This is my first post to the forum and appreciate feedback/advise from any of the seasoned sailors in this network.
While we have crewed a 36' PDQ
from the USVI to Tampa & done some sailing in the USVI, as well as our local lake, we consider ourselves novices. We bought a 1989 Gemini
3000 & have done all the improvements we thought necessary to take her cruising. Now, we've brought her down the river system to the gulf but have not yet crossed over from Apalachicola to the west coast
of FL. Not enough weather
window this time of year for our comfort level. Locals have warned us of the armpit/Golden Coast "washing machine" in Jan & Feb & given the delays we've already experienced, we've decided to stay put until March. Longterm, however, we are wanting to get over to the Bahamas
for a few weeks/months.
QUESTION: Considering our lack of experience, what time of year is best for crossing Gulf Stream
, Mar-April or Nov-Dec? Our thoughts are that we don't plan on being on the water
there during hurricane
season, although we're not too concerned about June. (comments?) Also, considering the time of of year (April)is there any advantage of cruising south to north or vice/versa? That will help us decide if in March when we head
out again if we head
to Key West
& around to Southern Bahamas
or if we cut across St Lucie & head on over in April. Thanks for the advise. BTW.. we run average of 5.5 kts motoring; 7 kt if we have to push it (50 HP Honda) and up to 8-9 kts with favorable 15 kt winds. The boat
has daggerboards in each hull
and kick up rudders so we can take shallow water
Thank you for your advise!