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Old 27-08-2011, 08:27   #1
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Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

This will be our first real cruising adventure. We're on a 27' boat, and I get horribly seasick - so we're wanting the smoothest ride we can find. I heard that crossing the Gulf in late October, early November was a good time due to favoring winds.

What do the good people of Cruisers Forum say?

Cheers!
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Old 27-08-2011, 08:31   #2
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Re: Sail to Bahamas in late October, early November?

I've found that I am less prone to seasickness when serving as the coxswain.
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Old 27-08-2011, 08:34   #3
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Re: Sail to Bahamas in late October, early November?

Hurricane season last until the end of November - your choice.
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Old 27-08-2011, 08:37   #4
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Re: Sail to Bahamas in late October, early November?

I assume you mean crossing the gulf stream. Even in Oct/Nov it can be a rough crossing if you don't pick your spot. You just have to wait for a good weather window.
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Old 27-08-2011, 08:52   #5
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Re: Sail to Bahamas in late October, early November?

I crossed in a 26-foot sailboat several times. As Vasco indicated, the key to smooth crossing is waiting for just the right weather. I also get seasick and rely heavily on sea sick meds.

Living in Florida, I'm sure you are well aware of hurricane risks at that time of year.
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Old 27-08-2011, 10:14   #6
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

This is just a repeat, but it does not matter what month you cross, there are three words of advice; wait, wait and wait. We have crossed in December, January, February and March. We have sat behind Key Biscayne and waited ten days for a weather window. Make sure you have a minimum of 48 hours and preferably 72 hours of weather you feel comfortable in. Give the Gulf Stream a minimum of 24 hours to lay down after a blow. Get some seasick remedy that works for you and take it ahead of time. Things can and do change half way there. Most importantly, have fun. Chuck
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Old 27-08-2011, 10:40   #7
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

Generally you want to wait for the wind to go more south than from the east. It does so often and then goes west for a short time. It may take a a week or two to get these conditions. anytime the wind is from the NE, N etc the wind waves are against the gulf stream current causing lumps!
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Old 27-08-2011, 11:01   #8
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

When leaving Marathon for the Bahamas, I would make a lot of southing as soon as you leave. Thay way when you head and get to the Bahamas, you will be on the outer edge and head on in.
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Old 27-08-2011, 13:15   #9
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

For the least-rough trip to the Bahamas, wait for days or weeks till you get a forecast of "winds light and variable, waves 1 foot or less," then motor across to Bimini. Ditto for the other long crossings. You can always enjoy sailing small hops from island to island once you're there. And the trip home is a reach, which you can sail with less discomfort.
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Old 27-08-2011, 14:26   #10
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

If one is troubled with waves over 1 foot or winds above a breeze, why own a sailboat?
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Old 27-08-2011, 14:37   #11
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

OP says he/she gets horribly seasick and wants the smoothest ride possible to the Bahamas. No shame in that. I admire them for wanting to go nonetheless. The Gulf Stream is mercurial and if you want the calmest day, there it is. You can avoid the harsher passages and still enjoy sailing.
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Old 28-08-2011, 07:39   #12
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

Quote:
Originally Posted by John A View Post
If one is troubled with waves over 1 foot or winds above a breeze, why own a sailboat?

The OP said nothing about being troubled by light breezes or 1-foot waves. The OP stated getting horribly sea sick.

As someone who gets seasick myself, the reason to own a sailboat is because I feel the benefits of cruising outweigh the negatives, one of those negative being having to manage seasickness.

Being prone to seasickness does mean I place some limits on my cruising: I''ll probably never be a serious passagemaker and may stay put some days others would travel, but it doesn't mean can't enjoy cruising the islands with some sea sick meds close at hand.
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Old 28-08-2011, 09:45   #13
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

Leave far south of your intended target (ie. Ft. Lauderdale->Memory Rock), wait for south winds, and motorsail to make the best time across. I use a combo of Bonine, MotionEaze, and nibble on some ginger cookies. MotionEase is all natural oil like stuff that you put behind your ears.
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Old 29-08-2011, 09:28   #14
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

This is all very helpful advice. I was told there were favorable wind in fall that could make for a more relaxed passing. Anyone have any sites they use for wind forecasting? Is Windfinder.com a decent one to reference?
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Old 30-08-2011, 10:31   #15
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Re: Sail to Bahamas In Late October, Early November ?

At the helm in the worst of weather will help keep from seasick.
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