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      The two messages below from Captain Faughn are very good news indeed. Heretofore, the city of Fort Lauderdale has consistently ignored Florida state law in regards to anchoring. Now, at least for the moment, they are complying. HOWEVER, there is a new threat to Florida anchoring rights on which we will shortly report!

      Subject: Ft. Lauderdale Anchoring
      Cruising News: Claiborne,
      We are currently anchored, and having a great time anchored in Sunset Lake in Miami Beach. We will be heading up to Ft. Lauderdale in a couple of days. So, I read with great interest your postings about the problems and potential problems with anchoring in Ft. Lauderdale. Since this has been a great stop for us in the past, I called the Ft. Lauderdale Marine Division of the Police Department to ask what they are enforcing right now. The officer told me they are no longer enforcing the 24 hour anchoring rule and you may anchor in Ft. Lauderdale and use your tender to land at a dock, which allows you to do so, and enjoy the town and provision your boat. They are in compliance with the new Florida state law with regards to anchoring and cruising boats. To us this was great news since we do enjoy visiting one of if not the largest West Marine Stores and of course Blue Water books not to mention many of the other attractions. I believe this is new information for you. By the way, thanks for all of the info you have on your website.
      Jim Faughn
      S/V Freedom a Gemini 105M

      Cruising News: I emailed previously that I had called Ft. Lauderdale Marine Police and they said they were in compliance with FL State Law. I am currently anchored in Lake Sylvia along with 8 other boats and everything is just fine except for the rain and front passing. It appears this should go back on the list of places you can anchor.
      Capt. Jim Faughn

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    • Welcome Aboard Boat Dock Marine!

      Boat Dock Marine, New Smyrna Beach, 386-690-1132, We Go to YOU!, Corrosion Controled, Outboards Tuneed Up, Diesels Repaired, Energy Systems Serviced We are very pleased to welcome aboard Mobile Boat Repair in New Smyrna Beach, Florida, where, “Service Means Business!” Boat Dock Marine makes “Doc” calls and will come to YOUR boat. With over 30 years experience they’re the right call ( 386-690-1132 ) for any repair, service or tune up. “I’m looking for customers for Life,” says Doc Marine. “I will demonstrate an urgent and relentless commitment to achieve total customer satisfaction through superior service and innovative solutions.” Srvices incldue: Alternative Energy Systems Installed, Advanced Corrosion Control, Outboard repairs and Small Diesels serviced. Specializing in cruising sailboats, they also offer professional yacht delivery service.

      Give them a call at 386-690-1132 or visit them online at:

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    • Welcome to Anchors Away Boat Yard

       The We are very pleased to welcome `Anchors Away Boatyard’ of Hampstead, NC, as a participating sponsor with the Cruisers’ Net. Anchors Away is right on the Atlantic Intra-Coastal waterway for all those making passage through NC. We are really blessed in North Carolina to have some great boatyard facilities on board with us and Anchors Away is no exception. Away Boat yard is located at mile marker 90 on the ICWW. From the North, Marker 90 is approximately 3 miles South of the Surf City swing bridge. From the South, Marker 90 is approximately 20 miles North of the city of Wilmington. Bill or Dennis can help you with most any issues and you’ll certainly like the overall ambiance focused on providing you with a positive boatyard experience. Join us please in welcoming Anchors Away Boatyard !!

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    • The Venice Water Nazi Lives, But Now He’s Driving A Cab

      Well, this is one of the most jaw dropping reports we’ve ever put up here on the Cruisers’ Net. Will this guy ever go away????!!!!

