Important – Definitive Info on Little Mud River, Georgia AICW Problem Stretch (near Statute Mile 655)
It is almost universally acknowledged that the Little Mud River section of the AICW, some 21 statute miles north of Brunswick, Georgia, is the single worst stretch of the “ditch” between Norfolk, VA and Miami, Florida. Well, Captains Chuck and Susan’s observations below certainly tend to bear out that theory.
As you may recall from other recent postings here on the Net, Captain Chuck Baier and Captain Susan Landry are the former general manager and editor, respectively, of Waterway Guide. They are now cruising south on the AICW on their way to a new home in Fort Myers, Florida. Chuck and Susan are being kind enough to forward very detailed reports to the Cruisers’ Net about concerns they encounter, particularly AICW Problem Stretches.
With this dynamic duo’s vast cruising experience, we can take their observations below as gospel. And, as you will see, just give up on the idea of traversing Little Mud River at anything but high tide.
We transited the Little Mud River on Tuesday 5/17/2011 and we thought your readers would be interested in what we found. I hope they also appreciate us transiting all of the problem areas on the ICW at or near low tide so we could get accurate depth readings. We transited the Little Mud at 2 hours before low tide. Based on this the following depths would be at low tide. At Red “192” depth of 5 feet. At Crooked Creek, depth of 4 1/2 feet. Approaching Green “193” 4 feet, then 3 feet very near “193”. Just past Green “193” 3 1/2 feet. At Red “194” 3 1/2 feet and just past Red “194” 3 feet. From Red “194” to the turn onto the Altamaha is all about 4 feet. Fortunately there were no other fools except us transiting at this low of a tide. We hope this will help others STAY AWAY at anything less than 2 to 3 extra feet of tides. We will send more as we find it.
Chuck and Susan
We have transited this area with our Tayana 37, `Dream Seeker’, twice and had no problems. Of course it was at 1/2 tide rising through 1/2 tide falling. With the tidal range in GA you can carry 6′ but you have to know your onions as they say.
We transited the Little Mud River on May 4, 2011 about 1/2 hour before low, northbound. The mud banks extending into the river were visible on both sides. While we didn’t risk going aground to sound each marker, we stayed in the middle between the visable mud sides. We draw four feet and were obviously dragging through the mud a couple of times based on how the steering responded. Otherwise we saw no less than 4.5 feet and generally 5 feet plus on the sounder.
Again, this was in mid-visible water, not necessasarily mid channel, although our course always honored the daymarks. The depths reported by the sounder might not have been accurate because of the soupy mud bottom.
Bob McLeran and Judy Young
I really appreciate all the info on the ICW. I will be making the trip to Tampa next week from Washington DC. Thanks again.
Captain Lisa Alexander