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Old 24-03-2015, 04:50   #1
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Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

Looking for some info, we are planning on leaving Freeport, Bahamas and travelling direct to Brunswick, Georgia.

Where do we pick up the Gulfstream? How much added speed, ie knots can we expect?

Thanks!

gunk
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Old 24-03-2015, 05:56   #2
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

The Gulf Stream is not fixed in place so the exact location and speed will vary although less so where it's squeezed between the FL coast and the western Bahamas.

Typically you will start picking up the Gulf Stream a few miles out of West End. The current is stronger in the middle than on the edges but I usually use 1 1/2 kts as the average.

As you go north from West End the Gulf Stream heads north but the US coast line heads slightly west of north so the Gulf Stream will gradually head further from the coast. It might shorten your trip to follow the stream for a while to benefit from the current but at some point you will need to leave the stream to take a course towards Brunswick.
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Old 24-03-2015, 06:27   #3
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

Thanks Skipmac, great information to have on hand. This will be our first trek to Brunswick from Freeport.

Wishing we had AIS for this one, but I'm sure we'll be fine. AIS will be added soon enough!

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Old 24-03-2015, 06:35   #4
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

I have done Abaco northbound many times. It is a great springtime trip. More fish than you can deal with. Usually great weather. AIS would definitely be helpful. Northbounds ride the stream while south bounds tend to go to either side. Have a good trip!
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Old 24-03-2015, 06:43   #5
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

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Originally Posted by gunkylump View Post
Thanks Skipmac, great information to have on hand. This will be our first trek to Brunswick from Freeport.

Wishing we had AIS for this one, but I'm sure we'll be fine. AIS will be added soon enough!

gunk
AIS is not a bad thing but I wouldn't loose too much sleep over the lack of it. I spent 10 years cruising the Caribbean and eastern US and never came close to ramming a ship. Just keep a lookout and don't forget to look behind you occasionally (they're fast and can overtake you quickly) and also behind the genoa if you have a low cut sail.

I did the math once and calculated the time to get out of the way of a big freighter. Don't remember the exact number but it was in seconds. I figured the worst case scenario, you fall asleep and wake up to find yourself directly in front of a ship. To cross all the way across the front of the ship (this assumes you can't easily turn around and you are moving 6 kts) was something like 20-30 seconds.

Of course I'm not advocating such but the point is, these things are big as buildings and even if you do get way too close for comfort it's not hard to dodge out of the way, even at the last second.

In my experience the risk is greater from small boats that generally won't have AIS anyway. Never had a close call with a ship but have had two with sailboats.
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Old 24-03-2015, 09:50   #6
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

A ship cruising at 20kts covers 5nm in 15 minutes. Keeping your radar on 12nm range in shipping lanes helps to prevent them from sneaking up on you.
Don't nap more than 15 min.(Joking)
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Old 24-03-2015, 10:01   #7
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

Gulfstream Live

earth :: an animated map of global wind, weather, and ocean conditions
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Old 24-03-2015, 10:24   #8
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

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And here's another one:
The Florida Current
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Old 24-03-2015, 10:51   #9
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

OP: I'm a little confused, maybe you can help me out.

You're in the Bahamas already. How did you get there? Did you not cross the stream already? Or did you come from somewhere else?
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Old 24-03-2015, 12:53   #10
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Re: Freeport Bahamas to Brunswick, Georgia

Quote:
Originally Posted by deblen View Post
A ship cruising at 20kts covers 5nm in 15 minutes. Keeping your radar on 12nm range in shipping lanes helps to prevent them from sneaking up on you.
Don't nap more than 15 min.(Joking)
And here's the details if you oversleep and wake up 14 minutes too late.

At 20 kts that's roughly 33'/second. A sailboat at 5 Kts will be a hair over 9'/second.

Beam of a large ship might be 150'. More for the largest container ships. Then allow about 40' from bow to stern of the sailboat. So to start from one side of a ship and cross in front of it and clear the other side you would have to cover a minimum of 200' which would take 22-25 seconds.

In that time a ship at 20 kts would cover about 800'.

So if you woke up to see a ship heading straight for your boat you would have time to cross completely across the bow if the ship was more than 800' away.

Again this is a worst case scenario, crossing all the way across the bow of a large ship. Other angles and situations would give you more time to react.

However naval vessels can move a lot faster than 20 kts so in case of an encounter with them all bets are off. On the other hand, they do generally keep a better watch and are almost certainly aware of your position, course and speed.

NOTE!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I am in no way advocating this action. The calculations are there just to illustrate how close you could get to a big ship and still avoid a collision.
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