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    • Good Dining in Waleka, Florida (St. Johns River)

      The SSECN published a recent article about the free city dock at the charming St. Johns River village of Welaka, Florida, south of Palatka (see /?p=108289). Now, in the note below, Captain Mike Rizzo seconds the recommendation for dining at Cafe Bleu, apparently within easy walking distance of the town berths.

      Welaka has a town dock that you can tie to and there is a great little cafe for lunch and dinner called Cafe Blue. Everything is freshly made even the bread.
      Mike Rizzo

      Couldn’t agree more! We stay overnight at the (FREE!) town dock every year, and Café Bleu is right there next door. Their parmesan encrusted grouper was some of the best fish I have ever had. I believe they are only open Thursday through Monday though
      Jonathan Graham

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Welaka, FL

      Comments from Cruisers (1)

      1. Pete baleyko -  August 6, 2015 - 2:42 pm

        If you visit Welaka make sure u got too Hog Wash for THE Best smoke hog in the STaTe U will not be disappointed. I promise uuuuuuu

        Reply to Pete
    • Frederica River Anchorages (off the AICW on Frederica River Near St. M. 666 – Northern Entrance)

       Frederica River flows east and south from the AICW marker #229, and re-intersects the AICW at marker #241. Over the years, we have received MANY conflicting reports here on the Cruisers’ Net about shoaling at both the Frederica’s southern and northern intersections with the AICW. Many have gotten through without a problem, while others reported thin water.
      I suspect that the tides have a lot to do with what’s going on here. The tidal range in these waters is greater than 6 feet, so it’s easy to see that if your vessel and enters or leaves the river at mid to high tide, chances are you will not have a problem, as interior depths are generally good, except possibly on the inside shores of some bends in the river.
      The reason for spotlighting attention to this river is the real possibility of anchoring within sight of the Fort Frederica National Monument. As of two years ago, there is dinghy access from the anchorage to the National Monument, and, I can tell you from personal experience, this historical attraction is well worth your time. By all accounts, don’t miss the little movie presentation. It’s surprisingly well done.
      So, the best advice is to time your entry and egress for mid to high tide. With this plan, you should be able to visit the Frederica River anchorages (follow links below) with a minimum of difficulties.

      Has anyone recently anchored in the Frederica River opposite the Fort? Also has anyone traversed the entire length of the river? Comments on indicate some shoaling on the North end. Other comments indicated this as a good anchorage but are not too recent.
      Maureen Mezei

      No problem in the Frederica River if you follow the channel. Like any “soft bottom channel”, DO NOT GO DOWN THE CENTER OR FOLLOW THE MAGENTA LINE! Take the outside of the turns as the tide flows “out”.
      We went through the Frederica River at near low tide three weeks ago. In the “channel” no less than 12′ of water, in the center many dry sand bars. If you run the ICW through marsh channels of northern Florida, Georgia, and South Carolina in the center or on the Magenta line you will also run aground at low water, read the banks, study the tide chart and determine if the current is coming up “in”, or going down “out”, then you can determine what side of the channel you want to be on, works every time.
      Chuck Gorgen

      Chuck’s advise is excellent. the last time we were in there the northern entrance was about 3 1/2 feet at low tide. Don’t know about the southern entrance.
      Chuck Baier

      Stay to the SW side of channel, outside curve, as you leave or enter ICW at north end. You’ll find shallow water in center to inside of curve. Steep drop off on outside curve, so find 6-8′ of water and come back towards center and follow curve. Should be able to follow 6-8′ depth at the radius of curve shown on your chart. There’s probably more water further to the outside of the curve, would expect near 12′ based on depths we found in the rest of the river, but quickly goes to nothing, which you will see at low tide and not at higher tides. 6-8′ of water is plenty for any of us to get through.
      Chuck Gorgen

      Click Here To View the Georgia Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For the Frederica River Anchorages

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the Frederica River Anchorages

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    • St. Marys, Georgia READY To Greet Cruisers

      St. Marys, Georgia is a beautiful, charming village, with also doubles as the southernmost port of call on the Georgia coastline. There is a small city dock that can be used for dinghying ashore, and Langs Marina, located in the heart of downtown St. Marys, offers transient dockage, though, it must be noted, they also have some of the scuzziest showers along the AICW.
      All the town dockage is within easy walking distance of multiple GOOD dining attractions, particularly Langs Restaurant, and many historic sights, including unforgettable Orange Hall.
      It’s a pleasant cruise of several miles off the AICW, up St. Marys River (which acts as the coastal state line between Georgia and Florida), to the town waterfront. It’s well worth your time to make this journey!
      We were surprised yesterday, to see the following message on another nautical mailing list:

      Orange Hall - St. Marys

      Take St. Marys, GA off your favorites list. They got pretty beat up by Sandy last fall and haven’t repaired the damage.

