2015 Bermuda Reports

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Course: Offshore Passage Making; Norfolk to Bermuda
Date May 26 to June 5, 2015
Vessel: Skye 51 MONTAUK LIGHT
Students: Mick Meckler, Scott Murphy, Jared Smith, Rocky Vinciguerra
First Mate: Tom Tursi
Captain Jerry Nigro

The following account is taken from the Blog we used to track this cruise:

S/V MONTAUK LIGHT, a Skye 51 will depart West Palm, Florida on Thursday May 28, 2015 after two pre-departure preparation days. The crew members are: Captain Jerry Nigro of New York (Skipper), Captain Tom Tursi of Pennsylvania  (Instructor), and student crew members Scott Murphy (Texas), Jared Smith (New Jersey), Rocky Vinciguerra (New Jersey) and Mick Meckler (Pennsylvania). MONTAUK LIGHT will make the passage to Bermuda via  nonstop ocean route. The cruise has an estimated distance of 800 nautical miles, and will take approximately eight days sailing both day and night. 

May 26
All is well and boat work completed. Good training day today with hard working crew. Very hot here as to be expected. Departure on track for Thursday.

May 27 
From: Meteorologist Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 5/27 - 29
Wednesday - Wind E 10 - 15 Gusts to 20. Thursday a bit more breezy and variable - mostly from the E. A shift to the ENE is likely late day into Friday.
Today will be warm - high in the upper 80s which continues through Friday. Slight chance of t-storms possible mid to late day Friday.

May 28
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 5/28 - 29
5/28 - Wind E to ENE 10 - 15 off shore 20 - 23 near shore
5/29 - Wind E to ENE 15 to 20 off shore 
5/30 - Wind E 10 to 15 
West wall of Gulf Stream approx 8 miles E of Jupiter Inlet
Chance of t-storms mainly afternoon & evening

May 28
Subject: Status Thursday 05/28/15 
Great trip so far. As predicted, winds are from E to NE at 10-15 knots. Got an early start out of the slip successfully backing down against cross wind and headed to fuel dock. Successful completion of fueling activities and headed out to sea.

Officially started trip at 0835 with 8902 miles showing on the log. We have been sailing on starboard tack since raising the sails. Started out very choppy and challenging with 3-4 foot quick seas, but that has now settled down to smoother 3 foot seas.

Crew acclimating nicely. Sandwiches for most for lunch and a great pasta fasoule for dinner. Temperature cooling off to begin evening sail... Mick 

May 29
Subject: Status 5-29
Bright, clear morning. Winds 12-15 knots from the East. Yesterday and last night we sailed on starboard tack on a northerly course straight up the Gulf Stream in order to clear the Bahama Bank to our NE. At 0620 this morning we tacked to port and are now on a course of 125M which is not quite toward Bermuda. Our 0850 position was 2921N 7955W. Sailing great with boat speeds of about 6 knots through the water. We're still getting some directional lift from the GS but it slows our speed over ground by a knot. All is well.. Tom 

May 29
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 5/30 - 6/01
5/29 - Winds E 10 - 15
5/30 - Winds E 10 - 15 with gradual shift ESE 5 - 10 as the day progresses W of 75W - Winds still ENE to E - East of 75W
5/31 - Winds E to ESE 5 - 10 some variability in wind speed and direction expected
6/01 - expect wind to shift SE to S at 5 to 10 

May 30
Yesterday bright and clear; winds 15-18 knots E to NE. Sailed on port tack at 5 to 6 knots in beautiful sea conditions with waves 3 to 4 feet. Dinner hot dogs and beans. Took some celestial shots but difficult with sea conditions and boat motion. At 0300 today Saturday tacked to starboard on wind shift to 12 SE; heading 060M toward destination Bermuda. Current position N2832-W7810 at 0500 Sat. All is well... Tom 

May 30
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 5/31 - 6/02
5/31 - Wind Generally ESE to SE at 7 to 12 some variability in wind speed and direction expected
6/01 - Winds light and variable generally from the SE at 5 to 10 - winds will veer S as the day progresses
6/02 - Winds SE to S at 5 to 10 
Chance of showers & t-storms thru the period. 

May 30
Winds this morning shifted back to NE, and that's where they remain as of 1330.. Tom 

May 31
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Re: NE winds 5/31
There's a small surface low around 28N 71W that will not go away. I thought it would dissipate by now, but it has not. Winds will be ENE to E at 5 to 10 today (5/31). I do see the winds turning to the S, as soon as this weak surface low dissipates.

