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Old 19-08-2008, 10:13   #1
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Question Sailing the Caribbean - is it possible in ....??

Does anyone know where I can get the Marine Weather information of the Caribbean Sea between Mexico and the islands from the Gulf of Mexico (starting in Florida) to Trinidad during March / April, including sea current and wind directions?

Or if you have experience of sailing / cruising during this time, I would love to hear about it.

I have heard that there is a window, at this time of year for good sailing south through the Caribbean. Did I understand correctly?

I also found a book called the 'Concise Guide to Caribbean Weather' by David Jones... any comments?

In advance many thanks
rascalarg
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Old 19-08-2008, 10:39   #2
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look for a "pilot chart" for the area. they have wind and sea averages from the past ... lot of years (25 or 50 i think)
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Old 19-08-2008, 11:18   #3
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Pilot Charts for North Atlantic Ocean, including Gulf of Mexico:
Maritime Safety Information

March: http://www.nga.mil/MSISiteContent/St...106/106mar.pdf

April: http://www.nga.mil/MSISiteContent/St...106/106apr.pdf

Caribbean Currents below:
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Old 19-08-2008, 11:56   #4
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Thank for this information, it has all the information I was looking for...
Much appreciated
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Old 19-08-2008, 14:23   #5
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Unhappy "mainly fine weathah"

As the Caribe broadcast goes "mainly fine weathah" Seriously, that would be a great time of year, assuming you watch the wx report/nets along the way. The wind will generally blow from the east daily. You will be making day sails much of the time between islands. An occasional overnighter. (Turks to Dom Republic, Dom Republic to Puerto Rico, Grenada to Trinidad)
The lee side of the islands will generally not be strong winds.... if any. You will get hammered between the islands on your day sails at times. (It can be 12 knots behinds the islands and 25-30 between.) You will want to be to Trinidad or at least Grenada by June sometime. Personally I would want as much time Jan-June as possilble to linger...Damn.... I gotta go back!...........
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Old 19-08-2008, 14:44   #6
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Thanks for this Cheechako, sounds like you have some good times down there... After looking briefly at the charts I did see the easterly winds generally between 11 - 16kn, but it make sense that I will get hammered (by the wind of course, not by alcohol ;-)) between the islands... but is does sound like fun...

What about the top part from Florida, round the North of Cuba? Would I have the east wind behind me, battling against the current ..... or what would you suggest would be the best route to get to the Caribbean at this time of year...

Many thanks again...
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Old 19-08-2008, 14:46   #7
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I also found a book called the 'Concise Guide to Caribbean Weather' by David Jones... any comments?:
Great book, David really had a handle on Caribbean weather patterns.
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Old 19-08-2008, 16:06   #8
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Passage Weather

We have been relying upon Passage Weather at http://www.passageweather.com for some time and have found their projections very accurate. For example, they predicted the course actually taken by Fay yesterday morning, long before anyone else did. They were also dead on with weather conditions for our trip to Key West and back in June. You might find the site useful.

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Old 19-08-2008, 18:45   #9
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This information is excellent. Can you instruct us on how to change the month? I tried going into the Marintime web site without positive results. Assistance would be greatly appreciated! Thanks
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Old 19-08-2008, 19:09   #10
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George,

It's a very quirky site, and requires a bit of patience and work-around sometimes. It doesn't like to be linked to for some reason. Try this one, and select Atlas of Pilot Charts from the Publications menu.

http://www.nga.mil/portal/site/marit...c24fd73927a759
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Old 20-08-2008, 04:36   #11
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Thanks Hud!!
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Old 20-08-2008, 05:18   #12
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Google “Pilot Charts” or “Atlas of Pilot Charts”, then select the NGA “Maritime Safety Information” return:

Or goto URL: nga.mil/portal/site/maritime/?epi_menuItemID=a633978aca46a1625b2a7fbd3227a759

Hot Link (which, as Hud indicates, is VERY quirky):
http://www.nga.mil/portal/site/marit...2a7fbd3227a759
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Old 21-08-2008, 13:16   #13
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You need a vhf and a short wave radio, then once you get out cruising, there are local 'nets' that you will find, giving really good weather forecasts every morning and evening too sometimes. It is suprising how much information is available over the radio, from fellow cruisers. I have all frequency details on board the tri, but here in UK my memory does not retain such 'boaty stuff' when I am landbound. We sailed from Honduras up through Belize and Mexico to FL, 30 Dec to 11 Feb '08, not rushing, and waiting for weather, with decent forecasts all the way.

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Old 21-08-2008, 13:22   #14
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Just rememberd, you might like to read 'The thornless passage', author beginning with a P !! My excuse is old age memory loss.

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Old 21-08-2008, 13:49   #15
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+1 on the Thornless Passage

great book. Had dinner with the Author on his boat in Luperon. Down to earth, a little opinionated, but pretty much right on!
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