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post #11 of 15 Old 08-04-2012
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Re: looking to sail liberty landing marina to newport RI

You can use tide tables and guess at currents, but the best thing to do is use the NOAA current tables: http://tidesandcurrents.noaa.gov/cur...ab2ac4.html#29 . The phase difference between state of tide (water height) and current (water movement) varies with distance from open water and the water passages. Pick a time to start and walk through the current tables. You'll find that starting from Liberty Marina (or even from Sandy Hook) you can grab the beginning of a favorable current and carry it all the way through the East River and past La Guardia.

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post #12 of 15 Old 08-04-2012
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Re: looking to sail liberty landing marina to newport RI

Peter, if you don't already have Eldridge, buy a copy. Has all the current charts and a wealth of other information.

September isn't too late but the choice of going south of LI or in the sound depends very much on the weather. Right now, you might find our own special doldrums, making it impossibe to sail on the Sound. There's nothing like a heatwave with high humidity and zero breeze from 8AM-4PM to really make sailing fun. (Not.) But by September that should change, and make the Sound a nice trip. Plenty of places to visit or duck into, as opposed to the south shore of LI, where there are few inlets and all of them quite dangerous if the weather goes bad. Better wind out there, and some interesting views, but also commercial traffic, more wave action, etc.

You could certainly consider going up one way, coming back the other, making your choices just based on the weather as the trip comes up.
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post #13 of 15 Old 08-04-2012
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Re: looking to sail liberty landing marina to newport RI

When using Eldridge, it is really helpful to look at the graphic map pages. I usually plot right on the little charts my approximate position, hour by hour, taking into consideration the current speed. This works very well for the run up LIS to lay out a departure time that takes max advantage of the current. You don't want to be approaching Plum with the tide going against you. Better to buck tide a little on the other end. It requires a lot of planning. I always plan to be approaching Plum 5-6 hours out of PJ which means leaving PJ 1 hr. before ebb at The Race. I'll motor sail to accomplish this if necessary. This means you're bucking about .1-.4 knots of current on the PJ end. If you left on the turn of current at PJ, you'd run into 3 knots against you approaching Plum. It really rips through there!

If you're going right over to Block, take The Race rather than Plum Gut. Be aware that the rip through The Race can get really interesting. There is a huge rotary current in Block Island Sound that can raise the dickens with navigation. Look at the inset map in Eldridge to explain it. If visibility is poor (which often is the case) a radar reflector is absolutely necessary here. Radar of your own is even better. I would not (now that I'm older and maybe a bit wiser) venture into Block I Sound and north without a radar. Pea soup fog can come in very quickly and without any warning.

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Last edited by smurphny; 08-04-2012 at 01:24 PM. Reason: grammar
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post #14 of 15 Old 08-04-2012
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Re: looking to sail liberty landing marina to newport RI

The tidal currents in LIS favor the trip to the east since more water flows in through the East River on flood than out on the ebb and more water flows out through the Race and Watch Hill Passage on the ebb than in on the flood. I would time the trip up the East River to the ebb before flood; use the NOAA Tidal current predictions for Buttermilk Channel as a proxy for the Battery. If you start then you will have a favorable current for eight hours.

Unless you plan to stop at Block Island, you'll probably transit the Watch Hill Passage. Laying over at Stonington, CT is convenient and allows you time your passage to align with the currents. If you time that passage to the ebb, you'll have favorable current to Point Judith.

When in Newport stop at the Seaman's Church Institute for showers, laundry, fi-wi, and a delightful breakfast. Alternatively, Newport provides showers, laundry, and fi-wi at the Ann Street pier.

I'd highly commend exploring further north while in the Narraganset. Bristol and Warren are particularly scenic and architecturally rich. If you lay over in Warren, you may wish to take the Sakonnet River south to circumnavigate Aquidneck Island. At the Southern end of Aquidneck you can get great view of the Newport "Cottages" while paralleling the cliff walk.
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post #15 of 15 Old 08-08-2012
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Re: looking to sail liberty landing marina to newport RI

Originally Posted by BarryL View Post

One last thing, DO NOT TRY TO GO EAST in the Long Island Sound if there is an easterly wind of 15 kts or more. The fetch to the east is very long and an easterly wind will cause some serious swell and chop to develop. I've tried it, and it's a miserable trip.

That's a great point Barry, and especially so if a strong ebb tide is also present. Heading eastward with the wind on the nose always guarantees a bumpy ride!

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