So, we’ve definitely recommend this place. Easy in and out.
The restaurant is not open for breakfast, so no report on that.
Statute Mile 747 – anyone spent a night or two at Palm Cove Marina, west of the AICW and north of marker #32? What were your impressions of and experiences at this facility?
The entry channel into Palm Cove Marina is well marked but narrow and shallow — less than 5′ at low tide. The facilities are top-notch, however, and docking is a breeze. Do not miss eating at Marker 32 — expensive and worth every penny.
In response to your request for NE Fl/GA wish list here is Palm Cove Marina:
We took a slip at Palm Cove on March 21 on our way north from Marathon on our 37′ sailing vessel. The entry from the waterway is well marked, we saw depths of 7′ or more at mid-tide and we had help for an easy tie on a face dock along with one other cruiser just back from the Bahamas. This is a large marina with many empty slips when were there. It was a pleasant evening, but I would expect it to be well protected back here in a blow. We did not use the shower or onshore head, so no comment. Within easy walking distance of the marina is a large Publix, several banks and drug stores and a Starbucks.
We had dinner at the Marker 32 restaurant which was only 50 yards from our boat. This is a moderately upscale place with many good seafood choices which we favor, but other good choices as well. Overall we rated the service and food as very good. The place was quite busy on a week night with many locals.
S/V Two for the Roads
It has every thing you need in a Marina plus an excellent food shopping area. The only problem is their entrance channel. Best to enter & exit at mid to high tide. I have a 4.5 foot draft.
Raymond W. Smith
Statute Mile 775.5 – Who has spent a night or two (or more) at Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor, just north of St. Augustine Inlet. Did you find it to be as first class as we remember it to be?
We stayed at Commanchee Cove in very early January (Southbound) and again in early April (Northbound). It is still a very well managed facility with two courtesy cars available for use for 1 hour at a time, a very good bar/restaurant with traditional seafood plus very good sushi, and excellent repair services on site provided by both Commanchee Yacht Yard for haul and First Mate Yacht Services for in water repairs/service. Dock and office personnel are friendly, courteous and professional. The physical facilities are still very good but not
as pristine as they were several years ago.
Camachee Cove has the best weather protection and also a very good marina. There is a new Publix grocery store just over the bridge in Vilano, making provisioning a snap if you’re staying here. Also, check out Fish Tales for good burgers, salads and sandwiches. They’re located in the same cove.
s/v A La Mer
Camachee Cove Marina is definitely a first class marina. Friendly staff, very attentive, great mechanic service on site ,use of a courtesy vehicle and a great restaurant on site.
Spent 4/8/13 to 4/12/13 there. Have made it a regular stop. Nice docks, great people, good facilities, courtesy cars. Use First Mate to take care of any boat problems I can’t solve. Will be spending more time there in the future.
We stayed 3 nights at Cammachee Cove marina in December 2012 and found it to be just as first class as our previous stays. They are always very responsive on the radio with docking instructions and their dock hands are very helpful. They have 2 courtesy cars and are flexible with their use if you need to use a car longer than a few hours and no one else requested it.
Great Marina, excellent facilities, just too far from town.
On 4/22/13, as part of a NE Florida – Georgia Wish List, we posed the following question:
10. Statute Mile 765 – Anyone anchored on the Pine Island Loop this spring season, north of marker #26? Did you enter by way of the stream’s southern entrance? What depths did you find? Please give us an overall impression of this anchorage.
I anchored at pine island loop on April 17  coming in from the south. Found 8 ft at low water and anchored to watch the birds. We use this anchorage routinely on our annual pilgrimage to the keys from Brunswick Landing Marina.
Dean and Clare Bensley
A good stopover but make sure your hook is set – I dragged in February but had a soft landing next to the marsh and simply backed out. There is NO access except the south arm of the inlet – there is no water in the north part of the loop. Just go near the green marker and head east until you find a spot you like.
Beach Marine guards the Waterway’s eastern banks, immediately north of the new B. B. McCormick high-rise bridge.
We stopped at [Beach Marine] en route to Jacksonville and found the dock master, Bryan Reid, to be exceptionally helpful. He went out of his way to provide useful information regarding local boating conditions as well as for the St. John’s River.
Camachee Cove in St. Augustine, FL is very nice with lots of amenities. This is the website – http://www.camacheeisland.com.
Marker # 18 and the AICW stretch described below lie along the Tolomato River between charted Booth Landing and Spanish Landing at mile 764.
Sounds like the key to avoiding the below described shallows, is to not approach marker #18 closely.
We just ran aground at low tide about 15′ east of Red 18, around MM 766 and we draw only 3 feet! Boats behind us said deep water was 50′ east of the mark. Fortunately, we got off quickly with with no apparent damage.
Barbara and Barry Kipnis
Palm Cove Marina’s marked entry channel cuts into the western banks of the AICW, just north of the B. B. McCormick/Beach Boulevard Bridge. We have personally visited this facility twice within the past twelve months, and can attest it’s a first class facility in every sense of the word.
Well, of course, these good folks are a SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR!
Palm Cove Marina at the ICW and Beach Blvd. Bridge Jacksonville has fuel, full service yard, pool, nearby restuarnts, shopping, good fuel prices, and a short bus ride to the beach.
Bill and Barbara Reed
The “One and Only Anchorage” lies south of the Waterway’s intersection with St. Johns River, south of unlighted daybeacon #15 and just north of the San Pablo Bridge.
Anchored here to-nite and the depth is 24 plus. Could not find the 10 -15 ft water. Noise from the bridge but other wise OK.
We came to Palm Cove Marina a week ago and we will be here for another week. Have been here several times before. The service is consistently great. Friendly and helpful staff. Fuel prices are one of the best in Florida. Within walking distance to Publix and Drug store. Next door is Marker 32, one of the best Restaurants on the ICW.