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The Salty Southeast
Cruisers' Net
Cruisers Helping Cruisers
 Welcome to the Staniel Cay Yacht Club, your own paradise in the middle of the beautiful Exumas.The Pilot House Marina is located on secluded Lake Largo just minutes from downtown Key Largo. This choice location borders on John Pennekamp Coral Reef State Park, an underwater park famous among snorkeling and diving enthusiasts.Riviera Dunes Marina Just off Tampa Bay Owned and Operated by BoatersFULL MARINE SERVICE ON SITE TRANSIENT DOCKAGE WELCOMEKey Lime Sailing Club in Key Largo, 305-451-3438, www.keylimesailingclub.comPunta Gorda, Florida - a GREAT cruising destinationRegatta Pointe Marina
The FROLI System, developed in Germany has made a big hit with the USA  recreation and leisure travel market. Nickle Atlantic will be at the Annapolis Sail Boat Show, October 8 - 12, in Booth Fisherman's Village Marina and Resort, Punta Gorda, FLOn the Water GuidebooksRoyal Marsh Harbour Yacht Club

Archive For: KEYS-All News

  • Announcement: All Florida Keys Cruising News


    Below, you will discover our COMPLETE listing of Florida Keys cruising news/postings from fellow cruisers, arranged in chronological order, based on publication date. IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO NARROW YOUR SELECTION of FLK cruising news to those messages which pertain to a specific geographic sub-region, locate the RED, vertically stacked menu, on the right side of this, and all Cruisers’ Net pages. Click on “Florida Keys.” A drop down menu will appear, with a blue background, Now, click on “FLK Regional Cruising News.” A sub-drop-down menu will now appear, listing 13 Florida Keys geographic sub-regions. Select your waters of interest, and after clicking on your choice, a list of messages will appear, confined to the sub-region you have picked!

    Yellow Background Denotes Navigation Alert Postings
  • Update on Florida’s Anchoring Restrictions Bill

    This Florida senate bill restricting anchoring has been much in the news for several weeks, see and This update is from Kim Russo on AGLCA’s Forum

    Below is an update provided this morning from the team working on defeating the proposed anchoring restrictions in Florida. Thanks to all the Loopers and our Sponsors who have taken steps to help with this issue. We’ve made
    a lot of progress!

    1. There are 8 days left in the regular session.

    2. On the House side, there is currently no remaining bill that includes the anchoring ban. The bill that most logically could have been a vehicle for such a provision passed 119-0 this morning on the House floor (i.e. vote by the full House). This was after the anchoring ban amendment was defeated in its last committee hearing. Therefore, when it was brought up for a vote of the full House (on the floor) it contained no anchoring ban provisions. Unlike last year, no anchoring ban amendment was filed on the floor although our team was poised, ready to respond rapidly … as were the House members who have become champions for the boating and cruising
    community. That bill is now going to the Senate for a vote.

    3. On the Senate side, the bill containing the anchoring ban made it through the 2nd of its 3 required committees 2 weeks ago. With 8 days left, the bill is not currently scheduled for a 3rd committee hearing.
    Currently, that 3rdcommittee is not scheduled to meet again, although that could change.

    4. We are working continuously to monitor and track every bill and every potential amendment to a bill that could create the anchoring ban. We are in constant communication with a full host of House and Senate members who are with us.

    5. At this stage, broad messaging from the boating community to legislators is not an effective strategy. If, however, any threatening bill or amendment emerges, we will again engage promptly with messaging that is tailored, timed and targeted.

    6. The boating and cruising community has done a great job throughout this session. It has strengthened its voice and its effectiveness. It has broadened and diversified its sources of messaging. For example, recently
    there was effective proactive messaging from the veterans boating community and the Boy Scouts/Sea Scouts boating community that was influential in conjunction with the balance of the boating and cruising community family.

    7. We still have 8 days. Readiness is the key.

    Kim Russo
    America’s Great Loop Cruisers’ Association

  • Mother’s Day Special at Key Lime Sailing Club, Key Largo, FL

    key lime

    Key Lime Sailing Club in Key Largo, 305-451-3438, www.keylimesailingclub.comOur good friends at SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR Key Lime Sailing Club want to wish you and your Mom a very special Happy Mother’s Day! Key Lime Sailing Club is on the Inside Route side of Key Largo.

    Mother’s Day Gift!
    Treat your mom to an early Mother’s Day here in the Florida Keys! At Key Lime Sailing Club and Cottages, you’ll be able to enjoy the best of the Keys like sailing, kayaking, snorkeling, fishing, eco tours, manatee visits, amazing sunsets, and nearby local attractions without spending a lot of money. This is a vacation that you will remember for many years to come as our dear guests have experienced. Book now as we still have cottages available this April and May.
    Cottage rental starts at $225 per night (plus cleaning fees and taxes) and includes the free use of a 22’ sailboat (for qualified sailors), kayaks, paddle boards, snorkel gear, fishing gear, and other water toys. We also take out all of our guests once or twice a week aboard our 40’ catamaran for a sunset cruise around Florida Bay for free! You won’t get this deal anywhere else.

    Call 305-451-3438 or just reply to this email to inquire or to reserve. Check out our website for more info.

    If you have no sailing experience yet but would like to learn, we have a sailing school onsite where you can get ASA certified from some of the best sailing instructors in the industry! For sailing school information you can talk to Capt Gary at 305-587-3205.

