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Planning a Key West trip and need help...

 
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ken35216



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 561
City/Region: Destin, Florida
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2017
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Lady Onyx
Photos: ken35216
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2022 12:02 pm    Post subject: Planning a Key West trip and need help... Reply with quote

My God-daughter just called and said she'll be in Key West, in December, and asked me to bring my boat and meet her there.

I've put in in Ft Lauderdale and gone down to Key West, and back, before but this time I want to put in much closer to Key West.

Any ideas?

Thanks!

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2017 25 Cruiser 200 Yamaha (2017-present)
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ken35216



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 561
City/Region: Destin, Florida
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2017
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Lady Onyx
Photos: ken35216
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2022 3:57 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Just called Bahia Honda State Park and it's about 32 miles from Key West. I can leave my truck and trailer there as long as I'm paying the $2 per ft., per night, slip charge. Having a 25 ft boat does have it's advantages lol

This might just work out and I can use Bahia Honda as my home base.
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-Waypoint-



Joined: 02 Nov 2019
Posts: 47
City/Region: Jensen Beach, Florida
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 1998
C-Dory Model: 22 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Waypoint
Photos: Waypoint
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2022 4:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Base yourself out of Bahia Honda State Park! It is actually way better than anything you're going to find in Key West. Not to mention in my opinion, the park has the best beach in the Florida Keys. Drive the truck down to Key West, leave the boat at Bahia Honda. We use our C-Dory 22 down there like that it's really fun and you'll enjoy that trip with your boat! Key West better with the truck.
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gulfcoast john



Joined: 14 Dec 2012
Posts: 908
City/Region: PENSACOLA
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2010
C-Dory Model: 255 Tomcat
Vessel Name: Cat O' Mine
Photos: CAT O' MINE
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2022 5:05 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Ken,

Snatch the Bahia Honda reservation and don’t let go. Travel the 35 miles by truck. Count on $25/day for parking near town. The best beach in Key West is Zachary Taylor SP; agree Bahia Honda is the best beach in the keys but pitiful compared to our beaches. Bring your FL State Park Geezer Card.

You might also try Cudjoe Garden Marina, closer at 21 miles with a very good ramp, eclectic rig storage and lots of er, character.

This season’s Looper fleet is much larger than usual and approaching South Florida after Hurricane Ian destroyed or disableled untold marinas and transient slips. Standard advice BEFORE Ian was ‘if you didn’t pay for your Florida transient slip six months ago, it’s way too late now.’

On the other hand, those boats avg LOA is 40-45 feet and they draw 4.5, sailboats even more. The advertised depth at BHSP marina is 3.5, but it varies by area, sea grass winds and tides. You’ll be able to maneuver around with care.

We had our usual six weeks planned at Pink Shell Marina Resort in Feb, but it (both the marina and the reservation) no longer exists. Our old standby, Stock Island Marina Village Key West (now Perry Hotel and Marina) has no transient slips until April 2023 and 30 days is now $3,5000 + with a 40 foot minimum if there is a cancellation.

Here are our choices for Florida marinas with adequate ramps for a TC255, transient slips and rig storage on site or nearby. I don’t list BHSP marina ramp because it’s marginal for a TC255, since the sponsons ride above the bunks rather than lower or partially between them. This list is on the AGLCA Trailer Boaters Special Interest Group, but only Members have access. PM me if you want the whole list.

Safe travels and hope this is helpful.

This is our updated (as of Q2, 2022) list by State of marinas with with adequate deep or steep boat ramp (or nearby) for a C-Dory TC255, and transient slips if you get there late. (Requested on main AGLCA Forum Nov 8, 2022 by David Levin). That combination plus nearby rig storage works best in our experience as the starting point for a one-way Cruise or Loop segment. Our intent here is to provide a potential list for larger trailer boats. The nature of this beast is such that current info does NOT age well, so ALWAYS call to confirm current policies. Ex: Hurricane Ian affected almost all SW FL marinas. We have personally launched at or visited them all, except as noted.

We currently recommend https://www.neighbor.com for private rig storage options for a $20 cost if you finalize.

For public transportation options between the put in and take out towns, we like https://www.rome2rio.com/map/Buffalo/Clay
This example shows all choices between our Pirates Cove, NY put in and the end of the West Erie Canal at Tonawanda, NY for our summer 2021W Erie Canal/Finger Lakes Adventure.

