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Old 22-12-2011, 14:59   #1
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Weather Windows in Gulf Stream

How are weather windows in the Gulf stream between FLorida, and Grand Bahama island the next couple of months?

Here in Texas we get a few calm days followed by extreme storms brought by cold fronts regularly. If you go far enough south you should get below where all but the most extreme fronts stall out.

How about march or april?
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Old 23-12-2011, 12:11   #2
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

When do most of you? cross the Gulf Stream for a run down the Carribean?
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Old 23-12-2011, 12:53   #3
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

If departing from the Carolinas north, early November is the time most choose. Insurance restrictions, if any, generally lift on November 1st. Although the hurricane season isn't officially over until November 30th, tropical storms affecting the route from the East Coast to the Virgin Islands or St Martin are much less frequent in November than October. If you wait, the cold fronts become much stronger and more frequent in late November and on into the winter.
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Old 24-12-2011, 08:31   #4
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

Too late. I'm leaving from Florida, and the cold fronts are already here. I'm looking at a mid spring, (or whenever the cold fronts die down a little), but I'm not sure I can get below hurricane belt before June.
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Old 24-12-2011, 10:10   #5
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

It's "normally" fairly quiet in the Tropics until August, though it's possible that a tropical storm could pop up as early as May (rarely). Keep an eye on the weather and you should be fine through early August, most years.
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Old 24-12-2011, 10:26   #6
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

I know people wait months for the right weather window but it is really quite subjective. If you are an offshore person wave height is not as important as wave period. 4 to 6 ft. wave are fine if the period is over 8 sec depending in the direction. Ft. Lauderdale to West End is an overnight passage or you can do it in the daylight and anchor on the banks until daylight to clear in. Anything with a Northern component should be avoided. Give 24 to 48 hours for the seas to settle down and go. So you need a 3 day window at most. It is doable in Jan. & Feb. but the best weather starts in March & April, then again so does the wave of cruisers. If you are leaving from Texas I would cross further south to take full advantage of the stream.
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Old 24-12-2011, 10:50   #7
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

I have crossed in Jan and Feb. waited 1-2 weeks for a good report with wind east or SE.
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Old 24-12-2011, 11:59   #8
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Re: Weather windows in Gulf Stream

Thanks, I guess if I get across in between cold fronts, then hole up until it blows over, then hop each time it clears up, I get get a long ways south by the time summer comes.
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Old 25-12-2011, 14:18   #9
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Re: Weather Windows in Gulf Stream

check out " The Thornless Path - A Gentleman's Guide to Passages South"
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Old 25-12-2011, 14:53   #10
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Re: Weather Windows in Gulf Stream

Once acrross you are often in protected waters thru the bahamas. Big jumpsx being T&C to DR and DR to PR. Yep, get hat book and all is ready!
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Old 28-12-2011, 14:16   #11
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Re: Weather Windows in Gulf Stream

Cap'n Bill,

The cold fronts are an opportunity! They influence the trades and allow more comfortable and efficient progress. Depending on the strength, they peter out eventually - some don't even make the Abacos, others make it all the way down to the bottom of the Exumas and a few get beyond. (This year I can only recall a few that got as far as Georgetown.)

For the Gulf Stream crossing, just wait until the easterlies swing south of east and go. This happens approximately weekly and a decent front will allow a day crossing towards Bimini, a few hours rest and then on towards the Berrys and beyond.
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