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Old 09-02-2013, 05:21   #1
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Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

Been doing some reading about making a passage from Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic, looks like you have the Tradewinds and the current against you. What would be the best way to make that crossing in let's say this coming November. Starting my winter cruise after hurricane season more or less and from what I understand it looks like 1 hell of a dilemma. So what do you guys do? :-)
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Old 09-02-2013, 06:37   #2
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

It's not a hell of a dilemma but its would be un upwind passage unless you are going to the western half of the DR.
In November there's plenty of NE winds so it shouldn't be too bad at all. Have a look at the pilot chart.

If you go across Silver Banks you won't see any whales as they will have all gone north by then. Those banks are one of the most heavily wreck infested in the world as the Spanish galleons needed to go quite close and if their nav was a bit out they would be a bit dead... So if you stop for a dive please remember to offer the government a share of the gold you find!
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Old 09-02-2013, 11:47   #3
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Thank you Mark, I know this is vague but what kind of currents am I looking at in that area? Western DR was my first choice to visit matter of fact...
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Old 09-02-2013, 11:52   #4
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

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Thank you Mark, I know this is vague but what kind of currents am I looking at in that area? Western DR was my first choice to visit matter of fact...
Its not vague. I know exactly what they are. They are contrary about 1 knot.
I did the passage a few weeks ago to St Martin.
I found them always more than the pilot chart said .6 to .7

Its not that hard a trip. Just plug away at it and its done. The wind is warm


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Old 09-02-2013, 12:02   #5
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Wow...not as bad as I thought...haven't got charts yet for the area but that's in the works.
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Old 09-02-2013, 13:11   #6
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

We staged in Sand Cay (rolly rolly) with an pre daylight departure to Luperon. Bruce VanSandts book "Gentleman's Guide to Passages South" is helpful. Although he speaks of an "umbra effect" that gives you protection once you get within 20 miles or so of DR.
Whenever we are in boisterous conditions we now joke about waiting for the "umbra effect" to give us protection.......
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Old 09-02-2013, 13:26   #7
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

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Wow...not as bad as I thought...haven't got charts yet for the area but that's in the works.
Pilot charts are free and downloadable off the net.

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Old 09-02-2013, 13:48   #8
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

Both times I found the wind to be minimal and not on the nose; close reach to broad reach. However, there really wasnt enough wind to keep moving at the rate I wanted so motorsailed alot. . Probably a 3-4 ft swell. I found the trip from Luperon to Samana more tedious... we left from a small anchorage at the very SW end of the T&C's. forget the name. Arrived afternoon before, never checked in. Left at first light next day.
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:05   #9
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Thanks for that link Mark, been staring at charts all day lol...appreciate all the other info and stories guys, love to hear them and it gives me a great idea of what I can possibly expect....thanks so much
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:16   #10
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

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Pilot charts are free and downloadable off the net.

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Thanks for posting this link. I've saved it to my favorites for future reference.
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:23   #11
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

It's been almost 10 years ago we did the trip from Big Sand Cay to Luperon, 80 nm IIRC and we sailed it overnight. We started off on the port tack sailing as high to wind as possible without slowing down too much. We gained easting that way so could point a bit more off the wind later on.

Very nice trip, could smell dirt from 30nm away. Do not attempt to enter Luperon in the dark.

p.s. do NOT forget to spend some time anchored between Big- and Little Ambergris cays just before sailing to Big Sand Cay. That anchorage has provided us with the best snorkeling ever.

ciao!
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:38   #12
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

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Originally Posted by irwin28 View Post
Been doing some reading about making a passage from Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic, looks like you have the Tradewinds and the current against you. What would be the best way to make that crossing in let's say this coming November. Starting my winter cruise after hurricane season more or less and from what I understand it looks like 1 hell of a dilemma. So what do you guys do? :-)
This is a perfect opportunity to learn "coasting". Read up on how to do it and you will have the best ride of your life. The process is based on the fact that the green hills absorb the suns heat durring the day and it is lifted off at night when the heat currents rise and drop off the side of the mountains. I did it from Luperon to Samana and enjoyed every minute.
All the best,
Clif
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:43   #13
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

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It's been almost 10 years ago we did the trip from Big Sand Cay to Luperon, 80 nm IIRC and we sailed it overnight. We started off on the port tack sailing as high to wind as possible without slowing down too much. We gained easting that way so could point a bit more off the wind later on.

Very nice trip, could smell dirt from 30nm away. Do not attempt to enter Luperon in the dark.

p.s. do NOT forget to spend some time anchored between Big- and Little Ambergris cays just before sailing to Big Sand Cay. That anchorage has provided us with the best snorkeling ever.

ciao!
Nick.
Theres a hook on the South point on Little Ambergris that forms a bay. Is that navagible or too shallow? Might be a good spot to jump over to Luperon from....
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Old 10-02-2013, 12:48   #14
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Re: Turks and Caicos to Dominican Republic

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Theres a hook on the South point on Little Ambergris that forms a bay. Is that navagible or too shallow? Might be a good spot to jump over to Luperon from....
I did not check that particular spot but it is all very shallow. The way in between the two cays is from the north and clearly visible as a nice blue highway. We did leave by going up that blue lane and turning east over the reef instead of going around the fish keys (or what are they called) further north. But that was with a shallow draft boat in front finding a path for our 6'2" draft.
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Old 10-02-2013, 14:40   #15
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Guys I'm so digging the posts...so much as "coasting" I'm going to check that out, i wonder if its like dealing with the thermals like here in the gulf coastal area?
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