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  #1  
Old 04-30-2013
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Cool The Journey Commences-- read and post

Good day my fellow wind-blown brethren of ye old sailnet forum. May 12th looks to be my departure date.
Gee-- Another departure date post-- not so fast. I am leaving on the start of life, my life, and I have no idea where or what I am going to do with it.

To start, my sailing vessel 'Strong Back,' has been living restored and prepared for an extended, albeit permanent, cruise. Add to this I own the boat outright as well as a 2002 Honda Civic. I have no gf, wife, kids, or other REAL reason for remaining attached to this prisoners existence for more than a few more weeks.

I do have the first two months planned- I was still hoping for some help from the thoughtful and less posters on here regarding some in's and out's. After the two months end I have an idea what to do, but it could change in a breeze. Feel free to live vicariously through me. Got an awesome adventure/idea that you can't do? Shoot it my way, i'll let you know if i'm down.

A few logistical and captain related questions to begin with. First off I am solo sailing. I am leaving from JAX on May 12th (weather affording) and making my way to New Smyrna Beach then West Palm Beach and then the shoot over to west end.
I know not to attempt the stream crossing with any winds from the N or E. What about the sail from Jax? Does a North or East wind affect the ride down the coast a lot? How far off shore should I ride off? 3 miles? 5? 10+?
I plan on doing the sail in day legs so no need for overnight. A planned stop in fort pierce, NSB, and WPB should sufficiently break the trip up to avoid any need for an overnighter
I have never used my GPS before- plan on getting west marine to show me how to program routes on it this week. So far I have used paper charts and eyesight. However the stream will put me out of sight of land, I want to make sure I dont miss west end. When you use the GPS, is it really going to tell me if im out of sight of land that now its time top cut in if I want to make the inlet suggested? I am just a bit worried about sailing past destinations. I am not worried about being out at sea, but I do want to know how to get to where I am going---Any and all pointers and advice in relation to single handed navigation is appreciated. (already know the 20 min egg timer rule)-- Just assume I have read my Chapmans, because I have.

Ok so the first part of the voyage has been planned in advance. I plan on a two month cruise of the Abacos. The questions come after. What should I do in July or August? Should I try to scrape money from odd jobs and fishing and skirt the out islands? Should I break for the virgin islands and get a serving job at a resort for a few months? Then maybe head to Brazil or Trinidad or ???
My whole life is open right now, i seek only opportunity. My voyage begins in two weeks. I am 25 years old and have my whole life ahead of me. How F'cng exciting is that?
Top 5 regrets before you die: 1. Didn't live life MY way
2. Worked too much
3. Lost friendships- busy lifestyles close you in to a wall of seclusion and isolation.
4. Worried about what others thought
5. Waited too long, now health is failing.
Well guess what? Im only at risk for #3 right now as friends tend to remain in one place... So I will have to make lots and lots wherever I go.

So what should I do? Stay in the Caribbean? Shoot for Latin America and work on a fish farm, work on a resort in the Virgin Islands-- sail to the Azores then med. What?
Money you ask? I only need $20 per day. I do not think I will starve. Also, I can always sell me car for a quick three grand.

The goal is to find my place on this planet to find peace, comfort, and happiness. The journey begins in two weeks. Fair winds and calm seas ye sailor friendlies.

No, im not crazy. Ive sailed all my life. Just never learned navigation without modern technologies. Something I need and plan on remedying soon.

THE WORLD IS MY OYSTER
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Old 04-30-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Couple of quick thoughts come to mind. Heading south along the Florida coast a north wind is great, just stay inside the Stream. You can check its position online before you go. The margin does not change all that quickly. If you get too far off and into the Stream you won't die. You will notice that it gets rougher with a northerly wind and the GPS will show you slowed down over the ground. Time to head in a bit. Actually there is no strong reason to be too far off in any case.

Research what tides you want going into and out of passes. Ask locals.

Your plan has you in the Bahamas and/or Eastern Caribbean during hurricane season, June to October basically. Would not be my choice but I am a suck about such things and I know people do sail in the Region during hurricane season. You should be safe in southern Grenada or Trinidad although Grenada did get nailed a number of years ago.

Because of winds and currents getting to Brazil from the Caribbean is quite difficult. You need to get a long way toward Africa before turning back. To help with this kind of info get a book called Ocean Cruising Routes by Jimmy Cornell. It is a wonderful compendium of where you can go and when you can go. You will end many hours with this book. It is great fun and very useful.

