FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

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FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Rpontual » Thu May 05, 2016 9:02 pm

[
This is our first trip on our own to a destination that requires loosing visibility to all land. I checked oil levels, including the out drive oil (xixp ;) ), fueled Sea Home of diesel, beer, soft drinks and even water. :mrgreen:

After two delays due to weather, we left 5/19. The sea was supposed to be calm with waves below 2.3f and wind below 10mhp.

For navigation, I decided to define a heading that pointed 5 miles south of the Bimini entrance and then I put the autopilot on heading hold. It was fun to see that the Gulf Stream pushed Sea Home North approximately by 5 miles. When we were close I let the autopilot work towards the entrance... Here we go!

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We can see Miami separating from us


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and we cannot see land ahead of us!


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Entering the Bimini straight towards North Island


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Calm and pieceful here... No wake...



Some photos on the Island

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This is how pools should be built


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Dinner


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Beach water is incredible


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Beach, beach


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Testing the pool design


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Bar by the beach



Return trip

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Starting return trip


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Nice view of the Island as we move towards exiting it


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Getting out, water is shallow all around. Never arrive/leave this place during night hours...


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Weather looks scary, but we are confident to get home before the rain


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We can see home port :)



This was a fun trip, the sea was fine but not silk. I ended up slowing down sometimes to 24 mph and playing with trims to reduce the "bowl splash" effect. My guess is that the waves were small but too close to each other creating resonance if the boat was at 30mph.

Bimini buoys do not seem sufficient to properly guide a boat out of the shallow areas, one needs to "see" the sea to be safe. For that reason, I would not recommend traveling to Bimini with the intent of arriving post sun light.

Note: In the photos you can see my new forward Sunpad cover. I managed to install it after xixp helped me by letting me see how it was installed in his boat! Regal promised, but did not yet find a person that could explain the installation over the phone...




--- Below is the original post to keep the continuity of the three ---

This is going to be my first adventure towards Bahamas. I already registered with the "svrs.cbp.dhs.gov" to make my life easier here and got yellow and US flags. Now I just have to convince Her that I am a captain :mrgreen:

I reviewed other postings to aggregate information here that could be valuable to others. This post includes video and multiple hints: viewtopic.php?f=6&t=7510&p=42458&hilit=bimini+island#p42458

I will be refining my plans and posting here to share amongst us. Please contribute with suggestions or hints.
Last edited by Rpontual on Sat May 21, 2016 1:39 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby xixp » Fri May 06, 2016 9:56 am

Have you purchased the CBP decal as well? Since it last for a year i purchased it a few days before departure. (You need the decal number to fill the float plan in the cbp site if i recall corectly).

Last time i went with a large group and stopped by Bimini Sands (nice floating docks ) , nothing fancy but a good place. In my experience the MOST important thing is to check the weather forecast in order to have less than 3 ft waves . Otherwise your family will never want to repeat the trip. (I tried with 5 footers and the Miami beach inlet exit was forgettable when the bow of my 3760 was covered by a swell...no good!!).

When you decide to go let me know because i want to go as well .
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Rpontual » Fri May 06, 2016 4:04 pm

xixp wrote:Have you purchased the CBP decal as well? Since it last for a year i purchased it a few days before departure. (You need the decal number to fill the float plan in the cbp site if i recall corectly).

Last time i went with a large group and stopped by Bimini Sands (nice floating docks ) , nothing fancy but a good place. In my experience the MOST important thing is to check the weather forecast in order to have less than 3 ft waves . Otherwise your family will never want to repeat the trip. (I tried with 5 footers and the Miami beach inlet exit was forgettable when the bow of my 3760 was covered by a swell...no good!!).

When you decide to go let me know because i want to go as well .


I already have Global Entry, which I use when traveling abroad by plane. I applied for the SVRS to be able to electronically file boat trips in/out the country and avoid having to go in person to the port authority. What is CBP for?

