Sunday, April 3, 2016

Marine Stadium in Miami - At anchor

Marine Stadium - originally built for power boat racing but the harbor area was found to be too small
Due to small craft advisories we decided to exit Caesar's Creek on the bay side. Now you only have 5.0 ft of depth at high tide but I can barely make it out with my 4 ft 9 in keel but it's a little tense when you moving with only a few inches under the keel. So we have to exit with a 1.3 ft tide or greater, anything less and we'll hit bottom. So we hauled anchor at 6:45 and turned to the bay. I was informed by the Admiral that she was getting tired of these early morning departures, something I have to consider in the future of harmony on Fleetwing. However, high tide was at 7:30 and so we just had to leave then, she understood but was not happy.

Sad, it has attracted graffiti artists from all over the world
So I inched out and made it to the Bay and headed north. All the storms passed either north or south of us so we were pleased about that. We were treated to a convention of Sea-Doos, about a dozen zooming around the anchorage stirring up wave action and lots of noise. This was not the Marine Stadium I remember but then it was a Sunday afternoon and everyone was out on a fair day. So we endured the bouncing around until a Florida Fish and Wildlife enforcement boat slowly motored around the perimeter. All fast Sea-Doos stopped at that. Peace and quiet at last!

The weather reports are all over the place for Monday for traveling to Ft Lauderdale. Grib and StormSurf says it's fine but the NOAA Coastal Forecast gives dire warnings. Once again we want an early start since slack current is at 8:00 am at Government Cut. One year we didn't pay attention to that and exited the cut with a 2 kt current going out and four foot waves coming in - what a mess. The 2 kts of current shortened the waves so we had them coming over the bow and the boat was pitching up and down about 8 ft! We  buried the bow several times along the way. Once out of the cut, everything was fine. So now we pay attention to the current direction in Government Cut.

The night time view is still spectacular
So the plan is to leave early and make Ft Lauderdale by 11:00 am and pick up a mooring for the night. Hopefully the weather will cooperate.


Mary Minard NT42 said...

Those of us who hang on your words appreciate that exactng scientific mind!
Sounds like Caesars offers better anchoring and shore access; exiting into the Bay is the bottom forgiving? Could you share the depths you saw at high tide this morning?
Using Anglefish the closest anchorage is at Pumpkin Key with no shore possibility and we have seen many boats drag there and at Elliott Key. My Golden appreciates your attention to canine desires...

Fred Brillo said...

Out going tide at Government Cut or Port Everglades can be really rough... particularly when the wind is blowing in from the east. Makes the waves stand up tall. Ive found that its best to stay to one side of the channel and slip out of the main channel as quickly as you safely can given the depths. That works well at Government cut but can be dangerous at Port Everglades...there is a nasty shoal on the north side of the channel less than 1/4 mile from the end of the breakwater. Remnants of an old breakwater from many years ago.

Fred Brillo said...

At that shoal spot on the north side of the Port Everglades channel....there is actually a piling there with a sign on it that says... DANGER SHALLOW WATER! .. but you cant read it till youre aground!

Bob423 said...

Hi Mary,

Thanks for commenting. Caesar's Creek is not for everyone. It's not an open anchorage like most people are used to, you just pull over to the side of the channel and drop a hook. Also, the current can really rip, up to 2 kts so you had better have a dependable outboard to get back and forth between the boat and the Ranger station dock. In the fall that trip at night, at least for us, is in the dark. I've found the holding good in a sandy bottom but I have a 66 lb Spade with 60 ft of 3/8 inch BBB chain.

However, we put up with all that due to the very convenient dock for Hoolie. Entering from the ocean side you'll see 4.5 MLW so I always like to have about 1.0 ft of tide for my 4 ft 9 in keel. I've entered at dead low and have "skidded in" over soft mud for about 100 ft right at the first pair of markers. It deepens to 15 to 20ft the rest of the way. You have to follow the markers and not the Garmin chartplotter, the marks are way off here.

The Bay side is another story. You have 3.8 MLW using the Billy's Point tide station. We always wait for high tide at a minimum of 1.3 ft to use the channel which gives us 5.1 ft of depth, enough for us. Even though we've used the Bay side entrance a half dozen times, it's still nerve racking when you have only inches between you and the bottom and that bottom is hard, not soft mud (according to other comments), I've never hit bottom on the Bay side. I only use the north exit on the Bay more depth.

If you are still interested after all the cautions I can supply you with the waypoints.

Bob423 said...

Fred, last year we had a very bad experience exiting Givernment Cut on an outgoing tide with 3 ft waves coming in, not fun!! Now we pay attention to the current! This morning we left on a slack tide but we met a huge ocean liner that had the same idea, we squeezed over to one side. The liner had three tugs helping him in. The Coast Guard closed the cut after we got through.

Unknown said...

I think we'll avoid Caesar's Creek. We draw 5'5 and don't have a dog that we have to take ashore. You should be thankful you are there - it has snowed here in RI all day. There's about 5-6 inches and it's going to continue for a few more hours. Light and fluffy, but now it's getting a little wet and heavy. Not your usual "Spring" snowstorm. I'm living my life through your posts. Can't wait until September!

Mary Minard NT42 Quest said...

Thanks for the details on the Bay side; for once I will not even consider following your bread crumbs.
Garmin seems taken with putting 3.9' depths at every creek entrance down there making them look impassable with our 5' depth but I know we have never had a problem going through Angelfish. Just a lot of breath holding in case we find the "hard thing" someone has hit in the middle of the channel.... Ocean Reef club did give us local knowledge for the passage.