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 Was I reckless in running an inlet with a bowrider

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T O P I C    R E V I E W
blouderback Posted - Aug 02 2007 : 14:35:52
OK, in all seriousness, I would like to have your opinions on this subject. I am in no way trying to stir the pot. I really want to know your opinions, and since your answers will be annonymous, I hope you will all be honest.

Here's the background:

  • 20' bowrider, 5.0L Mercruiser w/Bravo III.

  • The boat recently passed CG Aux Safety inspection.

  • I have taken the PA State Fish and Game Commision safety boater class and passed the test.

  • I have obtained and studied nav charts and tide charts of the area, and chose 3 hours before high tide to navigate the inlet, pannin g to re-enter after 30 minutes.

  • I waited for a day where the weather and seas were predicted to be calm

  • I performed 2 recon missions to view the conditions and the activity of other boats and how they did it.

  • I had on board 1 GPS, 1 VHF, 2 cell phones, all other required CG equipment, and one 45 year old friend.

  • I had the engine cutoff lanyard attached to my person

  • We were NOT wearing life vests, although they were stowed in a handy area.

  • Our wives were both aware of our plans, and knew we were planing to return at a specified time (approximately 2 hours after we left)

The poll question is: Was I reckless in trying to negotiate this inlet given the above information?
50   L A T E S T    R E P L I E S    (Newest First)
Audrey II Posted - Jan 21 2015 : 21:00:24
"And IMHO, Ed is Bob."

Winner Winner Chicken Dinner!

Who else would have dug this old thread up just to stir the pot!!!!!

Reel Antsy Posted - Jan 21 2015 : 20:55:42
Originally posted by Britanic

And IMHO, Ed is Bob.

Britanic Posted - Jan 21 2015 : 20:05:44
I am native to Barnegat Inlet NJ, she is Mother Natures bitch, and I have seem some darn small boats, open bow riders to boot go they Her. you can, but you must be very skilled or lucky, or dumb to make it.
And IMHO, Ed is Bob.
OBX Boater Posted - Jan 21 2015 : 11:50:50
I run Oregon Inlet, NC in my 20 foot center console. But I dang sure don't try it on anymore on a falling tide, east wind. Once was enough for me. 14 years later and I'm still shaking.
BoatCrazy Posted - Jan 21 2015 : 08:29:36
"I still maintain that with the properly skilled operator, you can run an inlet in a bow rider."

When I had my 17ft Center console I used to run out Jones Inlet run the ocean to fire island inlet and run the bay home.

When I was selling that boat, we went out for a sea trial. Potential buyer wanted open water, I pointed and said there's the ocean. He was running the boat, and I took the controls over as he had NO idea how to run Jones inlet on an incoming tide and blowing 15.

gcolton Posted - Jan 21 2015 : 07:03:57
Originally posted by November Charlie

I still maintain that with the properly skilled operator, you can run an inlet in a bow rider.

Without a capable operator, you're probably going to die.

Certainly you can run an inlet with a bowrider.

As stated here it depends upon many things, just like running an inlet in a boat that is not a bowrider depends upon conditions.

November Charlie Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 22:05:22
Originally posted by Capt. Bill1

Originally posted by November Charlie

I still maintain that with the properly skilled operator, you can run an inlet in a bow rider.

Without a capable operator, you're probably going to die.

Of course you can. As I'm sure you see in your job, it's done all the time.

See it often both ways - with a capable operator and without. In fact, I'm spending this month on this very matter. I'll try to get some photos up in NBR when I get back home. I have had the most fun you can possibly have on a boat these last few weeks.
Capt. Bill1 Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 20:33:16
Originally posted by November Charlie

I still maintain that with the properly skilled operator, you can run an inlet in a bow rider.

Without a capable operator, you're probably going to die.

Of course you can. As I'm sure you see in your job, it's done all the time.

zane Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 20:28:16
I miss bob. Love him or hate him, his topics always went viral. Always a few pages of responses.
November Charlie Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 19:03:33
I still maintain that with the properly skilled operator, you can run an inlet in a bow rider.

Without a capable operator, you're probably going to die.
walterv Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 18:59:24
Ed Fritz seems to be resurrecting old threads, not the first :)
MikeeH Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 13:57:45
Who resurrected this thread and why????
FYI, Bob and I did get together for a beer and still stay in touch.
Reel Antsy Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 13:57:27
KiDa Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 13:37:33
Originally posted by Reel Antsy

Originally posted by Audrey II

I guess you had to be there:)

Maybe he was...

