U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream - Page 4 - SailNet Community

   Search Sailnet:

 forums  store  


Quick Menu
Forums           
Articles          
Galleries        
Boat Reviews  
Classifieds     
Search SailNet 
Boat Search (new)

Shop the
SailNet Store
Anchor Locker
Boatbuilding & Repair
Charts
Clothing
Electrical
Electronics
Engine
Hatches and Portlights
Interior And Galley
Maintenance
Marine Electronics
Navigation
Other Items
Plumbing and Pumps
Rigging
Safety
Sailing Hardware
Trailer & Watersports
Clearance Items

Advertise Here






Go Back   SailNet Community > Out There > Cruising & Liveaboard Forum
 Not a Member? 


Like Tree4Likes
Reply
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
  #31  
Old 10-15-2013
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Location: Old Saybrook
Posts: 296
Thanks: 1
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Rep Power: 8
justified is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Ambitious
I'm not quit understanding your logic and thought process on your trip over to the Bahamas. I have not done the trip over as of yet , hoping to make it there early next spring on a return delivery back north from Key West. However I have done lots of planning and reading. Question: why spend 4-5 days in the ICW when it is only 2.5 days from Charleston to Lake Worth and that's hugging the coast where there is little n. current. It will also gets you and your crew more experience with passages. And then you would have a very safe and pleasant jump over to the West End from Lake Worth.
Question: since this is the beginning of a much longer adventure why not take the advice of those whom have made trip many times safely in the past. Isn't the whole idea here to make it as safe and enjoyable as possible so that you may continue the rest of your journey?
I very much envy you and your adventure and hope to do the same someday, but non of us want to hear of your demise only the greatness of your trip- Pictures included.

Peter
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #32  
Old 10-15-2013
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 36
Thanks: 2
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
ambitious/rubbish is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Justified,
A cruise hugging the coast down from Hilton Head to Lake Worth, Lauderdale, etc. is not a bad idea, but I have not sufficiently researched that alternative. I know the ICW would generally work, although there are depth/ tide concerns in Georgia, and bridge concerns in FL. Neither concern is major, but they could slow us down (we were making roughly 75 statue miles a day Norfolk-Charleston) The condition of the ICW in Georgia is partially why we've looked into a SC-Bahamas passage.

Based on research, the current seems to be very tight to shore in South Florida. I think Charleston, SC-Jacksonville, FL could be done outside the ICW, but without crossing the Stream. I'd think after Jacksonville we'd be pretty much restricted to ICW until we wanted to make the crossing. Regardless, it is an option that should be considered. I would say this approach, or simply ICW to the West End crossing is just as, if not more likely than a Charleston-Abacos passage. Reality is the weather is most likely unfavorable, so instead of holding out in Charleston waiting for a window that may never come, I would make progress south, likely going so far as to make the more traditional passage from Lauderale-Bimini-Abacos the only option.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #33  
Old 10-15-2013
jimgo's Avatar
Asleep at the wheel
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,916
Thanks: 71
Thanked 108 Times in 106 Posts
Rep Power: 3
jimgo is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Why would you be restricted to the ICW south of Jax?

I'm new to this, so forgive the ignorance of my question, but if your goal is to gain offshore experience while still staying safe, wouldn't it make sense to stay within 3-5 miles offshore (or more if you prefer and the current isn't too bad in opposition) and sail straight through for a few days? That give you the experience you want while still keeping you close for an easy rescue should issues arise. Personally, I'd want that as my shake-down for boat and crew before trying to cross the ICW head-on. Clearly, if you're only doing 75 miles a day, you aren't sailing 24 hours a day. If you haven't done that already, how can you be sure you're all really up for the task?

