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Old 03-27-2013, 10:09 PM   #41
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no ridicule here

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Originally Posted by rwidman View Post
I would hope that the OP asked the question because he honestly wanted to know the answer, not so he could ridicule anyone whose answer didn't agree with his practice.
No Ridicule from me. Not my style. I have better things to do than poke folks in the eye on a boating forum. Pretty damn surprised at the turn this has taken. Oh well.
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:20 PM   #42
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No Ridicule from me. Not my style. I have better things to do than poke folks in the eye on a boating forum. Pretty damn surprised at the turn this has taken. Oh well.
Here is the flip side of the coin to your question. I see--- as have probably plenty of other people on this forum---- a LOT of boaters simply "head out" with no thought to the currents, tides, or winds at all. All you need to own a boat is the money to buy it with. You don't have to prove one shred of competence. And I would venture to guess, particularly if you remove the sailboaters from the equation, that more boaters head out with no thought to the currents and tides than do. Doesn't matter if it's a 16 foot runabout or a 50 foot cruiser. There are more than enough bozos out there in our waters to make Channel 16 very interesting to listen to during the summer months and to provide hours of entertainment in the anchorages and at the boat ramps.

So from that perspective your question was pretty valid because, in my observation anyway, an awful lot of boaters do NOT take currents and such into account when planning a trip. "The weather's nice, the water's deep, we're off."
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Old 03-27-2013, 11:33 PM   #43
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... a LOT of boaters simply "head out" with no thought to the currents, tides, or winds at all. All you need to own a boat is the money to buy it with. ...
Perhaps, but when sailboat racing in SF Bay in the 1960s, the tides were a major factor in determing our strategies. It wasn't uncommon to find counter/reduced currents to help our forward progress. Still use such strategies.
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Old 03-28-2013, 07:53 AM   #44
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One thing about many TF discussions....

Some look at boating as ALL of their boating is paid for by "expendable income". For some liveaboard cruisers...it may be the vast majority of their entire budget. Also discussions about conveniences, scheduling, maintenance...heck most things about boating are at least a little different for full timers than others.

If you have a crew that's from Baltimore...yeah...I was under strict orders to be in a marina with cable TV on Super Bowl Sunday...we had to change marinas and almost reposition slips for that one mutinous demand..

Some boaters cruise "trips"...meaning a fairly well planned itinerary but of limited nature. For others it's just wake up and see what the day brings. It doesn't cost anymore to spend the night somewhere if you go 5 miles as 100 miles in transit. 100 or 200 or 300 nights per year in marinas costs the same no matter where you spend them to a degree (just the price of the marina which you can still juggle a bit). The same for staying at free docks or at anchor.

So if I can plan a trip, get where I'm planning to go anyway sooner or later and save hundreds of dollars in fuel over the course of a multi-month trip....yep I'll do it if it only takes a couple minutes of looking at a computer tidal current program.

I guess the extreme example would be the boater who didn't think it through and did the "Loop" in reverse...
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Old 03-28-2013, 01:29 PM   #45
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I've also paid the price for not paying attention to tides.
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Old 03-28-2013, 02:33 PM   #46
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I've also paid the price for not paying attention to tides.
OK so don't tease us, spill the beans.....
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Old 03-28-2013, 02:36 PM   #47
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The further north the bigger the tide swings and currents. In the Puget Sound tide swings are 14 ft and further north, Alaska/BC, they get to 20 ft. Also the depth can charge hundred of feet within a boat length. You do not want to cut buoys/corners, so courses, tide and currents are important to check.
When you are in the inside passage current charts are almost more important than tides.

I have been in Cook Inlet Alaska when there is a 32 foot tide change. My 2 pound lead halibut weight was water skiing behind the boat!
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Old 03-28-2013, 03:14 PM   #48
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OK so don't tease us, spill the beans.....
This was a few years ago [edit: I'm getting old, this was over 10 years ago now]. That's our Catalina 30, the grey coat is my brother-in-law, and yellow pants is my wife.

It's not really a story about tides, but one of making sure you know where you are on the chart! (Side note - this day is why I prefer GPS chartplotters to paper charts. I had paper charts, but no electronics -- I just didn't know where I was on said paper! )

Anyway, once we were aground I looked at the tide tables, and read that high tide was in a few hours. So I figured we would be lifted off the sandbar in no time.

Of course, I read the Seattle tides (45+ miles away)... and didn't take into account the offsets for the south sound.... within an hour the hull was dry!

Nothing was damaged (missed large rocks by just a few boatlengths though), and nobody was hurt, and now it's a somewhat funny story to tell at the dock.
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Old 03-28-2013, 04:40 PM   #49
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This was a few years ago [edit: I'm getting old, this was over 10 years ago now]. That's our Catalina 30, the grey coat is my brother-in-law, and yellow pants is my wife.

