Carabelle is only a short 31 miles southeast of Apalachicola and it is the last stop on Florida’s Panhandle and ICW. From here you have to either cross southeast out into the Gulf of Mexico to Tarpon Springs (160 miles) or hopscotch around the “Big Bend.”
The Big Bend is three to four travel days with the advantage being that you’re closer to land in case you want an exit strategy from the Gulf in a hurry due to worsening weather. If you went the whole trip around the Big Bend you would stop first at Steinhatche then Cedar Key and finally Crystal River.
We’re in a waiting pattern right now however it looks like Friday is shaping up to be our day to make the crossing to Cedar Key, Florida which we have choosen to break up the trip across into two days instead of one humungous long one. We have opted not to take the whole Big Bend route as this time of year there are just not enough good weather days close together to count on not getting stuck at one of these places waiting for a week, or sometimes more, for a bad front to move through.