Good luck and have fun.
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Old 04-30-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Man, I wish I was in your shoes. Have a great voyage!!!!
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Old 04-30-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Harbourless, get that GPS lesson before you go and take your GPS manual along as well! The sail to Brazil is best done as Killarney suggests, but a few intrepid souls have done it the hard way as well- bucking the trades and current and going down the coast. It's not easy! I'm not sure you could live on 20 dollars a day in Brazil though....
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Old 04-30-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Quote:
Originally Posted by Harborless View Post

A few logistical and captain related questions to begin with. First off I am solo sailing. I am leaving from JAX on May 12th (weather affording) and making my way to New Smyrna Beach then West Palm Beach and then the shoot over to west end.

I know not to attempt the stream crossing with any winds from the N or E. What about the sail from Jax? Does a North or East wind affect the ride down the coast a lot? How far off shore should I ride off? 3 miles? 5? 10+?
I plan on doing the sail in day legs so no need for overnight. A planned stop in fort pierce, NSB, and WPB should sufficiently break the trip up to avoid any need for an overnighter

I have never used my GPS before- plan on getting west marine to show me how to program routes on it this week. So far I have used paper charts and eyesight. However the stream will put me out of sight of land, I want to make sure I dont miss west end. When you use the GPS, is it really going to tell me if im out of sight of land that now its time top cut in if I want to make the inlet suggested? I am just a bit worried about sailing past destinations. I am not worried about being out at sea, but I do want to know how to get to where I am going---Any and all pointers and advice in relation to single handed navigation is appreciated. (already know the 20 min egg timer rule)-- Just assume I have read my Chapmans, because I have.
Uhhh, haven't be been down this road before?

Help With Offshore Navigation

6 months have passed, and you STILL haven't figured out to use your GPS?

In that case, my advice remains the same as it was last fall: Stick to the ICW for the start of your trip ...
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Old 04-30-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Quote:
Originally Posted by killarney_sailor View Post
Because of winds and currents getting to Brazil from the Caribbean is quite difficult. You need to get a long way toward Africa before turning back. To help with this kind of info get a book called Ocean Cruising Routes by Jimmy Cornell. It is a wonderful compendium of where you can go and when you can go. You will end many hours with this book. It is great fun and very useful.
A superb companion piece to WORLD CRUISING ROUTES is Cornell's recently published WORLD VOYAGE PLANNER...

NEW: World Voyage Planner, Jimmy Cornell



WCR is more oriented for those who already know where they're going, whereas WVP is a better resource for those still in the dreaming/planning stages, and gives a much fuller appreciation of the assortment of voyages in each ocean, from any continent... I had assumed it would be very much of a duplication of much of the material in WCR, but if you're sitting in front of the fireplace on a winter evening, I think this is the book you want in your lap... Very nicely done...
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Old 05-01-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Anyone can use GPS....you need serious skills for the voyage ahead.... can you download from your Iphone and GoPro directly to your blog and FB page?

Best of luck, fair winds and safe passages.
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Old 05-01-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Well I own the book so thanks. Brazil was just a spout off.. Could be anywhere.
I am shallow only in navigation and perhaps internal engine mechanics. I have spares for spares and built the boat my self. I single hand all the time. I have sailed the abacos numerous times, though not sngle hand.

I do not have FB. I use photobucket. I will post periodic updates as cool stuff happens.
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Old 05-01-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Sounds like fun!
GPS is really nice, basic navigation skills are much more valuable. The Gulf Stream rarely gets closer than 15 miles from the Florida coast. There is plenty of room to sail down the coast and avoid the stream. Harbor hopping is a good way to single hand. Mixing up coastal hops with runs inside the ICW is a very manageable way to make your way to your jumping off point to the islands.

Would suggest you plan your destinations with hurricane season in mind. You might want to be out of the way come June or have a very good hole close by to hide in.

Be safe and have fun.
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Old 05-01-2013
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Re: The Journey Commences-- read and post

Ha! Sounds great! A couple of former students of mine, a couple of years your senior, left 10 years ago for a vacation in the VIs. Still there. One has started a family and is now a chef at a resort. Both still loving life. Who knew? Enjoy! "Life is what happens to you when you are making other plans."

Be safe!

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