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  #11  
Old 03-07-2012
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Quote:
Originally Posted by jimrafford View Post
Beyond getting some experiance I would suggest looking into your intended destinations. I think you will find the dog will have to stay home and unless you can show some financial means most of the islands you are thinking about won't grant you entry.
Jim
Okay so let's just remove the more Southern destinations from the equation. I just want to make it over to the Bahamas from S.FL. Then sail from one island to another at our leisure.
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Old 03-07-2012
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Your budget is tight, but not impossible, if you don't mind a tired orphan boat with spartan accomodations.

Buddy boat with another boat to cross to the Bahamas, after taking a few weeks to learn your boat, and equip for the cruise.
Sixpoint and Kenn43 like this.
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

I'm perfectly happy with that idea and realize going further South is too ambitious to think about at this point.

Can you elaborate some on the feasibility of a complete noob 'gunkholing the Bahamas'?

Boat size, costs, training/learning for that specific trip?
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Beyond the good advice above, if you do this, you will want to research the entry fees in each of those countries.
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Old 03-07-2012
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

It isnt just the trip over to the Bahamas, Its staying on a boat for a length of time in nachorage, having access to water ( did you know it cost money for water in most of the islands?). Have you ever sailed in the trade winds...far different than what even most copastal cruisers sail in. Its also expensive to travel there even by your own boat with entry fees etc. Food may be 3X US costs.

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These old deck hands are just trying to take the wind out of your sails... so to speak. Of course theres risk involved... of course it will take some time and practice/ learning Rear Admiral
You have to be kidding with this statement?

Most people do not get a permit to drive at 16 and then enter the NASCAR Daytona 500 in a 10 yaer old car.

I beleive you can do this and build up you experience so that you begin to make it less risky. It more than risking your boat and you lfe...you are also risking someone elses.

Get sopme experience crewing and delivering on other poeples boats before you set out on your own I would suggest.

I not telling you to give up your drive or your dream at all so do not take it as that. I am not telling you to be overly cautious, just be prudent. Its always safety first.

Feel free to PM me.

Dave

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Last edited by chef2sail; 03-07-2012 at 07:47 PM.
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Hi Owen,

The short answer is, "It is possible if you are a really LUCKY person"

Even if you are an experienced coastal cruiser, sailing passages needs a different equipment and skill set.

But if you have NO sailing experience, I would not really recommend that kind of adventure. Foreseeing and avoiding potential risks is directly related with your experience and believe me, usually the"Unthinkables" happen on the water.

I believe it would be wiser to extend you prep period from 1 mth to 6 mths and would definitely include proper sailing lessons in the training mix.

Budget is a totally different aspect. Of course you can find a nice boat in that range but equipping it for long distance cruising may cost you a fortune.

I would think it twice... even more times

Cheers,

Tafa

PS: I hope this is not a joke ...... and I admit.... I have some trust issues
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Maybe a more realistic goal and just as fun would be to buy in FL and island hop the keys. By the time you get to key west you might have the boat and your skills dialed in enough for the crossing to the Dry Tortugas. When stuff breaks you would be closer to services. If you run out of money you could find jobs at a restaurant or hotel in key west.

Get a small stout boat with lots of water tankage and some good ground tackle. Lots of boats for sale in FL get a decent one but save plenty of dough for upgrades and unforeseen failures, which will probably be many if you don't have much time around boats.
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Not to make light of the difficulties of the journey, but let's not overcomplicate it. Novice cruisers have been fumbling through the Bahamas for decades. Really, when you get down to it, there is little difference between a novice sailing in skinny water in the bahamas and sailing in skinny water in the USA- the biggest hurdle is getting there. Make friends, introduce yourself, get time on the water before setting out, and prep your boat. buddy boating and picking your window, then continuing to keep an eye on the weather and being prudent will take you a long way.

Find the best decent old Bayfield 29 or Alberg 30 or Grampian 30 for 80% of your boat budget, then spend the other 20% making it better, and go.
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

you can gunkhole the coastal waters of the good ole USA - especially the Chesapeake Bay - and you can get a boat capable of doing such a trip within your budget. I'd not expect to be able to go for the state championships your first effort - try districts first...
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Re: Can I sail to the Bahamas with NO experience?

Thank you bljones, that's exactly my sentiments. I'm not trying to downplay or trivialize the difficulties but c'mon, is it really the 'Daytona 500'?
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