Tell us where you've been, trade information
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Postby goodnight » Wed Feb 15, 2006 6:59 pm

I'd like to find out some information about sailing from south america to uk, what kind of yachtsman i.e(skill level needed to cross the ocean). what would the mimimum size boat be to do such a trip be. Should be a holiday of a lifetime, can anyone help with this one!
keep the chin up

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Admiral of the Blue
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Joined: Sun May 12, 2002 4:11 pm
Boat Type: Albin Vega 27
Location: Oban. Scotland

Ocean crossing . . . S. America to the UK

Postby Nick » Thu Feb 16, 2006 1:18 am

First you need to have a look at global wind patterns . . . N. of the equator the winds in the tropics are the NE trades, blowing from the NE to the SW. They provide an easy passage Westward from the Canaries or the Cape Verde islands to the Caribbean. South of the equator in the tropics the SE trades prevail; these carry sailors from the Cape of Good Hope across to Brazil - so you see that most of the downwind passagemaking across the Atlantic between 30degN and 30degS is West to East.

If you are crossing from S. America the best plan is to work your way up the Caribbean as far as Bermuda then catch the Westerlies to the Azores. This is usually a more difficult passage than the West-East trade wind crossing.

People have crossed oceans in tiny, rickety boats with very little experience, learning as they went. Some of them have even survived.

How much sailing experience have you got? From your post I would say not quite enough. Don't give up on the idea though, read a dozen ocean crossing books, sail a few hundred miles in coastal waters on various different boats then you will be able to ask more precise questions.

I recommend reading Sailing An Atlantic Circuit and Your First Atlantic Crossing as starting points, then maybe having a look at Jimmy Cornell's World Cruising Routes.
- Nick 8)


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