    Click Here for a listing of upcoming events.
    Key Lime Sailing Club
    101425 Overseas Hwy. #922
    Key Largo , FL 33037

  • Praise for Garrison Bight/Fleming Key Mooring Field, Key West

    The Garrison Bight/Fleming Key mooring field lies along a broad swath of water between Fleming Key and Sigsbee Park, north-northwest of Garrison Bight and is managed by Key West City Marina.

    We spent two winters in Key West at Garrison Bight mooring field. Wonderful spot. One mile to Garrison Bight, 2 miles to Key West bight and Rat Key is in the anchorage for doggie walking. Grocery and other shopping within dingy distance. We loved evenings in Key West bight and dog walking from Garrison Bight docks through the lovely ‘Meadows’ neighborhood. Key West is fun on a daily basis. Be sure to use Key West Marine for all your boating needs, and if you have head problems, use the Head Honcho. The Cubanos at KW Marine will hook you up. Great Thai food at Garrison Bight and generally great fun and food are available in short range from the moorings.
    Cap and Linda Munday

    Click Here To View the Florida Keys Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For the Key West – Fleming Key Mooring Field

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the Key West – Fleming Key Mooring Field

    Click Here To View the Florida Keys Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Key West City Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Key West City Marina

  • Good Words for Key West Harbour, Stock Island, Florida Keys

    This report from Key West Harbour was posted on AGLCA’s Forum by Skipper Favors. Key West Harbour’s marked entry channel cuts northwest off the Boca Chica Key channel between markers #5 and #7.

    We’ve stayed at Key West Yacht Harbour on Stock Island for month stretches and would recommend it for consideration. They have a pool, exercise room,restaurant and bar and there prices are a bargain compared to downtown. If you have a car you’re in good shape for getting around but without a caryou have to rely on buses, bikes or taxi.
    Jim & Lisa Favors – Kismet
    Ranger Tug R27

    Click Here To View the Florida Keys Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Key West Harbour

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Stock Island

  • Less than Good News on SB 1548!

    April 15: Despite the best efforts of SSCA and AGLCA, the afternoon session in Tallahassee brought less than good news with the inclusion of the anchoring restrictions in SB 1548 . Here is a follow-up report by our good friend, Make Ahart, posted on AGLCA’s Forum:
    April 14: This report by Mike Ahart of Waterway Guide is good news for cruisers! Kudos to all who attended and spoke at the hearing and to those who wrote in opposition to SB 1548! Special praise to SSCA, AGLCA and BoatUS for their efforts on boaters’ behalf.

    Following the good news on the House side in Florida this morning, this
    afternoon the second state Senate committee to hear the bill including the
    anchoring provisions voted to move the bill forward. More to come later on
    next steps. More detailed report by Mike Ahart of Waterway Guide is here:
    Kim Russo

    FL anchoring restriction bill passes another Senate committee
    Reported By: Mike Ahart, News Editor
    Florida’s Senate Appropriations Subcommittee on General Government heard Senate Bill 1548 today. This legislation would prohibit overnight anchoring on navigable water near private residences and public marine infrastructure, exception certain circumstances, among other less-contentious provisions. Despite strong support from the cruising community, the committee voted favorably for the bill 6 to 0.

    Eleven bills were on the 2-hour session’s agenda, including contentious legislation related to fracking. Due to time constraints, only two attendees who petitioned the committee to speak were able to. Watch video of hearing (starts at minute 78:08 – a short break is taken for another bill during the hearing).

    Over a dozen cruisers attended the hearing, as well as a morning Florida House hearing on a related bill at the State Capitol in Tallahassee. House Bill 7123 – At-Risk Vessels had no anchoring restrictions for or vessels that are neither considered “derelict” or at risk of becoming derelict, but, last night, an amendment was introduced to the bill which would have aligned with the anchoring restrictions in Senate Bill 1548. Several cruisers and cruising advocates spoke. The amendment was withdrawn, and the “At-Risk Vessel” bill passed unanimously without the amendment.

    Florida House ‘at-risk vessel bill’ passes committee, amendment withdrawn
    Date Reported: Apr 14, 2015
    Reported By: Mike Ahart, News Editor
    Source: WG Staff

    UPDATE: A last-minute amendment which would have aligned House Bill 7123 (At-Risk Vessels) with the anchoring restrictions in Senate Bill 1548 was withdrawn after over a dozen cruisers and advocates spoke against it at a House State Affairs Committee hearing this morning. The bill passed without the amendment.

    The Florida House of Representatives has introduced a new bill defining vessels “at risk” of becoming derelict. It does not mirror Senate Bill 1548 currently under consideration – a bill that would make anchoring illegal within 200 feet of public marine infrastructure and developed waterfront property.

    State Representative Holly Raschein has introduced House Bill 7123 (formerly PCB HWSS 15-06) titled “At Risk Vessels,” does not include any anchoring restrictions for vessels that are neither considered “derelict” or at risk of becoming derelict. Rep. Raschein is Vice Chair of the Highway & Waterway Safety Subcommittee, and represents Monroe County and south Miami-Dade County.

    This legislation would, if enacted, create a new section of code in Florida Statute 327 (“Vessel Safety”) defining at-risk vessels as exhibiting any of the following characteristics:

    (a) The vessel has compartments designed to be enclosed which are incapable of being sealed off or remain open to the elements for extended periods of time.

