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Archive For: West FL – 6 – ICW, Miserable Mile to Gasparilla

  • CCCC Visits South Seas Island Resort & Marina, near GICW Statute Mile 15


    The Cape Coral Cruise Club is a group of dedicated cruisers who always provide unique reports from the marinas they visit. See http://cruisersnet.net/138063 for a description of the channel into South Seas Marina.

    Cape Coral Cruise Club returns to South Seas Island Resort & Marina
    by Mike Stewart

    part of the fleet 3

    Member boats docked at South Seas Marina

    part of the fleet 2

    Member boats docked at South Seas Marina

    South Seas Island Resort was the place to be for fun loving CCCC cruisers March 15, 16 17. Fog early on Tuesday, the 15th, did not deter 11 boat skippers from sailing up the sound and arriving safely at the Resort marina to be assisted by the professional dock crew with lines, power and TV cables. (Two boats did not make the run due to last minute mechanical difficulties.) Phil and Lyn Quick, cruise leaders, had matters in hand and the whole evolution went off without a hitch.
    South Seas Yacht Harbour
    Most people, except for our hard core fishermen, either enjoyed the pool or walks on the beach. There was a get together for “docktails” at 5pm, after which we all boarded the trolley for a run to Doc Fords for dinner. After enjoying the wide variety of seafood and land offerings, accompanied by wines and beers of choice, the group rode the trolley back to the marina. Some boaters even had room left for ice cream!

    Wednesday morning in the Chart Room our cruise leaders served a sumptuous breakfast of eggs, sausage, fruit, sweet muffins, muffins…..and more! Those ladies assisting by providing the fruit for the menu saw to it that nobody could claim that the selection was sparse. Most of us chose to walk the beaches for a couple of hours before again lounging at the pool. For lunch, cruisers were on their own to eat on board their boat or at an on-site restaurant. Several of us took the trolley to do some shopping off property. There is a great Mexican restaurant within easy walking distance of the resort, down near the Bubble Room. Two more boats arrived to bring our party to 13.

    Dinner was prepared by our leaders and their assistants and served in the Chart Room. You just cannot beat barbecued pork loin with baked potatoes and green beans! After dinner the Second Annual “Not so Newlywed Game” entertained everyone. Apparently, only Jon and Elise “know” each other very well, the rest of us really struggled with the questions. And the jury is still out on our Commodore and his karaoke machine that “makes anyone sound like a professional”. I understand that there is evidence otherwise on Facebook!

    Thursday, St. Patrick’s Day, and with everyone wearing green, started with a continental breakfast in the Chart Room. Then it was “on your own” until 4:30 pm cocktails. After happy hour, everyone spread to the winds to find a place to have dinner, most of us selecting the Harbourside Bar and Grill a fine restaurant at the marina. At about 7 pm we reconvened at the Chart Room for a “99” tournament, with tokens supplied by the cruise leaders. Mike and Brenda got no good cards at all and were gone early. Leave it to Dee and “newbie” Joanne to wipe out all the others and win the jackpot at their respective table. Way to go ladies!

    Friday dawned spectacularly and the hardy cruise group said a fond “farewell” to South Seas Island Resort and safely proceeded home.

    The Cape Coral Cruise Club is open to new members who own a boat with overnight accommodations and reside in the Cape Coral / Ft. Myers area. For membership information please contact Phil Kryger at 239-541-0236. View a short picture video of recent Club activities and read additional Club information on its website, www.c-c-c-c.org Like us on Facebook.

    Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For South Seas Island Resort Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of South Seas Island Resort Marina

  • Good Words for Gasparilla Marina and Staff, GICW Statute Mile 34


    In spite of its name, Gasparilla Marina is not located on Gasparilla Island, but rather it is to be found along the northeastern banks of the GICW, just south of the Gasparilla Island Causeway/Bridge. The entrance to Gasparilla Marina cuts east off the Western Florida ICW. This facility features a well sheltered harbor and offers superior services. Our thanks to David Burnham for these kind words.

