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    • Hurricane Damage Report from Fairhope, Alabama


      Fairhope is on the eastern shore of Mobile Bay and south of Mobile. Our thanks to Lynn Donnelly for this report.

      Communications are tough along the Florida Gulf Coast. I was at our marina this morning and our manager has learned that the intracoastal is a mess with debris and advising our loopers to wait before departing any time soon. Marinas around Panama City Beach, Destin, Mexico Beach – that whole area – we hear are damaged and we don’t know how badly. As I said, communication in and out is spotty at best.

      Lynn Donnelly Maser
      City of Fairhope
      Special Projects Manager
      251-929-7432

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    • Thanksgiving Lunch at Turner Marine, Dog River off Mobile Bay


      We have had many positive comments about Turner Marine over the years and this Thanksgiving lunch is typical of their care and concern for boaters. Turner Marine is the first facility to starboard as you cruise under the high-rise Dog River bridge. This notice comes to us from our friends on the AGLCA Forum.

      Hi everyone! Turner Marine want to remind everyone about our Thanksgiving lunch on Wednesday Nov. 26 at 12:30. Everyone is invited, all we ask is that you bring a dish. We will be providing the fried turkeys and paper products. The rest of the menu is up to YOU! Please call the office to RSVP and to make reservations for your boat, at 251-476-1444 or email at TMYS97@aol.com. We look forward to seeing everyone next Wednesday!
      Roger and Christie Turner

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

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    • Five-Year Study on Florida’s Red Tide

      Here is an interesting article on red tide which had a recent bloom in the Big Bend region of the Gulf, see /?p=144423.

      fwc-banner

      FWC, partners unlock some mysteries behind red tide in 5-year study

      Last month, researchers at the Florida Fish and Wildlife Conservation Commission (FWC) published new findings on Florida’s red tide organism, Karenia brevis, in a special issue of the scientific journal Harmful Algae. This publication is the culmination of an unprecedented collaboration on red tide research in the Gulf of Mexico led by the FWC’s Fish and Wildlife Research Institute (FWRI) and funded by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
      For more on this study, go to:

      http://content.govdelivery.com/accounts/FLFFWCC/bulletins/dbfa20

      redtide2

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    • Good Words for Turner Marine (Dog River – Mobile Bay)


      Mouth of Dog River - Click for Chartview

      We get many positive comments about Turner Marine which is the first facility which will be spotted to starboard as you cruise under the high-rise Dog River bridge. They have been occupying this spot for many a year.

      We’ve docked at Turner 3 times. First time 4:am, thought we was at Dog River. Let us sleep til noon. Nicest people you could ask for. Treated us very fair on repairs and knew what they were doing. The only place we’ll stay in Mobile. Wish all marinas were like these folks. You’ll really feel like you have a friend when in Mobile.
      Dick and Sandy Frakes

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

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    • Dog River Marina No Longer Offering Free Overnight Dockage with Fill-up (off Mobile Bay)

      As of May 6, 2012, Dog River Marina, Mobile, Ala. is no longer offering a free nights dockage for a fill up. Ricky says they have lowered fuel instead.
      Joseph

      This is so disappointing. For years with our sailboat, we have stopped at Dog River Marina for fuel and transient dockage before heading up the rivers. In all fairness, we could never accept free dockage after only taking on 10 gallons of fuel for the sailboat but always remembered the Loopers offer of free dockage with a BIG fillup. Now, with our trawler, we were looking forward to the Loopers deal that is no more. We feel disappointed at being a day late and a dollar short. I hope Sonny has LOTS of diesel this week.
      Tom & Patsy

      Apparently, the free dockage with fill-up is still available for members of the American Great Loop Cruisers’ Association (AGLCA) and the Marine Trawlers Owners Association (MTOA) only!