      We were stuck in Venice anchored in Roberts Bay in front of the expensive homes sharing their view when the Sheriff stopped by our boat to ask us a few questions. This was the first few days in March 2010 when those terrible north winds were blowing at over 30 knots, a front was on the way with expected cloud to water lightning, possible tornadoes and water spots which is what the Sheriff and I discussed. He was concerned for our safety and most helpful, even suggesting that we move over to the free dock and tie up to be a bit more secure. He said the city wouldn’t bother us considering the weather conditions. Well we moved to the free dock and it still has a sign limiting the time you can tie up there to 18 hours in a ten day period. Now as to why I’m writing this: The water Nazi still lives but is now driving a yellow cab! Here is what happened. We called a taxi to go down on Venice Avenue where we spent a few hundred dollars on meals and goodies to send to grandkids. When we returning to our boat in a cab, we were talking with the cab driver and we mentioned that the sheriff said we should tie up until the storm was over and the cabbie got real quiet (up until this part of the conversation he had been most friendly)until he dropped us off at Higel Park. Not 5 minutes after the cabbie left there was a siren and a police car pulled up and a fellow got out with a camera and proceeded to take a picture of the name on the stern of our boat. He didn’t say a word to us, just took the picture and left. So did we. We got the ‘˜H’ out of there. The water nazi is still operating in Venice, now he is driving a yellow cab and he will still report you even after giving him a good tip. Wish I hadn’t given him that tip, would have felt a lot better if I had stiffed him!
      Total time at the dock? Less than 5 hours, no other boats present. Have to wonder what they are thinking at this point; no dockmaster, no mooring balls, just a beautiful city waiting to be explored and an ordinance that will keep some boaters from a wonderful experience and who loses? The city of Venice and their shopkeepers, restaurants, grocery stores, etc.
      Please note, We love Venice! The people are great, the city is beautiful and that is the only negative we have ever experienced here. We are a shallow draft vessel and usually anchor in 2 to 3 feet of water in Roberts Bay. We shall return!
      Capt. Phil & Capt. Linda
      `BloMee’ (Sailing Catamaran)

      I was surprised at the recent commotion about overnight tie up at Higel Park. We were run out of there years ago by a land cop. The `anchorage’ off the Venice yacht club was full of derelict live aboards. Had an ugly confrontation with a waterski jerk who felt he owned Roberts Bay. Couldn’t reach the Sheriff or the Venice CG station with a 65 foot tall VHF antenna. We have avoided Venice for 10 ish years. Never met any of the `friendly’” great’ people that Capt Phil talks about.

      Would it have been considered out of line to ask him what the issue was and why the sirens and photo? I think most states have laws about when to use a siren and I don’t think they are to take photos. Did you get the name of the Sheriff that told you it would be okay to tie up?
      John Meirhofer

      Georg McCay

      We recently stayed at the dock in late Feb.& learned that the city was about to change the regs to 6 hrs. We also read via the Venice News as well as this site that there is a plan to put 14 moorings in the area where the derelict boats are now moored. We shall see when that happens. We agree with Capts.Phil & Linda that the city & its businesses are the ones who will lose out big time on this decision.
      Capts. Steven & Diane Koch

      Comments from Cruisers (1)

      1. Capts. Steven & Diane Koch -  March 12, 2010 - 3:06 pm

        We recently stayed at the dock in late Feb.& learned that the city was about to change the regs to 6 hrs. We also read via the Venice News as well as this site that there is a plan to put 14 moorings in the area where the derelict boats are now moored. We shall see when that happens. We agree with Capts.Phil & Linda that the city & its businesses are the ones who will lose out big time on this decision.

        Reply to Capts.
    • Sunset Bay Marina (Stuart, FL on the St. Lucie River, South Fork) And the Roosevelt Bridges

      There have already been many postings praising Sunset Bay Marina here on the Cruisers’ Net. For those who don’t know, this facility is the new incarnation of the Stuart City Marina, once known as Southpointe Anchorage. The new version has plentiful slip dockage, plus an extensive mooring field.
      What makes Captain Dave’s note below so valuable, is his advice about the nearby Roosevelt Bridges, which lie between Sunset Bay and the AICW. These old spans were supposed to be removed with the adjacent high-rise span opened, but that’s never happened!

      Ditto to all the good comments. We agree and will be there for the next three months.
      Note of interest: I suggest calling the Roosevelt Bridge for an opening before going under the new 65′ bridge. The bridge tender is very accommodating and will let you know when she is about to open so you can proceed safely. Be prepared to stop and possibly turn around as the railroad bridge closed without warning just after we started to go under the new bridge.
      On weekends with many boaters and a strong tide racing thru there, it can get interesting.
      Capt Dave

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    • New Marina in Everglades City (Southwestern Florida, Ten Thousand Islands Region)

      I love the backwater feeling of visting Everglades City by water. There is a true feeling of OLD Florida here. Just don’t try this on a still summer night!
      Heretofore, waterborne visitors to Everglades City had only choice for overnight dockage, the old Rod and Gun Club. Well, that’s still a possibility, but, according to Captain Jan’s note below, there is now a new “luxury marina” in town known as Everglades Isle.
      We would like to know more bout Everglade Isle. Anyone else berthed here. What were your experiences. Please share by clicking the “Comment on This Posting/Marina/Anchorage/Bridge” link below!