    (b) The vessel has broken free or is in danger of breaking free from anchor.

    (c) The vessel is listing due to water intrusion, has sunk or is partially sunken, or is left or stored aground in such a state that would prevent the vessel from getting underway.

    (d) The vessel is taking on or has taken on water without an effective means of dewatering.

    According to the bill, the occupant or registered owner of an “at risk” vessel on Florida waters can be warned or fined:

    First offense, $50.
    Second offense occurring within 30 days after a prior conviction, $250.
    Third offense occurring within 60 days after a prior conviction, $500.
    Fourth or subsequent offense occurring within 90 days after a prior conviction, $1,000.
    If the at-risk conditions are not corrected after 90 days, the vessel would be considered derelict. According to Florida Statute 823 (“Public Nuisance”) it is unlawful for a person, firm, or corporation to store, leave, or abandon any derelict vessel in the state, and law enforcement can have the vessel relocated or removed, and any costs associated are recoverable against the vessel owner.

    The legislation would take effect July 1, 2015.

  • Model Letter re SB 1548 by Jim Healy

    Here is a well-written, insightful letter to Florida legislators that should serve as a model for those of you who plan to write in opposition to SB 1548, see Thank you Captain Healy.

    Chairman Hon. Alan Hays
    Vice Chairman Hon. Oscar Braynon
    Senator Hon. Thad Altman
    Senator Hon. Charles Dean
    Senator Hon. Tom Lee
    Senator Hon. Gwen Margolis
    Senator Hon. Wilton Simpson

    Dear Chairman Hays and members of the Senate Committee on General Government Operations:

    I am writing in reference to SB1548, titled “An Act Related to Vessel Safety.” I am a legal resident of Green Cove Springs, Clay County, and an active boater. I have previously written to Sen. Rob Bradley requesting that he decline to support Senate Bill 1548 in its present form. While I do not object to the core safety-related provisions of SB1548, I do object to the anchoring setback provisions contained in the bill. The setback provisions reduce the availability of safe anchoring locations all across Florida, thereby acting against the goal of promoting safety in navigation on state waters. Furthermore, the setback provisions represent revocation of lawful pubic access rights to public trust lands. These lands are held by the state in trust for use by the public, not for the aesthetic preferences or personal use of adjoining waterfront landowners or for the promotion of waterfront business interests.

    Although limitations on anchoring may favor certain business interests, the origin of the setback provisions in the bill appears to be isolated disputes between waterfront landowners and occupants of anchored vessels. Some of these disputes have been highly publicized, but do not justify a sweeping statewide law which would restrict the rights and freedoms of hundreds of thousands of boaters throughout the maritime waters of coastal Florida. These disputes are not based on safety concerns. They can and should be resolved on a case-by-case basis through noise and nuisance proceedings in the judicial branch of municipal, county and state government.

    House Bill 7123 deals with derelict vessels without changing current Florida-wide anchoring rights. When we first moved to Florida in 2004, there was a confusing and inconsistent patchwork of local, city and county laws that restricted or disallowed anchoring in Florida’s intracoastal public trust waters. Compliance with that patchwork of local ordinances was impossible. Florida Statute 327.60 ended that inconsistency in anchoring policies and local manipulation of navigation rights and rules. At this time, HB7123 creates an “at risk” category of boats and gives local governments new tools to manage these situations. Because local governments sometimes seek to promulgate anchoring restrictions as a means of managing problems with “at risk” and derelict vessels, I strongly believe that HB7123 is an excellent step to deter vessels from becoming derelict in the first place.

    I ask that SB1548 be aligned with HB7123. I also ask that as the opportunity presents itself in the future, that the committee act to maintain the statewide consistency of anchoring rules the legislature previously established in FS 327.60, and act to prohibit local or regional exceptions to this state wide policy.
    Thank you for your consideration.
    James B. Healy
    Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary, currently at Daytona Beach, FL

    Monk 36 Hull #132

  • April and May Events at Key Lime Sailing Club, Key Largo, FL

    key lime

    Key Lime Sailing Club in Key Largo, 305-451-3438, www.keylimesailingclub.comOur good friends at SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR Key Lime Sailing Club want to wish you and your family a very Happy Easter! Key Lime Sailing Club is on the Inside Route side of Key Largo.

    Photo by Joe Sweat of Better Off Wet Magazine

    Happy Easter from the Florida Keys!

    If you haven’t booked your Florida Keys vacation yet, we still have availability.

    Listed below is our available cottages and dates until May:
    Call Teresa at 305-451-3438 or reply to this email for reservations! You can also check out our website for more information.

    Cottage rental includes free use of 22′ sailboat (for qualified sailors), kayaks, canoes, paddle boards, water toys, bicycles, snorkel & fishing gear, and free Sunset Cruise around Florida Bay!

    If you do not know how to sail yet but would like to start now, we offer sailing certification courses where you’ll learn from some of the best sailing instructors in the industry! Come check out our Learn to Sail packages.

    Good news for those who are planning to go to the Keys for the next few months as we have some great local activities lined up that you’ll surely love!