    I forgot (nothing new at my age) to look at the fuel prices when we left Gasparilla Marina this morning after an overnight stay on our trip across the sandbar from Gulfport FL, to Jacksonville.
    But I have to give the folks at Gasparilla Marina two thumbs up for accommodating us as we arrived at 10pm last night and easily found our assigned reserved slip for our 28 foot Catalina “Synergy” right where they’d described it earlier over the phone. Their facilities are first rate (warm on a very cool night) and we enjoyed our short stop over and a cup of coffee before leaving this morning at 8AM for the next leg to Fort Myers.
    David Burnham

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Gasparilla Marina

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

  • Clarification Sought on Redfish Pass, off Pine Island Sound/GICW, between Captiva and North Captiva Islands


    Redfish Channel, which leads cruisers from the Western Florida ICW’s run through Pine Island Sound, and the entrance channel to South Seas Island Resort Marina have both been completely altered within the last year or so. Several earlier postings here on the Cruisers’ Net have noted this change. Skipper Chris is requesting local knowledge.

    I have been through this pass 3 times and I am still confused by the way it is marked. Red Right Return from the Gulf brings you through some very shallow waters. Check your GPS chartplotter coming in….quite unnerving! Thankful I draw only a couple feet. Any insight would be helpful! Only one red marker and it appears to be in the middle of a shoal!
    Chris

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Redfish Pass

  • Report from Picnic Island Anchorage, GICW Statute Mile 0.5


    Picnic Island Anchorage is found off the eastern and northeastern shores of Picnic Island, which itself lies just south, southeast of the ICW/Miserable Mile’s unlighted daybeacon #8.

    Good for a lunch hook but it is hard to hold here as the current will rip through here. Better holding and less wave action (boats navigating the miserable mile wake) is to the north. I have used the Merwin key anchorage many times and for week long anchoring . 26°30.184’N,82°2.867’W safe journey fair winds 2 U.
    RJ Schwandner

    Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For Picnic Island Anchorage

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

  • Good Visit to ‘Tween Waters Inn and Marina, near GICW Statute Mile 10


    This fine group of boaters, made up of overnight cruisers from the Cape Coral area, is a cruising club worth following as they visit marinas along the West Coast. ‘Tween Waters Inn and Marina lies southwest of the Roosevelt Channel’s marker #19 off Pine Island Sound.

    Those arriving early enjoyed sunning, swimming and chatting around the pool. ‘Tween Waters’ tiki hut provided many boaters with its’ famous lunch specials. Arriving by car to enjoy docktails and a fabulous, 2-for-1 prime rib dinner in the Old Captiva House at ‘Tween Waters were Commodore Lee & Brenda Jetton, Mike & Brenda Stewart, John & Mary Brehm, Bruce & Sue Longman and Rear Commodore Edie Limbright.
    Wednesday morning brought us a clear beautiful day. Each of the cruising couples entertained themselves with swimming, poolside lounging, fishing, reading, or bike rides and long walks through town and on the beach. Kelli & Joe Miller came by car to enjoy docktails complete with Phil Kryger’s famous fish bites.
    The official ‘Tween Waters cruise leader had been sidetracked at the hospital, so Edie and Jim Limbright arriving on Princess, graciously stepped in with marinated flank steak, cooked to perfection right on the dock using a portable camp stove set up by ingenious Phil Kryger. All crews pitched in providing side dishes.
    By Thursday morning, after all the storms had skirted ‘Tween Waters, the crews of all boats enjoyed a relaxing day. The Taake’s took their grandchildren to the beach only to sight sharks swimming close to the beach. Needless to say, the pool became very appealing. Our group of 16 had a delightful dinner at The Green Flash, followed by a beautiful sunset.
    The Cape Coral Cruise Club is open to new members who own a boat with overnight accommodations and reside in the Cape Coral / Ft. Myers area. For membership information please contact Phil Kryger at 239-541-0236. View a short picture video of recent Club activities and read additional Club information on its website, www.c-c-c-c.org Like us on Facebook.
    Elise Soyza

    Club member boats tied up at ‘Tween Waters Resort.

