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Old 19-04-2011, 05:57   #1
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Transatlantic Sail Plan

We are planning our first transatlantic crossing to leave Ft. Pierce, FL, bound for Bermuda sometime in mid-May. Then onto the Azores to spend a few weeks there. We are planning to winter on-board in Spain.

Anybody have similar plans or wish to share their experience from this crossing?
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Old 19-04-2011, 06:18   #2
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

Take a lot of fuel with you.
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Old 19-04-2011, 06:24   #3
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

Good luck on your voyage. I believe I have met you guys, past summer in Ecum Secum Nova Scotia. I was one of the fisherman talking to you on the dock while we unloaded our catch of slime eels.
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Old 19-04-2011, 06:26   #4
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

I am planning a similar trip from the Chesapeake. I would enjoy hearing from anyone with experience that they would like to share. I understand that calms are common on the run from Bermuda to the Azores and a turn to the north is in order.
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Old 19-04-2011, 07:02   #5
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

Sounds like a nice trip.

Enjoy yourselves.
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Old 19-04-2011, 08:50   #6
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

Do you have Jimmy Cornell's "World Sailing Routes" book? That seems to be the bible for route planning.
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Old 19-04-2011, 09:01   #7
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

I did a lot of research into making this trip and the website that made the most sense to me was this one Routes to the Azores The collective wisdom over the ages has been to sail NE to 40^ N and then make your Easting. This would allow you to miss the Azores High. With weather info more available now the idea seems to be to not go as far North and to proceed in lighter winds a little further south. Here is a quote from Woosh's website:

he pays attention to the current Surface Analysis with an eye to two goals: Don’t get trapped in the High and don’t get so far North you’ll be uncomfortable. Given most of the boats making this passage today and the on-board weather information available, both are realistic goals. And here’s one other fact that makes Klaus’ opinion worth considering: he’s made these passages, almost every segment of every one of them, single-handed.

Good luck with the trip
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Old 19-04-2011, 09:57   #8
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

There's a lot of good information in the SV Sarah / Woosh site. I've read it fairly completely and learned much. Good suggestion.
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Old 19-04-2011, 10:05   #9
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

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he pays attention to the current Surface Analysis with an eye to two goals: Donít get trapped in the High and donít get so far North youíll be uncomfortable.
Sound advice. I had good weatherfax reception all the way with just a little degen 1103 pluged into fm radio aerial.

This was my track last year , frustratingly windlessly slow to up around 38deg N. Then turn right and fast downwind nearly all the way, ran out of wind a day or so before the Azores. But by that time so relaxed it really didn't matter .

Will without doubt visit the Azores again
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Old 19-04-2011, 11:15   #10
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

Unless you really want or are required to visit Bermuda to refuel/rewater, you could save money by using the Gulf Stream to head north to 35-40N and then do as others have said...check the march of the continental air masses, and if good, fly downwind with the thicker sort of assymetrical spinnaker or twin jibs.

May is a touch early, because you could still get a cold low up your stern far less likely in June. But if you left around the 20th, you could take it easy to Bermuda and reassess.

I suppose that's the upside of Bermuda: You can stop and shelter if things have gone wrong.
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Old 19-04-2011, 15:29   #11
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

I'm planning on heading the reverse route. From the North Atlantic coast across to Ireland and England, then on down to France and Spain. From there to the Azores and Bermuda. I'm planning on doing all this next summer if all goes well. Right now I'm toying with the idea of single handing it, but I'l most likely bring my brother along with me. I guess I have to read up a bit more on the currents and weather patterns as I get closer to departure.
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Old 19-04-2011, 17:48   #12
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

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Originally Posted by SPCarroll View Post
I'm planning on heading the reverse route. From the North Atlantic coast across to Ireland and England, then on down to France and Spain. From there to the Azores and Bermuda. I'm planning on doing all this next summer if all goes well. Right now I'm toying with the idea of single handing it, but I'l most likely bring my brother along with me. I guess I have to read up a bit more on the currents and weather patterns as I get closer to departure.
From what I have heard...this can be the fastest route, being close to a great circle route, but you will be chased by one low system after the other. Cold wet and rainy most of the way. My family lives in N. Ireland and they can tell you all about it. So, to me, the southern route, with the turn north to avoid the Azores high, seem to make sense as I am in no hurry. After all, it is cruising. So, why not stop and see the Atlantic Islands along the way.
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Old 20-04-2011, 08:30   #13
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

I've done the westbound route a few times from caribbean. Agree with the advice to take lotsa fuel. Also, i've had a better time transat since fitting AIS B transponder, few if any "wow that ship's suddenly a bit close" events.
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Old 12-05-2011, 13:41   #14
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Re: Transatlantic Sail Plan

We have the same plans as yourself. We are anchored on the south side of Causeway Island, Fort Pierce (ICW opposite R188) waiting for weather to take us to Bermuda which makes a nice break before heading to the Azores. Did this trip 9 years ago and are hoping this one will be as enjoyable. Our email is tinawburgess*at*hotmail*dot*com
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