It's not really a story about tides, but one of making sure you know where you are on the chart! (Side note - this day is why I prefer GPS chartplotters to paper charts. I had paper charts, but no electronics -- I just didn't know where I was on said paper! )

Anyway, once we were aground I looked at the tide tables, and read that high tide was in a few hours. So I figured we would be lifted off the sandbar in no time.

Of course, I read the Seattle tides (45+ miles away)... and didn't take into account the offsets for the south sound.... within an hour the hull was dry!

Nothing was damaged (missed large rocks by just a few boatlengths though), and nobody was hurt, and now it's a somewhat funny story to tell at the dock.
Was that @ Penrose? I have seen sailboats with that very same look over at Penrose on a few occasions.
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:00 PM   #50
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Tides- we always check, and run with whenever possible.. makes a huge difference!
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Old 03-28-2013, 05:09 PM   #51
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Was that @ Penrose? I have seen sailboats with that very same look over at Penrose on a few occasions.
Yes, that's Penrose Point State Park.

For those unfamiliar with the area, the sand spit with the boats moored around it on this link is what I ran aground on: penrose point state park - Google Maps It's about 5' under water at high tide.

Even with (or maybe because of?) that one experience, Penrose is one of our favorite places in the South Sound. We visit there once or twice each year and enjoy lots of wildlife and great views.
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Old 03-29-2013, 08:50 AM   #52
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while traveling the East Coast. Icw. I've had days that the.tide. seem to be against me all day some days I've had a favorable tide most.if the.day: while making 75to 110 miles a day and passing numerous inlets I truly don't believe you could work the tide in your favor without a computer program and much time waiting for the tide change
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Old 03-29-2013, 09:05 AM   #53
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Tide is good. Current is gooder.
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:35 AM   #54
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Tide is good. Current is gooder.
Point taken. Currently
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Old 03-29-2013, 11:47 AM   #55
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while traveling the East Coast. Icw. I've had days that the.tide. seem to be against me all day some days I've had a favorable tide most.if the.day: while making 75to 110 miles a day and passing numerous inlets I truly don't believe you could work the tide in your favor without a computer program and much time waiting for the tide change
Usually you can time such a trip to get one "sling shot" in, using the current in you favor then hitting the area of the inlet at slack and riding some current from there. I consider it all part of the sport and enjoy the process. No need for a computer program, not even a calculator really. We're almost never in a hurry, so why not play the game if you can?
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:15 PM   #56
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while traveling the East Coast. Icw. I've had days that the.tide. seem to be against me all day some days I've had a favorable tide most.if the.day: while making 75to 110 miles a day and passing numerous inlets I truly don't believe you could work the tide in your favor without a computer program and much time waiting for the tide change
That's a point I've been trying to make here without much success. I'm happy to see that someone else understands.
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:26 PM   #57
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while traveling the East Coast. Icw. I've had days that the.tide. seem to be against me all day some days I've had a favorable tide most.if the.day: while making 75to 110 miles a day and passing numerous inlets I truly don't believe you could work the tide in your favor without a computer program and much time waiting for the tide change
Go back and read post #7...there are DEFINITELY runs that are worth predicting...even if it's not all downhill. That post #7 was seconded in post 20 by another prolific cruiser...and supplementd in post 55 by anther.

There are certain areas where it is worth waiting several days or even a week to gain favorable tides...if you cruise slow enough...above 8 knots and of course it becomes less meaningful.

It is even worth ducking outside of some inlets to avoid foul tides and coming back in for fair ones.

And again...if you don't care or cruise fast enough...then obviously curents are meaningless.
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:30 PM   #58
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You would wait several days for a favorable current ? I envy your patience. I guess I need to relax a little more
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:30 PM   #59
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I find this thread to be quite interesting and since I have a slow boat, I pay attention to the tides for" progress over the ground purposes." I know that depth is also a component of tidal changes but distance & time concern me the most. Moonstruck has taken that element out of the equation with his speed, which I continue to lust after.
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Old 03-29-2013, 01:35 PM   #60
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You would wait several days for a favorable current ? I envy your patience. I guess I need to relax a little more
Sure...I timed my departure from NJ by delaying 2 eeks to get the right tide. My first days run was 8 hours instead of 15 and much of it in the dark.

I also delayed certain stretches of the ICW till favorable tides because I could...I had no lplace to be by a certain day or week.

Big difference when you are just cruisin' versus vacation.

Especially if you are limited on funds and when over the course of the year you can avoid hundreds of hours of wear and tear and many hundreds of dollars in fuel when it's no big deal when and where you go.
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