31 January 2012 | 25 48.059 80 08.441
After an arduous start of the day contending with a reckless bridge operator in Fort Lauderdale, we had an easy run, “outside” from Lauderdale to Miami. Miami harbour is a large and busy one and we cannot take the main channel which since 911 is off limits to pleasure craft when cruise ships are in harbour - which is just about always. The so-called “fisherman’s channel” is wide and while it is very congested with sport fisherman, tugs, ferries, and numerous other craft, it is easy to navigate. We are heading for a favourite anchorage of ours, Sunset Lake.
To get there we have to come right into the waterfront of the City of Miami, head north under several fixed and one opening bridge, then head east along what I call the “lozenge islands” These perfectly formed islands were created in the 1920’s by the Corp of Army Engineers by the dredging of sand to create the waterways as well as these perfectly symmetric islands with their multi-million dollar homes.
There is a small passage between two of these islands and it opens to an area about 500 feet wide by a quarter of a mile long and at least 10 feet deep. This is essentially the back yard of numerous mansions but available to boats to anchor at their leisure. However, this does not mean that we are entirely welcome. In fact one particular owner, who detests visiting sailboats anchoring in front of his home has taken somewhat drastic but laughable measures to keep us out. He sometimes blares loud and raucous rap music towards anchored boats. More recently he has acquired a fleet of 13 small plastic sailboats which he moors in the vicinity of his home preventing other boats from encroaching. In any event, we find his avarice to be pitiful and are not deterred by his shenanigans.
Otherwise this is a safe and pleasant place to anchor for a couple of days. There is a place to go ashore and a few days in the South Beach area of Miami is a real adventure, if very expensive. Several other boat we know are here and it is comfortable and fun.