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
St Augustine inlet, always subject to channel shifting, suffered much change during hurricane Matthew, see http://cruisersnet.net/160414. Our thanks to Malcolm Hunter for this update!
November 21, 2016… all navigation aids are back in place in the Inlet. In good conditions this remains a safe Inlet. As the local TowBoat US operator said, if you follow all the buoys, no problem. People get in trouble by short cutting buoys in poor conditions. It can be hard in poor light to see where the next one is, but if you favor the red side in, no problems in reasonable conditions.
Our thanks to Sandy Flowers at Port of Call for this information.
St. Augustine Municipal Marina’s fuel dock has re-opened. A few slips available for short rem – no power or cable.
ALL NAV AIDS IN THE INLET ARE GONE – DO NOT USE!!
This report is from “Harts at Sea” a blog by Barb and EW Hart. St. Augustine is home to Inlet Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, which borders the eastern banks of the Waterway and which was extensively damaged by Matthew.
First of all…the St. Augustine community, the cruisers, the marina staff, everyone we have met during the past year, and especially our friends have been outstanding post-Hurricane Matthew. Please note that this is a time of stress for pretty much everyone in this community, whether boater and non-boater. Read
Still, some people don’t get it.
The first was a local boating lady who stood to one side and listened as I talked with David at the marina just after seeing our boat. David already knew La Luna’s location and was appropriately and sincerely concerned for us. I told him the boat was in great shape and we just had to figure out how to get her back in the water. As he walked away, the woman turned to me and said, with deep sympathy, “What kind of boat was she?” I was not in the mood. “She was and still is a Cheoy Lee designed by David Pedrick. And don’t talk about my boat in the past tense.”
Oops. Guess she struck a nerve.
The Facilities Manager of the Bayview Retirement Center where La Luna ran ashore kept making a joke about all his new boats and how he was going to put a rope around them. I was not pleased. After dropping our anchor to shore (a signal that she was being tended and not available for salvage) we learned that Florida actually has a law that prevents others from claiming your boat for salvage. (First Florida boating law I’ve liked.)
Gawkers have wandered down to the waterfront and usually joke a bit before they realize it is our home they find so droll. I pretty much handle that just fine. The St. Augustine Police Department has been amazing, first going out in a vessel the day after the storm to seek lost boats. They came to us during our first visit to La Luna, moved close enough to read her name and converse with us, and offered their condolences. They also made sure she was our boat and took our contact information. Other police officers have stopped by to check on us and the boats. Last I heard, the SA PD found 29 boats and posted their names and coordinates on Facebook so the owners could find them.
EW and I love the Coast Guard. I have two wonderful, brilliant, and accomplished nephews who have made their careers with the Coast Guard, and we have met many other members of their force in our travels. My recent favorite was the CG plane who flew over us on our way up from Panama and who contacted us. Sure, he was probably trying to determine if we were drug runners, but we had a delightful conversation.
Unfortunately, communication skills were lacking in the CG crew who showed up in a truck when EW was aboard La Luna. Like the SAPD they came within speaking distance and said, “Are you leaking oil or gas?” That was it. No, “Good morning, Captain, is this your boat?” No, “I’m very sorry to see this.” No nothing. EW answered in kind. “No, we are not, but frankly that is not my first concern.” They left.
Now that the storm is over, some folks who weren’t affected want things to get back to normal pretty darn quick. There have been Facebook rants by area venues asking the public to give them a break. Evidently, some folks are ticked that the free concerts held on St. Augustine Beach have been suspended.
Really? That’s a problem for you? The person who posted the rant suggested that everyone worried about their fun take a measuring tape out to four feet and make a mark around every room on the ground floor of their home. Now imagine all of that stuff wet with sewer water. Get over yourself.
The lovely catamaran we are now guests aboard is on the north dock which has no power so EW and I are currently onshore charging all electronic devices while I write a couple of posts. This vantage point lets us listen to David Morehead respond to the calls from folks who are anxious to start their cruising adventure and want to include the beautiful city of St. Augustine. Some of them have been rather insistent that David provide them with a mooring or slip. At least one implied that there weren’t a lot of options nearby, and David suggested he check online to see the area damaged and why there were few options.
And for those of you who love music, don’t mind the smoke, and have a place in your heart for the Trade Winds—The Oldest City’s Oldest Bar—they will rise again. When we walked past two days ago, a crew of bar staff, patrons, and friends were removing everything from the bar and dismantling the stages. Already there are Black and Decker Workmate Benches on the sidewalk where soaked plywood had been stacked. We will soon listen once again to “Those Guys”, and Joe and Rusty, and Dewy Via, in St. Augustine’s iconic bar.