May 31
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 6/01 - 03
The weak surface low from today's earlier message is still around. It's current center is approx. 29N-76W. Based on the boat's SPOT position, winds should be light 5 to 10 and variable ranging ENE to SE tonight and through morning on Monday (6/01).

Winds will shift to SE Monday evening at 5 to 10 knots. Winds continue to veer S Monday night. Tuesday (6/02) Winds S to SSW at 5 to 10. Wednesday (6/03) winds S to SE at 5 to 10.

June 1
As you know, our progress has been slow due to east winds mostly below 10 knots and often below 5. Yesterday the mainsail halyard broke with a loud pop and the sail came tumbling down. We rigged a spare halyard using the topping lift and put the sail back up. That's working ok. Position at 0430 today was 3100N-7523W. Motorsailing at 4 to 5 knots over ground on a heading toward BDA. Dinner last evening was pasta and meatballs made by Rocky ashore before departure at his brother's house... A definite highlight to our day, and he has an additional dinner of the same in the freezer. All is well and everyone is healthy. Rocky, Mick and Jared have been practicing celestial shots and becoming proficient with the technique. Yesterday we got a good celestial fix of our position... Tom

June 1
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx
The surface low is still with us. Center of circulation is now W of your position according to your position on SPOT. 
6/02 - Wind variable E to SE 5 to 10 early then SE to S 5 to 10
6/03 - Wind S 5 to 10
6/04 - Wind backing to SE - 5 to 10  Delete

June 2
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 06/03 - 05
6/03 - Wind SE 7 - 10
6/04 - a cold front approaches bringing a greater chance of rain as the day progresses and into 6/05 
Winds 6/04 - SE 5 to 10 early, increasing 10 to 15 in the afternoon
Winds 6/05 - SE 15 to 20 showers and t-storms from the W

June 2
Subject: Status 6-2
Full moon; 414 miles to Bermuda. 0830 position 3121N-7233W. Winds SE 6-8. Making 4 to 5 knots under sail. Yesterday morning winds were NE 5-7 shifting to NNW 5-8 at noon and remaining so until 2200 when winds backed around to SE 5-7. At 0700 today went through some light squall activity and winds then freshened to SE 10 and we had a delightful sail until 0800 when winds again lightened to SE 5-6. So you can see that we're challenged with very light winds and slow sailing. Currently maintaining 4 knots on course of 095M toward Bermuda, but will need to start engine to continue progress. Actually, we've been motor sailing for the past 24 hours except for this morning's brief sail...   All is well and crew eating like a bunch of teenage boys... Tom 

June 2
Subject: SAILING
Position 3129N-7139W at 1646 on 6/2/2015
Currently sailing at 5 Knots directly towards Bermuda, most of the day we were making 7 plus knots on the same coarse. We had been motor sailing a lot the last 3 days as the winds have been very light, it is a pleasure to be sailing now towards our destination. The crew is doing wonderful! Much interest in DR plotting, celestial navigation, meal prep and general boat handling. The weather has been very pleasant with bright sunny days, blue skies, blue water, warm air temps, low humidity and cool nights. MONTAUK LIGHT has been her usual pleasant and reliable self, taking good care of all of us on board...Jerry 

June 3
Subject: Status 6-3
Position 3219N-6913W at 1540. Winds SE 10. COG 100M. Crew have all completed the ASA108 onboard celestial navigation and other requirements. Rocky preparing our second serving of pasta and meatballs. Skies clouding up and we anticipate rain later as indicated in Brad's forecast... All is well and crew jovial... Tom 

June 4
From: Bradley Mabe
Subject: Wx 6/05 - 7
6/5 - Winds SE 15 to 20 turning S late in the day.
6/6 - Winds S 15 to 20 early, turning SSW at 10 - 15 in the afternoon
6/7 - Winds SSW 10 - 15 becoming WSW 5 to 10 during the day.
Chance of showers & t-storms thru the period - greatest chance 6/6 - chances diminishes 6/7. 

June 5
From Rita
Good morning all! I spoke with Captain Tursi by phone this morning. They arrived in Bermuda at 0700 today June 5, 2015. They are docked at the bulkhead near the Dowlings Fuel Station. Tom said they had a great passage. They sailed a lot, even though the wind was not always from the right direction. The last few days the wind direction was perfect and they were able to sail towards their destination. The weather was beautiful, sunny warm days and puffy white clouds. The next crew will board on Monday for the return passage to Huntington New York.



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