    Club member boats tied up at ‘Tween Waters Resort.

    DSC_0014

    ‘Tween Waters historical marker

     

     

     

     

     

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For ‘Tween Waters Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of ‘Tween Waters Marina

  • $$ for Lunch Dockage at Tween Waters Inn and Marina, near GICW Statute Mile 10


    Tween Waters Inn and Marina lies southwest of the Roosevelt Channel’s marker #19 off Pine Island Sound.

    Docked at this marina June 3rd 2015 for lunch. Dock-master informed me of “new” policy, cost $45 TO DOCK FOR LUNCH ! Said I could stay all day and I get a $25 coupon to use on premises. I guess if I got a $25 lunch then docking for the privilege of eating there would only cost $15.00 What a deal! Turned around and promptly left. Cabbage Key is much better and just a little further up the waterway.
    Lil Toot

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Tween Waters Marina

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

  • A Visit to Gasparilla Marina, GICW Statute Mile 34


    Each year the Cape Coral Cruise Club makes an extended cruise and, after visiting several marinas on the Gulf Coast, sends us their reports. This report is one of eight marinas they visited in April. In spite of its name, Gasparilla Marina is not located on Gasparilla Island, but rather it is to be found along the northeastern banks of the GICW, just south of the Gasparilla Island Causeway/Bridge. The entrance to Gasparilla Marina cuts east off the Western Florida ICW. This facility features a well sheltered harbor and offers superior services.

    The final stop before heading back to Cape Coral was Gasparilla Marina. A final happy hour under a huge canopy by the docks gave the cruising members the opportunity to express their thanks to the cruise leaders for arranging a great itinerary, and or course assuring that the winds were calm and the weather outstanding.
    The Cape Coral Cruise Club is open to new members who own a boat with overnight accommodations and reside in the Cape Coral / Ft. Myers area. For membership information please contact Phil Kryger at 239-541-0236. View a short picture video of recent Club activities and read additional Club information on its website, www.c-c-c-c.org Like us on Facebook.

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Marina Directory Listing For Gasparilla Marina

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

  • Good Words for Uncle Henry’s Marina, GICW Statute Mile 34


    Uncle Henry’s Marina is found at the terminus of the long, southward-flowing channel that cuts off from the West Florida Waterway between the old railway span and the Gasparilla Island causeway bridge.

    Arrived with a boat club and 11 boats of various types and sizes. Friendly staff, excellent restrooms and showers. Nearby restaurant (Patricks Thai ) was excellent as well. Convenience store within walking, however if you want to do more shopping a golf cart will be necessary. Beaches within dinghy ride distance with good shelling. We will be back.
    Jim Merritt

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

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Uncle Henry’s Marina

  • Report on Peekins Ranch Cove Anchorage, GICW Statute Mile 32


    Peekins Ranch Cove anchorage lies west of flashing daybeacon #13 near Gulf Waterway Mile 32.

    I would add that there is also little protection from wave action when wind is from the south or south east. Wind generated waves wrap around the small peninsula that appears to offer protection from the south.
    Rick Parish

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For Peekins Ranch Cove Anchorage

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Peekins Ranch Cove Anchorage

  • Report from Boca Grande – Gasparilla Island Basin Anchorage, West Florida ICW, Statute Mile 28.5


    Boca Grande – Gasparilla Island Basin Anchorage lies on the charted basin, north of the primary Boca Grand entrance channel, which itself lies west, northwest of the West Florida ICW’s unlighted daybeacon #2.

    June 7 2014
    Basically the anchorage is a wide spot in a very active waterway, with fishing boats coming and going constantly (there was a tarpon tournament that weekend). Necessary to “Med moor” with a stern anchor near the adjacent mangroves to stay out of the water way. Had a NW wind which was helpful, a SW or South wind would tend to push you into the water way. Whenever there are Mangroves there are bugs so be prepared.
    Jim Merritt

    Click Here To View the Cruisers’ Net’s Western Florida Anchorage Directory Listing For the Boca Grande – Gasparilla Island Basin Anchorage

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the Boca Grande – Gasparilla Island Basin Anchorage

  • High Praise for Sanibel Island Marina, Statute Mile 0, West Florida ICW

    Sanibel Island Marina – Click for Chartview

    Sanibel Island Marina is located near the island’s southern tip (Point Ybel), and within walking distance of the lighthouse.