    Florida Keys Events through May:
    Islamorada / April 5
    Underwater Easter Egg Hunt

    The Easter bunny hosts this annual underwater egg hunt to benefit Kids in Special Situations, a local charity for needy children. Famous for his up-close creature feature dives with his undersea friends, Captain Spencer Slate, clad in a giant bunny suit and dive gear, hides brightly coloured Easter eggs for ardent bounty hunters on the sand, adjacent to a shallow coral reef in the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary. Real eggs and nontoxic colourings are used to avoid any negative environmental impact. Open to divers and snorkelers, check-in at 8 a.m. Dive is scheduled to depart the dock at 8:30 a.m., must register prior to event. Check in at Captain Slate’s Scuba Adventures, located at mile marker (MM) 90.7 oceanside in Tavernier at the Casa Mar Village shopping enclave.

    Contact: 305-451-3020

    Key Largo / April 16
    Free Fish I.D. Classes with Keys Underwater Photographers: Filefishes

    Learn how to identify fish found in the Florida Keys! Join Allison & Carlos Estape at REEF Headquarters (MM 98.3 in the median) for interactive fish behavior & ID classes. Become a citizen-scientist by participating in REEF’s Volunteer Fish Survey Project where divers & snorkelers add their Fish ID Surveys to REEF’s database which is used by scientists around the world. Begins 7 p.m.

    Contact: Allison Estape 305 794 5081

    Key West / April 17– 26
    33rd Annual Conch Republic Independence Celebration

    With activities ranging from wacky bed race to a lighthearted sea battle featuring tall ships, the Conch Republic’s 10-day birthday party showcases the independent and eccentric spirit that characterizes the Florida Keys.

    Contact: 305-296-0213
    Islamorada / April 19
    21st Annual Bay Jam

    This music and art festival features local and guest artists performing on the shores of Florida Bay at the ICE Amphitheater at Founders Park, mile marker 87 on U.S. 1. Attendees can savor the sounds from midday through sunset and into the night from the hammock-like performance center set against the aqua waters of Florida Bay.

    Contact: 305-394-2765

    Key West / April 30 – May 3
    Key West Paddleboard Classic

    During this ocean paddleboard race, participants enjoy a challenging 12-mile course over crystal blue waters, circling Key West through scenic mangroves, passing by the Historic Seaport district and more. The race around Key West is open to paddlers on standup paddleboards, prone boards, outrigger canoes, dory boats, surf skis and kayaks. Other weekend beach and paddling activities are planned.

    Contact: Sue Cooper 305-304-4259
    Key Largo / May 14– 17
    Key Largo’s Original Music Festival

    Enjoy the food, entertainment and ambiance of Key Largo during this singers and songwriters event. Multiple “on the water” venues feature Nashville’s hit songwriters and musicians as well as unique local entertainers. Presented by the Upper Keys Business Group.

    Contact: 305-394-3736

    For more Florida Keys Events, please visit

    Win Free Stays at Key Lime Sailing Club

    To our guests and friends, get a chance to go back and vacation at KLSC for free by sending us pictures of your stay here! Win our 4th KLSC Photo Contest and get a 3 free night stay. Check here for details.

    Got a talent for video making? Join our KLSC Video Contest and get a chance to win a free 5 night stay! Check here for details.

    We at Key Largo Cottages at Key Lime Sailing Club love our guests and we will be happy to have you guys here again for another fun filled and relaxing Florida Keys vacation!

    Facebook Twitter

    Join our Facebook and Twitter to receive our updates before we send them out to our email subscribers.

    Theresa in Reservations is standing by @ or call 1-305-451-3438

    Thank you and Sea Yah all in the Florida Keys!

    Top 12 Things to Do in The Upper Keys

    1.Take a free tour of Key Largo Fisheries,see where most of the fish and lobster in the Keys come from. 1-800-432-4358

    2. Complete Senor Frijoles’ Free On-line Key Largo Treasure Hunt. Fill it out and take to Senor Frijoles to win your free gift. 305-451-1592

    3. Take a dip at the Beach at Marker 88, and while you are there, enjoy a refreshing beverage. 305-852-9315

    4. Feed the Tarpon from the dock at Sundowners 305-451-4502

    5. See the Pontune’s Pirate Ship sail at sunset 305-393-5593

    6. Learn Sailing at Key Lime Sailing Club 305-451-3438

    7. Get a bird’s eye view of the Keys with Key Largo Parasail 305-747-0032

    8. Visit the Christof the Abyss Statue and name at least 5 fish on the reef. 305-451-3595

    9. Kayak around Key Largo 305-451-3018

    10. Visit the Wild Bird Center at feeding time. 305-852-4486

    11. Swim with the Dolphins at Dolphin’s Cove or Dolphin’s Plus. 305-451-4060

    12. Visit the Everglades Alligator Farm in Florida City and take an airboat ride 305-247-2628
    Key Lime Sailing Club
    101425 Overseas Hwy. #922
    Key Largo , FL 33037

  • Keys Free Pumpout Service Renewed

    This free pumpout service was initiated in 2012 and has been a real blessing for visiting cruisers. The program has been renewed for two years, but its future beyond this extension is uncertain as outlined in this article from sent to us by good friends Chuck Baier and Susan Landry .  See for news on other pumpout service in the Keys.

    Long-term future of pumpout program remains uncertain
    BY BRIAN BOWDEN Free Press Staff
    KEY LARGO — The county commission gave the OK on a new two-year agreement with the contractor tasked with providing a free Keys-wide mobile vessel sewage disposal service for liveaboards at its most recent meeting, but following expiration boat owners could start incurring fees.

    The county currently contributes $380,000 to the program which comes at no cost to individual vessel owners. The dollars used to offset the cost of the program are pulled from boating improvement funds generated via annual vessel registrations.