Give us some time, people. Some restaurants and stores have re-opened. Enjoy those and wait patiently for others. More importantly, there are people who have lost everything or nearly everything. If you can, help them. We have lost nothing except water under the keel. Just like the Mary Ellen Carter, La Luna will sail again. In the meantime, treat those of us in St. Augustine, Flagler, and points north with a bit of sensitivity. We have maintained our sense of humor, but some things just cut a bit too close to the bone.
In closing, I will resurrect a comment the musician Fond Kiser made when we were discussing our first year in St. Augustine. He had just moved back here from Austin when Hermine joined us. I mentioned that we had arrived in time for the area’s coldest winter in years, hottest summer on record, and now a potential hit from a hurricane in an area known for being safe. “Hmm,” said Fond in his charming accent. “The city may want to take up a collection to pay to have you move out of town.” After Hurricane Matthew, they may want to consider his suggestion.
NOTE: The link above for the Mary Ellen Carter was performed by Stan Rogers, who wrote it. We learned it from Maine’s Schooner Fare and I have to share that version out of loyalty. (And because I raised a stein many, many times as I belted out “Rise Again! Rise Again! Let her name not be lost to the knowledge of men.”
Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Inlet Marina HURRICANE DAMAGE AND CLOSED UNTIL FURTHER NOTICE
A fellow boater asks for your opinion on long term mooring in the St. Augustine harbor. The mooring field has a northern portion and a southern portion. General consensus is that the southern portion, below the Bridge of Lions, is more protected from wind and wake. Let us hear from your experience anchoring there. For more opinions, go to http://cruisersnet.net/112455.
I am considering mooring my 43′ pontoon houseboat here long term, but am concerned about wake from winds, boats, and the current. What are your opinions of how this would work out?
Blue Ocean Sails (BOS) is a developing non-profit, educational organization, based in NE Florida, whose mission is to support, facilitate and assist students, educators, citizen and research scientists in all endeavors associated with marine science education and research. BOS is worthy of our interest and support.
Friends of Blue Ocean Sails – this is the first quarterly newsletter summarizing the ongoing development and activities of Blue Ocean Sails (BOS).
Longtime cruiser and SSECN Contributing Editor, Captain Jim Healy, shares his knowledge and experience in these observations on this portion of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway. Thank you Jim!
Contributing Editor, Captain Jim Healy, shares his perspective on St. Augustine, FL, home to three SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSORS and on Titusville, FL. Our thanks to Jim Healy for sharing his observations!
Charlie and Jackie continue their reports with as visit to St. Augustine City Marina which overlooks the western shoreline of the Waterway, just south of the Bridge of Lions.
5-8-16 Now at St Augustine Municipal Marina. At MM777. We like it here since it’s in the middle of everything. Had AC problems here but called Dometic and they recommended Hansen Marine. Chris came out the very next day- even tho they VERY slammed– and not only fixed but also cleared 2 other problems. Charge was VERY reasonable and on top of the Chris is a pretty nice guy. Use him if need AC work there. Ate at AIA like everyone else but in the bar and was great!! A walk around is necessary in the town. Careful docking!!! Listen to dock hands. Current can exceed 5kts!! Showers are very clean and laundry is largest I’ve seen. Money change machine!
Charlie and Jackie on Traveler.
A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, Camachee Cove Yacht Harbor is located just off the Waterway’s western shoreline, south of unlighted daybeacon #7 and north of the Vilano Beach Bridge.
Stayed three nights. Very protected marina. Staff was very helpful. One of two courtesy cars were always available for short trips into town or the nearby Publix. Clean restrooms and showers. BoatUS discount was a plus. Saw a sea turtle swimming around my boat one day and a manatee getting a drink of water.
Captain Vic Wilreker
Another great 4th of July event and the St. Augustine North Mooring Field would be the perfect vantage point to watch from your boat. We wish both teams the best of luck! If you are passing through, WATCH YOUR WAKE!
