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Old 05-05-2013, 21:07   #1
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Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

Hello,
I am very grateful for the excellent advice received so far! We have made our way from Norfolk to Sandy Hook on our way to Boston and are about to push for the long island sound from sandy hook. I am challenged by timing the currents, can anyone provide detailed tips? We are on a 35' w/ a 27hp yanmar and easily move 5.5 knots without current cruising but can push it to 6.5 knots without stressing the engine. When would y'all recommend we leave Sandy Hook to time the currents at Hell's gate? I have read to hit battery park by 1 hr after low tide at battery but it looks like we will hit considerable current north frustrating calculating an accurate departure time.

As always, any guidance is greatly appreciated!

Thanks again!
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Old 06-05-2013, 01:03   #2
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

Figure it will take you about 4 hours to get the 15 miles from Sandy Hook to the Battery, with an average current of 1.5 knots against you. If you leave Sandy Hook about an hour before low tide at the Battery, you should get in the East River about the time the flood starts in earnest, and it will sweep you all the way into Long Island Sound. Don't get too stressed about Hells Gate--I always go through near max current and its fun to be hitting 10 knots over the ground. Just watch your ranges as you go by the South end of Roosevelt Island and through the Brothers. We usually drop the pick in Manahasset Bay, but there are now free 48 hour moorings for visitors.
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Old 06-05-2013, 06:33   #3
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

One little thing that can catch some folks is to stay west of Roosevelt Island as the lift bridge over the east channel only has 40 feet of vertical clearance when down. If you've caught the favorable current you will get swept down and under that bridge pretty fast.
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Old 06-05-2013, 17:26   #4
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

Thanks for the tips! Got through with no problems and now on the Long Island sound making a long press for Buzzard's bay. Any tips in exiting LI sound? It is likely we will arrive with an unfavorable current, and I have read that going between plum and gull islands is a good way to handle this circumstance (max current appears to be ~3kt and is reported to be brief). Any thoughts on that? Any other tips for this part of the passage?

Thanks again!
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Old 06-05-2013, 17:41   #5
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

Quote:
Originally Posted by Kettlewell View Post
One little thing that can catch some folks is to stay west of Roosevelt Island as the lift bridge over the east channel only has 40 feet of vertical clearance when down. If you've caught the favorable current you will get swept down and under that bridge pretty fast.
The last time I went through the Coasties were inquiring why I was using the left channel as they seemed to forget the lift bridge ( now fixed bridge on right channel ) limited our choices!!
We got the Coastie escort through on both sides as United Nations was in session at the time. As if a Ericson 32 is menacing!
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Old 06-05-2013, 19:47   #6
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

Looks like you got some great weather and a good breeze. Make the most of it! Watch out for commercial traffic on the Sound. It can be busy, and they're not expecting sailboats to be out- especially at night- this time of year.
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Old 08-05-2013, 14:15   #7
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

The Eldridge Tide and Pilot Book, 2013, has detailed information about the current changes on Long Island Sound and The Race. If planned correctly you'll get a big boost from the current. I strongly suggest you look at Eldgridge's.
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Old 08-05-2013, 14:57   #8
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Re: Timing Sandy Hook to Hells Gate (and to LI sound)

You definitely want to catch the flood in the East River. With only 5.5 knots of headway, you'd be motoring backwards against max ebb. The timing is easy, however, and don is right, don't worry about Hell Gate. Most times it's pretty tame. Best way to calculate all tides and currents, I've found is with psiegel's advice: Eldridge. There are more than tables in it. There are valuable general descriptions of tides, currents and timing, along with charts indicating where the strongest and weakest parts of the current occur.
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