    The commission previously gave county officials direction to develop a new program that would begin to charge customers on a per pumpout basis come 2017.

    “It’s going to be hard to start charging people,” County Administrator Roman Gastesi told commissioners at the March 18 meeting.

    Gastesi said his staff was still looking at funding the program through state dollars or elsewhere before the agreement expires.

    “There are a lot of people who do not agree with that position,” Mayor Danny Kolhage told Gastesi.

    Kolhage and Commissioner Sylvia Murphy seemed to be in agreement that a new program charging individuals at least a nominal fee would be preferable. Kolhage pointed out that the funding spent offsetting the cost of the program could be put toward the removal of several derelict vessels the county has had on its radar for some time.

    Pumpout USA Inc. has had the contract with the county since 2012. It pumps out up to 1,500 vessels a month under the new agreement.

    The commission also unanimously approved acceptance of a Florida Department of Transportation easement in regards to a pedestrian bridge planned for construction over Marvin D. Adams Waterway at mile marker 103. The easement, at no cost the county, will give it jurisdiction over the bridge. Construction of the bridge is expected to begin in the fall.

    A design outlining a boardwalk and other amenities, including a parking lot and bathroom facilities, at the Rowell’s Marina property at mile marker 104 was unanimously approved by the commission as well.

    The commission’s next meeting is scheduled for 9 a.m. Wednesday, April 15, at the Harvey Government Center in Key West.

  • AIWA Winter Newsletter

    Because these are our home waters, SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’NET is especially proud to be a member of the Atlantic Intracoastal Waterway Association and of supporting their invaluable work. If you are a cruiser of “The Ditch” you will want to join in support of the AIWA.


  • Good Review of Mangrove Marina, Florida Keys Inside Route, Key Largo, Statute Mile 1150

    Mangrove Marina is one of only a very few facilities offering transient dockage on the Florida Keys Inside Route between a point south of Jewfish Creek, and Snake Creek. To access Mangrove Marina, depart the Inside Route just northeast of the Tavernier Creek intersection, between markers #64A and #65. Note that Mangrove Marina also features a full service repair yard! Skipper Foster’s review comes from the AGLCA Forum.

    While the boat has been here over a two months, we’ve just been here a month. if you are looking for a marina on the bay side of the keys I’d highly recommend Mangrove Marina in Tavernier. Docks are combo of fixed concrete and wood. There isn’t a tidal swing, but the wind does push water in and out of the cove, total swing is about 18″.
    Water depth coming in is ok if you are 4′ or less. Call the marina office and get a route if you draw 5′
    Within a 10 minute walk: Win-Dixy, movies, post office, McDonalds, hospital, 6 restaurants, hardware store and liquor store. A bike ride will add three more places to eat, a beach and a marine parts store. There is a lunch truck on site that has Breakfast / Lunch Sat and Sun, and a special dinner (Prime Rib, stuffed pork tenderloin, etc. ) on Wednesday night.
    Gas, diesel, ice, pumpouts. If you are staying, there are weekly pumpouts on the docks. Lots of liveaboards here made us feel welcome. There is the only Marching Conch Band in the Keys here! Nightly docktails at sunset.
    Lots of good fishing locations a 5-10 min dink ride away.
    Location is Keys MI 92. Car rental across the road will match Enterprise rates. By car you are 1 HR from Miami, 45 mins to Marathon, 2 hours to Key West.
    Rates include water and electric, no liveaboard fee.
    Mangrove Marina
    200 Florida Avenue, Tavernier, FL 33070
    (305) 852-8380

    Quo Vadimus
    Nowhere OK
    1993 Bayliner 4588

    Click Here To View the Florida Keys Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Mangrove Marina

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

  • Keys White Reef Lights Being Replaced

    As reported by Adam Linhardt in, Alligator Reef Light (Islamorada), American Shoal Reef Light (Big Pine Key), Carysfort Reef Light (Key Largo), Sand Key Reef Light (Key West) and Sombrero Key Reef Light (Marathon)are scheduled to be replaced by brighter, more powerful LED lights.

