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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
My worst night sailing this year was sailing my Kayak down the Gulf intercoastal.

Around 10 pm after being up for about 18 hours of single handing I started to feel very fatigued. I found a boat launch and decided to get some sleep..

I dragged my boat up the bank and hid in the trees. Set up my hammock tent.

Was basically at the edge of a parking area in South Florida. Drug deals went down all night a few feet from me.

Around 3, noticed the drug dealers had made my camp site, so decided to split. Some big dude with an older Mercedes watched me drag the boat back down to the ICW. Got in my boat and paddle sailed for another ~10 miles or so until I found another beach to crash on around 5 am.

Sounds kind of laid back, but was a pretty bad night. What was you worst night this year?
 

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That's all sounds pretty awful. Not something I'd be eager to try again, if that's in the cards.

Your post brought to mind an interesting revelation. I don't think we sailed at night this past season. Given the flexibility of working aboard, having no guests, etc, we sailed quite a bit. We even sailed mid-day, around lunchtime, just to reposition, then get back on the computer/phone. Sailing at 5pm was easy, as sunset was late. As I've said in other posts, we made the best of a tough season and it had some real upside too.

All the flexibility seemed to prevent the need for sailing an overnight.
 
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My worst night ever was during my trip to Florida. We had left Charleston SC earlier that day, were in the North Atlantic and I decided to pull in after motoring for 45 miles to the South Edisto River. My thinking is that it looked easy in, easy out on the chart, and seemed fairly protected from winds as long as they were not out of the south or east. There was a strong current as the tide was coming in, but the anchor had set well. We had a nice dinner at anchor and then the wind kicked up to about 20 kts. - out of the southeast.

There was a navigable creek that offered protection from the wind nearby, and there were several ActiveCaptain marked anchorages, so we moved the boat before the sun went down. We anchored between the channel and a marsh. I was concerned that when the tide turned we might swing into the weeds, so for insurance, I deployed a Fortress FX16 off the stern (I could have set it better, but it seemed to have dug in). We settled in to sleep at about 8pm

For no apparent reason, I woke up at about 10:30pm and decided to check the anchor situation. The tide had changed, and was now ripping out (over 3 knots!) and the wind had piped up out of the east, thereby pushing us into the weeds!

See this post in this thread; Finding a new home?
 
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The query seemed to be for sailing at night, but we spent as many, if not more, nights at anchor this summer. Probably more, as we worked several full weeks aboard, using hot spots for internet. No tragedies that I recall. I couple of boats that just couldn't help but anchor too close, but no drama.

One more thing, among all this strife, to be thankful for.
 

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Mine was coming south along Florida when the wind went onto the nose (was forecasted to be a reach all night) while the waves decided to get higher and shorter period coming almost right up the stern
 
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Hey,

My worst night sailing was the second night of the Vineyard race. From the start of the race on Friday until dusk Saturday we had a great race. We made it back into the Long Island Sound Saturday at sunset, had a nice dinner, and prepared to work our way west to the finish at Stamford,

The weather forecast was SW moving to NW, and building. We can handle that. Unfortunately, the tide was flooding (moving from west to east). So wind against tide made for a terrible ride. I had the midnight to 0400 watch and it was pitch black, large confused seas, and wind 20-25 apparent (and mostly on the nose). We sailed as close to west as possible, but were WNW. The ride was awful. We were under reefed main and #2 headsail. Steep seas, falling off of waves, no way to see the waves, etc. For my four hour shift the sailing was just awful. Around 0200 I woke the owner looking for advice on how to improve the ride. He suggested sailing a little lower and that did help a little but it was still terrible. At 0400 I went off watch. My watch mates went down to rest. I stayed up to brief the new watch. When I got below the two good berths (aft quarter berth and low side settee) were occupied, leaving me to the V Berth. The V berth is no place to be when beating into steep seas. After 15 minutes I gave up, put on my foulies, and slept on the weather deck. After a few hours of that I was caked in salt (spray was going all the way past the helm).

Of course the wind died early Sunday AM. At least I got a good sleep in, but we ended up being the last boat to finish.

