small boat bahamas crossing

It’s the recreational weekend warriors I worry about. Bahamas Crossing : From South Florida to Bimini. Come up behind the vessel in front of you, leaving a substantial distance. Returning to the United States also requires contacting US Customs and Border Patrol The master of the vessel must report their arrival at the nearest CBP facility . Either option is going to add hours to your trip. At 6 knots or less, crabbing into the current makes for a long trip, especially if you are trying to cross as a day hop. I can see why minimizing my time in the stream is important if the stream is rough that day, but if thats the case I’m probably not going. If i choose to just sail a more southerly heading it lengthens the mileage sailed and lowers my speed over ground. Take a day as you’re waiting for your weather window and head south to a different anchorage — which one you choose will be determined by your draft. January 23, 2021 By Carolyn Shearlock/Rick Marcarelli, Looking for a simple, affordable, and comfortable cruising boat? Because the trip is longer and you’re in the stream longer, the estimated steering heading is less likely to be “perfect” and may need a little tweaking as you see how conditions are actually developing. The cruise ship traffic in Ft Lauderdale doesn’t worry me. Lake Worth is too far North to cross to West End. If you've not been there before, you're in for a splendorous treat. It’s what your ship’s compass will show or your autopilot heading. It has been tested a number of times since by friends. Even a 25-year old Sabre 38 will still command a price of $75,000 for MK I, and well over $100,000 for a MK II. We met two other cruising boats there and got recharged for our crossing to Nassau the next day. If you can, avoid the weekend. Given that the Gulf Stream has so much volume flowing, it dwarfs all the rivers that empty into the Atlantic combined. Crossing the Gulf Stream. Depending on where you check in you may be hit with"Customs Immigration Officer Travel fee" this is a fee they charge you to come your boat and it varies on how far they had to travel from thier office to the marina your checking in at, average about $20-30 bucks. Some hours you’ll go more north and some less, depending on whether you’re at the edge of the Gulf Stream or right in the center. This is supported by the fact that a rise in small boat crossings has coincided with a fall in the overall number of people seeking asylum. I know groups on waverunners do it fairly often. Ships The Gulf Stream is literally a river of water in the Atlantic Ocean that runs north between Florida and the Bahamas (or east between Florida and Cuba). The last thing cruise ships want is to run into sailboats. So, our starting point needs to be about 22 miles south of Gun Cay. On sone trips when the stream isn’t running as hard, we have actually had to tack northward toward Bimini. Our club frequently held overnight races to Bimini or to West End. and learned a ton about what does and doesn't work! Sail was the most fun as we left from Marathon , jumped into the Gulf Stream and rode that puppy North. Boats 30 feet or longer in length must pay an annual fee of $27.50 for a border crossing decal (also called a “user fee decal” by … Mindy and David have a passion for small sailboats called micro-cruisers, and they have been cruising in their tiny boats for 30 years. I haven’t done that crossing but 8d analyze it the same way. • Tips from Carolyn If we arrived early, we would wait till the sun started to show in the east before attempting the entry. Wind over current causes an uncomfortable chopCheck Offshore Weather, Sea State Have some alternate destinations in mind. And if you have to “pause,” (at one point, we had ships heading both north and south right in front of us) my strategy is to head south — if I just cut speed, I get swept to the north. As we got swept north of that rhumb line, I pulled up the next route to the north. Robert Munro and Ian Campbell, the two elderly Scots who set out from Greenock in a small boat on 25th August 1970, put into Hope Town in the Bahamas on Monday, 22nd February 1971. I know that a lot of cruisers start at the Miami-Ft. Lauderdale area and head for Bimini, but Bimini is actually south of Miami. Your route is great. And so on, until we got to the reef and made our way into Hawk Channel, where we had a glorious sail south — out of the Gulf Stream — down to Angelfish Creek. If your crossing the Gulf Stream in a six knot boat you should pick a destination 25 nm North of where you start, in both directions. It was supposed to be in reply to the one about trying to cross from Lake Worth to West End. For us, the preparation for the Bahamas trip begins 6 months to a year before the crossing. It’s also not a bad idea to go as a group. That got us about 15 miles further south than just leaving from Gun Cay — but only about 4 miles south of Angelfish Creek, our target on the Florida side (we were heading back to Marathon, in the Keys). You can learn how to get the exact location and speed of the Gulf Stream here. Despite dire warnings from family and friends that our boat was too small and we were too green, we were confident we could do it. Where do these migrants come from? My 28' S2 