    New reef lights being installed
    BY ADAM LINHARDT Citizen Staff

    Saturday, February 7, 2015
    Florida Keys maritime historians can breathe a sigh of relief as the Coast Guard has no plans to remove the historic reef lights throughout the island chain.
    But they are scheduled to go dark this year.
    The Coast Guard Sector Key West Aids to Navigation Team (ANT) is in the process of installing new, more powerful LED lights on single steel pilings near every historic reef light in the Keys. The cost to taxpayers will be about $100,000.
    That cost should be negligible in the coming years as the ANT crews have been spending about $2 million the last few years repairing and maintaining the existing lights at Alligator Reef Light (Islamorada), American Shoal Reef Light (Big Pine Key), Carysfort Reef Light (Key Largo), Sand Key Reef Light (Key West) and Sombrero Key Reef Light (Marathon).
    The problem has been the ANT crews have had to contract out the work needed to be done to the old historic lights to keep them up to Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) standards at a high cost. The new, modern lights will be much more efficient in terms not only cost, but also operationally, said Coast Guard ANT Chief Jeff Hunter.
    The old historic light structures are not going to be taken down, but they will go dark when the new lights are installed.
    The new lights are going up very close to the old structures, Hunter said. They will leave a smaller environmental footprint and were approved by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) as per the Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary.
    “The old lights project about nine miles out to sea and, in our opinion, we just don’t need them to project that far anymore,” Hunter said. “Things like modern GPS and navigational tools make that possible. The new lights will project about seven to eight miles out, just past the marine sanctuary.”
    Ships larger than 164 feet (or 50 meters) cannot legally transit sanctuary waters outside of the main shipping channel, and the reef (warning) lights are intended for those vessels more than smaller recreational boats, Hunter said.
    The white reef lights are not to be confused with green and red navigational lights more commonly seen throughout the island chain.
    “That’s really what our reef lights are for — to keep the big ships out there and let them know there’s a hazardous reef nearby,” Hunter said. “As long as the light is projected past the boundary, those ships know they need to avoid the area.”
    The ANT crews have put up new lights at Carysfort and Sand Key reef lights. The rest are scheduled to be completed by the end of this year, Hunter said.
    “Obviously, weather is always a concern when working out on the water,” Hunter said.
    Hunter stressed that the old reef lights — some are 100 years old or more and as much as 80 feet tall — aren’t going anywhere.
    “Don’t think we’re abandoning them or that they’re going to fall into the reef anytime soon,” Hunter said. “They’re just not up to our structural standards when we have to work on them. I would add that the historical lenses were removed on the old lights years ago and what’s up there now is just a traditional beacon and not the historic light.”
    Meanwhile, a system of offshore weather stations previously attached to the historic reef lights that once provided information to mariners, anglers and scientists has been defunded, said Florida Keys National Marine Sanctuary Superintendent Sean Morton.
    The program was called Sustained Ecological Research Related to the Management of the Florida Keys Seascape, or SEAKEYS. The station once provided real-time weather, tide and current data to the public free of charge via the Internet, but those days appear over.
    “Funding for that program came through a grant and (it) ran out,” Morton said.
    Whether the program will come back remains dim.
    “I doubt it,” Morton said. “We tried and basically the message we got was that it most likely will not be funded. Attempts were made to a different part of NOAA in Miami collecting some information, but not like we had at each of the lights.”
    Hunter added the Coast Guard has been having problems with people climbing the old reef lights, which is a federal trespassing offense.
    “The Alligator Reef Light (Islamorada) is the worst,” Hunter said.
    Residents need to know that they will be arrested and forced to appear in federal court if seen climbing the lights, Hunter said.


  • Florida Wildlife Commission 2014 Anchoring and Mooring Survey Results

    Here are the long awaited and much debated results of FWC’s survey on anchoring and mooring in Florida’s waterways. See for background information.






    2014 Anchoring and Mooring Public Survey Results and Analysis

    This page contains the results of the Anchoring and Mooring Public Survey which took place November 21st – December 7th 2014. Below you will find an Executive Summary of the overall results. The Full Analysis of the surveyed concepts with public comments attached and a document form of the Original Survey are also available for viewing. In the specific analysis of the surveyed concepts, you will find links to view the free text public comments given for each concept. Thank you for your input and interest in this matter.
    The referenced documents may be accessed at this site:

  • No Name Harbor, Praised and Reviled! AICW Statute Mile 1096

    No Name Harbor Anchorage is on the waters of the tadpole-shaped harbor which indents the westerly banks of south Key Biscayne, near Cape Florida. Few anchorages on the Waterway elicit such a range of opinions.

    NO NAME HARBOR SUCKS now cause of a few local old large boats docking at the seawall the entire day even blocking the ladder for us snow birds, is charging $8.00 to tie to the seawall thank you miami river old boats for cause the park to enforce this and also pending $25.00 to moor in the middle of the harbor which sucks cause the bottom is mud and the anchors do not hold.

    We stayed in No Name this past year for several days waiting out weather and enjoyed this stop…never saw any problems with holding in strong winds either. But did have issue with seawall being taken up which made it impossible to go and get pump out…don’t know why they have it if that area is not free from the local loud boaters. We had one incident where 5 local boaters were told to get off the wall well after dark, (rules are off at dark) and they proceeded to come off about 10 feet and do a 5 boat raft late evening playing loud music and forcing a sail boat who had been anchored for two days to have to pick up anchor and move to avoid being hit…no authourity did a thing about it nor did anyone pay to stay the I guess the locals control the area. We learned one thing, never go there on a weekend. During the week it was less problematic and a beautiful place to be. Loved walking aroung the park and going to the beach. Also enjoyed a very old large manatee that stays in that harbor.
    S/V Colleen Mae

    Partly it’s a cultural thing, the loud music and rafting is fun to them, “party time”!!! To those of us who like to sit reading in the cockpit while our sailboats bob gently, not so much :)
    It’s also a money thing, it’s cheaper to go from Miami to No Name than to zoom over to Bimini or wherever. They can’t afford the gas to actually GO anywhere anymore. At least they not zooming along waking us as WE slowly go somewhere.
    As to the authorities, I have never seen them there, I’ve seen people in golf carts removing garbage but that’s about it. They don’t seem to get involved, but if they did, I bet they would side with the locals after all, they are locals too!
    My pet peeve is the GENERATORS and their godawful noise! People stay at home in your condo or buy a solar panel, please!
    Ok, rant over!
    Susan Kennedy

    Awesome anchorage! We could not use the local mooring fields because of our 51 ft length & weight so No name was our only choice to avoid strong winds from ALL DIRECTIONS.Yes the bottom is soft mud however properly set hooks will hold at least to 30 mph no problem. In regards to the weekend party this is Miami’s back yard and should be expected near any large boating community. The actual fee is $20.00 per night to anchor and $8.00 to tie up to the wall until 11 P/M. Our personal comment is No Name Harbor is if not the best anchorage we have been in it comes close.
    Our Lord’s Blessing to All
    Ed & Bonnie S/V Almost Heaven 01/20/12

    And a question:

    Is there free water at No Name? I forget. Thanks!!

