During 2011, depths in St. Augustine Inlet (or lack thereof) were a hot topic here on the SSECN. Then, during the early months of 2012, we were happy to report that a significant dredging project had eased, at least for the time being, the earlier reported upon shallow water problems in this seaward cut.
In the first report below, authored by Captain Hipple, it would seem he found depths following the dredging project to still be more than adequate. And, that’s good news indeed.
However, be sure to also take note of the report from sailing vessel, “Blue Highway.”
You and I shared emails on the shoaling in St. Augustine inlet 2 years ago after I “encountered” it on my way in with our 130 foot motor yacht. I sent you some pictures of the shoal protruding beyond the green markers. You hooked me up with Jay Bliss who kept me informed and was extremely helpful.
I am glad to say we spent 3 great days in St. Augustine on our way north this spring and also stopped on our way home. I did a round trip through the inlet last weekend with plenty of water and no issues.
Thanks for all your help.
Captain Bill Hipple
M/Y Lady Kath
It appears the inlet is already suffering from shoaling. We transited inbound during a large 6′+ long period swell and out going tide on 10/17/2012. We called a couple locals thinking it would be a piece of cake to enter in those conditions because of recent dredging. We have been through this inlet about ten times in the last 20 years even in the middle of the night so know it well.
We were surprised to hear the various sources we called say how horrible the inlet has become even with the recent dredging. We came in at 3/4 tide (falling) and saw no less than 18 feet.
Good luck using this inlet in moderate to rough conditions!
s/v Blue Highway
Thanks for posting the aerial photo and layout of the correct positions of the aids to navigation [see http://cruisersnet.net/?p=99782]. This confirms that buoy “5A” was as we assumed very, very far off station when we ran the inlet a few weeks ago. I’m so happy we did the right thing and didn’t honor the buoy.
However if “5A” has been re located into it’s proper position as the aerial shows then my previous info should be removed as it will confuse others. I hope they upgrade to larger mooring blocks to keep these buoys on station! Thank god as a surfer I could read the waves and made the correct decision as to where the deeper water was. And also I noticed the number “5A” being out of sequence so was suspicious. SCARY!
The SSECN editorial staff confirms that Blue Highway’s earlier report of #5A being out of position has been removed!