I will definitely share the plan, going together sounds as a great plan.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby xixp » Fri May 06, 2016 4:19 pm

You an your crew has to apply for the Small Vessel Reporting System . (I have global entry as well but I had to have the interview at the Miami Port to get the SVRS # for each crew member):
https://svrs.cbp.dhs.gov/Default.aspx

And you have to register the vessel as well (same link has the option) and in order o fill the float plan you need to enter the decal # ( DTOPS, The Decal / Transponder Online Procurement System) required for vessel over 30ft.
Decal is purchased in below link, you need to register and purchase the decal.

https://dtops.cbp.dhs.gov/main/login_in ... 1880250623

let me know how it goes...(Pretty easy)
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Rpontual » Fri May 06, 2016 7:45 pm

xixp wrote:You an your crew has to apply for the Small Vessel Reporting System . (I have global entry as well but I had to have the interview at the Miami Port to get the SVRS # for each crew member):
https://svrs.cbp.dhs.gov/Default.aspx

And you have to register the vessel as well (same link has the option) and in order o fill the float plan you need to enter the decal # ( DTOPS, The Decal / Transponder Online Procurement System) required for vessel over 30ft.
Decal is purchased in below link, you need to register and purchase the decal.

https://dtops.cbp.dhs.gov/main/login_in ... 1880250623

let me know how it goes...(Pretty easy)


I logged in the SVRS system and filed an itinerary for a future trip. Everything went smoothly and at the end I got the float plan. On the float plan there is a decal number. (???). My boat is registered with the USCG and an AIS transponder, all I am thinking is that one of these two included the CBP decal. Anyway, I am going to read more about it before concluding that I have all I need...
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby xixp » Fri May 06, 2016 11:19 pm

As long as you have each passenger BR# , and decal # in order to fill the info in the float plan you are good to go.

BR# identifies each crew member and the decal# relates the boat registration to the CBP filled float plan.
In this way when you approach Miami you just call the 1800 number to notify the arrival and the crew and boat clears inmigration without the need of going in person. (Thats the advantage of the Local Boater option system).

In the in person interview the offices gives each crew member an id (front with your info ...handwrittten, its more a memory helper not an official id and at the back the number to call in order to report arrival).

Hope this clarifies the matter...
Last edited by xixp on Tue May 17, 2016 10:43 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Rpontual » Mon May 16, 2016 9:42 pm

SVRS float plan is filed. We are leaving Miami Beach 5/18 and returning 5/19.

Probably leaving from Port Miami to start from southern location, we will be staying in North Bimini at "World Resort Bimini". Due to WAF, we will sleep at the Hilton hotel...

Fingers crossed for the weather, the weather convinced us to delay the trip by a day...
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby On Holiday » Tue May 17, 2016 6:20 am

You need to be flexible on the travel dates, have fun and share pictures when you return.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Bull Market » Tue May 17, 2016 1:03 pm

It should be a good trip. Weather looks good in the AM. Definitely post pics when you are back.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Rpontual » Sat May 21, 2016 1:41 pm

The trip was great and the sea a good education experience, not rough but not silky either!

I modified the post and added photos, just to have the trip at the beginning of the thread.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby xixp » Sat May 21, 2016 5:03 pm

Glad trip turned great! Nice hotel, next time it would be good to stay an extra day to snorkel aroud the concrete sunk ship.
So, with 2 ft waves you had to run at around 24mph...good to estimate travel time looking at the forecast..although waves period has its effect as well.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Rpontual » Sat May 21, 2016 8:42 pm

xixp wrote:Glad trip turned great! Nice hotel, next time it would be good to stay an extra day to snorkel aroud the concrete sunk ship.
So, with 2 ft waves you had to run at around 24mph...good to estimate travel time looking at the forecast..although waves period has its effect as well.


I believe the period was the issue, not the size. The cruiser would keep pounding the water at 30mph, at lower speeds 24-26 and with some trim play we could keep Sea Home planning and not pounding.

I agree that staying two nights is a better choice for this trip. ;)
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby timp4411 » Wed May 25, 2016 10:34 am

Thanks for sharing your trip with us.

The info is valuable and the pics are amazing. It's is truly a beautiful place.

I hope to someday be able to take a trip like this. But it's out of my range from the Chesapeake Bay for now.

Regards.
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Re: FL - Miami Beach > Bimini

Postby Chris_in_Texas » Wed May 25, 2016 9:03 pm

timp4411 wrote:Thanks for sharing your trip with us.

The info is valuable and the pics are amazing. It's is truly a beautiful place.

I hope to someday be able to take a trip like this. But it's out of my range from the Chesapeake Bay for now.

Regards.



Its more out of range from my Dallas lake... :shock:
Thanks, Chris

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