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Savannah River Inlet

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Tybee Island, Georgia United States
32° 2' 16.79'', -80° 52' 55.21''
Savannah River Inlet
Savannah River Inlet
Savannah River Inlet
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The image above is a view from the east looking west over Tybee Roads and the entrance to the Savannah River where it empties into the Atlantic Ocean. Off to the right (north) of the inlet jetties is Oyster Bed Island, while Cockspur Island and Fort Pulaski lie to the left (south).

From here, the Savannah waterfront is only 14 miles away, and if you are looking to rejoin the Intracoastal Waterway after your offshore hop, Elba Island Cut is only six miles east. From Elba Island Cut, you can either head north toward Daufuskie and Hilton Head islands, or south toward the town of Thunderbolt.

Savannah has a couple of resort/hotel marinas on its waterfront, and the River Street area is fun to explore with many restaurants, gift shops, T-shirt shops, art galleries and pubs scattered along the waterfront. Adventurous visitors should take a walk up past the riverfront walls to explore the beautiful garden squares that Savannah is famous for.

Civil War commander Sherman liked Savannah so much he decided not to burn the city to the ground, but rather set up his headquarters here. More recent items of interest include the filming of Forrest Gump and John Berendt’s book “Midnight in the Garden of Good and Evil,” an account of a wealthy local antique collector that lived in the Mercer House and was tried on charges he killed his young assistant.

Navigating the Water:

Use NOAA Chart 11512.

The approach to the Savannah River from the Atlantic Ocean starts at red and white Morse (A) buoy “T” about nine miles southeast of the Savannah River breakwaters. The approach channel, technically called Tybee Roads, is deep and wide to allow for frequent heavy ship traffic that offloads upriver in Savannah.

Once you have picked up red and whiet Morse (A) buoy “T,” set an approximate course of 305 degrees magnetic to pick up flashing green buoy “1” and flashing red buoy “2.” You will be able to see and follow the solid white Tybee Range from here. The light is especially helpful at night. The range is discontinued at quick flashing green buoy “7,” where you will make a turn toward the northwest and pick up the Bloody Point Range.

The Bloody Point Range is discontinued at quick flashing green “13,” and a turn farther east will reveal the Jones Island Range. Quick flashing green bell buoy “17” marks the beginning of the Tybe Knoll Cut Range, and the point at which you will enter the Savannah River between the stone jetties.

As previously mentioned, the Savannah waterfront is about 14 miles upriver. If you want to pick up the Intracoastal Waterway, you can intercept it at Elba Island Cut about six miles in from the inlet.

Local Notices to Mariners:

Local Notices to Mariners are available online from the U.S. Coast Guard.

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