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sempercat23 26-06-2010 02:52

Looking for Some Information and Advice
So i just graduated college and like alot of people was unable to find a job. I have decided the best way to spend my time would be new experiences via adventurous travel. so basically what ive decided is that along with a friend somewhere with in the new year to year and a half we would buy a boat and sail it down to Florida. it wouldn't be a rushed trip and wed be making plenty of stops along the way. I have grown up on boats my entire life and competitively sailed until college. so basically I'm asking for any advice or insight anybody here has on making the trip i.e boat recommendations, pricing, food requirements, best time for travel, and any recommended readings/resources. thanks alot

skipmac 26-06-2010 05:12

Hard to answer without just a little bit more information.

1. It would help a lot if you indicated some rough budget. Did you get a seven figure inheritance for graduation or are you working part time flipping burgers and have about $500 in the bank for boat budget?

2. Where is it that you want to sail from?

3. Food on a boat is about the same as food on land. If the boat has no refrigerator then you will have to stop more often or do with fewer perishables.

4. Time to travel? See question number two.

5. Reading.

- minimalist, any books by Lynn and Larry Pardey
- maximum sailing, any books by Linda and Steve Dashew
- technical, any book by Nigel Calder

You might want to consider coming to Florida to buy the boat since the market here is about as good as anywhere else.

Sailaway Kid 29-06-2010 16:27

I just bought a 24' sailboat and will be sailing it from NJ to Morehead City sometime this summer or early fall. I asked the same questions regarding the possibility of success with my plan. Many sailors with years of experience have tried to convince me my plan would be difficult to accomplish. Since that time I have been reading sailing books, the internet, and talking with anyone who will listen. There may be many dangerous situations in my trip but what does it really mean? I could be sailing in my home area and not aware of a shoal or danger area and get into the same trouble.

If anyone has ever sailed from NJ to the Chesapeak just off shore, I would really appreciate any information to make the trip safer and more pleasurable.

skipmac 29-06-2010 17:04

Made the trip last fall. Would not call it dangerous at all, just need to know basic seamanship, navigation and a bit of common sense.

No tricky offshore hazards, not too much shipping traffic. Trip will be about 24 hours from Sandyhook NJ (NY harbor) to Delaware Bay and the same from Delaware Bay to Chesapeake Bay. Check the weather before you leave, stay far enough offshore that you don't run into the beach and have a little sea room if you get strong onshore winds.

There are a few unlit buoys here and there so overnight you will need to keep a close plot and lookout.

Not an advanced sail but would not recommend for the first time you ever took out a boat.

Sailaway Kid 29-06-2010 17:38

Thanks Skipmac
What happens if I need to take a break somewhere between Sandy Hook and Delaware Bay? Do you know if there are any places to put down the anchor? I know someone said to stay away from someplace sounding like Mautak. I don't think I spelled it right. It is along the coast and an inlet or whatever. It has strong tides. My biggest fear about sailing is that I will have to go to the bathroom or eat, or sleep and no one to take the boat..... I need to learn how to put the sail and boat in neutral. I forgot the term. I would guess that planning the trip around the full moon would be the best solution to sailing for 24 hours.
Sailaway Kid

skipmac 29-06-2010 17:52

Take someone with you. Solo sailing is a lot more advanced skill than going with crew. Why are planning a solo trip anyway?

Sailaway Kid 29-06-2010 18:01

I don't want to go alone but none of my friends are sailors. I posted it on the crew wanted area and got a few replies. I just don't know if someone who has less experience than me is a good idea to take along.

skipmac 29-06-2010 20:05

Having a second hand on board, even someone with no experience, will make a much, much easier trip. Like you ask, what if you need to go to the bathroom or fix lunch.

You can stop a boat at sea by heaving to. There are already threads on the forum discussing this. But some things would be very difficult to do alone for someone with little experience on a boat. Just to have someone steer while you check the charts is a huge help.

Another suggestion, you ask where to stop on the way. You should not even think about making the trip if you can't read the charts and plan the trip by yourself. What if you have an itinerary that someone on the forum gives you and weather or other issues force a change. If you can't read the charts and understand the process you will be up a certain creek without a paddle trying to figure out what to do.

So why not go ahead and get the charts and appropriate guide books, plan the trip, note potential spots to pull in and post your plan for critique?

Sailaway Kid 30-06-2010 09:03


I am in the process of acquiring the charts for my trip. I appreciate the advice. I will certainly plan my trip and I am learning to read the charts and plot a course.

I'll keep you posted when I get the charts. Thanks again for your help.
Sailaway Kid

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