As the owner of a shiny new yacht, you may be wanting to take it out on what were previously “uncharted waters” for the first time. Many sailors look forward to attempting the epic voyage of crossing the Atlantic to the warm Caribbean at some point during their sailing career. This crossing is a trip that can take years to plan, or even execute, and must be carefully considered. Included here are a few tips for your first Atlantic crossing on a yacht.Traveling on board of a Yacht can be a lot of fun but there are five basic things that you need to know to attempt an Atlantic crossing.
5 Tips for Attempting an Atlantic Crossing Via Yacht
The best method for a successful Atlantic crossing involves maintaining a consistent speed around the clock. Having downtime is a great way to kill your itinerary and the potential success of your crossing. Installing twin headsails, an asymmetrical spinnaker, or Twistlerig are all unnecessary when it comes to a successful crossing. A basic poled-out genoa “barn-doors” with your main are all you really need.
Plan for Power
When planning your Atlantic journey, take whatever energy equation you have used to figure your power consumption, and add another third. Similar to how you would budget an extra 20% for a home remodel, everything that drains power on your ship will add up. Increase your electricity output with a diesel generator, solar panels, or even a bigger alternator. Even fitted LED lights can add up to your overall savings and should be considered beforehand.
Know Your Boat
A transatlantic voyage is more about knowing the ins and outs of your boat than simply understanding navigation. Having a comprehensive understanding of how to deal with problems when they arrive can be key to your success and safety. Learn more about survival at sea, first aid training, and diesel engine maintenance. Additionally, attending courses run by manufacturers can help the skipper and crew be more prepared for break-downs.
Add Extra Crew
One of the worst mistakes many sailors make is in running a veritable skeleton crew when making a journey. While your pride may make you want to sail independently, take careful note of how much work it takes to run the ship. Having a few extra people around the help out with the breakdowns and night watch can make the experience far more pleasant and add more stimulating social interaction.
Enjoy the Process
Many Atlantic voyagers leave the cooler climates of the north to head for warm Caribbean waters in the months before Christmas. One way to stretch your trip into the experience of a lifetime is to relish the time you spend along the shore before heading into open water. Take a summer cruise down the Canary islands, enjoy France, Madeira, Portugal and Northern Spain; those cruises could be some of the greatest highlights of your trip.