Browsing: ICW

Cruising Life
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Fort Pierce, Florida: A Historic, Boater-Friendly Stop on the ICW

If you’re cruising through Florida, you may want to think about stopping at Fort Pierce. It’s a major boating center right on the Intracoastal Waterway, and the Fort Pierce Inlet gives easy access to the Atlantic, if you want to go outside, or to the Bahamas. Hutchinson Island, the long, thin barrier island, separates the Waterway from the ocean there. Fort Pierce is called the “sunrise city,” because of the clear view to the east. One of the oldest cities in the area (with roots dating to 1567), it’s on Florida’s Treasure Coast, so-named because of all the tons of…

Boat Reviews
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New, Prize-Winning, Dutch-Built Linssen 40 Sedan: All Ready for the ICW or the Great Loop

The new prize-winning Linssen 40 Sedan, named the European Power Boat of the Year in the Displacement category at the Düsseldorf boat show in January, is a Dutch-built, salty-looking, steel-hull cruiser. It was designed for cruising Europe’s coast and vast inland waterway system, but it would be equally at home in the U.S., cruising on the Intracoastal Waterway or along the Great Loop. It will be introduced to the U.S. at the Annapolis Powerboat Show in October. The Linssen 40 comes in an aft cabin and a flybridge version, but the basic sedan version has a large forward stateroom, with…

Cruising Life
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Good News: Dismal Swamp Canal To Open by the end of September

Here’s good news if you’re heading south this fall. The Dismal Swamp Canal, the 22-mile cut of an alternate route of the Intracoastal Waterway through parts of Virginia and North Carolina, will reopen by the end of September. The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers says it will be able to complete dredging of the canal to a 6-foot controlling depth by then. The Corps closed the canal after Hurricane Matthew last October, and has cleared more than 350 trees from the waterway since then and dredged shoals as shallow as one foot. The oldest operating man-made canal in the U.S.,…

Cruising Life
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Army Corps Says Great Dismal Swamp Canal Won’t Reopen Until Late Summer

If you’re planning on the Great Loop or just cruising on the East Coast this summer, you’ll have to wait a while to go through the Great Dismal Swamp. The Army Corps of Engineers, which closed the Great Dismal Swamp Canal after Hurricane Matthew in October, now says it may not reopen until late this summer. The 22-mile-long canal dates back to George Washington, who visited the Great Dismal Swamp in 1763 and suggested draining it to create a waterway connecting the Chesapeake with Albemarle Sound in North Carolina. After the canal was dug, mostly by slave labor, it opened…

Cruising Life
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A Washington, D.C. Couple Take Their First Cruise to Florida on a New Prestige 550

When last seen, Jonathan Murray and Desiree Van Welsum, from Washington, D.C.,  were just leaving Annapolis on their new Prestige 550, heading south to Florida, even though they’ve only been boating for about a year. They’re now in Palm Beach, after a great cruise down, and are planning to head over to the Bahamas. Here’s a look at their trip so far: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ss_Gi6JlaVg

Cruising Life
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Great Dismal Swamp Canal Closed Indefinitely

The Army Corps of Engineers now has closed the Dismal Swamp Canal, which first opened in 1805, indefinitely so it can clear all the damage caused by Hurricane Matthew in October. The Canal, which is part of the ICW connecting the Chesapeake Bay in Virginia with Albermarle Sound in North Carolina, will be closed while the Corps removes trees and debris, completes dredging and checks for shoaling. Work on the Deep Creek Lock river gates alone will take 75 days, starting in early January. Meanwhile, if you’re heading south for the winter, use the Albermarle and Chesapeake Canal section of…

Cruising Life
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Nordic Tugs Head Down the Waterway to the Keys

Here’s a group of cruisers who are living the dream. So far, ten Nordic Tug owners have joined Ben Wilde’s “ICW Nordic Tugfest,” cruising down the Waterway together, heading for Marathon in the Florida Keys. Wilde, who runs Wilde Yacht Sales, the largest Nordic Tugs dealer in the world, started out on his personal Nordic Tug 54, Nordic Lady, from his office in Essex, Connecticut. The cruise officially got underway from his other office in Rock Hall, Maryland, on the Chesapeake. The picture above is of the group leaving Spring Cove Marina on Solomons Island on the Chesapeake. The Nordic Tug…

Boat Reviews
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Take Your Pick of 5 Great Cruising Boats

From 27 feet to 88 feet, here’s a good look at five popular cruising boats from major builders – the Ranger Tug 27, Beneteau 34 Swift Trawler (pictured here), Kadey-Krogen 48, Nordhavn 52, and Outer Reef 88. I’ve spent a good amount of time cruising on all of these boats (except the Outer Reef) and I can attest that they all offer comfortable and safe cruising over the waters for which they were designed. (The Nordhavn, for example, is a blue-water cruiser built to cross oceans, while the Ranger is a coastal cruiser appropriate for the ICW or the Inside…