So I'm not the only one with that thought playing pong between my left and right ears.
Reel Antsy Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 12:20:26
Originally posted by Audrey II

I guess you had to be there:)

Maybe he was...
Riverbed Posted - Jan 20 2015 : 12:17:09
Dave - yer just plain bad!!! :)
Audrey II Posted - Jan 19 2015 : 22:19:23
I guess you had to be there:)
EdFitz Posted - Jan 19 2015 : 16:48:30
STEELA Posted - Aug 06 2007 : 15:22:45
Bob, some people will feed you all sorts of BS on many, many different topics. I personally visualize way before I get to a destination what that destination will be like based on condistions I hear about and see. Inlets are light light switches. Many times just sitting out a tide change can mean the difference between life or death. If you get out there again and it's too nasty to come in with a following sea, wait it out. Of the 100's of butchered landings I have witnessed there's no doubt in my mind 99% of them were a result of the Capt. figuring out conditions "During" the docking proceedure, not way before. Same goes for your inlet voyage.
Freddy Posted - Aug 06 2007 : 10:35:44

Great wave/tide/current info, as to the other, "Yawn", err, sorry

PeteMrrs Posted - Aug 06 2007 : 10:22:15

You are the best. I find your threads and outlook on life to be truly entertaining. And just when I think it can get no more entertaining, you express your wife's concern for your safety when meeting fellow RO's. She doesn't appear concerned over Block Island or running inlets . . . . but, MikeH could spell danger.

Bob, I'm not poking fun at you I am just entertained.
shepdog Posted - Aug 06 2007 : 09:59:20
Originally posted by In the know

As my dad says - some people are meant to be Captains', and others are meant to charter.

And still others seem destined to become chum....
blouderback Posted - Aug 06 2007 : 09:14:17
Originally posted by Tanqueray

By the way.....Did you ever meet up with MikeeH like you were going to?

Geeze, do you keep notes on everything I've posted? How'd you remember that?

In any case, no I've not met up yet with Mike. I have his phone number, but I've just been too busy. Week at the shore, new addition at the house, Kids started football and cheerleading practice, etc. Plus, my wife is a little leery of me meeting my friends from the internet. She has no idea how great you all are!
Estimator Posted - Aug 05 2007 : 13:55:49
Tanq……good morning, slept in late today. The walkways at our marina are a little less than a foot under the water and it looks like our boating season will resume next weekend, which is also my lovely bide of 22 years birthday.

Since Bob puts soooooo much importance in polls. (I don’t)….check the latest results of his, I was surprised when I looked this morning, but it does give me confidence in the overall knowledge of the people that use this board.

Bob, your tsunami example is dead on right, and regardless of what anyone else says, any article ever printed, or any science to the contrary, with that one example, I DO believe that water particles move forward with the waves. Just ask those poor tsunami survivors and they will tell you that those waves were definitely moving forward…..a great example, and I am just waiting for the scientific community to rewrite their books and catch up with your knowledge regarding waves.

While your ocean experience was thirty minutes, and I stated I had none, that wasn’t totally correct. A few years ago my wife and I went to the Bahamas, and rented a damn big ass Boston Whaler (27 or 30 foot-convinced the guy I knew what I was doing, with a big ass motor) First of all, I found that cell phones aren’t much good between some islands. We had the boat for two weeks and explored the islands. It was absolutely one of the neatest things we had ever done, but I was reckless, and know I did a couple of stupid things that endangered the lives of me and my wife. I got us caught in a squall (learned later that they are very common, and predictable in the Bahamas) that came up in about 5 minutes and survived waves that appeared to be larger than the boat. We were scared to death and considered just taking the boat back if we lived through that experience. I learned very quickly some hands on experience of waves, tides and currents and as well as knowing that what ever the forecast was for the weather, it is just that, a forecast.. I also learned that with a big damn ass, self baling boat, plenty of power, and a lot of prying, that even the ignorant can get a chance to live and boat another day. I wouldn’t recommend what we did to anyone.

If you’ve never been scared ****less while boating, than you are either the greatest boater ever, right out of the box, or haven’t accumulated enough man hours yet.

Let’s debate Dolefins again….that was great fun.

Tanqueray Posted - Aug 05 2007 : 13:52:35
I guess maybe that last question seemed a bit sarcastic but even YOU would have to admit that after reading the initial post that you wanted to know how to make the next possible outing easier............and then reading this..........