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Florida Keys Anchorage Directory Listing For No Name Anchorage

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of No Name Anchorage

  • More Abuse by Florida Wildlife Commission Enforcement Officers

    Skipper Starling’s report comes in response to an earlier posting on the heavy-handed practices of some FWC patrol officers, Despite numerous complaints filed by experienced and law abiding boaters, Florida seems unable to control the over-zealous enforcement present in the FWC enforcement division, practices definitely not limited to the Keys.

    Predatory practices by FWCC toward boaters in Key West
    Being shadowed by a boat with no lights while underway to the dock at sunset is unnerving , but when it turns out to be FWCC , it is worse.
    Now pulled over by FWCC, they mention running lights so I mention the sunglasses they still have on. No matter that it is literally moments after sunset. Their intention is to write a citation and generate income for FWCC and at the moment I have become that revenue resource.
    Minor infractions that should warrant a verbal warning are tickets.
    Worse yet , a few weeks later I receive a certified letter from FWCC .
    Inside, a citation for a non operational anchor light , which was issued in my absence from the vessel. It was issued at 6:32 , just after sunset when the ambient light was bright enough to keep the photo cell on my Davis auto anchor light from activating. This anchor light is an industry standard and turns on and off automatically . My vessel was not anchored in State waters but Navy bay bottom and not in navigable waters.
    I have lost any respect for the newly inducted Officers, as they lack the skills necessary to gain the confidence of the Citizens and form relationships that would benefit the FWCC and boating community. Older Veteran Officers do not operate in this manner and know that it creates animosity and results in the boating community not helping FWCC in investigations of serious violations due to bad experiences and distrust.
    FWCC wonders why the boating community doesn’t trust them , and refuses to cooperate . This is one example of their perception of boaters as a income revenue resource.
    Lee Starling

  • Advice on Sailboat Chartering in the Keys

    Charmaine Smith Ladd is a longtime contributor to SSECN, as well as a good friend to Claiborne Young. Her expert advice below was in response to a reader from the UK wanting to bareboat charter a sailboat (34-35ft, 5ft or less draft) in the Keys. The quality of Charmaine’s advice is such that it calls for sharing with all of you who dream of cruising the Keys in a charter or in your own boat. Thank you Charmaine!

    If you’re wishing to charter, you need to hone in on where you want to do your sailing as that will dictate from where you’ll want to charter the vessel. People tend to think that getting from Virginia Key to Key West is no big trip or problem, but I’m sure you don’t want to spend your entire 6 days/5 nights going in circles and then have to get the boat back on time. Weather can change. Tides need to be considered. You need a plan. So, recommending you look at charts of the Keys (you can find them online) and figure out from where you wish to charter. Then you can branch out your sail and overnighting (be it on the hook or at a marina) from there.

    “Mod cons,” you say? Modern conveniences… have mercy. That’s like telling a realtor you want a house with modern conveniences. That’s quite relative and subjective to each individual. It depends. I had satellite phone, satellite television, watermaker, inboard diesel generator, freezer, etc., things that many others would not want on a charter but that some others wouldn’t leave the dock without them. LOL Okay, so I admit to being somewhat of a prima donna when it came to “mod cons.” Bottom line: please be specific in requesting what you desire.

    A draft of 5’ or more is probably too drafty for someone on a 6 day vacation and never having sailed the Keys. That is, not unless there is a solid plan of where and how one wishes to sail. People come down to the Keys all the time from up north where there’s deep water everywhere (especially Canada) and run aground constantly. They are used to having lots of water beneath them and are not adept at chartplotting. It’s necessary in the Keys to either know the lay of the land beneath the water or know how to read charts! The only way you know the seafloor is by reading charts.

    You’d be surprised how the adage, “ignorance is bliss” gets tested time and time again when people come down to sail the shallower waters of the Keys. It can be a rude wakeup call to those who thought they knew all the ins and outs of sailing. Getting in and out can be a problem too, depending where you are! But it can be done. One simply needs do some homework.

    You’ve made it clear you wish to sail both sides of the Keys: Florida Bay/the Gulf of Mexico and the Atlantic sides. Most locals of the Keys rarely take their sailboats on the Bay/Gulf Side, though I did all the time during my eleven years there. It’s actually some of the most pristine and fabulous backwaters in all of the Keys. However, it comes down to reading charts and having your course plotted BEFORE you leave the dock or hook (depending on where you wish to go)… tides and currents can move you around and some areas are very tight for passage if you have much of a draft beneath you. Hurricanes have changed the seafloor and areas get silted in… before you know it you’re hailing Tow Boat U.S. No one wants to spend much time on their vacation doing that!

    You want have to fun on your vacation and do all the sailing you can. And that, with due preparation, can most certainly happen! And when it does, it is a glorious thing!

    Fair Winds and Calm Seas!

