Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream
We did the ICW for multiple reasons, partially due to lack of experience on the ocean, but most importantly to save time. I can't say I'd be thrilled to be in seas of 15-20 feet and winds at 40 knots, but the boat is certainly capable, with the right crew I'd say there isn't much our boat couldn't handle. Since our crew is somewhat short on experience I want to make a crossing that is reasonably safe, and somewhat ease into it, but still challenging, adventurous, and enough to push my skills and comfort zone.
I feel we can get a reasonable forecast 4-5 days in advance, and would not attempt a crossing, especially such a long crossing, in North winds or similarly bad weather. The weather concern gets us back to the original question, would it be prudent to take the ICW down into Georgia and cross from there if we cannot start our crossing as initially planned from Hilton Head, SC? (is the initial plan even safe/ reasonable, or overly ambitious?)
Personally, I'm interested in a more ambitious crossing than Ft. Lauderdale to Bimini, but there is a fine line between ambition and stupidity. I'm trying to embark on a challenging journey, but still keep a reasonable level of safety. If a long leg from SC or Georgia is not safe I'll make alternate plans, but if it is just not as comfortable or easy as the shorter hop from FL I'll stick with my plans. Basically, your feedback seems to be that a long leg is a bit more difficult and risky, but not unreasonable or unsafe if properly planned, does that properly sum it up Yorksailor?