Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 10-11-2012, 07:53   #16
Senior Cruiser
 
atoll's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: gettin naughty on the beach in cornwall
Boat: 63 custom alloy sloop,macwester26,prout snowgoose 37 elite catamaran!
Posts: 9,311
Images: 75
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Quote:
Originally Posted by btrayfors View Post
Vic,

Lots of numbers and directions being tossed about, some rather cavalierly IMHO.

Bermuda is in the same longitude as St. Thomas (65W) and is only 630nm ESE of the Chesapeake Bay. Pick your weather carefully while waiting in Norfolk or Little Creek. It took us 4.5 days.

Once in Bermuda you have more options. Wait for weather. Sail due south to the BVI or St. Thomas if you like (took us 5.5 days). From the BVI, St. Martin is an overnite trip across the Anegada Passage...about 100 nm.

Or, if the weather is right and you feel like it, head a little further East directly for the Leeward Is. instead of making landfall in the Virgins.

December should be fine, so long as you're very careful to watch the weather and -- as others have said -- get across the Gulf Stream fast.

Bill
as i stated in my first post,since i have never sailed this passage,and can only offer,estimates,be it sage or cavalier advice!!
,perhaps you could answer vic's other question,which was about heading south to the bahamas,then island hopping east to the windwards in dec/jan.
__________________

__________________
my catamaran building project updates http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...36#post2502136
atoll is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 08:32   #17
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Jul 2006
Location: Chesapeake Region and Maine
Boat: 42' Bob Perry sloop
Posts: 4,038
Images: 4
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Quote:
Originally Posted by atoll View Post
...perhaps you could answer vic's other question,which was about heading south to the bahamas,then island hopping east to the windwards in dec/jan.
Question has been asked and answered a hundred times on this and other boards. Books have been written about it.

Yes, of course, it's possible to go south to Florida, then work your way East thru the Bahamas, Puerto Rico, etc. In December or any other time.

BUT, it takes MUCH more time and patience, involves fighting winds and currents most of the way, and is not the way I'd do it.

BTW, at the moment there are many, many boats doing it this way. Forty are registered for the Caribbean 1500 which departed the Chesapeake last weekend and over 50 are registered in the Salty Dog Rally which has been departing all week. In a typical year you can count on there being many more boats which are not registered in either of these events and are headed for the Virgins or Leewards.

Moreover, in his original post Vic stated that he can't get under the bridges on the ICW, so would have to go offshore down to Florida or the Bahamas. Doable, certainly, but once you get to the Bahamas you still have a long way to go to windward to get to the Virgins or Leeward islands.

Bill
__________________

__________________
btrayfors is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 10:04   #18
CF Adviser
Moderator Emeritus
 
Hud3's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Sep 2007
Location: Virginia
Boat: Island Packet 380, now sold
Posts: 8,929
Images: 49
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Vic,

As much as I like Bermuda and as much as I'd love to buy BlueStocking a beer, my personal preference is to skip the stop and head down to the islands non-stop. It takes two or three days for the crew to get into the offshore passagemaking routine, and making landfall after only 4-1/2 days destroys the rhythm. Again, just my personal preference. Of course, if you've always wanted to see Bermuda, this would be your chance!

If you can read weather charts and the data available on the Internet, you'll be able to pick a good window to jump from Norfolk across the Gulf Stream. Otherwise, consider hiring a weather router. I've seen weather charts reporting 90-100 kt storms out there in Decembers past.

Departing Hampton Roads at noon, you should be across the Stream by nightfall the next day. We would generally head SE almost to Cape Hatteras before entering the Stream. It's generally at it's narrowest there.

If you head out after a front blows through, you'll most likely experience light SE winds, clocking to SW and building as the next front approaches. You should be across the Stream when the front passes over you. Winds will rapidly clock NW, N and NNE, likely building to gale force. Then it should be a reach with quartering seas, and likely leftover crossing seas of lesser magnitude. If it's a strong front it could carry you all the way to the Tradewinds. If weak, you'll have a day or so of motoring through the Horse Latitudes to reach the Trades.

I strongly advise you to look into some means of determining where the cold eddies are located. The Gulf Stream spins them off to the east. If you get into the wrong side of one, it can cost you 1-2 knots of SOG. On the other hand, if you play it right, you can get a very nice boost. Jenifer Clark and Commanders Weather both offer Gulf Stream charts with eddy locations.

Best of luck!
__________________
Hud
Hud3 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 11:21   #19
Senior Cruiser
 
Blue Stocking's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2008
Location: St. Georges, Bda
Boat: Rhodes Reliant 41ft
Posts: 4,115
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Hud3 View Post
Vic,

As much as I like Bermuda and as much as I'd love to buy BlueStocking a beer, my personal preference is to skip the stop and head down to the islands non-stop. It takes two or three days for the crew to get into the offshore passagemaking routine, and making landfall after only 4-1/2 days destroys the rhythm. Again, just my personal preference. Of course, if you've always wanted to see Bermuda, this would be your chance!

If you can read weather charts and the data available on the Internet, you'll be able to pick a good window to jump from Norfolk across the Gulf Stream. Otherwise, consider hiring a weather router. I've seen weather charts reporting 90-100 kt storms out there in Decembers past.

Departing Hampton Roads at noon, you should be across the Stream by nightfall the next day. We would generally head SE almost to Cape Hatteras before entering the Stream. It's generally at it's narrowest there.