    Sanibel Marina is like no other. It is family-owned and there is a lot of attention to detail, including great signage and beautiful flowers. This marina should be a definite stop in your SW Florida cruising adventures. Tom, the Harbor Master, doesn’t know a stranger, and he has a great team.
    Gramma Dot’s is simply one of the best restaurants in the area. And, the food is consistently terrific. Take note, Gramma Dot’s is VERY BUSY (open for lunch and dinner) and reservations are not accepted. You must be seated by 8:00 for dinner or you will be heading elsewhere.
    If you have a stand up paddle board or kayak, allow time to paddle around the canals and/or out into the bay. Billy’s Bike Rentals will deliver rental bikes upon request. The Ship’s Store has basics. A 1/2 mile walk to the east on Periwinkle will take you to Gepetto’s Beach Foodies for gourmet provisions and amzing pastries as well as to The Lighthouse Cafe for a great breakfast.
    Sanibel Marina is special!
    Melanie Humphrey

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Sanibel Island Marina

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

  • Channel to South Seas Resort and Redfish Pass Described, Western Florida ICW, Statute Mile 14

    Redfish Pass - Click for Chartview

    Redfish Pass – Click for Chartview

    Skipper Colgan describes a channel from the Waterway to South Seas Resort and Redfish Pass which departs the Waterway southwestward and is marked by a series of non-waterway buoys 24, 23, 22, etc into South Seas Resort.

    I recently found a channel from GICW to South Seas Resort on Captiva Island with reworked channel markers starting south of ICW “39” in descending order, then making a dogleg to right and eventually leading to Redfish Pass. South Seas entrance is to port prior to Redfish. Redfish Pass is now a straight heading out of 270 with proper buoyage. The 1,4,5 aids on charts have been relocated to mark current channel. South Seas Resort has a handout printed showing both.
    Pete Colgan

    Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For South Seas Island Resort Marina

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of South Seas Island Resort Marina

  • Detailed Description of Boca Grande Marina Entrance Channel, Western Florida ICW, Statute Mile 28.5)

    Boca Grande Marina, Gasparilla Island, Florida One of the most important personal marina visits on my Western Florida speaking/research tour of 2/9/14 to 2/16/14, was to call at Boca Grande Marina, A SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR, on lovely Gasparilla Island. I knew this facility has just dredged, and sported entirely new docks. And so, it was with more than a little pleasant anticipation that I drove my “land yacht” across the causeway and down the length of the island, on my way to Boca Grande Marina.
    The reality I discovered upon seeing the new iteration of this fine facility was NOT disappointing. The new, modern, composite decked docks represent a huge improvement over the old, tired, wooden decked piers. And, tied up in the marina’s wet slips, I discovered a whole host of friends from Isles Yacht Club, where I had just spoken the previous evening. Everyone agreed that Boca Grande Marina was now a facility “worth visiting again.”
    I also had lunch at the on-site Eagle Grill, located on the second floor of the building overlooking the harbor. My grouper sandwich was yummy, and the view was all that might be asked. The interior furnishings were what could only be described as “sumptuous.” All in all, a GREAT spot for a memorable lunch or dinner.
    Downstairs, cruisers will discover an open air dining choice, known as Miller’s Dockside, recalling the original name of this marina, back in the “bad old days,” thankfully, now long in the past. I did not get the chance to sample the cuisine downstairs, but if it’s anything like the upstairs bill of fare, you will want to make the acquaintance of this dining attraction as well.
    As usual, I’ve wandered a bit from my subject, which is to describe Boca Grande Marina’s entrance channel, and the good effects on this passage brought about by the recent dredging. Prior to the dredging project, the problem with accessing Boca Grande Marina was that, for years, a long, long shoal had been building farther and farther to the west from Boca Grande Bayou’s southside entrance point, south of marker #7.
    While, due to permitting restrictions, the marina was not allowed to entirely remove this shoal, the dredging did drive it back to the east. That represents a considerably improvement, but Dockmaster Garrett Lown still suggests cruisers observe the following procedure:
    After passing marker #7 to its northern side, proceed on to the west for a boat length or so, and only then turn to the south, heavily favoring the westerly shores. This procedure will cause your vessel to pass west of the shoal, and hard by the private homes and docks which flank the bayou’s western shoreline.
    I also observed two green, spar type, floating buoys outlining the western and northwestern edge of the entrance shoal. DO NOT APPROACH THESE SPAR BUOYS CLOSELY. They are founded in the edge of the shallow water.
    The marina staff also suggests that you give them a call on VHF channel 16 prior to running the entrance channel, and they will be glad to update you on any recent changes to the above procedure.
    So, now you know how to safely visit one of the most improved marinas on the Western Florida coastline, and some of the reasons to choose a visit to this facility. There are LOTS more attractions in the nearby village of Boca Grande, all within walking distance, but that’s another story for another day!

