Lemon Bay is the home of Englewood. The barrier islands of Manasota Key and Knight Island separate the bay from the Gulf of Mexico. The Intracoastal Waterway passes through the center of Lemon Bay.
The Gateway to Lemon Bay.
Stump Pass Separates the Gulf to the West, Manasota Key to the North, Knight Island to the South and Lemon Bay to the East.
Local mariners use the Pass regularly. But it is forever changing.
NOAA Chart 11425, Note D reads:
"The natural channel location through Stump Pass is subject to continuous change in alignment and depth. DO NOT NAVIGATE in or through the area without absolute knowledge of channel location and depth. Privately maintained aids are not charted."
On June 6, 1998, the Stump Pass dredging project was completed! It is reported to be 150 feet wide and at least 9 feet deep. The channel starts from the northern end of Knight Island, on the inside of the spit of sand at the southern end of Manasota Key. It runs parallel to the beach until the southern tip of the sand. It then continues southwest until beyond the outermost sandbar. Although the Pass can now be navigated, it is not clearly marked.
But remember, it still could change at any time!
Unless you are familiar with The Pass, check with local tackle shops and marinas before attempting a crossing.
Update October 1, 1999
FIRST ANNUAL BATTLE FOR THE BAY. The First Annual Battle For The Bay in support of the dredging of Stump Pass will beheld at Englewood Beach on Saturday, October 30, 1999 from 9:00 a.m. to 9:00 p.m. For more information, see the Save Lemon Bay Web site at http://save.lemonbay.com/.
Update September 16, 1999
Commissioners put WCIND Loan Offer on hold. Charlotte County Commissioners met earlier this week. Instead of approving a $150,000 loan from the West Coast Navigation District, they did what most "good politicians" do - nothing.! Instead, they will hold a workshop to discuss the county's options. No date has been set for the workshop or any other action.
Update September 15, 1999
Stump Pass Interim Dredging.The $100,000 that was hoped for from the Florida Department of Environmental Protection will not be forthcoming. The DEP says they cannot use the funds for navigational maintenance.
But, the West Coast Navigation District has offered a loan of $150,000 in addition to $100,000 it has already committed to the project. Charlotte County Commissioners will have to approve the loan.
Organizers hope Englewood will unite to save pass.
According to a report in the The Englewood Sun Herald....
"Englewood's biggest bash may be to save Stump Pass and Lemon Bay.
Englewood residents are taking Charlotte County Commission Chairman Mac Horton's words to heart and want to raise $100,000 to go to the dredging of Stump Pass."
He urged the citizens of Englewood to form a committee and try to raise money for the project. John and Stephanie Mead, along with John Grimshaw, are trying to coordinate fund-raiser to be staged Nov. 6 or Oct 30 at the Englewood Beach Complex.
Watch this space as plans for details about this fund-raiser......
We received the following from Capt. Ron Blago.
"From a Charlotte Co. public works dept. memo dated June 8,1999.
Stump Pass - a safe water light will be installed by Folsom Marine Contractors. The approximate location will be 3000 ft.(1000 yards) from the existing pass.
This means that they will be installing a fixed lighted piling offshore of Stump Pass. This marker is there not to mark the channel but to only show boaters that they are in the Stump Pass area. The piling should be in place by the end of July 1999. "
Capt. Ron - Englewood Fl email@example.com 941-474-3474
The following appeared in the Englewood CCA Newsletter of May, 1999.
"Last month the Englewood head boat "Fat Cat" got stuck twice trying to get out the pass. It has only been a year since the pass was dredged for the first time in fifteen years, and already some people are saying "we told you so". The critics say Stump Pass is a waste of time and money, that nothing can be done to keep the pass open. Not true.
Over the last year, Stump Pass survived two major tropical storms and only a small 100 foot section of the pass Is starting to fill in. The county engineers had anticipated this situation and money was approved to do a quick spot dredging to keep the pass open. The problem came when all the special interest groups got into the act. One group wanted the sand to go to Palm Island, another wanted the sand to be put on Stump Pass Beach. One group worried about the shore birds, the manatees and the sea grass. With all the fighting, the small project dragged on until May 1 - Turtle nesting season and by law, no sand can be moved until Oct. Once again we have shot ourselves in the foot and the boaters loose.
