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South Lake – Broad Creek Anchorage – Claiborne’s Review

East and South Lakes, abutting the Alligator’s eastern shore east of AICW marker #10, offer another overnight anchorage consideration. A narrow, unmarked entrance channel heads a list of less-than-ideal qualities, but those with a GPS chart plotter aboard will be able to make good their entrance without too much difficulty.
If you can avoid the surrounding shallows, 7- to 8-foot depths can be maintained, but a navigational error could land you in 3-foot soundings. With these difficulties in mind, the waters of the twin lakes are not recommended for craft larger than 38 feet or those drawing more than 4½ feet.
East Lake is much shallower than shown on charts 12205 and 12204 and, worst of all, it is choked with underwater weeds that can quickly foul props and intakes. East Lake should probably be bypassed by cruising-size craft.
By avoiding the correctly charted shallows, cautious navigators can maintain minimum depths of 5 to 7 feet into South Lake. Underwater weeds seem to be mercifully absent.
Captains piloting vessels up to 38 feet might consider anchoring just off the broad, easterly mouth of Broad Creek west of Boranges Point. Soundings of 5½ feet rise sharply if you attempt to actually enter Broad Creek.
On the plus side, the shorelines of both East and South Lakes exhibit the Alligator’s magnificently undeveloped character. This is yet another Albemarle anchorage with a backwater feeling, a place far removed from the trappings of civilization.
One exception to the shoreline’s virgin state is found on the western shores of Broad Creek, just as the stream bends to the south. Here, a little used public launching ramp can be found. Dinghies can be landed temporarily, and if you have pets aboard, they can be taken ashore for a walk. There are no services or, for that matter, any other sort of civilization within walking distance.

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