      Onward to Everglades City, there’s a new luxury marina just before the bridge: Everglades Isle. Actually an upscale RV park, it has 30 or so floating docks, only 6 with 30 amp power, the remainder 15 amp, pool, showers, laundry, bar. On the downside, the docks are narrow; I’ll measure them when we arrive; the strong tidal current makes for challenging docking and the airboats run non-stop until 5pm.
      Rod & Gun is okay, except a little rocky with the current and boat traffic, tie-up wall is in disrepair and had
      cold water only showers when we visited last New Years Eve.

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    • Good Words About the Dinner Key Mooring Field (Miami – Coconut Grove)

      Both the messages below paint a very different picture of the Dinner Key Mooring Field than what was shared in an earlier posting here on the Cruisers’ Net (/unhappy-times-at-miami-beach-marina-near-government-cut-inlet). There has also been an earlier, very positive posting concerning this mooring field (/great-experience-in-the-dinner-key-mooring-field-miami-coconut-grove-near-st-m-1094-5). Read all this info, and make your own decision, but it certainly looks as the tide of opinion in the Cruising Community is now running in favor of this facility.

      While I am in favor anchoring, from time to time moorings have great advantage. And in the case of the Dinner Key area this couldn’t be truer. For years I have passed though this area, but tended to anchor away from the crowds which I might ad looked mainly unseaworth and derlict. I did this because I have experienced many times vessels draging anchor. The dinner key area has really cleaned up for the better. My experience at the dinner key mooring field was terrific. The staff was professional and the facilites were clean. I hope that the moorings continue in the future as I hope to return.
      Captain Thomas Ryne
      S/V Sea Dog

      I stayed at the Dinner Key Mooring Facility all of January 2010 and it was one of the greatest experiences I had in my 25 years of sailing. They have a great staff, shuttle service and a pumpout boat. The view of downtown Miami is increadable!! My vessel is 40 feet LOA.
      Why didn’t the 47ft Soulmates stay in the big marina ‘“ funny, they have an expensive boat but I guess their too cheep for their britches.
      Capt. Bob

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    • Man of War Cay Entrance – Missing Marker

      Subject: Man of War Cay Entrance
      Cruising News: There is a marker missing at the entrance to Man of War Cay. It is the marker referenced in Steve Dodges guide as the “piling with the double arrow in front of the powerboat at the dock. It should be centered in the opening.” This marker is used was a red when going into the main harbor and as a green marker when going into Eastern Harbor. Please note that many markers are really not maintained as green or red in the Bahamas. You have to look for the arrow stick at the top of the piling. The entrance to Man of War it self is narrow thru a rocky pass but easy to navigate. It’s what you need to do after you get thru the pass that this missing marker is causing grief to many a boater. I’ve been here only a few days and have seen at least 3 boats to aground on the sand bar to the North East after entering the pass.
      Dennis Lawernce
      S/V Thate Wata

      The point is that you hve to turn sharp left or even sharper right (more than 90deg.) immediately after you enter. Don’t approach the opposite shore, and be sure you’re at idle speed.
      Ted Guy

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    • Florida Anchoring Rights/Regulations

      Florida Anchoring Rights/Regulations
      An Analysis As Of 2/12/09

      I have no fear of passing along an inaccurate statement when I say there isn’t a hotter topic in the Floridian cruising community than the issue of anchoring rights and regulations. That is why we at the Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net have been dedicated to passing along the best possible information on this controversy, at the earliest possible moment.

      Last December, I was dismayed to receive several e-mails from those that attended the last FWC (Florida Fish and Wildlife Commission) public comment meeting in Key West, indicating that the requirement to establish a state approved mooring field BEFORE a municipality would be allowed to regulate anchorage, HAD BEEN DROPPED from the FWC’s draft language. By the way, the `draft language’ referred to here is part of an attempt by the FWC to establish consistent, statewide anchorage regulations, a worthy goal indeed.

      I attempted to verify the accuracy of these e-mails by contacting a person who was (and is) intimately involved with all marine related issues within the Florida legislature. I was told that while this person was not fully familiar with the most recent changes in the draft FWC language, it did appear as if the new version would allow municipalities to once again enact any anchorage regulations they so chose.

      It looked to me very much like this change in the draft language heralded a return to the `bad old days’ of hap-hazard and hap-hazardly enforced local anchorage regulations throughout Florida. So, I sent out a special alert, and just a week or so ago, I reiterated my unhappiness within another alert, this one concerning the city of Marco Island’s denied appeal. Soon thereafter, I received the following e-mail from Captain Mark Leslie, dockmaster at Titusville City Marina:

      Subject: Local Anchoring Ordinances
      Cruising News: While the mooring field/right to regulate thing has been removed, the prohibition of local ordinances remains as it was when Marco v. Dumas took place. See line 162 in draft seven;
      This is not to say this thing does not have some twists and turns ahead once it hits the legislature.
      Mark Leslie

      So, I followed the link in Captain Mark’s message above, and read line 162. Guess what! Mark is 100% right. Municipalities and counties ARE STILL NOT ALLOWED TO REGULATE ANCHORAGE IN THE LATEST DRAFT VERSION OF THE PROPOSED STATEWIDE ANCHORAGE REGULATIONS.