      Well, that was a surprise to us, so first thing this morning we were on the telephone to the good people at the St. Marys Visitor’s Center, and confirmed that ALL damage has now been REPAIRED, and the town is ready and EAGER to greet the cruising community.

      And, several fellow cruisers have already chimed in with similar info:

      St. Marys is a wonderful stop, with several very good restaurants, the submarine museum, a park along the river, and many many homes and churches on the National Historic Register, all within walking distance. The marina has floating docks which are older but fine and very safe, and I saw no evidence of any hurricane damage.
      Larry and Anne
      Great Laker

      Sandy caused no damage to St Marys, Ga. We are just fine. Come see us—Azaleas have just finished blooming and warm temps are on the way.
      S/V Makai

      We were in St Mary’s a few days after Sandy made landfall in NJ and observed no damage whatsoever.
      Mark and Bev MacMahon

      Click Here To View the Georgia Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Langs Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Langs Marina

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    • Economic Woes for Gibson Dry Dock and All Boatyards

      Captain Burnham refers to his earlier posting on Gibson Dry Dock, /?p=68591, and provides insight into the financial state of boat repair/storage yards during this time of economic downturn.

      Thank you for allowing me to post on your excellent web service site.
      I kept my comments about Gibson Dry Dock brief in order to keep from posting an advertisement. Tom Kight is a good friend I often crew with but the depression is hitting his boat storage yard especially hard this year with fewer Canadians coming down to store their boats for the summer in his Dry Dock. The Florida residents are also feeling the economic pinch and too often are giving up their boat titles for the storage fees they owe. This does not benefit the Dry Dock as these boats are often neglected and bring very little money at auction. The sad effect is that now the Dry Dock has to be selective as to the condition of the boats that are hauled out of the water lest they become the property of the Dry Dock. It is becoming common that an owner will have their boat hauled out, strip it of its engine and valuable parts and abandons the hulk. I have no doubt that this happens at other boat storage facilities also.
      Gibson Dry Dock also has the problem of being south of the ill conceived 45 foot high clearance of the Shands Bridge at Green Cove Springs which limits the size of sailboats cruising south on the St Johns River. The boats that can make it under the Shands Bridge barrier are enthuiastic about finding Gibson’s and spead the word about what a great place this is to keep your boat and get it ready to sail again.
      David Burnham

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Gibson Dry Dock

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    • Praise for Longboat Key Club Moorings, Western Florida ICW Statute Mile 77.5, Sarasota, FL

      Step off deck at Longboat Key Club Moorings and come ashore to our Four-Diamond beachfront resort offering a private white-sand beach, 45 holes of challenging golf, the Island House Spa, six on-site restaurants, the award-winning Tennis Gardens and so much more.

      Longboat Key Club Moorings - Click for Chartview

      Longboat Key Club Moorings guards the western shores of Sarasota Bay, north of the city of Sarasota, and south of Longboat Pass. And, of course, these good people are a SALTY SOUTHEAST CRUISERS’ NET SPONSOR!!

      LBK Club Moorings is top notch facility! We wish we had planned to stay longer so we could have taken advantage of all they have to offer. Dennis Matthews’ (Director of Marina Operations) staff are all very helpful, friendly and go out of their way to make your stay pleasant. Facilities are 4Star, clean and very well manicured. Very accomodating shuttle service to St Armand’s Circle. Will definitely be back for a longer stay in the near future. Make your reservations in advance and request `H’ dock for short stays (closest to facilities, pool, ship’s store).
      The Kellys

      Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Longboat Key Club Moorings

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Longboat Key Club Moorings

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    • Don’t Dare Miss Moore’s Stone Crab Restaurant New Jewfish Key Anchorages (Western Florida ICW Statute Mile 85)

      Not only is the food really GOOD at Moores, but it is also located within sight of the excellent anchorages, just off the Western Florida ICW, behind Jewfish Key. Follow the links below to learn more about the nearby anchorages, but, at whichever place you drop the hook, don’t dare miss dinghying to Moore’s Stone Crab!

