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Old 12-11-2013, 14:35   #16
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

Sort of like way out of our pattern. I think 100% doable too. If you turn in after dark, then even offshore you can have 100% daylight sailing.

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Old 12-11-2013, 15:21   #17
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

We only been boating at night during the Christmas time on the lake with several hundred other boats. However, we do like to leave early in the morning, 6:00 AM, before sun rise when there are few boats, well not counting the hundred of so small boats fishing, which is usually foggy. The reason is we like to get to our destination about noon, while the grand children sleep, to a void the ARE WE THERE YET, and before the thermal winds cone up. When running in fog you have to rely on your instruments and you senses. In the fog I usually have the boat on auto pilot has it can steer are course better than I can. Its harder and more nerve racking than running at night in many ways. I will take night over fog anytime.
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Old 12-11-2013, 16:49   #18
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

every time i go sail i make a passage. those passages include night sailing in pacific ocean. it is gorgeous.
in gom we sailed at night--it was gorgeous except when we had severe tboomers...nasty things, but we sailed thru em.
sailing at night is beautiful time on ocean. make sure weather is good for ye. i need more than 10 kts winds to sail this boat. if i dont have the wind i will drift. is gorgeous drifting on pacific in full moonlight,l although i like sailing better...
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Old 12-11-2013, 17:07   #19
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

Nothing like the stars and the phopheresece when your offshore sailing at night. One night while steering from the low side, I giant dorsal fin appeared right next to me close enough that I could have touched it. It scared the crap out of me. Turned out to be a dolphin come to play in the quarter wake. Dolphins lighting up the phosphorescence at night are quite the sight. Nothing better then sailing at night!
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Old 12-11-2013, 17:16   #20
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Forgot about the phosphoresce, that alone is worth seeing, the wake is what I remember the most, been a long time
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Old 13-11-2013, 09:15   #21
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

I'm with Dockhead, night sailing is magical. On the east coast of the UK if you want to cross to Holland then it involves a night sail so did it there and back this year and the week after sailed the 70 miles to Wells-next-the-Sea overnight Friday and back overnight Sunday. Both these legs were less than ideal but still wonderfully satisfying.
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Old 13-11-2013, 09:29   #22
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

first in general - we plan our passages at 5k and arrival in daylight - so say we are going to do 100nm we plan on a 20hr trip -- so we may leave about 1200 or later and if we make more than 5k (which we do a lot) we get in early - if we only make 5k then we we get in still in daylight -- we REALLY REALLY hate arriving in the dark and in 6 years have done it maybe 2-3 times - for us it is planning - we do not mind leaving in the dark as we have planned our exit and know where most things are and have left as early as 0300 --

now for the loop - we can only talk about the east coast of the usa which we have done 2 1/2 times - unless we were offshore we only ran in the day and planned on about 50nm a day which is bridge dependent among other things - also anchorages - we planned our anchorages before we left so we would drop the pick at say 1600 to 1700 -- after all our sundowners start at 1700

hope this helps
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Old 13-11-2013, 10:43   #23
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

I sail at night fairly regularly, but only in known waters. As others have said, a quiet night with a bit of wind, the sound of water gently lapping against the hulls, stars out, phosphorescence around the boat - it's absolutely beautiful.
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Old 13-11-2013, 10:57   #24
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

There seem to be a lot of vague pronouncements about the safety of sailing on "inland waters" on the East Coast at night. There are relatively open inland waters like the Chesapeake Bay, and there are the "ditches" like much of the Intracoastal.

While I agree that it is probably prudent to avoid running the "ditches" at night, sailing at night on the more open bodies of water and on coastwise offshore passages is a delightful experience and quite safe as long as you take pains to learn how to interpret lights.

I don't sail offshore much anymore (no longer have an appropriate boat for it), and I now pretty much just cruise the Chesapeake, but my jaunts usually include at least some nighttime sailing. Love it!
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Old 13-11-2013, 11:35   #25
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

I only sail at night if it is going to be out in the open or if it is going to be in a channel etc that I know.

One of the good things about night sailing is you just stop looking out for the lobster pots! One of the bad things about sailing at night is you can not see the lobster pots!
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Old 13-11-2013, 14:38   #26
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

On the open ocean on a passage, night sailing is great....on the Cheasapeake it is not wise unless you stay in the channel...too many crab pots!
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Old 13-11-2013, 17:21   #27
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

Crab pots? I laugh at crab pots.

All the boats I've bought have had the prop in an aperture... well protected from pot warps. Never picked up a pot in 40 years.

Besides, we're supposed to be sailing the beautiful, quiet Chesapeake at night, not motoring.
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Old 13-11-2013, 19:14   #28
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Lots of night sailing, gotta get places. I often take off at night if it means arriving in daylight.

I've sailed the bay in the dark, taking advantage of north winds to cover miles. AIS is crucial and if under sail, no need to fret to much about pots with the right underbody.

ICW Is not a great place to be in the dark, but Ive carried on in the winter well after dark on the waccamaw, neuse and pamlico. Have to be careful not to hit day markers and flotsam. Far from ideal. Not recommending.
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Old 13-11-2013, 19:31   #29
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

Night = magic in ONLY the right places to do so, as many have mentioned.

Time to do the loop from your OP? The Great Loop Association has all of that info documented.

Have a great trip.
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Old 13-11-2013, 21:15   #30
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Re: How Often Do You Sail/Cruise At Night?

All our sailing when we are not cruiseing, is both day and night sailing here in the Gulf! And we are doing this for fishing mostly!! We leave 4 or 5 hours before sundown, get offshore and fish till the next day around 2 or 3 PM and head in to be at our dock before sundown! works for us and we get somefish and some good night sailing to boot!! Theres very few nicer places to night sail then gulf in good weather! And the fishin is hard to beat!! just our 2 cents
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