Originally Posted by MarkJ
*I haven't read the other replies before writing this*
I have come down from New York
twice and I think its good to leave BY by mid-September.
Once south of Cape Hatteras you have great choices of day hopping down the coast or icw
, anytime, or doing the easy direct to Bahamas route
in early November.
Obviously you have a month somewhere to kill, but as long as you are south of Hatteras its fine.
Heading direct to the Bahamas
, or the Caribbean from Norfolk or Beaufort North Carolina
is pretty easy. We don't know what the hurricane
season is likely to be yet... early should be quiet but its too far out to see if it will finish in early November or late November.
I think those that sail down from NY, Newport
etc in November are nuts. Truly nuts. Getting a Norther for a week against the Gulf Stream is just silly and doubly so because its avoidable
Sent from a stupid phone that replaces words with weird stuff.
would you believe me if I told you the most pleasant trip around hatteras I ever had was this past december? I know, I have a hard time believing it myself and I was there. had the best weather window in history
, I was bracing for the worst delivery
of my life. anyhow, I digress.
as for the OP's question. first of all coming out of boston don't bother sailing around cape cod
and dealing with nantucket
shoals, especially in the fall. there's kind of 2 schools of thought on the issue of making the passage
on the one hand you have the people who go from new england
and run to bermuda
to refuel, re-provision and rest then sail from there down into the caribbean, this gives you a better angle to sail into the caribbean, more or less due south but for sailing to the bahamas you do end up back tracking west a bit if you go this route
. the other advantage of going this route is that you cross the gulfstream once, further north and you're well offshore
from the gulfstream and shallow waters that can make the seas so miserable when going around hatteras.
the other school
of thought is stay closer to shore and basically sail in the corridor between the eastern seaboard and the stream. the advantage here is that if there's a nasty weather system rolling up the coast you're never too far from a place to tuck in and hide. the other advantage is that depending on what the stream is doing sometimes you can get into a back eddie whish will actually help give you a push south. the disadvantage is that you don't have a whole lot of real estate to play with in this relatively narrow corridor between the shore and the stream and if the stream has swung far inshore sometimes it just simply isn't enough room.
bear in mind too that if you're shallow enough/short enough there's nothing wrong with hopping into the ICW
. you can pick it up in norfolk and hop in and out as you please (well not exactly but you get the idea) even just hopping into the ICW to get past hatteras can save yourself a lot of time/discomfort. don't be to rigidly fixed on a plan written down in a book, gotta be flexible. oh also, while a late season delivery
can be miserably cold it can be done safely. you just have to be VERY careful with your weather window.