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Old 11-04-2010, 11:15   #1
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Passage: Salvador, Brazil to Horta, Azores via Cape Verdes

Does anybody have insight or experience sailing from Salvador, Brazil to the Cape Verde Islands and then onward to the Azores? Is this a reasonable route to plan, or is the long direct passage to Horta better? What kind of weather and temperatures should one expect? Also, does Cape Verde require visas for U.S. citizens arriving by sea on a sailing yacht, as they do for airline tourists? Finally, any advice on the best latitude for crossing the Atlantic ITCZ in May-June from south to north? Planning to crew short-handed on a 40-ft. Hallberg Rassy starting out in mid May, 2010.

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Old 11-04-2010, 11:48   #2
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Take a look at the Atlantic Pilot Charts and you will see the wind patterns and currents of the Atlantic Ocean. Generally the route you are suggesting is up-wind, up-current. The normal sailing route is up to the Caribbean Islands then north towards Bermuda then across to the Azores and Europe.
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Old 11-04-2010, 13:02   #3
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I fully realize that the Trades outside the ITCZ as well the the South and North Equatorial currents will be head-on crossing to Cape Verdes; then the adverse Canaries Current will slow things down when making for the Azores. But the Cap't seems set on this route because he dislikes the Antilles ambiance enough to want to avoid the Caribbean (he's been circumnavigating from Germany in stages for ten years now). He carefully consults the Pilot Charts, so he must know something I don't. Perhaps he's hoping for a small push from the Romanche Gap approximately 20 degrees West at the Equator.

I sailed double-handed with him last winter from S. Africa, around the Cape of Good Hope, up to Walvis Bay, Namibia, across to St. Helena and then to Salvador where he has now temporarily parked his boat until the next leg. That was largely a downhill milk run, even along the SW African coast where they had the worst weather in 20 years and the cold, foggy Benguela Current chilled us to the bone--although it did help boost us in the right direction.

I suspect the next leg will be a slow and unpredictable slog. The 440-litre water tank">fresh water tank and the equivalently size diesel tank will both be challenged for refills from his jerry cans before we can re-provision anywhere. No watermaker. He's good at catching rainwater, though.
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Old 13-04-2010, 11:50   #4
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Jeez, this sounds pretty awful route. Anything's doable i suppose. I wouldn't have thought the canaries ambiance that much more superior to justify the anticlockwise route. You could go direct to st martin, perhaps. EXcept it's either Dutch or French, hm, perhaps that's it, and the other islands ex-british, hm again... whereas the lovely Canaries under dictatorship just 30-something years ago, they've got a nicer ambience, right? Heyho, whatever...
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Old 23-05-2010, 03:45   #5
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I sailed from Fernando de Noronha to the Azores once . Unless I was determined to punish myself and beat forever I would never go to the Canaries. From Fernando to S.Miguel was already a solid 23 days close hauled. Another time I went from St.Helena to the Canaries , that was ok , but having gone as far West as Brazil , going back to the Canaries doesn't seem right to me. If the Canaries were my final destination coming from Brazil I would still go up to the Azores and then down again.
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