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post #13 of Old 10-14-2013
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Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Originally Posted by ambitious/rubbish View Post
TQA- Can you elaborate as to why you say do not leave from more North of Ft. Worth? Is it not possible, or just less enjoyable? I'm not interested in being conservative, just reasonably safe, so I don't want to deviate from my plans without clearly understand why my plans are misguided, if they are. While your advice my be sound I can't simply take your word for it.
Why it is simple the Gulf Stream is relentless. Every second you are in it you are being carried North at 4 knots in the center although it lessens at the edges.

The prevailing wind is E to SE.

So say you leave Charleston and Head for Walker Cay. Your track is a little S of SE. So the wind is more or less on the nose and the current is pretty close to being on the nose too.

What will your VMG [ velocity made good ] be do you think? This is assuming you are motoring into wind and current.

It is 400 miles roughly to Walker Cay. Do you have enough diesel?

My guess will be a minimum of 5 days with 7+ more likely.

Remember with every day you are out there the risk of encountering a fast developing cell which will turn the wind to the North increases. I cruised for 7 years in a bullet proof steel ketch. I got caught out in the stream south of Hatteras by such a cell. It is the ONLY time I had green water on the foredeck more or less all the time and ONLY time I had water building up in the cockpit and the ONLY time I worried about the boat breaking.

So stock up in the Publix at the North end of Lake Worth. WAIT FOR A GOOD WEATHER WINDOW light easterlies or south easterlies or anything from the south or south west. Be VERY CAUTIOUS about leaving in west winds as they are normally followed closely be a northerlies.

Have a pleasant overnight motor sail to Memory Rock

Last edited by TQA; 10-14-2013 at 02:24 PM.
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