|No, this is not a bad trip - this is a pic of the Atlantic. The red is the Gulf Stream. Pretty neat!|
The stream is a current that originates in Florida and traverses the whole east coast from south to north before jutting out across the Atlantic. It is such a big deal that it actually influences the climate of North America and Europe. This ain't no lazy river, that's for sure.
But I digress...
Crossing the Gulf Stream should not be taken lightly. Conditions in it are known to go from bad to worse in no time at all, and the waves generated in this river within an Ocean can be colossal. However, not all is lost. Conditions can be easy breezy - if you have wind without any northerly component. Ideally, you want a "weather window" that consists of light southerly winds for 2-3 days in a row. This is what we have been waiting for - wind from the South will help to ensure an uneventful crossing as the wind will be going with instead of against the stream. In addition to making sure the weather is ideal, you must also account for the current which can be up to 6 knots in places. For example, if we are to sail to Bimini from here - the magnetic compass course (as the crow flies) is 101 degrees. However, if we were to steer that course, we would end up way above of our mark (because the current would push us north) - so to avoid this - we'll steer a course of about 127 degrees . Pretty crazy.
The good news is this; it looks like we'll have the weather window we're looking for this Wednesday thru Saturday and we'll be making the hop with our good friends, Lara and Brian. You have no idea how ready for crystal blue water we all are!
Brittany & Scott