      Moore’s Stone Crab Restaurant, Longboat Key, FL – Great seafood (Oysters). Accessible by boat; located In the bight, east of G-ICW, just south of Longboat Pass, north of Sarasota Bay; overnight docking is free to patrons; no services. Can also anchor off the restaurant in a well-protected bight if you get there early; room for 8 – 10 boats; very busy with locals on weekends.
      Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary

      Best oysters in Sarasota. Sit at the bar with Barb; you can’t go wrong.
      Whit Sibley

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For the Jewfish Key South Side Anchorage

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the Jewfish Key South Side Anchorage

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Anchorage Directory Listing For the Jewfish Key Anchorage

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the Jewfish Key Anchorage

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    • Point Ybel Anchorage (off the southern Tip of Sanibel Island, Western Florida Coastline)

      The anchorage reviewed below by Captain Jones lies just off the southern tip of Sanibel Island, and south of Sanibel Island Marina, within sight of the Point Ybel lighthouse. Several years ago, we removed this potential anchor down spot from out “Western Florida Marina Directory.” Several local captains informed us that the holding ground was poor, and several vessels had drug anchor into the nearby Sanibel Island Causeway and Bridge.
      Obviously, Captain Jones has not had this problem on these waters, but just be aware that others have!

      For many years I have anchored overnight on a ‘sailboat’ as well as ‘power’ just off Sanibel Isl south of the causeway bridge on the [south] tip of Sanibel. You will find 13 to 20 feet of water, and it is very protected from the traditional SE or SW winds. I would not recommend it with winds out of the N or NE. The area to anchor is approximately half way between the entrance to ‘Grandma Dots’ and the lighthouse on the east point of the Island. On weekends you will experience some wave action during the day from boats of all sizes transiting the area.
      Regards, Tom Jones m/v Marbles

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Point Ybel on Sanibel Island

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    • Two Recommendation for A1A Ale House (St. Augustine, Fl, near St. M. 778)

       A1A Ale House is located directly across the street from the St. Augustine City Marina. I’ve not dined (or imbibed) here in several years, but after reading the reviews below, that has clearly been a gross oversight on my part. May you be wiser and more fortunate!

      Give the A1A ale house a try they have very good food and some fantastic home brews. It’s located directly across the street from the St Augustine marinia.

      A1A Ale House, St. Augustine, FL – Across the street from the Municipal Marina; excellent Brew Pub fare.
      Peg and Jim Healy aboard Sanctuary

      And the Strange Stout is yummy!

      Click Here To View the Eastern Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For the St. Augustine City Marina

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of the St. Augustine City Marina

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    • Naples Boat Club (Naples, Florida)

       Naples Boat Club overlooks the western banks of Gordon River, upstream of the Naples City Pier. This facility lies within walking distance of many shopping and dining attractions in downtown Naples.

      Naples Boat Club is a deluxe facility run by down to earth, friendly and efficient people. Stayed there for a week. Close to most things in Naples including City Dock and Tin City. Wharf restaurant has very good food and is reasonably priced. Our GB 42 was about the smallest boat in the place but we were treated like we were a hundred footer. Heated, waterfall pool and great showers. Free washer and dryer.
      The Club is run by the same nice people who own American Marine and Fuel at the same location – Donn and Judy Shulte. This is a cracker jack operation. Very clean. Easy in and out. Discount on fuel if you stay in the Club.
      Russ & Marcia Barron

      Click Here To View the Western Florida Cruisers’ Net Marina Directory Listing For Naples Boat Club

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Naples Boat Club

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    • Moore Haven City Dock – Okeechobee Waterway, West of Lake Okeechobee

      The Moore Haven City docks lines the northern shores of the Okeechobee Waterway, a quick hop west of the Okeechobee Lock. Note the advice below to arrive before 4:30 pm in order to get a code to the on-site bathrooms. Also, good to know there’s good Mexican and pizza/sub dining within walking distance.

      If you stop at Moore Haven just before the lake you can tie up at the along side city dock for $1/ft. An early leave from there keeps you from having to stop in the lake itself which can become very bumpy if any wind picks up. Moore Haven has long been our favorite place for mid crossing stop. They have very good along side docks with elec and water. Get in before 4:30 and get the bathroom code from city hall before they close. If you miss the dock master he will leave a self serve pay envelope on the pedestal for you.
      Good Mexican and a pizza/sub restaurant within a mile walk.
      David Doyle

      Click Here To Open A Chart View Window, Zoomed To the Location of Moore Haven

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