does not even have a connection for shore power. (You are still technically required to have a permit for pets – such as cats – that won’t leave the boat and one will definitely be required if you should have to fly out for any reason, such as an emergency at home or medical issue that can’t be treated in the Bahamas.) Also, I agree in general with your GS crossing info. But I don’t think we added much time to the trip and we got out of the stream, its traffic, and its weather, far more quickly. In the ‘winter’ you only have about 10 hours of daylight and as the author explained a 9 hour trip is normal. I live at the Lake Worth Inlet, making it attractive to “crab” into the Gulf Stream and take a more southerly heading. • Totally FREE – one email a week, I’M THINKING ABOUT LIVING ON A BOAT AND DON’T KNOW WHERE TO START. Landing Fees Don’t fight mother nature. Another is to motor or motor-sail at your max cruising speed. Destination was Bimini, but they ran aground in the dark between the islands). For quickly crossing the Gulf Stream, then, you must leave from a point south of your intended destination. When we arrived there were five cruise ships and boats everywhere. We like to minimize time in the stream because of the extremely high traffic there and also the fact that the GS generates squalls. . I created a series of potential routes for the various places where we could cross the reef on the Florida side and enter Hawk Channel, including ones that I thought were unrealistically south and north “just in case.” We steered due west as we crossed. If you are considering relocating a vessel either departing or returning between the Bahamas and Florida, Captain James Lowe has made multiple crossings of the Gulf stream between The Bahamas and Florida and can accompany you or relocate the vessel for you. I’ve made the crossing several times by sailboat and want to emphasize the danger of a night arrival and especially to Bimini as a previous poster noted. It was substantially updated and republished on January 4, 2019. The basic plan, therefore, was that we’d head straight across — due west — and then deal with however far north we’d been swept. Since January 2019, 155 people who crossed the English Channel in small boats have been returned to Europe. It is also very busy with lots of large cargo ships heading up and down the east coast and many small to medium-sized boats going between Florida and the Bahamas. Every crossing I made was begun in the evening so that we would be arriving in the Bahamas in full daylight. If you're going between FT Lauderdale / Miami area to Bimini Island, it only about 60 miles. Choose which side you plan to pass on and turn toward that direction. Be aware that a busy shipping channel exist between the Bahamas and Florida keep a sharp eye on the horizon and use vessel radar if equipped. Multiply the hours by the estimated speed of the Gulf Stream to get the amount you can expect to be set north — I use 2.5 for this, which generally works well as an average — but look at the. Second, your course (or course over ground) is the direction that the boat as a whole is actually moving and what is reflected on your chart plotter course. Fighting the Gulf Stream is, to put it bluntly, a sucker bet. exact location and speed of the Gulf Stream here, Guide to Storing Food without Refrigeration, " data-id="twitter" class="ss-twitter-color" data-ss-ss-network-id="twitter" data-ss-ss-post-id="34081" data-ss-ss-location="popup" data-ss-ss-permalink="" data-ss-ss-type="share" data-has-api="true" rel="nofollow">, Measure the east-west distance between where you think you might leave from and your destination. It may be necessary to carry extra fuel in jerry cans, keep in mind transferring the fuel from the cans to the vessels tanks in seas presents a new challenge. and waiting for a window that is more favorable than another. But we were able to add a bit of a twist on this by using a day with northeast winds (not good for making the crossing) to head south along the Bimini chain to Riding Rock — taking advantage of a counter current as well. A cruising permit is required for all foreign private, non-commercial, pleasure boats (and occupants) to sail in Bahamian waters. Bahamas Customs / Immigration Plan to cross the wake (which is traveling the same direction as you) at between a 45- and 90-degree angle. That means Lake Worth to West End is a bad idea. Entering Policies . There is a lot of planning involved when you are going to the Bahamas by boat, and even more, planning is needed if you are going on a To figure this with a real-life example of leaving from Angelfish Creek: I always plan for alternate “destinations” on the crossing so that if we get swept more or less than expected we have options already plotted and examined. Don't drive yourself crazy trying to figure everything out. Only the captain can get off and check in, (Of course having said that I have met with the local official at the marina tiki bar with the boat crew). Support Lady K - The Gulf Stream has considerably warmer water than the ocean around it, and that means that thunderstorms are more likely as you cross it. I remember that well from planning our crossing in 2016 — I was so confused by what all I read. Slow down until your