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Old 11-10-2012
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Zanshin Zanshin is offline
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Re: Cruising Caribbean Single-handed

Even though I don't often see them, my AIS shows how busy the St. Martin - BVI passage is with commercial shipping. This is a main passage from the north Atlantic to the Panama Canal and back and is quite busy. But the passage is 70nm wide (unlike the Channel) so ships can spread out a bit. In addition to this roughly north-south heavy metal traffic doing 20+ knots there are numerous cruise ships plying the east-west route between the islands and often they are idling along at 8knots (so they remain in international waters and can keep their casins open). Before I had AIS I had a couple of very uncomfortable trips in rainy weather and low visibility sharing the same sea space with big cruise ships.

The better the weather the better Radar works. In heavy rain and winds, where your boat is heeled over deeply and rolling around, radar doesn't work quite as well and you might lose targets in all the clutter and mush. But for the Caribbean and when not on a fixed schedule you can choose your passage weather with a very high degree of accuracy (since no passage is going to be longer than 24H) and not have to worry about really nasty weather.

http://www.seaweb.org/otherfiles/Glo...pernetal..jpeg
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Last edited by Zanshin; 11-10-2012 at 04:52 AM. Reason: Added picture
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