San Agustín Rowing Challenge
When: Saturday July 4, 2015
Time: 11:00AM to 1:00PM
Where: For Best Viewing
St Augustine Bay Front North of the Bridge of Lions to the Castillo de San Marcos
On Saturday, July 4th at 11:00 AM, the inaugural San Agustín Rowing Challenge is presented by the St. Augustine Maritime Heritage Foundation on the downtown waterfront. It’s the Men’s “Sons of Neptune” versus the Women’s “San Agustín Sirens” rowing crews. They’ll each take a turn rowing the San Agustín Chalupa competing against the tides and the clock. Watching a “Chalupa” a utility wooden workboat rowed along the waterfront was an activity familiar to the towns’ folks who lived here during St. Augustine’s 16th century Spanish Colonial period. On July 4th spectators are going to see it in live action. For information Phone 904-599-3800 email@example.com http://staugmaritimeheritage.org
Linda R Allen
Media Director/Board of Directors
SAINT AUGUSTINE MARITIME HERITAGE FOUNDATION, INC
904-794-1531 904 501 8597
Inlet Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, borders the eastern banks of the Waterway, immediately south of the Vilano Beach high-rise bridge. Skipper Herl adds to the many good things we continue to hear about Inlet Marina and their personal service.
Inlet Marina, Florida
Inlet Marina, the friendliest place we have stopped at yet. We talked to Jay about fuel earlier and he told us to come in late PM and we could stay on the dock for the night. So we did.
Jay made sure we ate at the restaurant by giving a discount on our meal. The meals were very good.
This is a great stop for fuel and grub. We were able to top off with fuel, walk to Publics for groceries. All set for another 500 miles.
The tide in that area can be strong, but don’t worry, Jay will let you know the direction and speed when you call for the approach. Like I said up front, Jay is very helpful.
Inlet Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, borders the eastern banks of the Waterway, immediately south of the Vilano Beach high-rise bridge. We continue to hear good things about Inlet Marina and their personal service.
These people are fantastic!! We got our first fuel since we left home. Overnight on their dock. Wonderful restaurant.
Phil and Sandy on board m/v Options
What a great service! Thank you Port of Call St. Augustine, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS NET SPONSOR! As you take advantage of this new convenience, send us a review. St. Augustine City Marina overlooks the western shoreline, just south of the Bridge of Lions and Hidden Harbor Marina lies on the western shores of the San Sebastian River, northwest of marker #37.
Port of Call St Augustine has launched their new Cruisers’ Shuttle servicing Mariners at the City Municipal and Hidden Harbor Marinas. The current schedule will transport visitors to all the necessary provisioning spots and watering holes.
Clean and efficient transportation at a great price has finally arrived. Five dollars will buy you an all- day pass and Albert, the extraordinary bus driver, makes every effort to be sure your provisioning is complete. Our Shuttle is designed to meet every requirement of the transient mariner. For example, the West Route can accommodate your propane tanks with the best price in town on refills. As far as purchasing supplies, there is no such thing as buying too much. The back of the Shuttle is designed to stack and carry all the groceries and supplies you can stand to buy. Our eight passenger Scuttle bus will tie up any loose ends with the 10 am Scuttle Run which handles everything from clearing Customs to supply deliveries from the local chandleries. Special handling can be arranged through our office if you call ahead. Tune into the local Cruisers Net Radio at
9am VHF CH 72 for daily information or go to our website portofcallsa.com for the latest information on the Shuttle schedule.
PORT OF CALL SAINT AUGUSTINE: YOUR SOURCE ON THE WATER
Our thanks to Skipper Newsome for the link below showing the placement of markers in June of 2013. Since that date an additional red marker has been added, see http://cruisersnet.net/?p=145360. With other possible changes in mind, the report Buoy Assessment is a handsome report and still well worth the time to read.
The link below to a power point presentation title STA Inlet Buoy Assessment 01-Jun-2013 seems to correlate to the April 16, 2013 meeting notes and provides a good visual and reference to the buoy positions and inlet in general.
The two St. Augustine mooring fields are north and south of the Bridge of Lions in the heart of St. Augustine. The northern mooring field is nearest the St. Augustine inlet and is more often subject to wind and wave action. Skipper MacKay is responding to inquiries about maximum vessel length in the mooring field. St. Augustine Marina states that the field is designed for vessels up to 120ft.
Anchored just [south] of the Castle last week (Nov, 2014) at the advice of harbor staff since there were no moorings available. No problems. As for size in mooring field, I’ve seen some 60 plus foot boats in there. Shouldn’t be an issue.
Because of its shifting channel and the required frequent dredging, Green Only markers in the St. Augustine Inlet have sometimes been a source of confusion. This new lighted red marker will be a big improvement. Our thanks to Commissioner Jay Bliss for his Port Meeting report and to Chuck Baier and Susan Landry for the article below by Stuart Korfhage in the St. Augustine Record.
