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Old 19-05-2007, 07:29   #46
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Wahoo Sails,

Had to go back and review the advice posted. Most of it was right on the money and I didn't see any "downright dangerous" stuff. Sometimes a thread drifts a bit off topic, sometimes a thread morphs into something more interesting. That's the way it goes. The only silly bit I saw was about going further north from Ft. Luderdale to Lake Worth to try another crossing. If you're getting the bums rush in Lake Sylvia, go down to Miami. You don't even have to go outside as you'll fit under the Julia Tuttle Bridge. Lots of good anchorages in Miami to wait for weather, from South Beach to No Name. Even Miami Beach won't try to move you on if the weather's unfavourable.
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Old 19-05-2007, 08:44   #47
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why don't you just correct what you feel is silly and what is 'downright dangerous'? vasco is correct about starting out as far south as possible. my easiest crossing was from starting out in the keys.
you claim your crossing attempt 'nearly cost us our lives'; a rather dramatic statement that could use some elaboration. in more than 20 years of sailing, i guess i've been fortunate never to have felt that i was in such peril. but i would only feel that way if i were sinking.
it seems as though the one sailor who pushed on, a geriatric singlehander, (and that does strike me as funny), crossed without any damage or complaints. what is more serious is that you and your convoy called out the cg to search for him and worried his family and friends with no indication that he had run into trouble other than he had not yet checked in to customs.
i think all the posts on this thread were only to give you a helping hand, from sailors who have experience crossing. on a side note, i was waiting for weather in lake sylvie, was kicked out after 24 hours in spite of a norther blowing and headed south to wait a day at anchor.
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Old 19-05-2007, 09:04   #48
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I started this thread in an effort to help keep fellow forum members safe while crossing the Gulfstream. The information provided by some other forum members has ranged from silly ... to downright dangerous. In an effort to keep others safe, I am asking the moderators to remove this thread, so that others will not follow the bad information provided here.
Bob
Wow, strong words.

I have not re-read the thread to look for the "dangerous"
information, but if indeed some postings have slipped by me that advocates downright dangerous behaviour, I would sure like to point it out so we can all learn what not to do....

Where is the convoy now Bob? Still waiting for a window to cross?
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Old 19-05-2007, 16:02   #49
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I agree there is no "dangerous information" here. Like CSY and others on here, I have crossed numerous times. The thing that has not been emphasized is wind versus current. When you have cold fronts, (even late in the season as we are this year), the wind starts southwest, goes west and quickly swings around to the north and then northeast. The cool air over the warm north-flowing Gulf Stream creates short period waves that when they get large enough are dangerous to even large vessels. Typically once the wind has shifted to "south of east" you can go. Although it may be rough it is usually not dangerous. Of course get current weather before you go.

I prefer night east bound and daytime returning to Florida. Since the predominant swell is from the east the seas are usually smaller at night allowing better headway. At times you even get a "landbreeze" from the west.

Baseed on the current forecast I would look at going Monday night as long as this forecast holds.

COASTAL WATERS FORECAST FOR SOUTH FLORIDA
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE MIAMI FL
400 PM EDT SAT MAY 19 2007
ATLANTIC COASTAL WATERS FROM JUPITER INLET TO OCEAN REEF OUT TO 60
NM AND GULF COASTAL WATERS FROM EAST CAPE SABLE TO CHOKOLOSKEE OUT
20 NM AND CHOKOLOSKEE TO BONITA BEACH OUT 60 NM...INCLUDING THE
WATERS OF BISCAYNE BAY AND LAKE OKEECHOBEE.
AMZ650-670-200300-
/O.CON.KMFL.SW.Y.0014.000000T0000Z-070520T1100Z/
COASTAL WATERS FROM JUPITER INLET TO DEERFIELD BEACH, FL OUT 20 NM-
WATERS FROM JUPITER INLET TO DEERFIELD BEACH, FL EXTENDING FROM
20 NM TO 60 NM-
400 PM EDT SAT MAY 19 2007

SMALL CRAFT ADVISORY FOR HAZARDOUS SEAS REMAINS IN EFFECT THROUGH
SUNDAY MORNING


TONIGHT
NORTHEAST WINDS 15 TO 20 KNOTS. SEAS 3 TO 5 FEET NEAR
SHORE AND UP TO 5 TO 7 FEET IN THE GULF STREAM. INTRACOASTAL
WATERS CHOPPY IN EXPOSED AREAS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS.

SUNDAY
NORTHEAST WINDS 15 TO 20 KNOTS. NEAR SHORE...SEAS 3 TO
5 FEET SUBSIDING TO 2 TO 4 FEET IN THE AFTERNOON. IN THE GULF
STREAM...SEAS 4 TO 6 FEET. INTRACOASTAL WATERS CHOPPY IN EXPOSED
AREAS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND SLIGHT CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS.

SUNDAY NIGHT
NORTHEAST WINDS 15 TO 20 KNOTS. SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET
NEAR SHORE AND UP TO 4 TO 6 FEET IN THE GULF STREAM. INTRACOASTAL
WATERS CHOPPY IN EXPOSED AREAS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND SLIGHT CHANCE
OF THUNDERSTORMS.

MONDAY
EAST WINDS 15 TO 20 KNOTS BECOMING 10 TO 15 KNOTS IN THE
AFTERNOON. NEAR SHORE...SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET SUBSIDING TO 2 FEET OR
LESS IN THE AFTERNOON IN THE GULF STREAM...SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET.
INTRACOASTAL WATERS CHOPPY IN EXPOSED AREAS. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND
THUNDERSTORMS.