    Charmaine Smith Ladd
    Hard Aground in West Central FL (Yikes! I’m a Landlubber!) (Author of “Shake Hands with Yourself” Amazon Books)

  • Good Words for Crandon Park Marina and Key Biscayne, Statute Mile 1094

    Located on the eastern shore of Biscayne Bay, Crandon Park Marina at 4000 Crandon Boulevard, Key Biscayne, FL, is a Miami-Dade County facility associated with Crandon Park Beach. The location looks very inviting and they do take transients on a space-available, no advance reservations, basis.

    We live on Key Biscayne. Just a tip. There is good provisioning in Key Biscayne on Crandon Blvd in the village. Take the bus, every 20-30 minutes southbound right at the marina. Every third bus goes down Harbor Drive and is less convenient. There is grocery, restaurants and every sort of shopping just 5 miles away. Best beaches in Crandon Park and Bill Baggs State Park. I believe moorings are only for sailboats. Enjoy.
    Gregory Han

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

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Crandon Park Marina

  • REMINDER: Comments and Background Info from BoatUS on Anchoring Survey

    Reminder, if you have not yet participated in the online anchoring survey, please do so before the 12/7/14 deadline.

    SSECN sent out this Anchoring Survey via an email Alert as soon as it was received. This posting is to publish comments we have received about the survey. Because a wide response is in the best interest of boaters, we ask that you not be deterred from completing the survey by negative comments about the language and format of the survey. This should be one of those “just do it!” moments. And the survey is pertinent to all cruising boaters, not just Florida residents. If you did not receive our Alert, the link to the survey is below.

    And this admonition from BoatUS:


    November 25, 2014

    Dear BoatU.S. Member,

    Florida is once again considering a change in their anchoring regulations. Whether you live in Florida or just want to cruise there someday, now is a critical time to share your views on this topic with the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC).
    Please click on the link below to take FWC’s survey. We recognize it’s long, but we’d like to make sure that active, responsible cruising boaters help the state understand what works and what doesn’t when it comes to anchoring laws in the Sunshine State:

    In 2009, the Florida Legislature enacted legislation that stopped local governments from placing inconsistent and often onerous restrictions on anchoring. During the 2014 Florida legislative session there were strong attempts to repeal part of this prohibition. While these changes were defeated, there will likely be new legislation introduced in the spring that would grant local governments the authority to regulate anchoring in their municipalities. The Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) is now asking for comments on possible changes to Florida’s anchoring laws. It is important to take the FWC survey to register your opinions on anchoring restrictions to help influence what could be allowed by the state legislature.

    For additional information on anchoring in Florida please visit:

    Thanks for helping us get some valuable information to the FWC.

    And thank you for being a BoatU.S. Member!

    Margaret Podlich
    703-461-2878 x8363

    You have been identified as an interested party on potential anchoring regulations on Florida waters. This message is your invitation to contribute your thoughts on this subject through an online survey FWC has developed in response to feedback received at three prior public meetings this year. This survey has crucial explanatory language in the form of a video and audio messages (text options are available). To minimize the risk of confusion please listen to the messages in their entirety. Immediately following each video or audio message are questions specifically related to the information contained in that message. It is our desire to obtain the most widespread response possible from all parties with an interest in this subject. Thank you for your time and interest in completing this survey.

    The survey may be accessed at this site:

    This survey will be active from 4:00 P.M. EST November 21, 2014, through 11:59 P.M. EST December 7, 2014.

  • Questions about Garrison Bight/Fleming Key Mooring Field, Key West

    Skipper Petra posed the questions below for a contributor who had commented on the Garrison Bight/Fleming Key mooring field (see which lies along a broad swath of water between Fleming Key and Sigsbee Park, north-northwest of Garrison Bight and is managed by Key West City Marina. SSECN is happy to facilitate the following exchange. Skipper Petra would welcome your input as well.

    Hi James,
    Are there any docks, balls or cheap marinas from Big Coppitt Key to the Boot Key Ball area? I am going to be working in a music duet in that area while also a novice captain of a 38′ Morgan w 3.6 draw. I would want to avoid that North wind chop and also rely on a bicycle due to knee problems. My more secure alternative now only seems to be the Boot Key Balling area. Any help or suggestions are appreciated.
    Charly Petra

    Hi Larry,
    I have been in the Key West Garrison Bight Mooring Field for seven years. There is a 3′ wave during heavy North Eastern Cold Fronts that last two to three days and then it’s flat. These fronts are not a problem for me since I am in a 45′ Gulfstar S/V and should not be a problem for a 38′ Morgan. If there is a wind generator on board he will get plenty free electric that keeps my refrigeration and Satellite Dome humming. The cost is $323/M free water, parking, bath house, and parking for dinghy and car. The cheapest Marina I believe is on Stock Island and I am not sure of it’s name. It is next to 3D boat yard. I would guess the docking fee around a $1,000 a month. The facilities are brand new and it is nice with Restaurant and bar. In Key West it would cost closer to $2,000 + per month. There are some spots to anchor free that his draft would handle. One is in Key West by Christmas Tree Island which is a zoo, west of Fleming Key in KW., another would be Cow Key Channel which is between Key West and Stock Island. There could be some spots near Boca Chico Island north of the air base. You would need to search these out, but I have heard of some spots near there.

    Click Here To View the Florida Keys Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For the Key West – Fleming Key Mooring Field

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the Key West – Fleming Key Mooring Field

    Click Here To View the Florida Keys Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Key West City Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Key West City Marina

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