49 knots is "Locally fresh trades"? - SailNet Community
 
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49 knots is "Locally fresh trades"?

Just got back from a week aboard a Lagoon 450 in the BVI and on the return sail we had gusts to 49 kts between Salt and Peter. That is a lot of wind for a guy who mainly sails an inland lake in VA. NOAA forecast for the day was 15-20kts. Apparently we were on the fringes of an Atlantic high.

It was blowing strong all week, so by Saturday it was no big deal to set the sails in 30 kts, but when my XO had the brim of his hat flatten against his face, it was time to douse the sails. Sail handling was surprisingly easy, but then luxury of all electric winches quickly spoils you.

Fwiw, chartering with Catamarans.Com was an excellent experience and the Lagoon 450 has a brilliant layout for 4 couples.
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Re: 49 knots is "Locally fresh trades"?

At 15 knots or over I add 5 to 10 knots to the gribs or forecast. But 49 knots is a bit crazy!

Its a charter boat so you didn't reef?


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Re: 49 knots is "Locally fresh trades"?

Reefs are good, no matter who owns the boat. I learned the last time I sailed in 20+ that the helm is WAY more comfortable when the boat is balanced.

I had the boat setup per the spec for 30 to 36 kts:

2 Reef, 60% of the Genoa ; the mainsail
traveler returns to the 30 cm to windward of center.

I only skimmed the configs higher than that, but I remembered the last one, hence why I reduced sail:

Over 55 knots: lie to, drag anchor or, preferably, scud bare poles


Surprisingly the girls were just gabbing away on the flybridge through the whole thing, if that gives you any indication of the comfort of the Lagoon.

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Re: 49 knots is "Locally fresh trades"?

I was out there too. Any chance the wind instrument was way out of calibration? Did you see other boats out there with sails up? I'm not doubting that a wind instrument on the boat your were on showed 49kts. I am doubting that the wind speed was actually that high...
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Re: 49 knots is "Locally fresh trades"?

I have to say that I was thinking the same thing, however the boat was a 2014 Lagoon 450 with a really nice Raymarine suite of linked instruments. I watched on two different days (Tue) the wind climbed from 25kts to gusts of 45kts as we approached East Seal Dog. On Saturday there were one or two other boats sailing (one upwind, one downwind). I am a windsurfer, so I'm used to 25kts...this was considerably more than 25! The anemometer also showed true wind speed and that was more like 40kts since we were on a close reach and were brushing 9kts for much of it.

I think there must have been some compression going on between Salt and Peter. Once we got past the middle of the Drake channel, the wind was back down to 25G35 (apparent). I wish we hadn't taken down the sails, but the trend line was appalling and I didn't want to have to explain why I sailed on through conditions like that if something broke.

It took the mechanic (docking jockey) 4 attempts to get the cat back into the slip and he bounced off another cat in the process. Saturday was something unusual.

FWIW, I watched a dismasted mono limp into Spanish Town on Wednesday.

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There is no lack of wind in the Caribbean, and its hurricane season so if a cute little white cloud wants to convect it will do so with remarkable results. That leading edge of a squall can easily be 30 to 40 knots for 5 to 10 mins. When there's reinforced Trades at 25 knots any equally is going to wallop you.

So I can quite readily believe you saw 49.

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