Barry
 

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March. (Just as COVID was closing everything) on a delivery from Washington DC to Mystic... Not sure really which was worse... Coming out the Delaware rounding Cape May in fog so thick at times I could not see the dingy in tow just 30 feet behind OR the leg into Sandy Point in 30 knots, 30 degrees and light rain (only heat on the boat was the galley stove while cooking). One was mentally exhusting the other physically although only a short period of discomfort you could say
 

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Well, I've only had one night at sea this year.
Do to Covid restrictions I had to decamp one country during their Lockdown and slip into another country during their Lockdown.
There was a certain amount of stress in the move as I didn't really know if I'd be bounced back from the destination country and then not allowed to re-enter the departed nation. Thus the enjoyment of sailing wasn't much of a priority... thusly it was a while before I looked up and realised it was a beautiful clear night of the full moon. Bliss.

I should be released from prison soonish.



137708
 

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My worst night sailing this year was sailing my Kayak down the Gulf intercoastal.

Around 10 pm after being up for about 18 hours of single handing I started to feel very fatigued. I found a boat launch and decided to get some sleep..

I dragged my boat up the bank and hid in the trees. Set up my hammock tent.

Was basically at the edge of a parking area in South Florida. Drug deals went down all night a few feet from me.

Around 3, noticed the drug dealers had made my camp site, so decided to split. Some big dude with an older Mercedes watched me drag the boat back down to the ICW. Got in my boat and paddle sailed for another ~10 miles or so until I found another beach to crash on around 5 am.

Sounds kind of laid back, but was a pretty bad night. What was you worst night this year?
Arcb, next time you ask why someone would not be comfortable on a 22 foot boat, I will refer them to this thread.

You are cut from a different cloth than most on this forum. This adventure would be something a younger me would search for but the older me avoids these kind of adventures. Was this part of the Everglades Challenge?
 

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My worst night on this hook this year was in San Domingo Creek in early October. Anchored by myself in the least popular branch of a popular anchorage, I was looking forward to a peaceful night with shore protection from the SW 7-10 knt winds in the forecast.

Wake up at 3am to heavy rolling and vibration from the anchor rode and stick my head out into the cockpit. My hat flies off my head and I catch it just before it flies into the landscaping of the nice St. Michaels mansion on the lee shore. So much for the forecast. Wind meter says gusts are 20-25 knts, and I'm starting to question my choice of anchorage. My anchor alarm says we are holding, but if we start to drag we are too close to the lee shore for much reaction time.

I spent the next 3 hours with my eyes glued to the anchor app and ready to bolt into the cockpit if needed. Fortunately wife and I did a good job setting that anchor and we stayed put. Not a fun start to our trip, however.

I've actually never sailed at night. It's on the list. (My tag line is 'advanced beginner' after all)
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Jeptohog, it was. I didn't have a great grasp on where I was. I had electronic charts going, but was zoomed in on the ICW. Happened across what I thought looked like a nice abandoned boat launch, but turned out to be a lot closer to Venice city centre than I thought 🤣🤣 It wasn't a planned stop, but I had a case of the nods, so needed to stop for a bit.
 

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Only had one, Trinidad to Carriacou, well aware that the islands were going to close up shop soon, and we wanted to be on our mooring in Tyrrel Bay.
Good night of sailing, lots of phosphorescence, no boat, ships or planes, and nobody left on. (as in baseball).
Good last sail, but not enough for me. Once in a while I think about provisioning and heading out to sea for 4 or 5 months. Not going anywhere, just sailing around the mid-south Atlantic.
 
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a few weeks ago, solo crossing the Pamlico Sound to Ocracoke. It would be about 10 hrs and I decided to leave ~midnight and arrive the in the morning. It was clear, full moon and warm, SCA was in effect. I'd be hard on the wind most of the trip so I switched to my 100% jib (the smallest I have), tucked 2 reefs in the main, and I set out. 2 hrs later the SCA was upgraded to a gale warning. Of course I had the chance to turn around at that point, I considered it .... but I decided to press on.

The Pamlico is shallow causing the waves to stack up quite steep and close together making for a very rough time of it.

by 3 am winds had built to 30 and I was seasick. Seasickness would remain with me until sunrise.