Selected proceedings at yesterday’s Oct 14 2014 Port meeting: USCG Chief Bosun Mike Tomasi reported our USCG has finally been able to allocate a Large LIGHTED RED channel marker #6 for the StAugustine Inlet channel. Until last Thursday, mariners entering our inlet at night had no red lighted markers, only green ones. Thus a few unintentional landings on Porpoise point over the years….
New illuminated marker should make for safer boating in St. Augustine Inlet
Posted: November 5, 2014 – 10:54pm
By STUART KORFHAGE
Master mariners might still use the stars to chart their course, but boaters slipping through the St. Augustine Inlet at night now have an even better aid.
Last month, at the urging of the St. Augustine Port, Waterway and Beach District, the U.S. Coast Guard added a lighted red buoy (No. 6) to keep boaters from accidentally running aground at Porpoise Point.
There are already reflective red markers and lighted green markers that show boaters the safest way to enter the Inlet. But without the illuminated red marker, night trips by those unfamiliar with the area have led to costly failures to navigate the Inlet.
“The Inlet is not a good inlet to go in and out of without local knowledge, and it’s more challenging at night,” said Sam Adukiewicz, harbormaster at the St. Augustine Municipal Marina. “The new marker will definitely make it better.”
Commissioner Jay Bliss of the St. Augustine Port, Waterway and Beach District said one of the dangers of the old setup was that captains would sometimes line up between the green markers of the Inlet and illuminated marker No. 60.
The problem with red No. 60 is that it’s actually in the Intracoastal Waterway, not the Inlet. And lining up with the Inlet greens and the ICW No. 60 will put a boat right into the sand.
“You see green on the left, and on the right side you don’t see squat at night,” Bliss said of entering the Inlet before the new marker. “A lot of people have wound up landing at Porpoise Point, and it’s been a pretty tricky maneuver.”
This very welcome information on the navigation aids in the St. Augustine Inlet and on area events is sent to us by our good friend and supporter, Port Commissioner Jay Bliss. During his tenure, Capt. Bliss has provided valuable and timely information on the St. Augustine area. Thank you Jay!
Greetings Port Observers,
Selected proceedings at yesterday’s Oct 14 2014 Port meeting: USCG Chief Bosun Mike Tomasi reported our USCG has finally been able to allocate a Large LIGHTED RED channel marker #6 for the St Augustine Inlet channel. Until last Thursday, mariners entering our inlet at night had no red lighted markers, only green ones. Thus a few unintentional landings on Porpoise point over the years….
Your Port board approved $6500 for the annual Regatta of Lights, which the St Augustine Yacht Club organizes and hosts. This year it will be Saturday December 13th. This evening event provides a spectator draw that closes down the Bridge of Lions and packs the bay front with residents and visitors enjoying the boating parade of lighted craft celebrating Christmas holidays.
Always you’ll find on the Port website a full set of the minutes of any past meeting!
My commission with the Port expires 13 November 2014. It’s been a pleasure to serve. Two very able individuals, Tom Rivers (who has been on the board before) and Conch House Dockmaster Mark Helman will fill board seats 1 and 5.
YOU get to decide the one contested seat 3 on your ballot. I’d urge you to vote for Herb Rippe. He brings balanced judgement and an even disposition as Chairman, an objective viewpoint, and is dedicated to the task.
Our community is favored with a distinguished group of contenders for City Commission seats. We can salute them all, challengers and incumbents alike, for their contributions. That said, this voter prizes the organizational and leadership skills, the integrity, and the data-based objectivity that Nancy Shaver has already brought to our community. She offers her service as candidate for City Commissioner and Mayor. She has our vote.
St. Augustine Port Commisioner
Inlet Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR! borders the eastern banks of the AICW, immediately south of the Vilano Beach high-rise bridge. We continue to hear good things about Inlet Marina and their personal service.
Hey Jay….Once again it was nice to see you again . (May 2014) If you boaters north and southbound don’t stop at the Inlet Marina and see Jay, you are missing a great Guy and a nice boating experence. Jay, see you in 2015!!!
Ray & Bernie Smith – “Fire Dog”
Inlet Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR! borders the eastern banks of the AICW, immediately south of the Vilano Beach high-rise bridge. As you can see, Skipper Reese was definitely pleased with the service!
Just fueled up@ Capt. Jay ‘s Inlet Marina. Great service from Capt Bob!