    a month or so ago i took a dingy ride into this marina, had to push a boat off the bar coming into #7, watch you stern coming in. I have heard the the dockage price is a little steep other then that it looked nice from the water.
    nick chavasse sv war depart

    Claiborne,
    Your praise of Boca Grande Marina was well placed. We love it. However, Millers Dockside Grill is great. However, I don’t look at the old Miller’s Marina as the “bad old days”. It was just different. We loved it, too. It was a happening place with fishing boats coming and going. I have saved one of the “T” shirts from the 25th anniversary tarpon tournament for a souvenir.
    Don on Moonstruck

    Claiborne replies:
    Captain Don, my reference to the “bad old days,” was not meant to cast light on the old, informal marina as a whole, but rather at what I considered to be very indifferent management in those days. Again, those times are now only a distant memory. The present dockmasters couldn’t be better!

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Boca Grande Marina

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

  • Report on Punta Blanco Inner Anchorage, Western Florida ICW Statute Mile 23

    Punta Blanco Anchorages - Click for Chartview

    Punta Blanco inner anchorage will be found on the charted bubble of deep water virtually surrounded by Punta Blanco.

    If you are looking for a secluded anchorage to hide out from a strong wind, this is the spot! Getting in with a chartplotter isn’t nearly as daunting as it used to be without one- just watch the depth sounder. There is a small sand “beach” where you can land with the dinghy. We didn’t, but a local boat pulled right up on the sand and the folks went exploring. A long dinghy ride from the state park though.
    Jean Thomason

    We can attest from a dinghy visit and speaking with those anchored there, that is a nice spot, with a few caveats. If a large boat gets there first and takes up the middle of the deep water, it is tough for another larger boat to fit.
    Second, as the description states, it is VERY easy to wind up aground, as we did. It is not always possible to read the water depth visually.
    Duane Ising

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For Punta Blanco Inner Anchorage

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Punta Blanco Inner Anchorage

  • WELCOME Dredging and Marina Rebuilding Project Begins at Boca Grande Marina (near Statute Mile 28.5)

    Click Chartlet to Open A Chart View Page Centered on Boca Grande Marina

    Those who have read my earlier SSECN comments concerning Western Florida’s Pine Island Sound, or the portion of my “Cruising Guide to Western Florida” describing Gasparilla Island, already know that the village of Boca Gande is one of our very favorite places on earth.
    This is Florida at its very best. There are no fast food restaurants, no strip shopping centers and no high rise condos. Instead, visitors to Boca Grande will discover a quaint village atmosphere replete with GREAT places to dine (particularly the Gasparilla Inn), good provisioning and plenty to see and do. It’s the sort of place where you can quickly fill the memory card on your digital camera, and have to haul out that backup card you’ve never used before.