I'm also surprised that you're only making 75 statute miles a day. My 31 did better than that on our trip.
__________________
- Jim
Home: Western Philly 'burbs
1980 Allmand 31
1975 Albacore 15


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #34  
Old 10-15-2013
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 36
Thanks: 2
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
ambitious/rubbish is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Jimgo,

We did 75 miles doing roughly 6 knots @2500rpm. When I say in a day, days were typically 7a-5p. I think we could run offshore, but inside of the Gulf Stream from SC to Jacksonville, FL. After Jacksonville, the Stream starts pressing very close to shore, so I envision fighting the current too much if trying an offshore leg from say Jacksonville to Ft. Lauderdale, although I have not tried so I speak from research and hypothesis, not experience.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #35  
Old 10-15-2013
Member
 
Join Date: Jun 2013
Posts: 36
Thanks: 2
Thanked 0 Times in 0 Posts
Rep Power: 0
ambitious/rubbish is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Jimgo,

We ran typically from 7a-5p down the ICW, going about 6 knots @2500rpm. I do believe we could have ran 6a-6p and gotten +75 mi in a day, maybe even 100 mi with favorable currents or running the motor harder. We had planned of 50mi/day, so 75 was plenty good.

We could certainly do an offshore run from SC to Jacksonville, FL and stay inside the Gulf Stream. In fact, it looks like there is a counter-current running right off the coast in that stretch (this info. comes from buoyweather.com, but passageweather.com is a good free resource). After Jacksonville the Stream gets closer to shore, so I'm not sure you could run down the coast beyond there without fighting current the whole way. My research suggests after Jacksonville we'd want to go back inside to say Lauderdale, but I don't have experience in those waters so I can't say for sure. I'd imagine other members of the Forum would be of greater assistance with that question.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #36  
Old 10-15-2013
RTB's Avatar
RTB RTB is offline
TROUBLE
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 325
Thanks: 1
Thanked 1 Time in 1 Post
Rep Power: 6
RTB is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Quote:
Originally Posted by ambitious/rubbish View Post
Good morning,

My father and I have just completed leg 1 of our journey, taking our '98 Dufour 45 classic down the Chesapeake, through the ICW to Charleston, SC.

How was that part of the trip? We had planned to make it up to the Chesapeake, but gave up and stayed in Georgia for this hurricane season. It was July when we got here, and afternoon thunderstorms were nasty. The Georgia ICW seems pretty challenging, even considering that we did the ditch from Galveston, Tx, to Pensacola, Fl.

There are some problem areas to watch as you get closer here, if you continue on the ditch southward. I'd go outside from Hilton Head down to Jacksonville, if the weather is ok. You can also come in here at St. Simons (a good inlet, but long) if you want a short break. There is a good anchorage near Morningside Marina, where we stayed, at anchor, a few nights.

There is some skinny water at low tide near Jekyll Island (on the ICW), so beware. The only place we had a problem was just south of Fernandina (Saw Pit Creek?). Check out Active Captain, or I can look it up for you. We had a problem with a 5' draft, but it was low tide. One other is just south of Matanzas Inlet. Follow the markers near shore! Bottom line-the Florida ICW is NOT maintained very well as you get closer to Georgia. Farther south is fine.

Anyway, have a safe trip, which ever way you go.

I'd love to just leave from here, Brunswick Georgia, and head to the Abacos like other's suggested. BUT....we don't have an autopilot, so it's too hard on us (my wife and I) over 60's crew. Plus, you need a longer weather window. We use http://www.windfinder.com/forecast/hilton_head_island, passage weather, and http://www.wunderground.com/MAR/AM/470.html. I also download gribs on UGRIB (free).

Ralph
__________________
S/V FUGUE
HUNTER 36
KEMAH, TX

Last edited by RTB; 10-15-2013 at 06:12 PM.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #37  
Old 10-15-2013
blowinstink's Avatar
Call me Ishmael
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 447
Thanks: 3
Thanked 6 Times in 6 Posts
Rep Power: 7
blowinstink is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

To the original question -
You have a couple issues here which I don't think have been adequately addressed yet. First, from Cape Hatteras in NC to Palm Beach in FL, the coast falls away to the west. That means that any Bahamas bound trip leaving south of Beaufort NC (but north of Palm Beach), will have to cover additional miles to the east.

