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Old 09-10-2006, 08:28 PM
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Default Point PLeasant Canal

Went out for a ride yesterday, instead of heading south from Toms River went north. Nice ride to the canal , but when I got to the canal it was crazy. Is it always like this? If so how does it compare to Barnegat Inlet. If the Manasquan Inlet is nice and easy and the Barnegat Inlet is the bad one, but I have to go through the canal to get to the easy inlet, I may never be on the outside ever...

When I say crazy I mean serious swells form all directions small and big boats not taking up any lane just 3 wide across the canal and not giving way. And a strong current going out.

Any insight wanted
Thanks
Sport
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Old 09-10-2006, 08:52 PM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Sport,

It depends on the tide phase. And, it was much worse 20+ years ago before they built the new bridge.

I've transited the canal in everything from an 18 foot Starcraft center console on up to a 34 foot Luhrs and never had any issues, even when the tide was screaming. Keep your speed up so you have control if the tide is at your stern, and keep your wits about you, and you'll have no problems. Consider it a rite of passage.
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Old 09-11-2006, 12:11 AM
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Default RE: Point PLeasant Canal

When I was young and stupid I attemted to take a girlfriend thru the inlet out to the ocean on a sunny summer Saturday afternoon........In a 12' inflatable boat with a 5 hp motor. I don't know what I was thinking. We were very lucky to have made it back alive. That inlet can be treacherous. Many years ago a large fishing boat sunk coming in in bad weather.
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Old 09-11-2006, 06:33 AM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Sport,
Try the canal on another day. It can be hectic as you experienced but can also be plain old boring. The problems usually start when other boaters don't know (or care) about the rules of the road. Try to plan your return trip when the tide is with you. Might make it more enjoyable. I've ony been through Barnegat twice, so I'm no expert, but I'd take a trip through the canal and out the Manasquan over Barnegat any day of the week.
Best of luck,

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Old 09-11-2006, 07:22 AM
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Default RE: Point PLeasant Canal


my buddy went through the canal that day also with his 10 year old. he said it was the worst he ever seen there that afternoon and hes a regular. probably a mix of the full moon tide/ boat traffic/fast moving tide......its not alway that bad
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Old 09-11-2006, 10:12 PM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Sport,
What type/size/power boat are you running?
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Old 09-11-2006, 10:45 PM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Hey Everyone,
Thanks for the info.
My boat is 1997 Crownline 250cr. loa is 27 with 320hp merc.
Keep the info coming.
Thank You
Sport
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Old 09-12-2006, 08:01 AM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Yeah, always crazy there, but still much better than it was before the new bridges. Barnegat Inlet was a washing machine on Saturday, too. Blame it on the full moon.
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Old 09-12-2006, 09:12 PM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Blah. The canal was running today big time. I was drifting for weakfish near the mouth on the Manasquan side and it got annoying pretty quickly. Basically, the current was kinda sucking me into it and preventing any good fishing.

I did, however, laugh my ass off when a circa 30' Bayliner approached the entrance from the Manasquan River/Treasure Island side following the No Wake signs exactly and didn't have enough power behind him to avoid the HUGE green bouy, which he smashed right into on his starboard side.

To answer the original question... In my experience, boat wakes cause more havoc than tidal conditions do. Although, that can't be said about today. I've gone through in everything from a 14' Stacraft to a 26' Robalo. I did put my PFD on in the 14 footer just in case a big guy came by a little too fast. Better safe than sorry. There's actually a great free public launch right into the canal on the Pt. Boro side near the Lovelandtown Bridge, right next to the NJ State Marine Police station. It's hidden away, but known well by all of the boaters in the area. I've used it once or twice on that inevitable 80 degree weekend in November after I've taken it out of its slip the week before.
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Old 09-13-2006, 04:35 PM
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Default Re: Point PLeasant Canal

Sport,

The reason I asked what type of hull is because low bow riders
have a history of getting swamped there. I have a friend whoís a trooper
stationed at the canal, and every season heís telling me of avoidable sinkings in the canal.
Typically low bow rides heavily loaded, especially bow loaded.

Your craft should have no problem provided the captain is up to the task.

Two major issues to deal with:

Current:
The current rips fast at its strongest portion of the cycle.
Note Ė thereís about a 3 hour delta for the canal flow vs the inlet tide.
So if low tide at Manasquan is noon, the current is still going out / moving north
till ~3:00 pm. Itís possible to time the journey so itís slack tide with no / minimal current to deal with. If going through an strong opposing current Ė plan on extra time to get all the way through, and using considerable more throttle to make head way.

Wave action:
The current provides some wave action, but not the major force.
Itís the wave action from opposing boats combined with all the reflected waves
pressuring the hull from many directions. Sometimes tall waves at short & random intervals. This can cause a stern lift while at the same time the bow has to get over/ through the wake ahead. Only place I ever had my 25 walk aroundís pulpit dunk to the point of water spilling a bit of water down the catwalk. Also took a bit of water over the bow many years ago in a 20 sea ray run about, but that was near the old rt 88 bridge with the standing waves + all the boat wakes.

So combine the current and all the wake action and itís a condition requiring extra sharp awareness, caution and ability to adjust as required. I often run from Toms River to the Sea Girt reefs, and I think there are some days I had more wheel and throttle adjustments inside the canal then all the dayís adjustments running outside of it.

The crew
Depending upon the conditions they may have to sit tight and be aware the boat can be seriously jostled.

That said of the canal, thereís another concern for a much short portion
of the run to the inlet. The Manasquan Riverís railroad bridge.
Itís the great melting pot of boaters bringing together the best and worst of captains, all needing to share a small through way often with strong tidal currents. Oh and if itís a really busy day/time, when the RR bridge is down and thereís a bunch of boats jockeying for position on both sides - caution! Itís a mater of patience here, especially if youíre a newbie and uncomfortable with the way the crowd of boats are building up as they wait for the bridge to go up, might want to consider hanging back / pull out of line and wait for it to clear. Important note for that through way, normally give right of way to the boat going with the current, because itís much easier to hold your boat in position against the current.

As far as inlets go, Manasquan shouldnít be an issue for a responsible captain.

With summer gone the traffic should reduce somewhat, so itís actually a great time of the year to gain experience in that route.

Be safe and enjoy.
Timing

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Old 09-16-2006, 09:42 PM
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Default RE: Point PLeasant Canal

Just wanted to say THANK YOU to all who replyed. I guess I will keep checking the tides before I head either out the canal or out the Barnegat Inlet. Anymore Info will be appreciated.
Thanks again!
Sport
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