      This was a very pleasant surprise for yours truly, but immediately I began to wonder about the confusion concerning these regulations. I fired off an e-mail to Captain Mark, and while waiting for his reply, telephoned Captain Herman Diebler on Marco Island. Herman is one of the princial movers behind SAMI’s (Sailing Association of Marco Island) effort to challenge local anchorage regulations on Marco.

      Captain Herman told me that when  the FWC draft language changed, they too had wondered whether, under this new proposal, local governments would once again be free to enact any sort of anchorage regulations. So, one of their members queried Captain Alan Richard, perhaps `the’ prime mover’ in the FWC behind the effort to establish statewide anchorage policy. They received the following reply:

      `They are already denied that authority. This legislation merely clarifies that prohibition so that local governments will be less likely to be confused by strident constituents advancing specious arguments.’
      `For example, two weeks ago, Sarasota adopted an ordinance that provides, ‘˜vessels that moor or anchor for more than seventy-two (72) continuous hours will be presumed to be no longer in navigation.’ It was a similar provision (the presumption kicked in after 10 days rather than 72 hours) that cost the City of Stuart $5,000.00 in damages plus attorney’s fees, an apology, and a promise that the ordinance would not be enforced until it could be repealed. I have attached a copy of the complaint that was filed in Admiralty in the federal district court. The final order in the case (also attached) does not say much because the city settled the suit within a week after being served. Note, however, that the court retained jurisdiction in case it became necessary to enforce the terms of the parties’ settlement agreement.’
      Captain Alan S. Richard
      Assistant General Counsel
      Fish & Wildlife Conservation Commission’

      Well, this was GREAT news. I, and a whole lot of other people in the cruising community, had been confused by the changes in regards to mooring fields (more on that in a minute), but the provision denying local governments the right to regulate anchorage WAS AND IS, STILL IN PLACE!

      Soon after this joyous clarification, I received the following reply from Titusville’s Captain Mark Leslie:

      `As it stands currently, they are proposing to have maybe 4 -5 “test case” areas where they plan to study the notion of buffer zones, Titusville is being considered as one of those areas, if we ever get a permit for our proposed mooring field. Currently we’re wrestling with the Florida Department of Agriculture about clams. Sorry to diverge.’
      `The test mooring field locations will have a certain area outside the mooring field where anchoring is somehow restricted–I’m not real clear on this. Perhaps a time limit, total prohibition, hybrid, or some other local methodology. This is aimed primarily at protecting those in the mooring field. Marina Jacks in Sarasota will be one to watch. Senator Bennet has taken a special interest in helping the owners create a significant buffer area around their facility. Ergo the buffer zone idea. I don’t know that I would be real comfortable being the first city to write a uniform citation for anchoring. Until this reaches the Courts in Admiralty, I really don’t think anyone knows where this will ultimately fall out.’
      `Regarding the mooring field/right to regulate; the notion stemmed from discussions with several in the marine industry who felt that if a locality put forth the effort to install a managed mooring field and charge reasonable fees, that said locality would have greater authority to regulate anchoring in their locality. This was the 10 day vs. 120 day part of draft 1 (I think those were the numbers) at any rate that is now out with the exception of the test cases. And that is yet to be determined. If this is how it actually ends up, I hope it will be a process where the responsible boater is removed from the cross hairs of catch-all legislation. As a city guy who has dealt with his fair share of DV’s and, makes his living off of cruisers, I can tell you, this is a very tough line to draw.’
      `I will also tell you, there is a move afoot to add language to make the permitting of a mooring field a diminimus exemption to the permitting process. In other words, the resource protection value/net benefit of mooring fields is significant enough to legitimize bypassing the permitting quagmire and get the moorings in the water. It took eight years to permit the expansion to the Boot Key Harbor facility. Boaters like to have the mooring field option and it’s hard to make an argument against them environmentally. `

      Since receiving the above note from Captain Mark, I have discussed the new, statewide anchoring proposal with several others `in the know,’ and have reached the following conclusions.