    Until now, cruisers have had some difficulty taking advantage of Boca Grande’s many charms due to a building shoal jutting out from the entrance channel’s northeasterly point, as you swing south to visit Boca Grande’s primary pleasurecraft facility, known, appropriately enough, as “Boca Grande Marina” (formerly Millers Marina).
    New owners took over here several years ago, and improved the on-site facilities, adding a new restaurant and downstairs bar. Everything was accomplished in an absolutely first-class fashion.

    Gasparilla Bayou and Gasparilla Inn Clubhouse

    Almost from the first day that the marina changed ownership, the management has been seeking the necessary permits to dredge the entrance channel, and remove the aforementioned shoal. This process has seeming taken forever, BUT WE ARE VERY PLEASED TO REPORT THAT ALL PERMITS ARE NOW IN PLACE, AND DREDGING HAS BEGUN!
    The far sighted owners have also taken the opportunity to completely rebuild their docks while the dredging is going forward. Now, that’s the sort of improvements we LOVE to hear about at the Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net!
    In a telephone conversation yesterday (7/16/13) with Garrett Lown, Boca Grande Marina’s Operations Manager, the SSECN was informed that the marina and on-site restaurant would close while the dredging and dock rebuilding were in progress. The restaurant will probably reopen around the middle of October (2013), with a grand reopening of the marina scheduled near Thanksgiving, 2013.
    The truly “on-the-ball” marina management plans to post regular project progress reports and photos on their web site at http://www.bocagrandemarina.net/Boca_Grande_Marina.html. Interested cruisers should monitor this site for the latest info!
    We know that we speak for the entire cruising community when we say how much we all look forward to the new, improved and deeper version of Boca Grande Marina this coming fall and winter. This will be a superb addition to the Western Florida cruising scene, and one which many of us will make use of on a very regular basis.
    The article and photo below are reprinted from DredgingToday.com (http://www.dredgingtoday.com), a new resource which we highly recommend to one and all who are interested in what’s happening with dredging projects around the nation. This publication’s scope is international, so you have to pull through the weeds a bit to pluck out the USA dredging news, but the format makes that an easy exercise, and the effort will be more than justified!
    The SSECN will keep you apprised of Boca Grande Marina’s dock building and dredging project as progress goes forward. Makes your plans now to visit this newly minted facility this fall and winter. See you there!!!

    USA: Boca Grande Marina Dredging Kicks Off
    Posted on Jul 15th, 2013
    Boca Grande Marina, Eagle Grille and Miller’s Dockside, will be closed for renovations beginning today, and it will be reopened in the fall of 2013.
    Construction plans include:
    – New docks – the new layout will eliminate the “stern to” docks and allow us to accommodate larger vessels (up to 150 feet),
    – Dredging of the entrance channel – allowing for an approximate 7 foot depth at low tide.
    The Coast Guard, Army Corps of Engineers, Department of Environmental Protection and Lee County have all signed on to the project, which will see a channel dredged from 5 feet deep at mean low water to 7 feet 6 inches.
    “Now boats won’t be stuck in the Harbor waiting for high tide to get out,” said Jerry Taylor, the marina’s general manager. “It will benefit the whole community.”

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

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

  • Pine Island Sound/Matlatcha Pass Area Recommended

    While I have sounded Matlatcha Pass several times over the years, particularly the shallow, hard to follow, southern portion of this passage, I must admit, however, to never spending too much time on Pine Island.
    This is not the first time I’ve heard of some dockage, and good eats ashore, but shallow depths on the Pine Island Sound side of the island have almost made me hesitant about taking a cruising size craft into the smaller streams which indent the isle’s westerly banks.

    Sounds like the effort might be worthwhile though. Of course, you can always anchor just south of the high-rise bridge. There used to be a potentially SHOCKING Issue here for sailcraft, but the powerlines were supposedly raised quite a few years ago, THOUGH THE NOAA CHART STILL LISTS THE VERTICAL CLEARANCE AS 56 FEET.
    Has anyone visited Pine Island Sound and/or Matlatcha Pass recently? Do you know if the powerlines at the bridge have indeed been raised? Can you recommend good places to anchor, dock and/or dine on Pine Island?
    Your fellow Western Florida cruisers can wait to hear from you!