      Apparently it’s reported MTOA mebers are still getting the free dockage with fill up.
      Capt. Sterling

      I just talked to Ricky at Dog River Marina and he said that there was a miscommunication between the office and the fuel dock: It’s free dockage for Loopers with a fillup.
      Verify with Ricky or Mike at Dog River Marina fuel dock at 251-471-4517 or the office at 251-471-5449.
      Hope this helps clarify.
      Kris

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    • “Homeland Security” Performing Searches Near Mobile Bay

      Yikes! Watch out on the waters from Mobil Bay, moving east to Perdido Key

      Cruising News:
      Mariners be advised that multijurisdictional boardings and vessel searches are being conducted AT DOCKS IN PRIVATE MARINAS in the area extending from Ingram Bayou/Orange Beach to marinas on Mobile Bay. Cruisers report first contact by Homeland Security vessels with alongside questioning at the entrance/exit of Bon Secour Bay. US Coast Guard, local police, drug dog, Alabama Marine Police, and Border Patrol/customs officers are seeking documentation info and ID of captains and crews but do not appear interested in safety or sanitation inspections. We would advise our fellow boaters to be on guard and be prepared. Even if permission is not given, boaters are being informed that the officers are going to “search your boat anyway.” Have all information in order related to liquor carried aboard as well as a ship’s log and other proof of where you have been and where you are going. It was repeatedly asserted to us that we had been in the Bahamas when in fact we had not, and the origin of a bottle of liqueur was closely questioned because it was named “Nassau Royale” even though in fact this product is widely available in the US and is manufactured in Puerto Rico.
      Remember that the officers are authorized to LIE in order to gain information and in severe cases of unreasonable search & seizure without permission, be prepared to request an attorney before answering ANY questions.
      Scott & Cyndi Perkins

      In a country that always trumpets its self designated superiority because it ‘˜follows the rule of law’ your government doesn’t seem to recognize any Constitutional limits. Rule of law for the proles but for the rich and their badged minions not so much.
      Bosunj

      WE just came through this area and wasn’t boarded, however, we did see a USCG RIB stopping fishing boats and spending a lot of time with them.
      James Angel

      Comments from Cruisers (1)

    • Mobile Bay/Dog River Recommendations

      The message below was copied from the American Great Loop Cruisers’ Association forum. Captains Patty and Robert give excellent advice about Dog River repair yards and navigation.

      There are many good yards in Mobile. We have used and also heard good things about Dog River Marina which is up the Dog River. We usually stay
      at the Grand Mariner across the river as they have a wonderful seafood restaurant up the stairs.
      Go to Dog River but do it in the daytime–fist time we did it was by moonlight and searchlight trying to find the twisting route by markers.
      Patty and Robert Mitchell with Maggi wonder dog
      ORINOCO

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    • Turner Marine (Mobile Bay – Dog River)

      Turner Marine is the first facility that will come abeam to starboard as you enter Dog River from Mobile Bay. There seems to be a real difference of opinion concerning this facility in the cruising community. Earlier postings here on the Net have praised Turner Marina, while, as you will see below, Captain Middleton did not have a totally positive experience.

      I arrived at Turner Marine a little less than 2 years ago, coming down from Manitowoc, WI. Our boat needed repairs and a slip before `moving along.’ We found the Turners (owners) and the staff to be professional, honest, hard-working and `affordable’ (relative to marine costs and valuations). Work on any of a boat’s many systems can be done. I recommend Turner’s Marina without question. If I have a criticism, they are busy enough with their maritime & marina workload, that sometimes work orders take a while to get completed.
      Mark Middleton

      Turner is a great place to haul out and work. I’ve been there twice in the last 5 years and will go back next time I need to haul out. Nice people,fair prices.
      Sea Gypsy

      We’ve docked at Turner 3 times. First time 4:am, thought we was at Dog River. Let us sleep til noon. Nicest people you could ask for. Treated us very fair on repairs and knew what they were doing. The only place we’ll stay in Mobile. Wish all marinas were like these folks. You’ll really feel like you have a friend when in Mobile.
      Dick and Sandy Frakes 12/28/2012

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    • Tuner Marine Recommended (Dog River – Mobile Bay)

      As you enter Dog River from Mobile Bay, Tuner Marine is the first of the river facilities that will come abeam on the northern shores.