FL PANHANDLE Pensacola.
(per Bob Austin) Pensacola Shipyard and Marina, has a security guard, and safe parking. $5 launch includes a day parking. For long term trailer parking is $65. I believe that $5 a day for short term parking--until you are at the $65.
Pensacola Shipyard, Boatyard & Marina

FL PANHANDLE Pensacola Military.
Pensacola NAS Sherman Cove Marina 4ft shoaling, day rig parking only, shore power inop since Sally.
NAS Bayou Grande Marina (sailboats), seaplane ramp, $300,000 liability insurance with ‘wreck removal’ with marina named as ‘additional insureds’ transients required for both, inquire at office re temp rig parking. DoD cardholder required in vehicle to sponsor guests with RealID state drivers licenses to enter base marina.
https://www.navymwrpensacola.com/programs/85528ed5-8ceb-48c9-a843-28d3f3364c0f

FL PANHANDLE Panama City Beach, Pirate’s Cove Marina. Rebuilt 2020, small pool, near St Andrews SP (short ramp), no ramp or rig storage.

FL PANHANDLE Apalachicola city ramps.
Free, no security, no utilities at city marina, limited city wall dock.
https://search.yahoo.com/local/s;_ylt=A0geKYw.8nRgw_MAaAxXNyoA;_ylu=Y29sbwNiZjEEcG9zAzEEdnRpZAMEc2VjA3Nj?p=apalachicola+florida+marina&selectedId=215383931&fr=mcafee
Also consider…
Water Street Hotel has limited slips, power, showers, city lot in front, walking distance to ramp. Strong tides perpendicular to short docks.
https://www.choicehotels.com/florida/apalachicola/ascend-hotels/flf48?pmf=yext&mc=llyxyxpx
Last there in 2015.

FL PANHANDLE Carrabelle Moorings and other marinas often full in winter with Loopers awaiting a weather window for crossing the Gulf

FL W FL Anclote key, Tarpon Springs, Anclote River Park ramp. Kiosk up to 10 days rig storage.
Anclote River Park
Tarpon Springs city marina upriver.

FL W FL Punta Gorda city marina (Laishley Marina).
Good ramp and 300 ft day dock while you go store the rig.
Laishley Park Municipal Marina - Punta Gorda, FL
Lyft 3mi to Crystal Cay for rig storage vs Frequently Asked Questions
Entrance to Lake OK waterway upriver, few locks.

FL Okeechobee canal, Indiantown Marina. See rig storage page. Long and short term transient slips often not available.
https://search.yahoo.com/local/s;_ylt=A0geKYw.8nRgw_MAaAxXNyoA;_ylu=Y29sbwNiZjEEcG9zAzEEdnRpZAMEc2VjA3Nj?p=apalachicola+florida+marina&selectedId=215383931&fr=mcafee

FL Okeechobee canal
St Lucie South and Franklin Lock boat slips w 30A power, fed park pass senior discount, ramp. Haven’t been there but trusted source says they are a good deal.
https://www.waterwayguide.com/reviews/1-4474/wp-franklin-campground-boat-in-docks

FL W FL Ft Myers Punta Rassa ramps. 3 miles from Pink Shell Marina. 3 day max rig parking pay at kiosk.
Rig storage downtown FM Guardian Storage monthly but prorated, cheaper options exist further out from town.
Covered & Open RV/Boat/Storage,
https://www.leegov.com/parks/Pages/FacilitySP.aspx?UrlSuffix=puntarassa
Pink Shell Marina and Resort 5 star, 3 heated pools 1 adults-only, 9 miles sand beach walkable at all tides, was $1.75/ft (no min!)/day for over 30 day stay. Lots of wakes, request inside long dock, Ft Myers Beach. This year our reservation is late Jan til Hontoon Hoot in March.

