U.S. Coast Pilot 5 NOAA

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2017 - 2018. Edition 45.

Gulf of Mexico coast


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Key West

The Gulf of Mexico coast of the United States, from Key West, FL, to the Rio Grande, is low and mostly sandy, presenting no marked natural features to the mariner approaching from seaward; shoal water generally extends well offshore. The principal points and harbor entrances are marked by lights, which are the chief guides for approaching or standing along the coast.

This chapter describes the W coast of Florida from Key West to Tampa Bay, and the ports of Key West, Naples, Fort Myers, Port Boca Grande, Venice, and Sarasota, and many of the smaller ports and landings. Also described are the Ten Thousand Islands, Big Marco Pass, Gordon Pass, Estero Island, Matanzas Pass, San Carlos Bay, Caloosahatchee River, Sanibel Island, Charlotte Harbor, Peace River, Myakka River, Gasparilla Sound, Gasparilla Island, New Pass, Venice Inlet, Big Sarasota Pass, Lido Key, Longboat Key, Longboat Pass, and Anna Maria Key.


This chapter describes the 170-mile Gulf coast of Florida from Tampa Bay to Apalachee Bay, the numerous rivers emptying into this section of the Gulf, and the passes making from the Gulf to the Intracoastal Waterway. Also described are the deepwater ports of Tampa, Port Tampa, Port Sutton, St. Petersburg, and Port Manatee, and many smaller ports.

This chapter describes the coasts of Florida and Alabama bordering the Gulf of Mexico from Apalachee Bay to Mobile Bay and the numerous bodies of water emptying into the Gulf including Apalachee Bay, St. George Sound, Apalachicola Bay, St. Joseph Bay, St. Andrew Bay, Pensacola Bay, and their tributaries. Also discussed are the ports of Port St. Joe, Panama City, and Pensacola, and other smaller ports and landings.


This chapter describes the coasts of Alabama, Mississippi, and Louisiana bordering the Gulf of Mexico from Mobile Bay to the Mississippi River and the numerous bodies of water emptying into the Gulf, including Breton Bay, Mobile Bay, Mississippi Sound, Lake Borgne, Lake Pontchartrain, Chandeleur Sound, Breton Sound, and their tributaries. Also discussed are Mobile, Pascagoula, Biloxi, and Gulfport, and other smaller ports and landings.


This chapter describes the Mississippi River from the delta passes at the Gulf of Mexico to Baton Rouge, 217 miles via Southwest Pass, 211 miles via South Pass, above the Gulf. Also described are the deepwater ports of New Orleans and Baton Rouge, as well as the facilities at the many small communities along the river.


This chapter describes the coast of Louisiana from the delta of the Mississippi River to Sabine Pass, TX Also discussed are Barataria, Timbale, Terrebonne, Atchafalaya, East and West Cote Blanche, and Vermilion Bays, and the interconnecting rivers and bayous which form a network of waterways in this section of Louisiana. The deepwater port of Lake Charles as well as many smaller ports and cities are described.

This chapter describes the 77-mile-long Texas Gulf Coast from Sabine Pass to San Luis Pass, and Port Arthur Canal, Sabine-Neches Canal, Neches River, Galveston Bay, East and West Bays, Houston Ship Channel and their tributary waterways. Also discussed are the deepwater ports of Port Arthur, Beaumont, Orange, Galveston, Texas City, and Houston.


This chapter describes the Texas Gulf Coast from San Luis Pass to the Rio Grande, a distance of about 238 miles, and Matagorda, Tres Palacios, Lavaca, Aransas, and Corpus Christi Bays and their tributaries. Also discussed are the deepwater ports of Freeport, Point Comfort, Corpus Christi, and Brownsville, and many of the smaller barge ports.

This chapter describes the Intracoastal Waterway a toll-free “canal” from Caloosahatchee River, FL, to Brownsville, TX. The waterway except for a 140-mile stretch, Anclote River to Carrabelle, FL, is a protected route inside the W coast of Florida and behind the Gulf Coast. The waterway is discussed in two sections: Caloosahatchee River to Anclote River, a distance of 150 statute miles; and Carrabelle to Brownsville, a distance of 1,059 statute miles. The outside route is described in chapter 5.

Also discussed in this chapter are the alternate routes of the Intracoastal Waterway: Algiers Alternate Route; Landside Route; Morgan City-Port Allen Alternate Route; and Atchafalaya River Route.

This chapter describes the islands of the Commonwealth of Puerto Rico, which includes Puerto Rico, Mona, Vieques, Culebra, and a few smaller islands. Port information is provided for San Juan, Fajardo, Radas Roosevelt (Roosevelt Roads), Yabucoa, Laguna de Las Mareas, Bahia de Jobos, Ponce, Guayanilla, Guanica, Mayaguez, Arecibo, Isabel Segunda, Ensenada Honda, and other smaller ports.

This chapter describes the United States Virgin Islands which include the islands of St. Thomas, St. John, and St. Croix, and about 40 small islets or cays. Information is given on the ports and harbors of the islands including Charlotte Amalie, Christiansted, Port St. Croix, Cruz Bay, and Frederiksted. A general description of the British Virgin Islands is also included; more complete information is given in Pub. No. 147, Sailing Directions (Enroute), Caribbean Sea, Vol. I, published by the United States National Geospatial-Intelligence Agency, and West Indies Pilot, Volume II, published by the United Kingdom Ministry of Defense Hydrographic Department.


It is a good policy to download the Booklet Charts and print out at home before departure. click below.


Created with images by skeeze - "killer whales orcas breaching" • darvinsantos - "mexico yucatan celestun" • Serge Melki - "Key West - Sunset" • NOAA Photo Library - "wea01195" • tpsdave - "florida coast beach" • Caro_pixer87 - "key west ship sunset" • Sangre-La.com - "ji5058.JPG" • skeeze - "houston ship channel aerial view petroleum facilities"

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