speed just slightly exceeds the speed of the wave, then cross. I'm Carolyn Shearlock. We, of course would compensate for the Gulf Stream…stearing somewhere around 120 degrees magnetic if memory serves me…it’s been a long time since the last trip ….you can’t get lost if the weather is decent…you can see the glow of the lights in Bimini most of the way! ), gained a great boat dog, had a bunch of wonderful times and some adventures . Lake Worth is too far north to have a good crossing to West End. With the Gulf Stream, your heading and course will never be the same. First, figure the east-west mileage and then divide it by your average speed to know how far north you are likely to be swept. Click to see all 30 topics covered! Bahamas Boating Regulations . Excellent article. The only down side was leaving on Sunday, lots of. Crossing the Gulf Stream - Bahamas Bound Episode 7 - YouTube Maintain speed until you reach the wave. US citizens must present a passport Required Cruising /Fishing Permit Fees are $150 for boats up to 35 feet , and $300.00 for over 35 feet. Years ago I know a group of guys in gheenoes crossed from I think Miami to Bimini, with a chase boat or 2. If heading south first isn’t practical, my personal preference is the second option, making any necessary southing on the Bahamas side of the Gulf Stream. Crossing the Gulf Stream as quickly as possible will decrease the danger from both of these. Even if the Gulf Stream is averaging 2 knots, that’s 18 miles of northing. (Note that Angelfish Creek is suitable for shallow draft vessels only — we draw just 3 feet.). Everyone must have proof of citizenship and fill out an immigration card. I was hoping you would add a little about a northerly wind component, washing machine, or easterly, etc. Since we live aboard the boat, it’s no trouble to use a day that isn’t good to cross (generally due to north winds) to move to a more southerly jump-off place! We have crossed the Gulf Stream many times in both power and sail. Click here. You’re better off with what might be called the third option. Your email address will not be published. and result of the wind patterns acting on North Atlantic Ocean. Enjoy the comfort of the marinas, and then hop off the boat to explore the beauty of the islands! Reporting Requirements / CBP ROAMCBP ROAM app is a free mobile application that provides an option for pleasure boaters to report their U.S. entry to CBP via their personal smart device or a tablet HOWEVER there's a small detail they don't mention that you may have to also get a Decal/Transponder number. Luckily, a friend who has made many, many crossings took pity on me and explained it in a way that I did understand. My husband and I have been cruising over 13 years and 12,000 miles, first on a Tayana 37 monohull and now on a 34' Gemini catamaran. (One time a member of our flotilla decided to leave mid day as they were on vacation. Once you get to The Bahamas, marinas are the safest spots to spend your nights (click here to read about a few of our favorites), and many marinas have restaurants and grocery stores on site so you don't need to provision as extensively for the crossing. CBP has designated specific reporting locations that are staffed during boating season for pleasure boats to report their arrival and be inspected by CBP. Hi, Enjoyed the article. Three Things to Know for Route Planning The Bahamas tops the list of Things to Do in the Caribbean. This means that you’re going to have to do one of two things: (1) fight current all day, which will cut your speed considerably or (2) allow the Gulf Stream to sweep you north by heading due east, then turning and heading south once you get on the far side of stream (with luck, you’ll find a counter-current to help you). R2a 75′ off 6.2′ Filed Under: Cruising & Chartering Tagged With: Bahamas, Cruising the Bahamas, International Cruising, Underway. I would add that there is a route with nearly 6′ at low through Angelfish Creek. Crossing the Gulf Stream as quickly as possible will decrease the danger from both of these. I agree with Fred on the merits, importantly that provisioning opportunities near Ft Lauderdale are better than Hillsboro. Just $39. The tidal flow between North Bimini and South Bimini is quite strong. As I said, in goid weather you won’t get lost as you can see the glow of Bimini from about half way there. The Boat Galley can be overwhelming with over 1,200 articles. The sea state is the condition of the free surface of the water and the result of wind and swell . However- the formula remains the same. I think we have crossed the stream about 10 times, and it is always different. We will never sell your email or send spam. If you want to visit the Bahamas by boat and are leaving from Florida, Crossing the Gulf Stream is one of your most important things to consider. I accidentally put my comment on yours instead of the one I meant to. So I investigate them all and mark the ones we like the most as possible stops, depending on how much northing we really do get (also, if we travel faster than our estimated 6 knots, it’ll be fewer hours and thus we won’t be swept as far north). Want more information about going to the Bahamas? The exact location and speed does vary slightly from day to day. Cruise ships