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We want to plan a boat trip this summer from anchor bay up to port huron, overnight/weekend; this will be our first overnight trip and we are looking for all good tips and advice to make it an enjoyable trip, including navigational tips, what is a nice marina to stay at in port huron...

we have a 29ft cruiser, thanks for the advice!
 

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Check out the following web sites.

http://bluewater.org

http://www.bridgeharbour.com/

If you have kids you'll probably want to stay at Bridge Harbour. The have the pool and club house. If you want to be close to town then maybe try the city docks.

If it is your first time up the river follow the US shore through St. Clair City as there is a nice sand bar out in the center of the river.
 

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Just a little north of Port Huron, a mile or so, is Lighthouse Park and Lakeside Beach. Both are nice beaches where you can anchor just off the swimming area in crystal clear water and swim in to shore.

We have gone out there for the day when our duaghter was little. It's a nice day trip.

Matt
 

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If you're not familiar with the river, watch your depth. The SCR can be deceptive where one minute you're in 55' of water and twenty feet of travel might put you in only 2-3' (obviously, depending on location, there's even a few wrecks/sunken barges that can be a problem if you get into those areas). If you have a Chartplotter GPS, no worries... just pay attention to it and depths on the chart. (..Or use a paper chart and pay attention to landmarks along the river to know your position relative to any dangers). As mentioned earlier, in St Clair, opposite and mid-river from the St Clair Inn, there is a shoal... mostly sand/rock dredgings from previous channel improvements, that you don't want to hit at speed. The river, for the most part, is 35' to as much as 70' deep, but the sides of the river channel come up VERY quickly and many of those 2'-8' shallows contain old pilings, seawalls, wrecks, and even an old house or two. If you're going past the bridges, keep to the Canadian side, about 100' from the rocks, to avoid the nasty current and standing waves in the main channel... which can be hazardous to small craft.

Sarnia Bay municipal marina is VERY nice... floating docks, restaurants close-by (Great night-time views of pssing boat traffic). Be sure to call 1-800-CAN-PASS upon docking in Canada (it's the law!) If you want to go into town, free shuttles are available from the marina and a number of Sarnia restaurants will send a car to pick you up if you call. Bridgeview Marina (Sarnia) is also very nice, but I can't add much on them as I've never stayed there.

Port Huron has city docks you're probably aware of.. two sets. Docks right in town, and docks further up the Black River. I've always preferred the ones in town... fewer facilities, but there's more things to do right at hand, unlike the one up-river.

St Clair also has recently sunk a ton of $$ into their city Marina... very nice place to stay with restaurants and things to do nearby.

At any of these marinas, you should probably have reservations, depending on the weekend you go (reservations are a MUST if there's an event in town). If you don't get reservations, you'll want to arrive EARLY Friday (noonish) to be on the safe side.
 

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QUOTE(Capn Ken @ Mar 12 2010, 01:22 PM) <{POST_SNAPBACK}><snip>
The river, for the most part, is 35' to as much as 70' deep, but the sides of the river channel come up VERY quickly and many of those 2'-8' shallows contain old pilings, seawalls, wrecks, and even an old house or two.
<snip>

Good warnings indeed!! I've been up and down this river many times. When travelling up the "controlled wake" areas I tend to stay as far away from the populated side as possible. I drifted just a couple of feet too far and went from 30+ft to 2ft in a second and buried a prop in the clay. Luckily I was able to pull out before further damage happened, and I didn't hit anything hard, but I still had to recondition a prop, replace a shaft, and straighten a strut (all 6 bolts were twisted like pretzels)
 
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