"there was never any danger of swamping, broaching, plowing the bow, waves over the bow, or anything."

It looks to me like there was NO problem yet you asked the original question as if there was.
I was JUST GETTING READY to cut you a little more slack to but now I have to return to my original assumption that you crave attention and lots of it and use this forum for your own personal form of entertainment.
By the way.....Did you ever meet up with MikeeH like you were going to?
Scottath Posted - Aug 04 2007 : 19:11:58
Ive seen people go through some inlets in a canoe. I would say it depends on the inlet.
blouderback Posted - Aug 04 2007 : 18:37:32
Nevermind. There is no point.
Tanqueray Posted - Aug 04 2007 : 15:33:02
"Tanq, he was encouraging me the whole way, never had any fear. It really wasn't as bad as you all think, there was never any danger of swamping, broaching, plowing the bow, waves over the bow, or anything. Jeepers, I didn't even get a splash in my face!"

So WHAT then was the purpose of this Question to begin with?
Estimator Posted - Aug 04 2007 : 10:56:58

I think it is pointless. After fighting any constructive discussion of smart tabs, and stubbornly arguing that one that has not had them can’t have a valid point about them standing on the tired old adage, you can’t knock it if you haven’t tried it, (Buddhism I guess) setting off a three page thread of knowledgeable\experienced people repeating the same points again and again, everyone telling him that they could help some in certain situations, and might be dangerous in certain situations, and one person he deems credible posting recently……He has come to the conclusion that smart tabs may help some in some situations and could be dangerous in some situations, and it is “Bob’s idea”, and that point of view is now OK and officially blessed by Bob, I pity anyone in the interim, that went off on his blanket endorsement of smart tabs without regard as to the situations in which they might be used.. …..dah, three pages, 3 different threads, to come to the simple conclusion that the excellent information that had been repeated to him over and over is correct., but God help anyone that challenged his view before then.

I used to think I knew what BE meant, but I now believe it means…….Bob’s Empire

The knowledge in this thread is great, and I too have learned, but not because of Bob. It is akin to taking medicine; you can swallow a pill with water, the easiest way, or swallow it dry, a good way to choke. And most of his threads and post make me want to choke. I got the informative information in this thread many posts ago (And also from the Coast Guard) I don’t know if he’s got it yet, but when he does, he will grace us with his opinion that he has studied the post and deems the information BB (Bob Blessed) for all here, 4 or 5 pages later. Trying to get information to him is like talking to a fence post and not worth the effort IMO. I prefer dealing with people that are not blinded by stubbornness (it’s certainly more than normal questioning) and are a little quicker (hell of a lot quicker) on the up tick…he’s gone for the weekend I guess, with his I’m out of here comment, probably on the water, probably speeding of his little lake and feeling secure in the knowledge that he is smarter in all things, than anyone here, based on his extensive use of a pwc and about 3 years of owning boats, an 18 and 20 foot bow rider, and their use on a very small lake. If he is the new voice of wisdom here…..I feel sorry for new members he will lead astray.

I’m headed to my backyard to stare at my trailer and dream of being on the water….will someone please e-mail me when he gets banned again.
bobh Posted - Aug 04 2007 : 00:22:21

The ballpark description was excellent...thanks.
Ghost Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 22:17:05
Bob, seriously, what does it take to get the cotton out of your ears? If you don't want to hear anything, why do you keep asking?
Perry Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 21:52:35
Was fishing today out of Shinnecock Inlet...went out at the start of incoming to 2-3 footers. Traversing the Inlet was lumpy but not impassable. Seas outside built to 3-5 as we fished. We came back in during the outgoing tide...with the wind and the ocean waves there were standing 8 footers inside the inlet. Not for the squeamish or time to second guess. You must have a plan and the experience to carry it out. Coming down off the face of a wave and getting spun sideways is very easy to do.
Perfect Practice Makes Perfect.
papillon Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 18:44:43

Overall a good thread. Thanks
L Hall Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 18:17:15
walter, that's the only reason I kept posting - same with the others I suspect. This stuff is important for a boater to understand and many other people besides Bob read it. But he's so stubborn that we have to explain everything ten ways from Sunday.
PascalG Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 18:14:34
"Bob, this post is educational. What have you learned?"

since we established that many boats will swamp, sink and barely stay afloat by the bow if they get in trouble in an inlet, the lesson is clear. Add a bow thruster to your boat so you have something to grab on until help arrives. If you can salvage a piece of line you could even tie your kids up high on the trhuster prop.
Msibley Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 18:07:48
Take more baths instead of showers's incredible what you can learn by watching tub waves slop around all over the place. I especially like the displacement dynamics when lowering my tired old body into the tub.

walterv Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 18:04:35
Thanks for the education, I never thought about it before but if anyone asked I would say waves move. Your analogy about the ball park was a good one. Also what Pascal said really hit home: "now, a boat will be moved by a wave but only because it will momentarily slip down the face of the wave... unlike a cork or piece of seaweed." The seaweed part of your statement was something I have always seen but never thought about it, a light bulb turned on when you mentioned that.