MONDAY NIGHT
EAST WINDS 10 TO 15 KNOTS. SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET.
INTRACOASTAL WATERS A MODERATE CHOP. SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS.

TUESDAY
EAST WINDS 10 TO 15 KNOTS. NEAR SHORE...SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET
SUBSIDING TO 2 FEET OR LESS IN THE AFTERNOON IN THE GULF STREAM...
SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET. INTRACOASTAL WATERS A MODERATE CHOP. SLIGHT
CHANCE OF SHOWERS THROUGH THE DAY. SLIGHT CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS IN
THE LATE MORNING AND AFTERNOON.

TUESDAY NIGHT
EAST WINDS 10 TO 15 KNOTS. SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET.
INTRACOASTAL WATERS A MODERATE CHOP. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND SLIGHT
CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS.

WEDNESDAY
EAST WINDS AROUND 15 KNOTS. SEAS 4 TO 6 FEET NEAR
SHORE AND UP TO 2 TO 4 FEET IN THE GULF STREAM. INTRACOASTAL
WATERS A MODERATE CHOP. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND SLIGHT CHANCE OF
THUNDERSTORMS.

WEDNESDAY NIGHT
EAST WINDS 10 TO 15 KNOTS. SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET.
INTRACOASTAL WATERS A MODERATE CHOP. CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND SLIGHT
CHANCE OF THUNDERSTORMS.

THURSDAY
NORTHEAST WINDS 10 TO 15 KNOTS BECOMING 5 TO 10 KNOTS IN
THE AFTERNOON. SEAS 2 TO 4 FEET. INTRACOASTAL WATERS A LIGHT CHOP.
SLIGHT CHANCE OF SHOWERS AND THUNDERSTORMS.
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Old 20-05-2007, 15:18   #50
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Thumbs down

If you check that forecast now you will find it did not hold. Doesn't look good for the near future either. If it was me I'd just continue south down the ICW to get a better angle on the gulf stream until the winds die some.
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Old 22-05-2007, 04:27   #51
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Outsmarting the Gulf Stream ~ by Joy Smith
A simplified explanation of this powerful force in the Atlantic Ocean
Joy Smith's Place - Outsmarting the Gulf Stream
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Old 22-05-2007, 18:53   #52
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Since I am a gulf stream virgin I find this thread very informative, but quick couple of questions.. Winds 10-15 with seas 4-6 is not uncommon up off new england region.. not overly comfortable,but is there a big difference in the stream (are they short or breaking or confused)??Is there any good reference material out, that describes the dangers and best way to deal with the stream....I hope to be heading that way withing the next Year or so...Thanks
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Old 22-05-2007, 19:59   #53
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Quote:
Winds 10-15 with seas 4-6 is not uncommon up off new england region..
Well, ya see the difference is the Gulfstream:

She flows North at 3.5 Knots on the average.
If ya have a wind from the North, (Opposite) it will blow against the stream and kick up short and steep waves.

A wind from the South will do a lot less damage as far as the wave-height and wave-action.

A good rule of thumb If ya want a fairly decent ride, is to never cross with more than 10 Knots from the North, or more than 15 from any direction.

Live with this one and ya should be okay.

I have crossed in more than that a few times and it gets old.

The most I have done is going East (to the Bahamas) in a 25 Knot breeze from the SE, with seas 9 feet.
It took 14 hours from Miami harbour to Bimini.

Motoring all the way and one of the boys got sick and all of us got wet and cold:

I had 3 buddies come over from Norway to do a Bahamas cruise. First time for all of them, first time on a sailboat, first time to these Latitudes.

Tickets booked 2 months in advance. 11 day window for sailing.
When they arrived the weather was crappy so we sailed from Ft. Lauderdale to Biscayne Bay. Hung out there for a few days waiting for a good crossing/forecast.

It never came, but the last day, when we only had 6 days left before the boys had to go back to the old country, I took a vote and explained: Tomorrow we can make it across the Gulf Stream. It won't be comfortable, it wont' be easy and it is going to be a long day. It will however be "safe", we are not risking the ship or life and limb...Who wants to do it?

They all raised the arms and the glasses...

Next day, early in the morning we pulled out of there and yes, it was a bit rough, a bit cold and a bit wet and the seas kept flying back into the cockpit. (Nobody could stay below..Don't even think about it)

Every hour I kept asking the boys if they wanted to turn around and go back to the safety and comfort of Virginia Key.
Nobody voulunteered, not even the guy that was sea-sick for 14 hours, green in the face, puke dripping down his beard...Bimini or bust.

We arrived in Bimini and used a 3 GPS approach to enter Nixon Harbour to find some shelter at night.
Once we were inside the rocks and the anchor down, the boat settled down, the appetite returned and we were in paradise despite the long crossing and the lumpy Gulf Stream.

Would I do it again?
Nah, getting too old and too lazy as it was hard work.

Not dangerous if ya have a good boat, just un-comfortable and long day.

The previous owners of my boat lived aboard for 5 years: They sailed from the Caribe to Maine and back, Bahamas, Florida, all over etc.

They said they never sailed in bad weather.
They were retired and had no schedule, therefore they never had to be anywhere at a certain time: If bad weather was coming, they hunkered down behind some island or in some lagoon.

There lies the secret: A calendar is the most dangerous piece of equipment aboard a sailboat.
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Old 22-05-2007, 20:08   #54
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Thanks for sharing your experience it is very helpful and very appreciated!!
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Old 23-05-2007, 04:43   #55
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GULF STREAM MYSTERY:
Jim Trindade vanished, between the Bahamas & Florida, on January 12, 2006, under suspicious circumstances.
Help Jimmy.org
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