      I arrived at Turner Marine a little less than 2 years ago, coming down from Manitowoc, WI. Our boat needed repairs and a slip before `moving along.’ We found the Turners (owners) and the staff to be professional, honest, hard-working and `affordable’ (relative to marine costs and valuations). Work on any of a boat’s many systems can be done. I recommend Turner’s Marina without question. If I have a criticism, they are busy enough with their maritime & marina workload, that sometimes work orders take a while to get completed.
      Mark Middleton

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    • Sailboat Fire at Dog River Marina (Dog River, off Mobile Bay)

      Must be the time for boat fires. I never remember hearing of so many is such a short period of time. And, we are all sorry to hear of Captain Sonny Middleton’s hip problems. Sonny is a true friend of the cruising community, and deserves our prayers and good wishes.

      It is sad to report that a sailboat caught fire on the Dog River Marina transit dock last night. The good news is the fire was isolated to a single boat. The exact cause is not known but reports are the newly purchased boat was in transit from Florida to Kentucky by a Mississippi owner who moved the boat from Florida to Mobile and returned back to Mississippi leaving the boat unattended and tied to the dock. The weather has been unseasonably cold – below freezing – and several electrical heaters may have been in use which overheated and caused an electrical fire which ultimately caused the boat to burn to the waterline and sink at the dock. Thanks to skilled first responders, the harbor patrol and fire department the fire did not spread.
      Please make sure your electrical heater(s) are plugged into a properly sized outlet for the heater wattage with proper size circuit protection.
      One final comment – several of the liveaboard owners sleep through this multi-alarm fire – every marina should post a fire response plan and a marina “status” board (i.e. watchman cell number, freezing weather water turn off date/times etc.) – responsibilities need to be assigned, i.e. as simple as the dock staff going boat to boat and make sure no one at risk sleeps through a fire. Preparation is critical to mitigating the unthinkable consequences. If there was a marina fire – how quickly could your boat be underway to get away from the dock? Seconds count.
      FYI – Sonny Middleton, owner of Dog River Marina fell yesterday and broke his hip – he will be in surgery today. Our prayers and wishes are with him.
      Douglas Pohl
      GREY GOOSE

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    • Turner Marine (Dog River – Mobile Bay)

      Turner Marine will be the first facility to come abeam to starboard as you enter Dog River from Mobile Bay!

      This marina seemed to keep coming up when I was looking for a place to get some work done on my Pearson while I was in the area. With the economy being the way it is, though, I still called around checking rates for haulouts, blocking, etc. and theirs were actually the cheapest by a good bit. I think to haul her out was $7 a boat foot, and that included putting her back in the water whenever they’d finished the work.
      They did an incredible job as well, really, really good work. I was very pleased. The Turners are all very nice and accommodating, and Roger (who runs the yard) was always willing to answer any questions or concerns I had.
      I also stayed as a transient docker a couple of nights on another trip, and again, their prices were the cheapest, which I really liked. I didn’t qualify for the Boat US discount, but even still it was less than a dollar a boat foot, like seventy-five cents or something. Not to mention anything I needed they pretty much had: laundry mat, Wi-fi, clean bathrooms and showers, they even had a courtesy car and small movie book library up in the office which was really nice of them.
      Anyway, just wanted to throw out my recommendation since I didn’t see it on the list. They’re really good and I always make a point to stop in whenever I’m down that way. They’re right there at the mouth of Dog River and Mobile Bay, so it’s really easy to get in and out of.
      ndaughter

      I would echo the above comments. I stopped there on my Way to Pensacola, to have my mast put back up after taversing the TennTom from Ky Lake. After a week on the hard and talking to other people I just stopped there and decided to stay. Roger is Great, I never had any problems and was treated very well. I had a lot of bottom work done and left under $3500. That inclued haul out pressure wash, bottome job some minor repairs to the keel and rudder, stepping the mast tunning rig and fixing a problem with the spreaders that they found that no one ever notices untill the boat was under the watchful eye of the Turners, so its a great place. Only down side is the water is a bit thin, they were haveing some unusualy low tides, but outside of that its great and I staying to join the gang.
      Captain Bear