The boaters of our area have made a simple request, all they want is a clearly marked, safe access to the Gulf of Mexico. We have from now until Oct. to get everyone rowing in the same direction.
We either pay a little now to keep the pass open or we pay a fortune
later to keep Lemon Bay alive after the pass closes."
Capt. Ron - Englewood Coastal Conservation Association / Florida.
Update 3/23/1999 - Pass filling in. May be
According to a report in the March 23, 1999 edition of the Englewood Herald Tribune, Stump Pass may get the benefit of some "spot dredging". The pass has decreased in depth at the north end from about 8 feet to 4 feet. Coastal Engineering, under contract to install markers, discovered the buildup. Since digging equipment will be on site to install the markers, the cost of removing the sand will be not be as much as usual. Today (3/23/99), county commissioners will decide to approve the funding.
On Wednesday (3/24/98), the DEP, engineers and other interested parties will meet to set the rules for a three year study to develop a permanent management plan.
Update 1/16/1999 - Coast guard approves much
needed markers for Stump Pass.
Charlotte County received U. S. Coast Guard permitting approval on January 11 to mark Stump Pass channel. The plan calls for a lighted marker to be placed on a concrete piling at the seaward entrance to the pass. Six additional markers will be placed on wooden pilings. Work may begin in 45 days or less.
The following appeared in the Englewood CCA Newsletter of October, 1998.
"Stump Pass is back in the news. The Charlotte Co. Board of Co. Commissioners voted to spend $18,000 to put markers in the Pass to mark the channel. The Coast Guard must approve the placement of the markers. So It make take up to 90 days to get approval.
Hurricane Georges was very kind to Stump Pass. I took soundings for the county on Oct. 6 at low tide and found the pass to be in good shape. The sand spit has grown quite a bit but the water next to it now 13 ft. deep. If you hug the red markers straight out the pass you should have at least 4 ft of depth at low tide.
The county is about to award a contract to begin the next phase for Stump Pass, the long term management plan, This plan should tell us what options we have to keep the pass open."
Englewood Coastal Conservation Association / Florida.
As of 7/28/98....
- Charlotte County is waiting for long range plan.
- A few markers have been placed (not known who placed them). Still not marked very well.
If you would like us to keep this page updated with progress, let us know at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Located 14 1/2 nautical miles North of Stump Pass, Venice is known as a good, reliable inlet. But NOAA Chart 11425 attaches a "Note B".
The inlets on this chart are subject to change."
When in the Gulf, approaching Englewood seaward from the North, this would be the pass of choice. It is less then a half nautical mile to the ICW. There are only a few no wake zones to Englewood. All bridges open on demand. There are marinas and waterfront restaurants along the ICW on your passage to Englewood.
Gasparilla is 6 nautical miles South of Englewood. NOAA Chart 11425 only says...
Hydrography and shoaling in this area are subject to continuous change."
If you make it over the sand bars, you will have to pass under a fixed bridge to get to the ICW. NOAA Chart 11425 shows the vertical clearance at 15 feet.
Check local marinas and tackle shops before attempting this passage.
Only 10 1/2 nautical miles South of Englewood.
The Tarpon Capital of the World !
Boca Grande is a deep major entrance to Charlotte Harbor and the ICW. Sand bars to the North extend as far West as Flashing Bell "7". The rest of the area is deep water. This is the passage of choice when approaching from the South. There are many marinas and waterfront restaurants along the ICW on your passage to Englewood.
Other Sites of interest....
Englewood unit of the U.S. Coast Guard Auxiliary, Flotilla 87. Located at Lemon Bay Park, Flotilla 87 is a group of volunteers that are dedicated to working with the Coast Guard to promote safe boating. We offer boating education courses at cost of the books, free boat inspections, maintain regular safety patrols on Lemon Bay, and provide SAR operations when required by the Coast Guard.
If you own a boat, a site you should check out this:
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