Originally Posted by Tempest
Peter, when you say you want to do the south passage..do you mean the Muskeget channel ( MC buoy) between MV and Nantucket ? If so, my initial reaction would be to encourage you to take a smaller bite your 1st time offshore. Given what you've told us about your crew, and experience. These are challenging waters even for the most experienced sailors.
Currents run strong in that passage and the seas can pile up as the depths are alarmingly shallow, going from 100 ft to 7 ft in spots. If you get any fog with no radar it could get ugly fast. I've never taken it. Call me Chicken if you want, But, have looked at it on the charts and would only attempt it for the 1st time in only the most benign conditions with Radar and an experienced crew. Once you're there, your only option if conditions are unfavorable is to backtrack around MV for another 50 miles. Or even more daunting around the east end and further out to sea
I would suggest cutting your teeth on a coastal cruise to block I. about 25 hours and within VHF range. Once on Block you can take the jump over to Martha's Vinyard and on to Nantucket through the sounds.
Peter, listen to Tempest, he has it exactly right...
The Muskeget Channel is a great way to go, but only if everything is in your favor... However, I would definitely NOT recommend it for someone with your level of experience, especially as the channel over towards Nantucket past Muskeget and Tuckernuck Islands can differ considerably from the charts, I'd suggest only running that in good light in the afternoon... And, as someone else mentions, Eldridge or the current diagrams for Vineyard & Nantucket sounds are a must for these waters...
Nantucket is a wonderful destination, especially after Labor Day. If you have the time, and want to get off the beaten track, try heading up to the Head of the Harbor - virtually guaranteed you'll have it to yourself... Then, reward yourself with a breakfast or lunch at the Wauwinet, but don't even think about a dinner there (grin)...
Then, if you really want to try someplace very few boats venture, you might head for Tuckernuck Pond... Pretty tricky getting in there, however - you might want to save that one for your NEXT trip to Nantucket... (grin)