Charleston might be the best example of a bad departure point. Yes, you are further south than Beaufort, but you are much further west. In addition, at WPB and at Beaufort, the GS is rather compact and close to shore. Compact means that you can get across it (and out of the associated dangers) quicker. Closer to shore means that when you set out you will have a better understanding of what the conditions in the GS will be when you get there. At Charleston the GS is far offshore and not at all compact (narrow). That means you are covering additional ground with a less foreseeable weather for the most volatile part of the trip and the duration of the time in the stream may be significantly longer. Those are some of the major offshore to the Bahamas points for consideration.

As you get further south and are considering an overnight jump to the Bahamas from Florida, the issues have been more clearly discussed already (the need to work against a fast moving portion of the GS). Hope that helps some. Do a search and find some of the GS charts online and you'll get an idea of where it runs (distance from shore) and how fast and how compact it is in various locations. Combine that with an understanding of the way the US east coast falls off and you'll have a better sense of the different routes and the conventional wisdom.
-M
__________________
Come not here if you have already spent the best of yourself
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #38  
Old 10-15-2013
Member
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Posts: 50
Thanks: 0
Thanked 3 Times in 3 Posts
Rep Power: 1
saldrich is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Quote:
Originally Posted by ambitious/rubbish View Post
My father and I have just completed leg 1 of our journey, taking our '98 Dufour 45 classic down the Chesapeake, through the ICW to Charleston, SC.

Great job!
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #39  
Old 10-15-2013
jimgo's Avatar
Asleep at the wheel
 
Join Date: Sep 2011
Location: Pennsylvania
Posts: 2,916
Thanks: 71
Thanked 108 Times in 106 Posts
Rep Power: 3
jimgo is on a distinguished road
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

In case you haven't seen this, I thought I'd pass it along:

The Gulf Stream

It seems that some of the links there aren't working, most likely due to the government shut-down.
__________________
- Jim
Home: Western Philly 'burbs
1980 Allmand 31
1975 Albacore 15


To view links or images in signatures your post count must be 10 or greater. You currently have 0 posts.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
  #40  
Old 10-15-2013
Senior Member
 
Join Date: Aug 2006
Location: wherever
Posts: 5,258
Thanks: 8
Thanked 17 Times in 16 Posts
Rep Power: 11
xort has a spectacular aura about xort has a spectacular aura about xort has a spectacular aura about
Re: U.S.-Bahamas, Crossing the Stream

Charleston to Fernandina is an easy overnight. From there the inlets are not class A until Canaveral except Jax. There's potential for issues on arriving at these inlets. Local knowledge is important.

we've run the Fl icw with a 5'6" draft and 62' mast without incident. It is a long way out around Canaveral along the coast. It has always been easier to keep pushing on down the ditch once you are in N Fl.

But if you're looking for adventure...
RTB likes this.
Reply With Quote Share with Facebook
Reply

Tags
bahamas , caribbean , florida , routes


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools

 
Posting Rules
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may post attachments
You may edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is On


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Crossing to Bahamas sailorduff Cruising & Liveaboard Forum 4 01-24-2012 09:24 PM
Gulf Stream Crossing Weather sites Jay2 General Discussion (sailing related) 7 05-18-2010 06:13 PM
Gulf Stream Crossing Jay2 General Discussion (sailing related) 18 05-11-2010 03:38 PM
Gulf Stream Crossing BlueWaterMD Cruising & Liveaboard Forum 6 01-02-2008 04:11 PM
crossing the Gulf Stream troyaux General Discussion (sailing related) 2 03-14-2002 01:49 PM


All times are GMT -4. The time now is 09:11 PM.

Add to My Yahoo!         
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.7
Copyright ©2000 - 2014, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
SEO by vBSEO 3.6.1
(c) Marine.com LLC 2000-2012

The SailNet.com store is owned and operated by a company independent of the SailNet.com forum. You are now leaving the SailNet forum. Click OK to continue or Cancel to return to the SailNet forum.