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Old 06-09-2014, 07:21   #1
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Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

As the countdown to retirement gets closer, I am starting research and planning to go further down the islands.

I am hitting two snags, tried searches- but my buddy Google seems to be striking out. The two issues are:

  • Laying out sailing courses requires knowledge of the dominant wind and currents. In the US there are several web sites that provide historical weather patterns. Is there a website with historical weather for spots like Rum Cay, Long Island or Turks/Caicos and further south?

  • Most cost-efficient means of getting current weather info? Are there VHF weather forecasts? Both SSB and Sat phone with a modem, are an investment I would rather avoid. Although I may get the sat phone as a means of voice communications, the frugal part of me would rather not pay for weather.
Any help from folks who have been down this route before would be appreciated.

Thanks
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Old 07-09-2014, 16:21   #2
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Bump. Any ideas???
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Old 07-09-2014, 16:43   #3
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Sailing Weather - Marine Weather Forecasts for Sailors and Adventurers - PassageWeather is what I use for planning and I am starting to use

earth :: an animated map of global wind, weather, and ocean conditions

You can listen to Chris Parker for free

GreenLight Web

Marine Weather Center - Bahamas & Caribbean Marine Weather Services on the internet or on an SSB.

This was all far more than I needed for 7 years of cruising between Nova Scotia, Trinidad and Panama

Good Luck
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Old 07-09-2014, 17:15   #4
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pirate Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

It mostly all comes from the same sources anyway so passageweather or magicseaweed is as good as anything else.. lets face it.. island hoping most you'll ever need is 2-3 days ahead..
Its all E to W once past PR.. just varies in strength..
Don't over think it..
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Old 07-09-2014, 17:29   #5
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Historical use the pilot charts. Electronic ones free off the net work on OpenCpn

One the way you can just use the VHF Peurto Rico blasts out to blazes. You will have that from T&C to BVIs.

As Phil said, unless its Hurricane season once south of the Bahamas its pretty obvious... easterly to slightly on the nose, 15 to 25, reef in into the wind.

In Hurricane season is E 15 with occasional gusts to 95
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Old 07-09-2014, 19:39   #6
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Thanks guys.
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Old 08-09-2014, 09:24   #7
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Sounds like a weather fax would make you happy and be current. You may need to invest 3K.
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Old 08-09-2014, 09:33   #8
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

[*]Laying out sailing courses requires knowledge of the dominant wind and currents. In the US there are several web sites that provide historical weather patterns. Is there a website with historical weather for spots like Rum Cay, Long Island or Turks/Caicos and further south?

When I traveled the Atlantic & Pacific oceans, I relied on "Ocean Passages of the World" from the British Admiralty Ocean-Passages-World-NP136-Admiralty/dp/0707718872 You don't need an internet connection & it was good enough for me ! For example, I did Tahiti-Hawaii in my 31 footer in 21 days on the same tack !

Cheers ! Alain
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Old 08-09-2014, 13:51   #9
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Quote:
Originally Posted by Cadence View Post
Sounds like a weather fax would make you happy and be current. You may need to invest 3K.
I have to agree with this, you cannot put a price on safety. I have SSB, Weatherfax, VHF, and some redundancy. If you can afford the toys you can't neglect the protection for them. And conversely for yourself and mates.
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Old 08-09-2014, 14:14   #10
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Try this one.
Sailing Weather - Marine Weather Forecasts for Sailors and Adventurers - PassageWeather
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Old 08-09-2014, 14:30   #11
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

The commercial long liners have everything redundant. Nice if you can afford it. I'm a compass and paper guy. I can remember my kid saying when the loran C took a dump. What do we do now, see this chart we know where we are and where we are going. a compass, chart and parallels can't be beat.
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Old 08-09-2014, 16:06   #12
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

SSB receivers are pretty cheap. You can tune in to NOAA voice forecasts, Chris Parker, and Eric Mackie (broadcasting from Trinidad). With free software downloadable from the Internet you can get NOAA weather faxes.
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Old 08-09-2014, 17:34   #13
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

It will blow from the E parts or thereabout 99.9% of the time.

In 2013/14 we got on windfinder via free wifi spots and that seemed pretty enough. In 2003 and 2007 we did without and we were fine.

With some more buck, get a mobile data card and you can download weather to your tablet anyplace anytime. Well, nearly so anyways.

You will get becalmed behind any tall island too. They each have their wind shadow pattern that you will learn as you go, on engine.

Cheers,
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Old 04-10-2014, 06:33   #14
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

Tag 4 later reference
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Old 04-10-2014, 07:01   #15
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Re: Eastern Carribean Weather Forecasts

As noted by others, we sailed up and down the Antilles using Passageweather for between the islands and winguru behind them, picked-up off either open wifi signals, or sometimes we had a paid one that worked in the major yachty centres over several islands; also there a local VHF-Nets in several places that you can listen/contribute to. You're rarely 'on your own' in the eastern Caribbean, so if you're really stuck, just put out a call over the VHF and you'll generally find someone who's got the latest weather info.

Further north - USVI/BVI, PR and right through T&C/Bahamas all the way to mainland USA, we were picking up lots of NOAA forecasts on our old Navtex/Weatherfax unit and whilst we didn't always get precise exact area, they gave us the 'big picture'.
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