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Old 10-01-2011, 02:41   #1
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St Martin to Florida

Hello All

I am supposed to sail from St Martin up to Florida in early February. I have not done this route before and have conflicting opinions. One, that it should be a fine and easy sail and another, that it will be a tough beat up to Florida.

Are there any other opinions out there as I would love to hear them.

Thanks

Craig
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Old 10-01-2011, 03:39   #2
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Usually down wind and down current. In Feb you can get head winds due to northerly lows. The pilot chart shows fair winds over 70% of the time. I did it in April straight up the Old Bahama Channel staying on the Bahama side away from Cuba and had winds aft of the beam all the time.

If it is a beat you get the current closing your tacking angles but the wind into current might make for choppy seas.

Might get more exciting if you go to the East of the Bahamas where there are bigger waves, less fair current and more chance of a low producing bad conditions.

Start watching the wind patterns on passage.com to get a feel for conditions:

http://www.passageweather.com/index....westindies.htm
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Old 10-01-2011, 04:27   #3
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To add to what Phil said, the further north you are the stronger the fronts will be. Also, you'll need to watch the weather patterns prior to actually crossing the Gulf Stream, as northerly winds over 15 kts tend to fluff it up. You don't want to be in the Stream during or just after a frontal passage.

A good source of weather info is Chris Parker's morning broadcasts on the SSB. You can find the freqs and times here: http://www.mwxc.com/services.php
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Old 10-01-2011, 04:56   #4
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Another advantage of the Old Bahama Channel is that you can cross the Gulf Stream well south and have a better chance of avoiding the combination of the Stream and the northerlies.
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