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Old 02-11-2009, 02:35 PM   #1
Join Date: Feb 2009
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The valuable insights in this thread


all relate to sailing south across Biscay at the begining of the season.

I would appreciate the communities insights into the best way and time of year to sail North from Portugal to the Solent, at the end of a summer cruise.

Thank you.

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Old 02-11-2009, 05:00 PM   #2
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I have crossed Biscay numerous times in both directions.

I would suggest going into Bayona or Corunna prior to crossing and getting up to date weather information. Biscay can be an absolute pig or beautiful. I always go straight across (but I am usually limited by time as it will be a delivery job) and go west of Ushant. You can come inside Ushant, possibly stopping in Brest, but make sure you check the tides if you go this way.

sea conditions can bear little relation to current wind as it may have developed deep in the Atlantic.

Keeping in deep water, west of the continental shelf is the best course IMO. If you do get caught in a strong SW gale make sure you have plenty of sea room to avoid getting caught on a lee shore.

As with all passages, good preparation is key and making sure you have sufficient capable crew on board - suggest 3 minimum.

From northern Spain to a UK Channel port should be 3-4 days.

Time of year - avoid autumnal gales if you can. To be truthful, I would do it almost any time if the weather was right

Hope that helps



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Old 02-12-2009, 12:40 AM   #3
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I've only ever gone south but pals who've gone north have reported exactly what Ed has relayed above. The weather reports for the Bay are usually good for 72 hours - long enough to cross safely from Corunna to either Ushant or an English haven with favourable winds.

We've had one set of pals who could not wait for wind to arrive, and ended up motoring the whole passage in a flat calm!


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