    Matlatcha is a quirky little town at the entrance to Pine island. There is a couple marinas there, and also at each end of Pine island. Pronounced ( matt-la-shay) This is a can’t miss area. There are several quirky art galleries and restaurants in the area. Have lunch or dinner at Bert’s bar and grille. (we like manatees,taste like chicken). Also, at the southern end of Pine island, is St. James City it is nice with several small marinas and restaurants. A little further north is Punta Gorda. There is a waterfront area with dockage and restaurants called Fisherman’s village. this is a nice stop for a walk and some browsing.
    haw961

    There is a new drawbridge just being finished alongside the old one, and you will currently find work barges and cranes in the vicinity. Work is supposedly being finished by mid-summer. Drawbridge is working, but you might experience delays until all work is cleared. There are NO LONGER any power lines in the vicinity of the bridge – they’ve been buried! Best anchorage is just south of the bridge. Once anchored, you’ll find Bert’s Bar (highly recommended!) just to the east of the bridge, on the south side, with docks available. Across the street is Andy’s Island Seafood fish store. Follow the shoreline to the west of the bridge around to Matlacha Park, where dinghy dockage is possible. From the Park, you can walk to the west to Barnhill’s Seafood Restaurant, with its attendant seafood store, or continue further west for some eclectic shopping, ice cream parlor, and the Sandy Hook Restaurant at the very west end of Matlacha (accessible by dinghy, if you look at the chart). Another good restaurant lies about 1/2 mile to the east, on the north side of the road – Miceli’s, offering good food at good prices, with nightly music. This restaurant is also accessible by water, if you look at the chart and take the first opening north of the bridge, on the east side, and follow along the shore.
    Access to Matlacha is best from the north, with deeper water and a well-marked channel. From the south, powerlines with a 47ft (sorta) clearance and a very twisty channel, along with less water (maybe 4′ with a rising tide), make it a mostly powerboat experience.
    Capt Mike Smith
    S/V Blue Skye
    M/V Scandalista

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Pine Island and Matlatcha Pass

  • Dinghy Access on Sanibel Island South of Tween Waters Marina (Western Florida Coastline)

    The message below authored by Captain Farst, was part of a discussion about dinghy access on southern Sanibel Island, begun on the AGLCA group. As you will see, Captain Farst and his crew found little in way of dinghy landings in this region.

    We just were there and dinghy access is a problem in that area. We were at Tween Waters and were trying to get access south near the hardware/grocery store. The Ding Darling administration said that they didn’t have anywhere, the Chamber thought the Rental Outfit would allow you to pay to tie up but they said “no”– twice.
    You can go down to Sanibel Marina or up to Tween Waters but we could not find anywhere close to tie up in the middle of Sanibel. Please let us know if you have had better luck.
    C. K. Farst
    SeventhSunIII

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Tween Waters Marina

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

    Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Sanibel Island Marina

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

  • Point Ybel Anchorage (off the southern Tip of Sanibel Island, Western Florida Coastline)

    The anchorage reviewed below by Captain Jones lies just off the southern tip of Sanibel Island, and south of Sanibel Island Marina, within sight of the Point Ybel lighthouse. Several years ago, we removed this potential anchor down spot from out “Western Florida Marina Directory.” Several local captains informed us that the holding ground was poor, and several vessels had drug anchor into the nearby Sanibel Island Causeway and Bridge.
    Obviously, Captain Jones has not had this problem on these waters, but just be aware that others have!

    For many years I have anchored overnight on a ‘sailboat’ as well as ‘power’ just off Sanibel Isl south of the causeway bridge on the [south] tip of Sanibel. You will find 13 to 20 feet of water, and it is very protected from the traditional SE or SW winds. I would not recommend it with winds out of the N or NE. The area to anchor is approximately half way between the entrance to ‘Grandma Dots’ and the lighthouse on the east point of the Island. On weekends you will experience some wave action during the day from boats of all sizes transiting the area.
    Regards, Tom Jones m/v Marbles

    Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Point Ybel on Sanibel Island

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