Most of the time I enjoy post's like Bob's purely as entertainment, this one really educated me on something that might have never of come up.

Msibley Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:54:21
Originally posted by charlie826

Bob, this post is educational. What have you learned?

Stay with your boat after it swamps...

blouderback Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:53:27
Originally posted by charlie826

Bob, this post is educational. What have you learned?

Waves only move up and down, they don't have any forward motion.
I need a bigger boat.
I will probably be in the news if I try the inlet again.

Just kidding, I learned a lot of good stuff, and I hope others have gleened info from this post.

Thank you, and have a good evening, I'm outta here!
blouderback Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:48:51
"The only stupid question is the question not asked."
Charlie Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:48:39
When you're laying on the ground and somebody's compressing your chest after drowning, is the water flying out of your mouth really moving?

Bob, this post is educational. What have you learned?
papillon Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:45:18
"Better to be quiet and thought a fool, than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt," Mark Twain.
Britanic Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:41:44
papillon, perhaps a better quote:

"you can't fix stupid" Larry the Cable Guy
blouderback Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:32:59
Pete, I only have 30 minutes experience in the ocean. This is why I'm asking these questions. I have learned quite a lot in the last couple of days!
papillon Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:25:25
"Cast not pearls before swine," Jesus Christ.

And for His sake, Bob, no, I'm not calling you a pig!
psalzer Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:19:30
Bob, you have been given many explanations, demonstrations, and advice, all of which you continue to ignore. You claim to have "hundreds of hours" at the helm" however it seems as you have learned nothing!! As I said in a previous post ... we are goind to read about you one day!!
PascalG Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:13:30
"Come on, do you all believe that waves just go up and down? Look at the picture from the wikipedia link and tell me that those water particles are NOT moving forward. Common sense here, fellas. I like how you all ignored the part that says the travel thousands of miles and concentrate on the other (contradictory) statement. I suggest that we are both right."

put a cork or something small in the water and see what happens to it as waves pass under it... it's not going to move. the water is not moving, it's not a current. it's only a vertical motion.

now, a boat will be moved by a wave but only because it will momentarily slip down the face of the wave... unlike a cork or piece of seaweed.
L Hall Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 17:00:54
Bob, drive up to the top of Mt. Washington and jump off. You'll find that you are sliding down the mountain, at an angle, getting further from the summit, both vertically and horizontally. That is caused by gravity, the same force that is pulling your boat down the wave.

The other effect you'll find in inlets is the equivalent of the Doppler effect on sound. An ebbing current will create steeper waves that are closer together, like a compressed sound wave. If you turn off your engine in the middle of an inlet during an ebbing tide, you will find yourself being pushed back out the inlet, regardless of the wave direction.

I suspect that you experienced two or three foot waves during your inlet trip. Try it, alone, in 6 to 8s or better and you may have a better understanding of what we are talking about.

LouC Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 16:28:54
I have a old I/O bowrider and have gone in and out of Northport Bay LI into Huntington Bay and LI Sound. The inlet from Huntington Bay into Northport Bay can be particularly challenging at certain times. During those times, I sometimes wished I was in a self bailing boat, preferably completely foam filled! When I rebuilt the floor in this boat, some people advised me not to replace the foam, because of rot concerns, but as far as I am concerned I will take the incremental increase in safety that the foam provides. In fact I would have added more if it would not have involved restructuring much of the rest of the interior.
Basic floatation is not the same as what Whalers and McKee Crafts have, I have seen boats with basic flotation sink and basically there is the first few feet of the bow to hang onto. Better than nothing, but full floation in a small boat is much safer.

I have seen boats smaller, and less seaworthy navigate the inlets in my area, but only you can decide what risk is acceptable, based on the conditions, your skill level and your boat.
In the know Posted - Aug 03 2007 : 16:28:34
As my dad says - some people are meant to be Captains', and others are meant to charter.

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