What to pack
Next weekend I'm scheduled to fly to Bermuda to move a boat back to CT after this weeks race.
I don't have any base layer. I've been making do with cotton long underwear.
Is it recommended that I break down and buy some?
Any other travel recommendations?
For example should I pack my sea-boots? In warm weather I usually just wear crocks if it rains.
Get some UPF (ultraviolet protection factor) rated clothing... it will be a lifesaver and save you from a really nasty sunburn. Columbia, Patagonia, etc., all make it.
Get some good moisture wicking base layer from Patagonia, REI, or someone like that... it will keep you far more comfortable and warmer than the cotton stuff.
Pack gloves and boots and some polar fleece to put on under your foulies. Here's a hint... the water temp off the New England coast is still fairly cold, and the air temps are going to be affected by it. I just finished a Georgetown, Exumas to Marion, Mass delivery, and we were wearing polar fleece and foulies for night watches the last couple of days. Also, remember that a tropical thunderstorm will have rain water temps in the low 40s in many cases, if not colder, since that water is coming from up where the air is below freezing in temp—how do you think hail forms???
Bring a good flashlight that is water resistant or water proof—preferably an LED one that has both white and red LEDs. A headlamp is a good choice BTW.
Bring a good hat and sunglasses. The glare off the water is a killer. Polarized lenses are nice but can interfere with reading the instruments if they're polarized at the wrong angle.
Bring a good PFD. Be aware that some airlines will not allow you to carry the CO2 cartridge...others will. Check with your airlines directly. You should also have a harness (integrated into the PFD is better) and tether, as well as whistle and strobe attached to the PFD. Yes, some boats will provide this gear, but I'd rather trust my own gear than what someone is providing...
Pack a good water bottle, so you can have something to drink when you go on watch.
Pack a spare set of glasses if you wear prescription glasses. Pack spare medication if you take any. This stuff should be in your carry-on luggage, where you can guarantee it won't get lost more easily.
Carry a digital camera. Always good to have photos of a trip like this. A good one, if you don't have one, is the Olympus Stylus Tough 8000 series.. waterproof, shockproof, decent image quality, and does video as well as stills.
Carry a good rigging knife. You'll have to check a bag if you do this, but you'll probably have to check a bag for your PFD CO2 cartridge anyways. I like the Boye's Cobalt Carbide rigging knives. They are sharp, keep a good edge, never rust, have a titanium marlinspike/shackle key, and can be opened with one hand. I had to dive on a crab pot line on my last delivery...so a good knife is important. :D
Have fun... fair winds...
I'll pick up some base layer, as that is the main thing I'm missing.
Keep us posted on how it all goes. :D
Dunno if you're in BDA or not but if not this might be helpful and if so, hope you're having fun! Trip across this year was pretty calm so hopefully that holds for you! I wouldn't worry too much about base layer, this layer that layer etc, just stay away from cotton - cotton is worse than nothing. Stuff I generally bring (and keep in mind this is racing, but it'll give you an idea):
-Regular camet shorts with the butt pads
-2 or 3 pairs of boxers (fine, these may end up being cotton)
-3 pairs ankle socks, 1 pair sealskins
-Harken or whatever running shoe style deck shoes
-3 dryshirt type shirts
-1 fleece top
-Musto MPX bibs - something similar to their BR1 line would be fine if you don't do this much
-Musto MPX dinghy smock, but I'm going to drop this one
-Henri Lloyd jacket, not top of the line but a good solid gore-tex one
If you don't have a jacket, you could get away with the dinghy top and 2 fleeces... it's not a long trip and it's warm for at least half of it - the great thing about fleece is even soaked it's still warm. STAY AWAY FROM COTTON, it's evil and cold the second it gets wet.
The big secret is... gold bond and baby wipes. Have a baby wipe shower every day (face more often) and powder your undercarriage every time you go on/off watch. You'll also be a much happier guy if you don't neglect the teeth brushing. Dry feet, a dry butt, a non-salty face, and clean teeth will go a LONG way to keeping you happy. Also, visit the Pheonix (pharmacy, close to RBYC) and buy yourself some Stugeron, esp if this is your first trip. I don't bother taking anything anymore but the stuff is magic and you can't get it in the US. Actually, if you want just send me a PM and we can arrange to meet up and I'll just give you some of mine - I always carry a supply in case it gets REALLY snotty or there's another crew who's looking a bit green.
SD has a an excellent list.
I also avoid denim, I wear quick drying hiking pants.
With respect to anti-sea sickness meds - try them BEFORE you make the trip. They affect different folks in different ways.
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