      1. As the draft regulations now stands, local and county governments ARE indeed still FORBIDDEN to regulate anchorage. As I said above, that’s the GOOD NEWS!

      2. However, the draft language also proposes the establishment of several `test cases’ within the next several years. What are `test cases’ you may ask. Well, they are communities that establish a state of Florida approved mooring field, and are then allowed to PUT A BUFFER ZONE AROUND THESE MOORING FIELDS WHERE ANCHORAGE IS EITHER NOT ALLOWED, OR RESTRICTED IN SOME OTHER WAY.

      3. THE DRAFT VERSION OF THE NEW, PROPOSED FWC REGULATIONS DOES `NOT’ TRY TO DEFINE HOW LARGE OR SMALL THESE BUFFER ZONES WILL BE!!! And that, dear friends, is where the next BIG fight over Florida anchoring rights is going to come! Sometime during 2009 the Florida legislature will have to grapple with the issue of buffer zones around moorings fields, and their size. MAKE NO MISTAKE ABOUT IT, THE OUTCOME OF THIS STRUGGLE WILL PROBABLY DETERMINE WHETHER MOST OF US CAN ANCHOR ANYWHERE WITHIN SIGHT OF A COASTAL COMMUNITY IN FLORIDA, OR NOT!

      Now, `wait a minute Claiborne,’ you may be saying. `Isn’t that a bit sensational.’ Not at all. Here’s why.

      The city government in Sarasota, Florida, which is almost surely going to be one of the `test cases,’ has just authorized a mooring field in front of their leased city marina (Marina Jacks), and when this field becomes active, they have warranted that anchoring will be ILLEGAL (for longer than 72 hours) anywhere else within Sarasota’s city limits. In spite of some e-mails I received after the Net’s announcement of this proposed mooring field to the contrary, this local prohibition would mean that anchoring would be restricted to 72 hours on something like 70% of Sarasota Bay!

      Based on this plan, it’s easy to see how other communities in Florida could contrive to disallow anchoring almost entirely by defining their `buffer zone’ as including all the waters within their town limits. Of course, they would first have to establish a state approved mooring field, but once this task is accomplished, all of a sudden, a whole lot of Florida could become an anchoring forbidden (or restricted) zone.

      After dispatching my last alert, several dozen of you e-mailed, and asked what you as individual cruisers could do, and to whom should you e-mail your views. Please be advised that the Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net is in close touch with the pro-cruiser forces who regularly work with the Florida legislature. WHEN THE TIME ARRIVES, WE WILL SOUND THE TRUMPETS AS LOUDLY AS POSSIBLE, AND TELL YOU WHOM TO E-MAIL, such that the voice of the cruising community will be heard! THE YEAR 2009 IS GOING TO BE A CRITICAL ONE FOR FLORIDA ANCHORING RIGHTS/REGULATIONS, and all of us at the Salty Southeast Cruisers’ Net are absolutely dedicated to keeping the cruising community informed both as to the process, and as to how we can influence that process!

      I know this has been a LONG article (you might want to use a bit of `Murine’ about now), but, believe it or else, I’m not finished yet. Within the next week, I will also publish an editorial on this same subject. You will be notified by another special alert when that article is available.

      Claiborne S. Young
      Salty Southeast Crusiers’ Net

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    • Use Your Anchor Light When Dropping the Hook In Sarasota Waters

      Yet another demonstaration of how “friendly” Sarasota is to visiting crusiers (grin!)!

      For those List members not in the harbor you may not know that 2 nights ago the SPD initiated “Operation Anchor Light.” Reports are police boats moved through the harbor shortly after sunset visiting those aboard that did not have an all around white light, or an anchor light, illuminated. The citation is in the $75 area, and some were told that the owners of the unoccupied boats without the light on would be receiving the ticket by mail. I assume Marine Police Officer Ken Goebel, cc’ed here, participated and is invited to offer any corrections or additional information to our community.
      Anchor lights are not required in a designated anchorage, but as far as I know our harbor has never received this official title regardless of it’s status as an anchorage for decades. Maybe even a century.

      This item perpetuates a popular myth about anchorages. It is simply not correct that `Anchor lights are not required in a designated anchorage’. The ONLY except for the required anchor lights specified in the Nav Rules is for `special anchorages’ that are designated by US law. There are currently only seven such anchorages in Florida waters.
      The seven special anchorages are at specific locations in the St. Johns River, Indian River (2 areas), Stuart, Marco Island, Manatee River, and Apollo Beach.
      In every other location, including mooring fields, anchor lights are required by federal law.
      Gene Fuller

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