      I arrived at Turner Marine a little less than 2 years ago, coming down from Manitowoc, WI. Our boat needed repairs and a slip before `moving along.’ We found the Turners (owners) and the staff to be professional, honest, hard-working and `affordable’ (relative to marine costs and valuations). Work on any of a boat’s many systems can be done. I recommend Turner’s Marina without question. If I have a criticism, they are busy enough with their maritime & marina workload, that sometimes work orders take a while to get completed.
      Mark Middleton

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    • Turner Marina (Dog River – Mobile Bay)

      Turner Marine is the first facility which will be spotted to starboard as you cruise under the high-rise Dog River brdige. They have been occupying this spot for many a year.

      In 2008 we spent 9 weeks at Turner Marine with a blown transmission and enjoyed our stay there. We just completed a 3 day stay and found
      things at Turner changing for the better. The restrooms are improved and a loaner car is now available for shopping trips. Their dockage rates are extremly reasonable as are their labor rates. They have a broad range of repair capeabilities and we have found their work top notch. As they were hosting a Thanksgiving lunch for all their live aboards and transients yesterday, we watched a new 50 ton Travel Lift being unloaded from the truck. It will be in service early in 2010. This third generation, family owned and operated business is staffed by friendly, helpful people who always make us feel most welcome. It is a pleasure to stay there and one of the best stops on the Loop.
      Hank & Ann
      Queen Ann’s Revenge

      We agree with Hank & Ann. We’ve been at Turner Marine for a week. It’s a very nice stop with fine folks, great service and dockage rates that won’t empty your wallet.
      Bill & Kathleen Root
      MV Tucandu

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    • Downtown Mobile, Alabama City Dockage

      The article below is interesting news to me. I didn’t think the city of Mobile provided any sort of pleasure craft dockage along their downtown waterfront. I learn something new every day here on the Net.

      The convention center dock is conveniently located right down town. Just walk through the first level parking garage and you’re within blocks of restaurants, bakeries and other entertainment. The dock is free and there are no services (water, electric, etc.). Just call and the security guard will come down and check your paperwork.
      Be aware though, that the debris you pass on your way to Mobile is the debris that you will encounter on your bow at night if you’re the boat in front on the north set of cleats or the lead boat on the south set of cleats. Low tide occurs in the wee hours and so the debris can float free on both sides of your boat.
      Watch your rub rail and the green fenders on the concrete pier. Great protection but put out fenders to soften the blows from the passing tows and inconsiderate boaters.
      Bob

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    • Praise for Dog River Marina (Mobile Bay)

      Dog River Marina receives my vote for one of the finest marinas on the Northern Gulf Coast! They also offer full repair services!

      We left Dog River Marina (Mobile) this morning on our way Pensacola. This is a first class repair facility. The staff is very professional and helpful. There is a West Marine store on the premises and the Mobile Yacht Club (semi-private) is right across the street. With diesel fuel at $2.43/gal including ValveTech, why would anyone skip this stop on their way to Florida?
      Tom

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    • Important – Mobile Bay Navigational Hazzard

      Wow, here’s a piece of news and no mistake! It could really ruin your whole day on the water to hit the “pole or iron post” described below by Captains Tood and Brenda. May I be so bold as to suggest that EVERYONE who will be cruising the waters of Mobile Bay, get out their charts and plot the position of this obstruction!
      If anyone else has more info about this navigationa hazzard, PLEASE either click the “Comment on This Posting/Marina/Anchorage/Bridge” link below, or send e-mail to me at
      CruisingWriter@CruisersNet.net.

