How far off shore

Skeeter08Skeeter08 Posts: 175 Officer
How far off shore do you take your bay boat? I own a 22 ft skeeter Bay boat and have been thinking about taking her off shore. I live close to St. Augustine Fl. and I don't want to get caught up into heavy seas.

Replies

  • Renagade69Renagade69 Posts: 1,230 Officer
    Don't take this the wrong way because I do not mean any disrespect. If you have to ask this question then do not go offshore till you gain more experience. The answer will come to you with using your boat and gaining what it can handle. Check the weather and wave height and act according .what other people do in their boats will not reflect what is good for you.
    Hells Bay Estero Bay Boat and Hells Bay Marquesas
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,349 Moderator
    Your also in the wrong part of the state for a bay boat offshore. Aside from some western gulf runs were they need to run 100 miles, Jacksonville has 50 miles of running to the shelf. That's a whole lot farther than 5 miles off Hillsborough. You also don't get the protection from the Bahamas bank and have to deal with open ocean type conditions. Storms come up fast and its a lot easier to shoot in from a couple miles than being 30 miles offshore and a storm coming up between you and home port.

    of course the boat can handle good weather and sea's, but its your experience level which helps with making the safe determination of when that may change.

    CMD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • ElementElement Posts: 1,749 Officer
    I have a 21' v-hull single engine and do not feel comfortable going past 20 miles and that's when conditions and weather forecast are great. I know an extremely seasoned fisherman (65+ years) that has literally done it all who runs a charter now out of St. A in a 24' v-hull boat. He told me once that he purposely only carries insurance out to 30 miles for his vessel. He said he does this on purpose to deter himself from ever making the decision to go any further.

    "How far you can go" and what is safe and smart are two different things.

    Regardless if you put your limit on 10 or 30, I highly recommend you get SeaTow or similar if you don't already have it. Then look at an ACR or similar beacon.

    Start small and work your way out with experience. Break the jetties/inlet a few days. Troll the beach for kings or cobia. Go out to 4 mile or 9 mile a few times. Start to understand how to interpret a forecast... would you rather be out in 2' at 4 seconds or 3-4' at 12 seconds? Is the ocean laying down or building? etc.... It's a learning process.
  • bay20bay20 Posts: 1,490 Officer
    Take my 20 ft Ranger out of Port Canaveral out to 30 miles east all the time just pick your weather right.
  • Skeeter08Skeeter08 Posts: 175 Officer
    my issue is the boat is a bay boat and it handles beautiful but it isn't a deep V, I have years of experience and I'm retired Navy not saying that makes me an expert however I feel very comfortable on the water and have enough sense to know when its safe and when it isn't. When I visit my son down in Tampa area we go off shore in his bay boat all the time however it always seems calm compared to this area. My boat has such a low profile I guess I'm worried about getting caught in heavy conditions.
  • Liquid TheropyLiquid Theropy Posts: 608 Officer
    You just answered your own question. Gulf is way different than atlantic. Weather is well unpredictable. Bad stuff happens. If you go, let someone know you are going. Have fun!
    [SIGPIC][/SIGPIC]AKA Flatheadcat
  • Alex from GAAlex from GA Posts: 1,279 Officer
    Don't go further than 1/3 of your fuel capacity.
  • camgcicamgci Posts: 185 Deckhand
    Don't go further than 1/3 of your fuel capacity.

    :Agree
  • FS DanFS Dan Posts: 2,349 Moderator
    Where the 1/3 rule is a smart offshore guideline, I would be hesitant to use it in this instance.
    Range isn't the danger he's facing. The danger of small boating offshore is sea state and weather.
    A bay boat at 5mpg with 40 gallons of fuel has a 200 mile range. Do you really think 66 miles offshore is safe in a bay boat?

    FSD
    Formerly Catmandew
  • hossmosshossmoss Posts: 1,197 Officer
    I used to take my little Angler 17 bay boat out as far as 20 miles out from Mayport. Some days stayed beautiful all day. Some days the weather kicked up. I got pounded on the way in. Sometimes a storm rolled through. I got wet and pounded on the way in. Then when I got home and told my wife, I got pounded again. At 55 years old, the next day I was usually pretty stiff. Then I'd do it all over again the next week.

    Caught groupers, sharks, sailfish, cudas, AJs, too many bsb and beeliners to even think about. Be safe, be smart, think ahead, plan for mishaps. Have what you need. I always carried an extra 6 gallons of pre-mixed gas. You can do it. If you get serious about the ocean, just get prepared for buying a different boat in a few years.

    After several years of that, I decided I needed to buy another boat.

    CHEAP BAIT! Try our NE FL Bait Co-op: www.neflbaitco-op.com

    2013 Cape Horn 31T with twin Yamaha F300s

  • Pioneer180Pioneer180 Posts: 124 Officer
    hossmoss wrote: »
    I used to take my little Angler 17 bay boat out as far as 20 miles out from Mayport. Some days stayed beautiful all day. Some days the weather kicked up. I got pounded on the way in. Sometimes a storm rolled through. I got wet and pounded on the way in. Then when I got home and told my wife, I got pounded again. At 55 years old, the next day I was usually pretty stiff. Then I'd do it all over again the next week.

    Caught groupers, sharks, sailfish, cudas, AJs, too many bsb and beeliners to even think about. Be safe, be smart, think ahead, plan for mishaps. Have what you need. I always carried an extra 6 gallons of pre-mixed gas. You can do it. If you get serious about the ocean, just get prepared for buying a different boat in a few years.

    After several years of that, I decided I needed to buy another boat.

    I think this is the kind of posts the OP should not read.
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