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Best Way To Dry Tortugas?

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Nov 30th, 2004, 02:20 PM
  #1
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Best Way To Dry Tortugas?

What's the best way to get to Dry Tortugas from Key West? Ferry? Catamaran? Or is it worth the extra money taking one of the seaplanes?
don512 is offline  
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Nov 30th, 2004, 03:07 PM
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It has been my experience that the best way to dry Tortugas is with one of those nice micro fiber towels, then follow up with a good buffing.
~XXOO
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Nov 30th, 2004, 03:09 PM
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You beat me to it TX...
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Nov 30th, 2004, 03:42 PM
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Will somebody care to explain who or what are Tortugas and why they/it require drying?

Is it something that can't be eaten raw?
FainaAgain is offline  
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Nov 30th, 2004, 04:05 PM
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OK, Don, let me give you a real answer! I personally prefer flying because it's a great view from the air and because it's so much faster. Just my opinion...
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Nov 30th, 2004, 04:07 PM
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I've haven't flown there, but the people I know who've taken the seaplane absolutely swear by it. Granted, it's expensive, but apparently worth it.
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Nov 30th, 2004, 04:12 PM
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Dear ones, all you travelers, Dry Tortugas are islands west of Key West, maybe around 80 miles or so.
It is a national park I believe. Knowb for turtles I think.

Geez, you all are so funny!

Don, I do not know how to get to Dry Totugas but would imagine the Key West Chamber of Commerce would. Assuming Key West has a Chamber of Commerce.

Sounds like you know there are seaplanes. IMHO that seems like a beautiful way to go assuming the cost is not too much. Enjoy!!!!
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Nov 30th, 2004, 04:36 PM
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tortugas = turtles in Spanish

Some of them are protected so treat them very carefully...be ready to make them wet again rather soon or they could die
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Nov 30th, 2004, 04:38 PM
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No, the Dry Tortugas are not known for turtles, but it's an obvious metaphor. I loved the seaplane. Where else can you take a seaplane with pontoons and land on an island for a few hours of exploring and snorkeling? It was lots of fun.
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Nov 30th, 2004, 05:08 PM
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Flying is worth the extra$$$. You can see shipwrecks, turtles, rays, and other large aquatic life from the plane. Our's flew at 500 ft (I think). The view was awesome.

Besides...it's a quicker trip.
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Nov 30th, 2004, 09:27 PM
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I read on an earlier post that some people got sick on the boat; and the roundtrip boat ride is 8 hours total, I think. Also, if you take the seaplane early in the morning or late in the afternoon, the island is much less populated because the boat traffic is gone. My husband and I took the seaplane...it was a wonderful experience.
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Nov 30th, 2004, 10:09 PM
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Ok all, since some of you have gone to Dry Tortugas how about giving Don the contact info. Phone # or whatever.
\/
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Nov 30th, 2004, 11:43 PM
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And I tuned in late halfway expecting to learn something here ala...smoking a turkey...
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Dec 1st, 2004, 04:56 AM
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Okay. We are leaving for Key West a week from today, so I have researched this topic (exhaustively).

There are two ferry companies that go from Key West to Dry Tortugas.

One is 2 hours one way, the other is 2 and a half hours one way. The cost is $100 round trip.

The seaplane takes 40 minutes, and is $179.00

So you would say, "Oh, it's a no-brainer, I'll fly!"

And you would be right EXCEPT, the seaplane trip only gives you 2.5 hours on the island. Not enough time for what we want to do.

If you want to stay longer - 6.5 hours - the seaplane costs $305.00 - ouch!

Unfortunately, there is no in between.

If you take the ferry, you have 4.5 hours of island time and 4 hours of travel time (total). It leaves at 8 and you are back by 5.

I guess if you are primarily interested in the flight and poking around the fort and island for a short time, the seaplane is the way to go, and if you want to snorkel and have a beach picnic and hang around in the sun, the ferry is better.

We leave in a week and I still have not decided which we'll do. Here are links:

http://www.sunnydayskeywest.com/fastcat.htm

http://www.seaplanesofkeywest.com/
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Dec 1st, 2004, 06:31 AM
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I'd go for the seaplane and stay 2.5 hrs. The plane trip is the best part of the trip to the Dry Tortugas. Tour the fort and snorkel and forget about the picnic lunch and hanging out in the sun. You can do that at the beach in Key West (there is a beach there that is interesting but not what tourists expect from a FL beach -- it has Australian pines that are close to the shoreline, can't remember the name of it, it's off the beaten path).

Do you have to book the seaplane in advance? You run the risk of going on an overcast day (bad for snorkeling and sunbathing). In which case I'd say exploring the fort is your best option. In the winter FL will have overcast days when fronts are coming through, followed by sun and colder weather. Be sure to rent wet suits, the water will be cold. Your best snorkeling will still be Looe Key. Rent the suits for a week and do Looe and the Tortugas (OK, it is turtles but there aren't any there).
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Dec 1st, 2004, 06:40 AM
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Go the seaplane and stay the 2.5 hours. Even though both ferries give you different times, you can pretty much count on them both being around 2.5 hours each way.

The bad thing about the ferries is that that 2.5 hour trip home will wear you out and you might as well forget trying to plan something for that evening.
 
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Dec 1st, 2004, 07:02 AM
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Hmmm. Thanks for the food for thought...

We have snorkeled in some of the best spots in the Caribbean, so unless it is stellar there, it sounds like the 2.5 hours would be enough.

We have our own wetsuits, but I will check the water temp as I was just going to take my 1 mil to save space.

You both made very good points about the time involved and getting back to KW too tired to enjoy our evening. I think I will definitely go with the seaplane, and make arrangements once we get there since it is low season and I can keep an eye on the weather.

Thanks!
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Dec 20th, 2004, 01:03 PM
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I went on the Fastcat a couple of weeks ago and it was a little choppy coming to the island. On the way back, the sun was out and the seas were calm and it was great to soak up the sun on the rear deck. The guides were young and very helpful and they made up for the fact that the ride was less than perfect. If you are prone to seasickness, I do not recommend the ferries but in my case, I enjoyed the rocking motion of the boat and the extra time on the island.
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Dec 20th, 2004, 01:55 PM
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We did the boat (I believe it was Sunny Days) a few years ago, & we all loved it. We liked the guide's info about the history of the fort, and the pinic lunch they served. Our budget, however, did not allow for the seaplane ride, and we are not prone to sea-sickness as several people on the boat seemed to be. I think you can snorkle around the fort in about an hour, and I don't recall seeing a great variety of coral or fish, so your 2.5 hours there, and view from the plane may be the way to go if you can afford it. We were tired at the end of the day, as GoTravel mentioned. Have a great time - I'm envious!
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Sep 4th, 2013, 09:54 AM
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Bookmarking for good info.
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