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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related) > Caribbean 1500
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Thread: Caribbean 1500 Reply to Thread
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Topic Review (Newest First)
08-05-2014 12:10 PM
FarCry
Re: Caribbean 1500

For comparison, I sailed a long leg across the Pacific with the World ARC in March. Having zero previous experience in this type of rally sailing my preconception was that there would be boats around and help if really needed etc. Within 12 hours of departing a port on a 3100 mile leg no boats were within sight. On AIS of the 35 or so boats that left, only about one half were visible. One boat had some sort of catastrophic electrical failure a few hundred miles out and was able to hail another vessel on a hand held VHF. The responding boat was nice enough to keep them insight and when conditions settled, got on the disabled boat and partially restored a battery and a charging source giving them enough power to run lights and radios. Other boats never involved themselves with the twice daily radio net. So there was no way to know where they were and if they were OK. Other boats that found themselves stuck in fishing gear, destroyed sails and other issues were on their own because of their location. It's not like the rally people are coming out to see why you haven't checked in or to actually help in anyway. At port before departure and at the arrival port, there were many friendly rally personnel around helping with everything from finding a laundromat to acquiring replacement boat bits. The weather services provided by the rally were useless. Most had paid for private weather routing and compared notes between services.
My point in all this rambling? I see some value with generally having others around, generally going the same way at generally the same time if things really go bad. Rebel Heart anyone? I do not see the perceived safety net that some have described on this and other forums that I visit. You are out there, responsible for you and your boat. Just because the rally says we are starting tomorrow sure wouldn't stop me from looking at the weather and making my own decisions. Maybe I would leave today or next week. Boats travel in the same conditions at such different speeds. It's very challenging to actually stay together for even a few hours, let alone days. My understanding is that some of the educational seminars are very good. The hop from the US to the BVI maybe worth the $1000 to some. I've heard they are pretty good at organizing parties.
08-05-2014 10:37 AM
MonAmie
Re: Caribbean 1500

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4arch View Post
In 2010 - 11 it was a $1000 entry fee but that was before the new ownership was fully in place so it may have changed since then.
Thanks for that info. I'm still looking to receive my event package for details, but have more or less concluded it may be right for me as a first-timer, that is, taking my boat to the BVI. Would you do it again?
08-03-2014 11:27 AM
Minnewaska
Re: Caribbean 1500

Lots of info here

Carib1500
08-03-2014 10:39 AM
aa3jy
Re: Caribbean 1500

Quote:
Originally Posted by 4arch View Post
There really is no "pack". I've done the trip twice and the boats naturally separate once out of the mouth of the Chesapeake. After 12-18 hours I think only once or twice did we ever see another rally boat along the way until we got within sight of the BVIs. Even the rally boats we did see offshore were far enough off to only be confirmed as such by showing up as an AIS target.

Daily check-ins are not mandatory. I believe the only mandatory items/actions with the 1500 are the tracker, the items on their safety checklist, and attendance at a skippers' briefing. I do agree that there is peer pressure toward a set departure date. Some of the pressure also comes from the fact that there a lot of guest crew who can only take a set time away from their jobs and lives. When there was a 5 day delay in 2011, crew departed a few boats before ever sailing and threatened to do so for several more. Also the time of year means a lot of people want to get home by Thanksgiving, which can get iffy if you're on a slower boat facing a delayed departure.
Do you recall the Rally HF frqs and time sked for boat check ins..?
08-03-2014 10:26 AM
4arch
Re: Caribbean 1500

There really is no "pack". I've done the trip twice and the boats naturally separate once out of the mouth of the Chesapeake. After 12-18 hours I think only once or twice did we ever see another rally boat along the way until we got within sight of the BVIs. Even the rally boats we did see offshore were far enough off to only be confirmed as such by showing up as an AIS target.

Daily check-ins are not mandatory. I believe the only mandatory items/actions with the 1500 are the tracker, the items on their safety checklist, and attendance at a skippers' briefing. I do agree that there is peer pressure toward a set departure date. Some of the pressure also comes from the fact that there a lot of guest crew who can only take a set time away from their jobs and lives. When there was a 5 day delay in 2011, crew departed a few boats before ever sailing and threatened to do so for several more. Also the time of year means a lot of people want to get home by Thanksgiving, which can get iffy if you're on a slower boat facing a delayed departure.
08-03-2014 09:58 AM
Minnewaska
Re: Caribbean 1500

I'm planning to do this or a similar rally one of these days. The social time is a big part of the draw, especially with those that have made several of these passages. While one can certainly gain access to all the same professional weather and nav resources on their own, I suppose it's a convenience for them to do so for you. I think I like the daily check in, but it's not the biggest deal. If you're in the raft and your EPIRB isn't working, it would seem like a nice safety feature. Whether in front or behind, one of the things I love the most about being offshore is getting away from other traffic. No stand on rule negotiations, no worries about taking your eyes off the upcoming 1000 yards full of lobster pots. I agree with the poster that has no interest in being in a pack.

However, I fully agree that there is both peer and schedule pressure, with these events. You can not join these to pay someone else to make decisions for you. Further, you must be willing to walk away from your entry fee, stay ashore, miss the arrival party, etc, if you aren't comfortable with the window.

There are several activities that require the same risk mangement decision making. Ed Viesturs wrote a great book on the subject, " No shortcuts to the top". I highly recommend it.

Ed has climbed Everest a half dozen times, every single 8000 meter peak, without oxygen, etc. On his first attempt to summit Everest, he turned back when just a couple hundred yards from the summit, because he reached the time of day he knew he needed to be headed back down the mountain to be safe. Most would set the same safety time before they began their accent, but many would ignore it, if that close. Understand which you are before entering one of these rallies, or making an open water passage at all.
08-03-2014 09:51 AM
4arch
Re: Caribbean 1500

In 2010 - 11 it was a $1000 entry fee but that was before the new ownership was fully in place so it may have changed since then.
08-03-2014 09:43 AM
MonAmie
Re: Caribbean 1500

Again, about how much does Carib 1500 participation cost? I've requested an event package, but haven't received it yet, and nowhere I've looked has any information whatsoever about the cost...other than there is one.
08-02-2014 03:39 PM
TQA
Re: Caribbean 1500

A major problem with these rallies is that they are run to a schedule often with considerable pressure to keep to that schedule.

This means they may leave when conditions are dicey, there are several good examples of this.

It can be argued that the last 1500 and Salty dog rallies are in this category.
08-02-2014 12:17 PM
capta
Re: Caribbean 1500

I've often thought of joining in on the parties and social events of a rally, but have absolutely zero interest in sailing en mass with a hundred or so other boats, with check ins and trackers, etc. I actually contacted the ARC folks about this and they were quite willing to accommodate me. Seems like the best of both worlds, to me.
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