Passage Makers: Memorial Day Cruise

Members of the PassageMakers fleet have been cruising the Keys, Bahamas and Puerto Rico, and up and down the Gulf Coast this month. They’ve posted photos and videos and we look forward to sharing their adventures when they return.

We’re preparing for the annual Memorial Day Cruise to Charlotte Harbor.

We have some smaller and/or single handed cruisers and some larger boats, there are both inside (ICW) and outside (Gulf) routes to our final destination at Useppa Island.

As always, everything depends on weather but preliminary plans are as follows

Cherie McNulty will be single handling her boat. She plans on leaving from the SSS on Wednesday or Thursday. If the winds and weather are great she will take the outside route to Useppa leaving early morning to get to the anchorage by sunset. If weather isn’t so good she will take the ICW south and anchor at Lemon Bay for the night, continuing on down the ICW to Useppa next day. She plans on heading back North on Monday via ICW or outside via Gulf on Tuesday.  You can contact Cherie at 941-914-0450 or She’s happy to answer any questions about the anchorages along the way and entry via the swash channel.

The other option is a straight run out Big Pass into the Gulf to Charlotte Harbor. We will likely have boats heading South starting Thursday. Dave Ash is planning to leave from the SSS on Saturday. To sail in by sunset requires leaving the SSS early.  There are two routes into the Harbor; via the main channel from the Gulf or the Swash channel close to shore. If you plan on taking the swash channel for the first time check your chart and tide /fishing boats once you get through!

We will anchor out on either the East or West side of Useppa, depending on winds. Some enjoy rafting up, others do not. The anchorage is large and deep enough to accommodate everyone.

Many of us have fond memories of our old friend Walt Wyatt around this time of year. Walt had a long and exciting life single handling his boat to the Bahamas and around Florida. When his long hauls were over he still looked forward to the SSS Memorial Day cruise. We’re planning on a mixed fleet of first timers and seasoned salts so everyone should feel welcome. . To sign up for our fleet newsletter go to

Captains meeting at the SSS on Sunday May 17 at 7pm

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