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Old 26-09-2010, 10:15   #16
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Originally Posted by SailFastTri View Post
Welcome to the board. IMHO you should take a basic navigation course before you go, such as the basic boating course offered by the US Power Squadrons. It will help you keep out of trouble.

As others wrote, it would also be a good idea to take experienced crew, if you can. It might even be a good idea to pay a captain to go with you and give some on-water instruction. If you can't afford a licensed skipper, you might inquire at the local colleges and try to find a student with sailing experience (perhaps on the sailing team) who would go with you for food/expenses and a modest wage.
thanks sailfast;
those are some good suggestions.
i'll be attending the survey and sea trial in about a week and probably closing a couple of weeks later.
So, not much time to educate myself but i have to get it to galveston/kemah.
I think i'll look on the crewing links here.
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Old 26-09-2010, 10:15   #17
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I strongly advise that you consult with someone who has actually done that Gulf crossing. Michael McCutcheon is such a person. He's in Corpus Christi and recommends doing it in May, but that's probably out of the question.

If you go south into the Gulf, you are exposed to potentially severe tropical weather systems all the way through November, then the Northers kick in.

The email address I show for Mike McCutcheon is: mmccutch :at: stx :dot: rr :dot: com

Mike also recommends that anyone contemplating doing what you propose to do should consult with Bill Worsham of Port Arthur - his email address is: bill :dot: worsham :at: lamarpa :dot: edu

Either, or both, of these email addresses may no longer be valid.

I don't know if you will have insurance on the vessel, but if you do, you should read your policy carefully. It may well be that sailing it offshore at this time of year will void your coverage.

Good luck!

TaoJones
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Old 26-09-2010, 10:18   #18
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Originally Posted by Hud3 View Post
Google Earth is pretty good for route planning. Use the "Ruler" tool, set on nautical miles. Of course, you'll need to estimate how many miles per day you can typically sail or motor before dropping anchor. Does that section of the Gulf have any cruising guidebooks? If so, get your hands on one.

thanks hud;
i think google earth is going to be a big help.
i'll be getting some charts and i'll try to find a guidebook you mentioned.
richard
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Old 26-09-2010, 10:21   #19
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Originally Posted by TaoJones View Post
I strongly advise that you consult with someone who has actually done that Gulf crossing. Michael McCutcheon is such a person. He's in Corpus Christi and recommends doing it in May, but that's probably out of the question.

If you go south into the Gulf, you are exposed to potentially severe tropical weather systems all the way through November, then the Northers kick in.

The email address I show for Mike McCutcheon is: mmccutch :at: stx :dot: rr :dot: com

Mike also recommends that anyone contemplating doing what you propose to do should consult with Bill Worsham of Port Arthur - his email address is: bill :dot: worsham :at: lamarpa :dot: edu

Either, or both, of these email addresses may no longer be valid.

I don't know if you will have insurance on the vessel, but if you do, you should read your policy carefully. It may well be that sailing it offshore at this time of year will void your coverage.

Good luck!

TaoJones

thanks Tao;
i'll be emailing them this morning.
the insurance heads up is a good one, maybe i'll have to do the icw, i will have insurance by the time i leave.
i suppose hurricane season will still be in effect through oct...

ok, emails send
thanks again
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Old 26-09-2010, 11:02   #20
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For planning, try downloading OpenCPN
--> Download OpenCPN | Official OpenCPN Homepage

Then the NOAA charts:
--> Obtain Charting Products

This will be a good, free planing tool.

People have their favorite places to buy charts. My favorite is BlueWater:
--> Bluewater Books and Charts

I have always gotten good advice from calling the 800 number and asking for their opinion.

-dan
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Old 26-09-2010, 15:22   #21
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Some serious advice for you, First, if you have limited navigation skills, DO NOT attempt this without having an experienced navigator on board.
Next, as a starting point, you MUST buy copies of the paper charts covering your route and spend some time understanding them.
Next, to get some safe practice before you go, get yourself a copy of OpenCPN (It's FREE) and a copy of CM93-2010 detailed charts and study those for as many hours as you can on your laptop or PC.
Using those PC programs, plot your course paying very close attention to depths, tides, wrecks, restricted areas, shipping channels etc. and when you have plotted your course, double check it against the paper charts I told you to buy.
Then, if you have not found an experienced buddy to help you, break the bank and hire a delivery skipper or, advertise locally for a competent sailor to act as your skipper. I assume that you have a pair of compasses on board so the next step is to understand the compass deviation in your area, not knowing compass deviation has forced many nice boats onto the rocks. GPS is nice, but since it runs on battery power, do you have a way to keep your unit charged?
Next, I'm concerned about your comments on your rigging, the golden rule on that is that if it's not safe, DO NOT go out to sea. It's OK saying that perhaps you will motor all the way but if your engine fails, you will need your sails and rigging to be in tip top condition.
Finally, I'm also concerned about the other safety aspects of this, do you have all the equipment you need to make this trip?. No Chart Plotter is not a good starting point so I'm hoping that you have at least one radio on board, safety harnesses, secure safety lines, in date flares, and on and on and on.
You will be making this trip during the Hurricane season and these things sometimes come up with very little warning, do you have life saving gear on board, a life raft, is it in date, etc. etc.
If you find a buddy to help you, DO NOT FAIL to notify the coast guard of your intentions so that they will know you are out there.
If you do not find a buddy to help you, or if your safety gear is not good enough to keep you safe, consider having her shipped by road, it will keep you safe and well and allow you lot's of time to bring her up to spec.
Call me a nervous nelly by all means but I have been doing this sort of thing for more than 50 years and trust me, PLANNING and SAFETY come above all else.

James
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Old 13-10-2010, 19:34   #22
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Another resource free from the web is ActiveCaptain (link: ActiveCaptain - The Interactive Cruising Guidebook - Marina Reviews, Fuel Prices, Anchorages ) This supplies locations for anchorages and marinas with reviews and some local information (That bridge is really 45 feet, not 55). This should not be your main navigation tool but it gives good information.
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