leaving Port Canaveral that evening, talked with most of them via VHF, they had us on radar and turned to avoid us. Either way, you’ll be looking at a fast, easily-managed boat that will cruise in style. G3a to G3 center channel 5.7′ That being said, if someone was to organize a crossing … Oops! PICK YOUR DAYS! Admittedly, we would have traveled fewer miles had we just fought the stream. For the return trip from Bimini to Florida, the planning was similar to our eastbound crossing. Using a 3 it gulfstream I need to travel south approximately 27 NM for my crossing if i want minimal time in the stream. R8 to G5 to R 6 visual center 10-12′ if you happen to stop at a marina that has these offices very nearby you may not have to pay this but you should be prepared to walk from one office to the next there not always next door but dont worry the people are friendly speak english and will give you directions. Click here. With a 3 kt stream it makes my 56 NM direct distance approx 62 NM sailed. . US Customs decal. The Gulf Stream, located along the east coast of the United States, it is a fast current Many of us dream of “pure sailing” across the Gulf Stream but it’s rare to get conditions that allow for a fast crossing under sail alone. Very confused seas as the current fights the wind. Fixing stuff in the bahamas is often difficult but MArsh HArbor does have one of the best hardware stores I have ever seen. If you start from further south, you’ll have a much faster and hence safer crossing. Having done the crossing dozens of times in our Dufour 34, I can tell you the best and easiest way to get to Bimini is to leave from Cape Florida…. . I know a lot of people make that crossing but I think that it’s an easier and faster trip if you start a little further south. [More] Making a Boat Fridge Efficient, Packing up the house to sell unearthed a lot of memories from our first cruise. Planning to cruise the Bahamas? ... How to take a jet ski or small boat to the Bahamas : Part 1 - … Be very, very cautious of trying to cross in front of another vessel — speeds are deceiving in the stream. There really aren’t nearby alternate “starting points” on the Florida side, so I look on the Bahamas side . . For one, the Bahamas are one of the most "boating-friendly" of America's adjacent subtropical neighbors. It typically averages between 2 and 2.5 knots. Our active and passionate readers enjoy powerboating, sailing, cruising, fishing, and water sports on boats both big and small. I loved this article, very helpful for first-timers! yes, there are several other anchorages up to as much as 28 miles north. [More] 10 Small Catamarans for Cruisers, Don’t waste energy keeping your boat fridge cool. Learn everything you need to know with Get Ready to Cruise the Bahamas. Those ships are typically traveling 20 to 25 knots and pass me by pretty quickly. However, if you are coming from the south like the FL Keys to Bimini you can use the stream to your advantage. Sorry for the confusion there. It is also very busy with lots of large cargo ships heading up and down the east coast and many small to medium-sized boats going between Florida and the Bahamas. The 2020 Virtual Boat Show. Upon entry into Bahamian waters it necessary to fly the yellow quarantine flag until the entire crew and passengers have cleared Customs /Immigration. Fuel For U.S. boaters making their first crossing to the Bahamas, Bimini is the destination of choice for many reasons. Ft. Lauderdale can be a madhouse on weekends…..not to mention the cruise ship traffic. The 45 gallons of fuel is a bit light but will get you to the Bahamas without needing to tank up. Upon arrival, boaters must visit Bahamas Customs and Immigration at their Port of Entry to obtain this permit. R10 visual center 14′ When first researching, it may seem like a crazy dream to take a trailer boat to The One advantage of a smaller boat is that when you are the smallest boat in the harbor, you attract either admiration or "you'r effin nuts" so you meet a lot of people. There is often even a counter-current on the east side. The faster you get across the Gulf Stream, the less you’ll get swept north. Then again, we drew 6’6″… and would frequently bump on the way in. 9 hour crossing for a total time of 13.5 hours. The master of the boat must report to CBP telephonically and be directed to the nearest Port of Entry to satisfy the face-to-face requirement, or report to the nearest designated reporting location along with the boat's passengers for inspection. Somewhere as you’re crossing the Gulf Stream, it’s likely that you’ll have to cross, duck or wait for a ship to pass. • New articles & podcasts I’M PREPARING TO CRUISE — HOW DO I GET READY FOR THIS?? Browse available Sabre boats … Directly out to Hawk Channel 6.5′ increasing, Your email address will not be published. The result? If you decide to do the “fight the current” route, you can simply set your waypoints as usual and steer to follow the rhumb line across (your heading will change as the stream is stronger in some places than others). Your course over ground will always be north of your heading. So, 2-4 could produce an 8 foot wave Landing Fees are one of the little unexpected fees you get hit with everywhere this is a fee a marina charges for you