By 4am the winds were 35 sustained and gusting higher. I was cozy under the dodger protected from the spray and occasional dousing of green water. Comfortable enough, poking my head out occasionally to throw up.

at 4:30am I heard a brief tearing sound followed by the sounds of a flogging sail. The jib blew out (to be fair it's 20 yrs old now). A bit of a struggle to get it furled and secured and I was grateful I could get it under control without going forward. My boat gets a rather uncomfortable motion when not balanced with the jib. Worse, my speed had dropped meaning I'd be in this mess for hours longer. I could fly the 135 furled a bit, but the thought of going forward to bend on that sail was not appealing. I resorted to the engine supplement the sail plan. It would not balance the boat any better but at least I could make up the lost power of the jib and keep my speed up.

as the sky lightened I could see what I had been dealing with. It was an angry scene, all white froth. The waves were 5-6ft with occasional bigger. Nothing startling in the face of it. On the ocean a 6 ft swell is quite pleasant. But these waves were steep, violently smacking my little boat every 3 or 4 secs. It seemed that these waves were hell bent on rattling the fillings out of my head.

But with the sunrise my seasickness was subsiding. The ferries were starting their routes to and from Ocracoke and it was nice to have some company out there. The fall sky was that beautiful Carolina blue, and sun was warming the air nicely. Although it was still awfully bumpy, the unpleasantness of the evening were fading from my memory. I was enjoying the sail and looking forward to dropping the anchor in Ocracoke harbor. I had hrs to go, that was fine with me I was enjoying it now.

For me, I guess I can say that a bad night sailing is better than a good day at the office!
 

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Discussion Starter #15
You are cut from a different cloth than most on this forum.
I think both Mark and Jeff would take exception to this, probably Capta and a few others too.

I haven't asked them, but my gut tells me Mark or Jeff would probably do an Everglades Challenge with me, and would probably be very good at it :)
 

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I think both Mark and Jeff would take exception to this, probably Capta and a few others too.

I haven't asked them, but my gut tells me Mark or Jeff would probably do an Everglades Challenge with me, and would probably be very good at it :)
300 nms in CROCODILE infested waters????????? With anacondas lurking!?

No way!! I bumped into a Black Mamba in Africa and I was scared. And they are tiny, about 12 feet long, compared to an anaconda.

And beer. How can I carry enough beer in a kayak for 300 miles?

However, if Jeff paddles in the bow and I paddle in the stern (where I don't need to do much work ;) ) I will do it. Oh, and CaptA rides shotgun :)

:)
 

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I think both Mark and Jeff would take exception to this, probably Capta and a few others too.

I haven't asked them, but my gut tells me Mark or Jeff would probably do an Everglades Challenge with me, and would probably be very good at it :)
Pretty sure you misunderstood my "cut from a different cloth" comment. It is a compliment. If you notice a pattern in the comments here every had a less pleasant night of sailing because things added up to put them in a position where things got exciting. Participating in the Everglades Challenge, makes it very likely things will get uncomfortable, at best you will be fatigued for many days in a row. Sleeping in a parking lot next to crimes being committed is far from the worst thing that can happen to you in the EC.

I have done some crazy adventures in my life but the EC is like the 1 percenters of living on the edge. I would guess I am in the 5% group but have told my wife my plan is to train and prep for an EC in 2022.
 

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Discussion Starter #18 (Edited)
told my wife my plan is to train and prep for an EC in 2022.
Awesome, don't hesitate to PM me if you have logistical or navigation questions. Even if you don't make it to the beach the training is a great motivator to get/stay in shape and spend money on cool boat stuff.

I am aiming for 2022 too. 2021 is out of the question with travel bans etc. I do have some logistical issues to work out. The biggest problem I have is my wife says no more solo racing small unballasted boats in the ocean at night (too dangerous). So I need a partner (working on my brother). I also need a fast boat. I am considering a 2 man/17 ft Cedar strip sailing canoe with outriggers. Trying to figure out if I can remove my basement windows so I can work on one in the basement over the winter 🤣🤣
 

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In thinking it though more, i don't believe I had any pleasant night sails in 2020. I only do night sails on passage trips and this year every single one turned to crap and became a “when will this be over”.
 

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We've only had three passages this year. The first was 750nm on a broad reach with nice wind and calm seas. Those were a few nights of bliss. The second was the reverse 750nm with no wind and glass seas. Those were a few nights of forgettable. We just completed a 350nm passage in 44hrs. The first night was not ideal, but OK. The second night was the only truly bad night of sailing this year. We spent that night alternating between being a sailboat and a submarine, found leaks we didn't know existed, struggled to keep the boat speed below 10kts, and still have sargasso weed stuck 15' up in our rigging.

Mark
 
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