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Old 28-02-2016, 00:57   #46
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Location: Gulf Coast-Bay Saint Louis-South Mississippi
Boat: 1976 Bayfield 25 -Gozzard Designed
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Re: My first Solo Distance Sail

Quote:
Originally Posted by four winds View Post
If your in hurry don't order a burger at the Cove. Even if you're the only customer they don't start cooking it for at least 30-40 minutes. Don't get me wrong, a great place to hang out, been there many times. And a good burger, too.

No doubt Jimmy has eaten one there but it's not the only place that claims a connection to the song. His sister owns
restaurant "down the road" (Lulu's) and lives in the area. If you happen to see him, don't make a fuss as he doesn't care for that.
One thing about sailing is you can't be in a hurry... at least not on my boat! I'm sure a 2 hour lunch would be just what the doctor ordered when I get there. Been to LULU's a couple of times when I lived in Point Clear... great grouper sandwich!
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Old 28-02-2016, 00:59   #47
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Re: My first Solo Distance Sail

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Originally Posted by thomm225 View Post
Yep, he was saying the pilot charts said SE but from 10 years of practical experience from say late Spring as in June through September Prevailing Winds from Ft Walton to Biloxi are SSW-SW (12 noon - dusk)

At the time I was there, we were sailing boats without engines so doing a 30-100 mile race it was important to really know the winds in the area.

I did the 100 miler out of Ft Walton 4X on boats from 17'-20'. The fastest trip was 12 hours on a Nacra 6.0 sloop rig no spinnaker. The wind went SSW at around 9am or so that day and stayed there most of day. (September 1997)

Either way, have a safe trip and don't ruin it with lack of sleep. You say it's just for the weekend.

You could drive over in what 2 hours?

Typical Wind forecast for the Race:

Round the Island Race, 100 Miles, Ft. Walton Beach, FL :: Catamaran Sailboats at TheBeachcats.com

The race traditionally begins at 7a.m. with one start for all competitors. The initial direction is due east in the Choctawhatchee Bay as the boats head for the East Pass located 3 miles from the start in Destin. The wind is usually 4 to 6 knots from the Northeast so the start is a one legged beat. Rounding a turning mark off the shoals of Crab Island the boats head for the Destin Bridge and the East Pass. There they meet the Destin Charter Boat fleet heading out the Pass for a colorful parade of sailors and fishing boats. Spectators line the Destin Bridge and capture some beautiful shots as the fleet will hoist spinnakers using the NNE breeze to speed them out the Pass.

The Destin Pass is lined with white sandy beaches and the water is turquoise so the run to the Sea Buoy is spectacular. It is approximately half a mile out the Pass so leaving this to starboard the fleet will now head due west for 50 miles of beautiful sailing in the Gulf of Mexico. As it is usually favored to stay along the shore to take advantage of the east to west flowing beach current most of the competitors will stay within 1 to 2 miles of shore. As the sun rises higher and starts its usual east to west trajectory the wind follows it. Thus the NNE breeze in the morning will give way to a Southeast veer that will usually turn southerly before going to the Southwest in the late afternoon. This makes for a lot of spinnaker work and reaching in the Gulf before reaching the Pensacola Pass.
Thomm,
I wanted the boat there for the weekend just to put put about and get to the little island in the middle of perdido pass, and maybe cruise on over to Tacky Jacks for a bushwacker. But, I do have paddleboards for that!!
Sounds like an awesome race...let me know if you ever need crew!!
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Old 28-02-2016, 01:17   #48
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Re: My first Solo Distance Sail

Cat Island Shake down report!
Sailed out at 1730... just as sun was setting. Everything was going great until the sun set.... I found out the backlight on my GPS doesn't work. Navigated off my phone the whole way.

Found a battery monitor to be incessently beeping so I checked it. One battery read 100% and the other 0%, though still showed a 12.8 volt charge. I'm going to replace it . I chose not to run the tiller autopilot due to the possiblilty that only one of my batteries was good. My water pump is electric so I didn't want to put too much drain on the one battery.

We had a great wind for a reach all the way to cat island. Dealt with a slight traffic situation at the ICW but we luffed sails and let the barge go ahead. It is just safer to do so. Right of way or not, its tough to stop two fully laden barges with only a 2,000 hp tug. Learned that running the Houston ship channel during weekends when I was in the Academy!

We anchored just off the west tip, about 0.5 miles from the island. There is a dropoff from 6 foot to 12, and we were hoping some redfish would be lurking about. We soaked cracked crab all night, but had no bites. Also the wind was supposed to lay down, but it only picked up. Made for a rough night of sleep. But we thoroughly enjoyed being out there, cooking steaks, fishing not catching, and enjoying the stars.

Woke up the next morning, weighed anchor, and motored to withing 1/4 mile or so of the island, and re anchored. Pumped up the paddleboards and went and explored the west end flats. Lots of grass beds, and the wind laid down beautifully!! Chased some redfish around the flats but none would hit our topwater baits. It was nice seeing schools swim underneath us though.

Went back to the boat, hoisted sails, and we were off. Wind picked up to 12-15 knots to provide what I was hoping to be a nice sail in. Turns out, that little Bayfield pitches excessively against a 2-3 foot short chop. Absolutely would kill any boat speed we had acquired. I may need new sails (mine are old and certainly not racing material) to keep the boat speed up, or I may need to redistribute weight so it is all not concentrated midships of the vessel. I'm not sure, but we had to put on some power to keep our boat speed up.

Upon coming into the bridges of Bay Saint Louis, it was dead upwind. So we pulled down the sails and motored in the rest of the way. The little yanmar seemed to be running smoother and more efficiently than ever with fresh fluids in her. 4.5-4.8 knots against a 2-3 foot chop and 15-20 (by then). Not bad for a 7 hp diesel. I'm hoping with a fresh bottom job I can get somewhere closer to 5 knots under power against a head wind and 5.5 on smooth water.

It was a great trip. The boat proved to be seaworthy and a joy on a reach. Not so much upwind. I'm happy the shoal draft keel allows me to sneak into shallow areas, it definitely helped when exploring the island.

Clyde at rebel boat works in biloxi had a full yard, so 'll be gettin a new bottom in March. Stay tuned!!
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Old 05-03-2016, 05:45   #49
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Re: My first Solo Distance Sail

Did some electrical reseach.
My alternator is 35 amp. Water, and fuel pump draw 10 amp/hour. My current setup as far as battery bank is 150 a/h.
I'm buying two new 100a/h deepcycle batteries to replace the current single deep cycle and single starting. I believe I will still have enough cold crank amps to turn over the little yanmar. Especially with decompression lever engaged until the motor gets a decent rpm under starter (2-3 revolutions).
With a 200 amp hour setup I should be good to go for autopilot tiller!
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