|Route: 2021 Texas 200|
The theme of the 2021 Texas 200 is going to be “The Show Must Go On.” 2020 was a crazy year. The COVID-19 pandemic dominated our lives, and required us to make major changes to the Texas 200 in order to hold an event while also keeping ourselves safe. Now we’re planning the 2021 event as the pandemic rages on. There’s a lot of uncertainty. But the show must go on.
The following are the camps for the 2021 event this June. Assuming the charter buses are up and running again, and we feel that we can safely and responsibly put 40 to 50 participants on a bus, this is what we’ll be doing. However, as this plan is being published more than 6 months before the event, we must all recognize that none of us can predict what things will be like in June. If, like in 2020, the charter bus companies are all shut down, this plan will not be feasible. Therefore, we urge all who are planning to participate this year to make reservations for accommodations in Port Mansfield with their cancellation policy in mind. If the charter bus is not an option, we will once again change the plan and run the Texas 200 like we did in 2020, starting in Magnolia Beach and ending back in Magnolia Beach.
So, over the first few months of 2021, please keep yourself safe, and please stay tuned. The show must go on. There will be a 2021 Texas 200, and it will be run the second full week in June. That much we know.
If we run it from Port Mansfield, there will be a Captain’s meeting and shuttle bus run on Sunday June 13th, with a Monday, June 14th start and Saturday, June 19th finish. If we run it from/to Magnolia Beach, there will be a virtual Captains meeting and a start on Sunday June 13th in Magnolia Beach, with a finish on Friday, June 18th. So, mark you calendars and start making your plans, because one way or another, we’re doing some sailing on the Texas coast this coming June!
The Start – Port Mansfield
The 2021 Texas 200 will start in Port Mansfield. You are free to arrange for and utilize any slip, marina, motel, boat ramp or beach in the Port Mansfield area that you feel is best for you and your crew. Camping is typically permitted at Fred Stone Park located less than one mile north of Port Mansfield. If you choose to utilize Fred Stone Park, you should contact the City or the Park directly for more information, fees, availability, services offered, etc.
The mandatory Captain’s Meeting will occur in the parking lot near the public boat ramps on the north side of the main channel into Port Mansfield at 7am on Sunday morning. The location is shown with the red location marker in the Google image above.
No rooms or slips are being reserved by the Club; each boat’s captain and crew are 100% responsible for their own room and boat slip accommodations. Please remember that there is the possibility of the event getting moved to a Magnolia Beach start & finish, and we won’t likely know that until April or May, so be sure to inquire about the cancellation policy wherever you make your reservations.
The actual start of the sailing on Monday morning will be from wherever you and your boat are located in Port Mansfield; there is no starting line or starting time.
|Camp 1 – The Port Mansfield Jetties|
26° 33’ 46” N, 97° 16’ 43” W
8 nautical miles from Port Mansfield
One of the best camps on the trip, this is a large, north-facing sandy beach. The camp is located a few hundred yards from the beach on the Gulf of Mexico, right before you get to the jetties themselves. This camp offers an opportunity to take a walk on the Gulf beach or just sit back at camp and enjoy the sound of the surf in the distance. From Port Mansfield, the camp is located about 8 nautical miles up the channel, usually only 15 or 20 degrees off the wind, so it is a real challenge to tack up it. In the past this camp has been used when we start in Port Isabel, and after 7 or 8 hours of sailing, many participants have found it difficult to decide to point almost directly into 20+ knots of wind and beat to windward for 3 or more hours to make this camp. As a result, most Texas 200 participants have never made this camp.
And if the natural beauty and short sailing distance to this camp weren’t enough to lure you in, the Club will also be sponsoring a cook-out on the beach at Camp 1 during the late afternoon hours on Monday. We will provide grilled hot dogs, snacks, soda and beer for all participants. This will allow for additional socializing and a somewhat relaxed start to this year’s event.
In addition to the cookout, we will also be holding a brief memorial ceremony for Texas 200 participants who have crossed the bar in the past two years. As of late December 2020, the Board is aware of one Texas 200 participant who has recently passed away – Kim Apel. If anyone becomes aware of any other Texas 200 participant who passes away prior to this year’s event, please email Matt Schiemer at firstname.lastname@example.org so that we can plan the memorial accordingly. The cookout and memorial will be held approximately in the 5pm to 7pm timeframe.
|Camp 2 – The Land Cut|
26° 55’ 49” N, 97° 27’ 24” W
29 nautical miles from Camp 1
This camp is located on the right (east) side of the land cut. We have used this camp several times in the past few years. Make sure your shoes are tied on good and tight before you step off your boat, and keep one hand on your boat as you do so. This is some of the thickest, deepest, foulest-smelling, shoe-eating, child-swallowing, fall-down-and-never-get-up-again mud on the Texas coast. The Land Cut forms part of the ICW and has active commercial barge traffic. You do not want to anchor any more than just a few feet out from the beach into the Land Cut. Also be aware of the large wakes than can be generated from these barges as they pass close by. Anything you can do to fully beach your boat and get OUT of the Land Cut would be recommended for safety reasons.
|Camp 3 – “Texas Coastal Explorer Day”|
26 to 33 nautical miles from Camp 2
We’re dubbing this one “Texas Coastal Explorer Day”. We'll all be exploring and camp-scouting like the Spanish and French explorers did 300+ years ago. Starting about 2 nautical miles north of Baffin Bay, we are recommending that participants pick a spot to camp in a roughly 7 nautical mile section of North Padre Island, shown (approximately) in the red circle on the above Google Map image. From the Land Cut camp, this will mean a sailing day of between 26 and 33nm.
|Camp 4 – Quarantine Shore|
27° 55’ 00” N, 97° 04’ 36” W
32 to 39 nautical miles from Camp 3
This is a great camp that we’ve used several times over the years. It is a generally north-facing shell and rock beach, with an approach to the beach that is deeper the further west you go, with the deepest approach (for deeper draft boats) even slightly further west than the red marker in the above Google Maps image. Depending where you choose to camp the night before, it will be a 32 to 39 nautical mile sailing day to reach Quarantine Shore.
|Camp 5 – Hidden Pass|
28° 17’ 33” N, 96° 36’ 13” W
34 nautical miles from Camp 4
This is another great camp that’s been used several times in the past. It is a north-facing shell beach. Note that this used to be an actual pass, with access from the south side through a very narrow channel. That channel has since filled in (as you can see in the above Google image), and so the only access to this beach is from the north side.
|The Finish – Magnolia Beach
28° 33’ 27” N , 96° 31’ 40” W
26 nautical miles from Camp 5
We will finish at Magnolia Beach where we will have our traditional shrimp boil and celebration starting at 4pm. Please remember that the shrimp boil requires registration and pre-payment, which should be done on the Texas 200 webpage in advance. This is a sand and shell beach and the approach is fairly deep right up to the beach. There are relatively new public restrooms with showers right there at the beach, and tent and RV camping is allowed if you want to stay the night after the event. At the north end, there is a boat ramp for pulling out. Our vehicles and empty trailers are located about a mile from the shrimp boil, and it’s usually fairly easy to find someone to drive you over to get your vehicle.