FL Key West.
Garrison Bight city mar, hose to rinse trailer brakes and engines
Garrison Bight Marina
Very safe. 40 foot trailer boats launch. Rig storage $10/day dual axle trlr, $15 triple axle, $10 truck but limited spaces, choose a weekday. Only ramp in Key West for a TC255
Stock Island Marina resort (now Perry Hotel and Marina), two heated pools, shuttle to downtown, our former winter getaway but they finally started enforcing a 35 foot min
https://www.perrykeywest.com/stock-island-marina


FL KEY WEST military.
NAS Key West, Boca Chico marina may fill 12 mos in advance, $1/ft 30ft min, free rig storage on access road. Bus to downtown.
Dinghy ramp only, launch large trailer boats at City Marina ramp, Garrison Bight. Sigsbee Annex on Dredger Key marina has a shallow ramp, no rig storage or transient slips.
https://www.navymwrkeywest.com/programs/2e66f2c5-f885-481a-8c48-74255891a53b


FL Cudjoe Key, Cudjoe Gardens Marina.
Cudjoe Gardens Marina – – A full Service Marina –
Good ramp, clear water. Call re transient slip availability. Tricky navigation out into the Atlantic side. Call re rig storage, sometimes defers to other innovative spots like behind the seafood shop.


FL Marathon 33rd st ramp.
8 spaces, store rig at Briers trailers, rate depends on length, fills early. RV Parking | Boat Storage
Faro Blanco resort and marina nearby, no trlr storage, 2 pools, Lyft around.
Florida Keys Marinas | Marina | Faro Blanco Resort & Marina

FL Tavernier, Islamorada Key, Founders Park Marina
Single steep ramp, you may scrape at top, fills up early. Pool and rig storage.
https://www.islamorada.fl.us/departments/plantation_yacht_harbor_marina/index.php


FL Biscayne Bay.
Herbert Hoover marina. 6 ramps, kiosk payment, call re rig storage, seems to vary.
Herbert Hoover Marina


FL W FL Calusa Island marina. Drive to Tigertail Park $16/car/day. Marco Island marinas were much more expensive.
TC255 launch requires medium to high tide.
Goodland, FL S of Marco Island, good folks who will work with you.
Safe Harbor Calusa Island


FL E FL St John river south of Astor.
Ed Stone County park and ramp, long term rig storage in grass by Hwy 44, free launch and parking, sheriff patrolled. No C-Brat issues over many years. Steep & deep ramp, TC255 outboards are in the opposite channel weeds before getting off the trailer, but worth it. No transient slips at the Park, but available at nearby marinas.
https://www.volusia.org/services/community-services/parks-recreation-and-culture/parks-and-trails/park-facilities-and-locations/ecological-nature-parks/ed-stone-park.stml
Hontoon Island State Park Marina, 25 ft max, 30A power, rustic bath house, no float ins, reservations online only. Free dockage for accepted volunteers who clean, run the pontoon ferry etc.

FL E FL St John river (3 miles south of Ed Stone ramp), Hontoon Landing marina 0.2 mile north of Hontoon Is SP. Scary steep single ramp, rig storage and transient slips for reasonable fees. $5 pump out. C-Dory owners are cheap (like me) and prefer Ed Stone County park 3 miles north for free with free safe rig storage (park close to Hwy 44).
http://www.hontoon.com/

FL Okeechobee canal, Franklin lock and ramp. Call for rig storage advice, informal.
Cruisers Helping Cruisers

FL (military) Jacksonville NAS marina. Good ramp, newer floating docks and transient slips but no formal rig storage on base. We used the ruse of putting the trailer ‘for sale’ in the Lemon Lot for a month with the truck parked near the BOQ. Nearby commercial rig storage options.


John

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2010 Tom Cat 255, Cat O' Mine
Yamaha F150, LXF150
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ken35216



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 561
City/Region: Destin, Florida
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2017
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Lady Onyx
Photos: ken35216
PostPosted: Sun Nov 20, 2022 5:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was hoping you'd stop by John. Great info!

Thanks!!
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ken35216



Joined: 12 Mar 2013
Posts: 561
City/Region: Destin, Florida
State or Province: FL
C-Dory Year: 2017
C-Dory Model: 25 Cruiser
Vessel Name: Lady Onyx
Photos: ken35216
PostPosted: Wed Nov 23, 2022 7:13 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

I was able to 7 days at Bahia Honda for $60 a day, which includes storage for my truck and trailer. That's the cheapest thing going anywhere near Key West and water front to boot.

I'll motor down to Key West for a night or two and explore some of the other keys and do some snorkling.

Any ideas?
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