Healy Report: Okeechobee Waterway, East to West
Experienced cruisers, Jim and Peg Healy, have been generously sharing their observations and advice as they make their way south for the winter. Thank you Jim and Peg!
Sanctuary and crew transited from Stuart, FL, to Clewiston, FL, today, 11/7/2017. The weather was ideal; clear, light winds, flat seas on Lake O.
The condition of the water is deplorable. In the anchorage at Stuart, the water is “Lake O chocolate milk.” The water throughout the system is an ugly, dark brown. Water levels are high, and there are no water level issues on the St. Lucie Canal or at Clewiston. The control depth on the Canal is at least 11.0 feet. The control depth at Clewiston is at least 9.0 feet. There is no evidence of storm damage on the canal.
The USACE is dumping water from the lake. In the St. Lucie Canal, we faced a 2 knot ahead current.
The downstream gate at the St. Lucie is misbehaving. It took several tries and at least 1/2 hour to get it closed. Delays at that lock are possible until that gets corrected. The lockmaster is not happy. “A work crew spent all day last Saturday working on the lock, and before they did their work, the gate was operating just fine,” was his line.
We are a slow trawler. We can normally make it from St. Lucie Lock at 07h00 to Moore Haven Lock by 16h00, but not today. We bailed at Roland Martin Marina for burgers at the Tiki Hut!
Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary, currently at Clewiston, FL
Monk 36 Hull #132