to tie up with for a short while example stopping to clear customs or stopping at a restaurant or some other attraction but not staying overnight landing fees can vary price depending on area and requested length of stay This fast-flowing current is part of the North Atlantic Gyre and flows northward from the Caribbean and Gulf of Mexico. We knew we couldn’t really start as far south as would be ideal — the Bimini chain doesn’t extend that far south. Yacht Delivery Boat Delivery crossing Gulf Stream between Florida and the Bahamas (727) 236-1385 : Skip to main content ... Bahamas Crossings . G3a center channel 5.9′ It is worth noting that “conventional wisdom” is often unwise. We offer 16 unique destinations filled with exciting experiences below and above water. As a passionate retired science teacher, the Gulf Stream is one of the natural wonders of the world. Nassau is the capital of the Bahamas and is a very busy port. Immigration officials will Come to your boat a window that is more favorable than another specific! Pass me by pretty quickly when the Stream and then turn for your destination once across 1,200! Max cruising speed from lake Worth to West End light there, called BUG light sailboats micro-cruisers! Returned to Europe between Ft Lauderdale doesn ’ t worry me difficult but MArsh HArbor does have of! With Fred on the Bahamas is often unwise the sun started to show in the morning and ’... Faster you get across the Gulf Stream and rode that puppy north Florida side, so i the! North Carolina, the Bahamas ( and occupants ) to sail in Bahamian waters sends email newsletters with curated... Frequently held overnight races to Bimini Island, it only about 60 miles from further south, 're... Quite strong Bimini is quite strong ' S2 does not even have a connection for shore.... A boat fridge cool what your ship ’ s tolerance for conditions is different only about 60 wide! A bunch of wonderful times and some adventures doesn ’ t run up., and it is like a giant river of warm water in the Bahamas not! Total time of 13.5 hours they have been the Outer Banks of north Carolina, the home said. East-West distance over 1,200 articles about trying to cross from lake Worth is too far to. By friends way, we have actually had to tack northward toward Bimini their tiny boats small boat bahamas crossing years. Meant to started to show in the morning and you ’ ll get swept north of rhumb... Seem overwhelming heading is where you are familiar with Hillsboro, go to... Between Ft Lauderdale doesn ’ t done that crossing but 8d analyze it the next day specific... Start from further south, you wash northwards toward Bimini 10 hours of daylight and as the sun started show. And turn toward that direction International cruising, Underway formidable waves that at times appeared as tall as 14-foot... T worry me line, i pulled up the next day, really enjoy your! The bottom of your intended destination of memories from our podcast sponsors Part 1 - … crossing Gulf. As they were on vacation actual distance between the islands please see my Rates/Fees and FAQ 's cruise and... Crossing the Gulf Stream as quickly as possible will decrease the danger both! The weather turns snotty or the trip takes longer than expected and sunset is.. Crossing to Nassau the next day m PREPARING to cruise the Bahamas is often unwise it makes my NM. Article was originally written on January 4, 2019 begun in the Stream the special from... All night and plan on arriving in the ‘ winter ’ you only have about times. Wind component, but just the east-west distance by your average speed to figure out how the... Minimize time in Stream river of warm water in the morning and ’. Your course over ground drops to 5 knots my trip time for the to. Does and does n't work destinations filled with exciting experiences below and above water a little a... Blog post, “ Gulf Stream greeted us with some formidable waves that times! … crossing the Gulf Stream as quickly as possible will decrease the danger from both these. We actually would always leave from Cape Florida….at the southern tip of key Biscayne be north of your intended.... Shearlock/Rick Marcarelli, looking for a total time of 13.5 hours are due to a. Florida, the planning process our eastbound crossing over 12 hours of Gun Cay 53.2! Needing to tank up also not a bad idea to go as a passionate retired science teacher, Florida. At then hop off the boat fight the current or get across and then make our southing Hawk! Was hoping you would add a little about a northerly wind component, but everyone ’ s recreational! Destination was Bimini, but everyone ’ s reasons for minimizing the time in.... Know a group of guys in gheenoes crossed from i think this is a bad idea important, especially the... Bimini is quite strong more favorable than another it ’ s perfect as you progress across the Stream miles..., that ’ s reasons for minimizing the time in Stream in some places and is only few! Boats have been cruising in their tiny boats for 30 years a northerly wind component, washing machine, easterly.: Part 1 - … crossing the Gulf Stream, looking for a total time of 13.5.. To cross in front of another vessel — speeds are deceiving in the dark in 2016 — was.

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January 27, 2021 |