      Morning All,
      Life’s2Short just crossed Mobile Bay and is headed north on the Tenn-Tom. Yesterday as we were headed across the bay at low tide we saw what appeared to be a large barnacle encrusted stump or pole or iron post. We were in 11′ of water and this baby was not moving and was 30+ inches in circumference, it was definitely attached to the bottom. We did contact the Coast Guard and reported it’s position but I also wanted to let the list know of it’s coordinates; 30.22.161 N 87.54.686 W When Life’s2Short cross’s Mobile Bay, headed west, we always leave the GIWW shortly after entering Mobile Bay and head N.W. on a direct line to Dog River. The obstruction is on that line about an hour north of the GIWW. The scary part was that we were following our old track on the Cap’n software and we came within 10 yards of it before we saw it sticking out about 6″ above the water!!
      Todd & Brenda Lanning
      Life’s2Short

      We recently completed a cruise from Punta Gorda, FL to Tennessee aboard our Viking 43 DCMY. We saw something like a stump just outside the west side of the channel and just south of Dog River in Mobile Bay. Anyone interested in fresh info the the cruise up the Gulf Coast, Tenn-Tom and Tennessee River can check out our blog at http://www.persistencetotn.blogspot.com
      Tom Murphy

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    • Mobile Bay Marinas

      I copied the discussion below from the Net’s “Ask Your Neighbor” page, which was in turn copies from the AGLCA list page. Note the two diametrically opposed points of view on Eastern Shore Marine!

      We are planning on starting the loop this fall and would like to find a marina in Mobile Bay for our 38′ Bayliner. We plan to get there around 1 Nov. and would like to leave our boat there, travelling back and forth over the winter months from Illinois before moving on. Of course, we’d like to use the boat as our “southern condo” during the winter and stay aboard. We’ll probably move on sometime early spring.
      I am familiar with Dog River Marina in Mobile and Eastern Shore Marina on Fly Creek (near Fairhope). Are there any others out there that you recommend?
      Any suggestions would be appreciated.
      Kathy & Gary
      Crazy Q

      Eastern Shore is a nice place. We stayed there for three days last Nov. . I would go back again. They do have a working boatyard. The marina is about 2 miles from Fairhope ( a great town). The marina has two courtesy cars. The dock area is a dead zone for cell phones. It is necessary to walk around the steel work building for good reception. Depth is not a problem, the yacht club across the fairway is packed with sailboats.
      Jerry Cilibraise
      Morning Star

      Our experience with Eastern Shore Marina was disappointing. I phoned ahead to tell them we were coming to their marina. We stopped to purchase fuel and obtain repairs.
      Engine service was requested. Several employees sat on the decks, visited,and speculated about the possibilities of what might be causing an unusual problem. No more than ten minutes were used to even look at the engine. That time was spent to verify that we were telling them the truth regarding the way the fuel lines were connected.
      No equipment to diagnose the problem. We were charged two hours of labor at the rates expected for a skilled mechanic. We never saw anyone that had a clue as to what they we doing. The charges were outrageous.
      Eddy Beard
      aboard Seldom’s Escape

      Kathy & Gary ,
      Grand Mariner Marina is a good family run marina. It is also on Dog River across from Dog River Marina and Turners.
      Alan Lloyd
      Great Circle Navigation Notes

      Kathy:
      Don’t overlook Grand Mariner Marina directly across Dog River from Dog River Marina. Very nice folks, good rates, courtesy car, etc. We have stayed there a couple of times for a week or so each. They can accommodate your Bayliner quite comfortably.
      Of course Dog River Marina (a major AGLCA sponsor) and Eastern Shore Marine are both very good facilities also.
      Bill

      If you can make it a little further to the Gulf Coast, you’d have a much more enjoyable “floating condo” to visit during the winter than in the Mobile area. Anywhere from Gulf Shores, AL, to Panama City, FL, there are at least a half dozen great marinas. We’re very biased on Baytowne Marina at Sandestin Resort, just east of Destin, FL. This is our 7th winter there.
      Dick Hanson on Souvenir

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