Join Date: Jun 2011
Location: somewhere south of civilization
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Re: novice sailor /sail to Florida from Baltimore
Seeing as I've experienced as much as 8 knots of north bound current in the Gulfstream between Fla and the Bahamas, I doubt your 38' ketch would make much headway against even half that. Since the prevailing winds in the Keys are easterlies and the Gulfstream runs west, offshore sailing in the Keys can be pretty rough, if not downright dangerous. Key Largo marinas are pretty expensive.
There is often a counter current close to the coast south of Beaufort, NC, but as a sailor alone (tired) and inexperienced, trying to sail close to the coast is a recipe for disaster.
As mentioned, hurricane season is no joke and that sort of experience (a hurricane) can cost you your boat, if not your desire to continue sailing. Consider waiting until fall to venture forth and spend the summer getting experience sailing locally, especially mastering anchoring and reefing in bad weather.
"Any idiot can make a boat go; it takes a sailor to stop one." Spike Africa aboard the schooner Wanderer in Sausalito, Ca. 1964.
“Believe me, my young friend, there is nothing - absolutely nothing - half so much worth doing as simply messing about in boats.” ― Kenneth Grahame, The Wind in the Willows
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