The Intracoastal—or ICW or The Ditch—is part natural waterway and part man-made canals, and it’s through lots of marshes and swamps (oops, wetlands). Most say that it begins at “Mile Zero” in Norfolk and ends at “Mile 1095” in Miami. It actually begins north of Boston and keeps going all the way to Key West and up the Gulf Coast to Brownsville, Texas, if you want to get technical. So we’ve already done part of the Ditch on earlier cruises to New England.
The ICW opened in 1805, twelve years after it was begun. Because parts of it are so shallow, its use was limited to flat boats and log rafts that were manually poled or towed through. In 1933, the ICW was dredged to 50 feet wide and 9 feet deep, but it silts in quite frequently these days. MicMac has a 5' draft--probably more right now with all that wine, beer, water, and books stowed in every nook and cranny. The Corps of Engineers is supposed to keep the ICW dredged to 12 feet, but we'll see.