If you head out after a front blows through, you'll most likely experience light SE winds, clocking to SW and building as the next front approaches. You should be across the Stream when the front passes over you. Winds will rapidly clock NW, N and NNE, likely building to gale force. Then it should be a reach with quartering seas, and likely leftover crossing seas of lesser magnitude. If it's a strong front it could carry you all the way to the Tradewinds. If weak, you'll have a day or so of motoring through the Horse Latitudes to reach the Trades.

I strongly advise you to look into some means of determining where the cold eddies are located. The Gulf Stream spins them off to the east. If you get into the wrong side of one, it can cost you 1-2 knots of SOG. On the other hand, if you play it right, you can get a very nice boost. Jenifer Clark and Commanders Weather both offer Gulf Stream charts with eddy locations.

Best of luck!
Agree with Bill and Hud3.

Weather has not been good around here in the last few years.
Come East, and turn south before Bermuda.
Listen to Herb.
__________________
so many projects--so little time !!
Blue Stocking is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 11:35   #20
Senior Cruiser
 
atoll's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: gettin naughty on the beach in cornwall
Boat: 63 custom alloy sloop,macwester26,prout snowgoose 37 elite catamaran!
Posts: 9,311
Images: 75
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

vic are you taking crew or just you and sandy?
__________________
my catamaran building project updates http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...36#post2502136
atoll is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 11:38   #21
Registered User

Join Date: Jun 2010
Location: Sailing the Caribbean
Boat: Switch 51
Posts: 1,498
Go out to 65W and turn south.
__________________
SVNeko is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 19:51   #22
Registered User
 
VirtualVagabond's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Australia
Boat: CT 54... for our sins!
Posts: 2,084
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Quote:
Originally Posted by atoll View Post
vic are you taking crew or just you and sandy?
At the moment we can't lock in a departure time because we're having to complete work before we can go. It makes it hard for others to plan to come along.
My guess is it will be early December, and probably just Sandy and I.
Why, you feeling like a Caribbean holiday?

Vic
__________________
One must live the way one thinks, or end up thinking the way one lives - Paul Bourget

www.windwanderer.weebly.com
VirtualVagabond is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 20:08   #23
Senior Cruiser
 
atoll's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Mar 2010
Location: gettin naughty on the beach in cornwall
Boat: 63 custom alloy sloop,macwester26,prout snowgoose 37 elite catamaran!
Posts: 9,311
Images: 75
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Quote:
Originally Posted by VirtualVagabond View Post
At the moment we can't lock in a departure time because we're having to complete work before we can go. It makes it hard for others to plan to come along.
My guess is it will be early December, and probably just Sandy and I.
Why, you feeling like a Caribbean holiday?

Vic
i would love to come and give you a hand but unfortunately i have to go and help out my old mum in hungary who is having a hip replacement on the 12 of december,so will probably be tied up there till mid january.

i really would advise taking a couple of extra crew for that passage,as going to windward can be very taxing plus you have a lot of untried systems,where brute force may be needed for a fix.
plus if your auto pilot stops working,2 up is very hard work.
i'm sure sandy would be less anxious as well.

i'm pretty sure you will not have a problem finding good people at short notice.
cheers alex
__________________
my catamaran building project updates http://www.cruisersforum.com/forums/...36#post2502136
atoll is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 10-11-2012, 20:11   #24
Registered User
 
VirtualVagabond's Avatar

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Australia
Boat: CT 54... for our sins!
Posts: 2,084
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Also thanks to all the others who have been chipping in with their knowledge and experience. It all helps a lot.

Vic
__________________
One must live the way one thinks, or end up thinking the way one lives - Paul Bourget

www.windwanderer.weebly.com
VirtualVagabond is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-11-2012, 19:17   #25
CF Adviser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Boat: Custom Van De Stadt 47 Samoa
Posts: 3,745
Re: Chesapeake South in December?

Quote:
Originally Posted by atoll View Post
erstarzinger?
I just noticed this thread . . . the information given has been pretty spot on.

1. There are good gulf stream charts on the web. My favorite two are: High res GS and GS comparisons

And if you get gribs (and you should if you are going to be doing offshore sailing) then you can also get the RTOFS model gribs (Which is an ocean current model).

It's overkill for cruising, but the most sophisticated tool (still relatively easy to use) is routing software like Expedition, that can take both wind and current gribs as inputs and output an optimal route (with features like routing around winds or waves over any limit). This is fun in a geeky way, but not necessary at all. You can perfectly well just eyeball the wind and current data and find a good route.

2. As stated in a post above, I like to leave Norfolk and go SE to get across the Gulf Stream ASAP. In December it will be real cold on the west side and T shirt weather on the east side.

3. As to Bermuda or not, I would leave that decision open until you see the specific weather pattern. It's a nice stop. Sometimes it makes a lot of sense to go there and other times it does not. Sometimes things have broken on the boat and you go there even if you had not planned to - so take charts anyway.

4. It usually makes sense to error a bit to the east along the whole route. You are then closer to Bermuda if you need to duck in, and you have better wind angles on your approach to the islands.

5. If you want to cruise the entire island chain, there is an argument for a landfall at St. Martin rather than VI's. And do the VI's at the end of the island cruise rather than at the start. But either way will work.
__________________

__________________
estarzinger is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off




Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 07:49.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.