Nautical routes

Here comes the season for the crossing of the Atlantic

The best dates to cross the Atlantic are between November and December, in Alcaidesa Marina we are waiting for you all at the Mediterranean Gates in the Strait of Gibraltar.

Crossing the Atlantic sailing is a dream and a true milestone for many sailing enthusiasts. The first to do so was Christopher Columbus back in 1492. Since then every year many sailors venture with their sailboats to imitate the feat of Columbus and sail across the Atlantic. Nowadays, the same route continues, only varies in dates, since Christopher Columbus crossed the Atlantic Ocean in summer, on the third of August, in full hurricane season and returned to the Azores in winter.

In high seas navigation and especially in oceanic navigation, planning is very important. We must study the route carefully in order to undertake it in the best statistical conditions of meteorology, thus minimizing the chances of encountering bad weather. Planning the route well to navigate with favourable winds and currents is essential in all high seas navigation.


We must cross the Atlantic with favourable winds; from Europe towards the west we must catch the trade winds. The northeaster trade winds extend to the north of the equator taking us from the African coasts to the Caribbean Sea with favourable winds. The northern limit of the trade winds is about 30º north latitude. The closer we get to this limit, the less constant are the winds. The trade winds, from January to March, have an average force of 3 or 4, being able to reach on occasion 6 or even 7 on the level of force.

The main danger we must avoid when crossing the Atlantic sailing are the strong tropical storms, especially hurricanes. Hurricanes are a perfectly studied phenomenon and based on statistics we can say that the hurricane season goes from June 1 to November 30, affecting the Atlantic Ocean, the Caribbean Sea and the Gulf of Mexico. Outside these dates there have also been strong tropical storms and some hurricanes throughout history, especially in mid-November and mid and late May, although the odds of hurricanes at this time are much lower.


If we start from the south of Spain, we can delay the departure to October or November, always with the precaution that at the latest the worst weather conditions we can find heading to the Canary Islands. From Alcaidesa Marina we offer you a privileged place to take the leap, with an unbeatable communication by land, sea and air, in an extraordinary environment at the Mediterranean gates in the heart of the Strait of Gibraltar. A perfect place to wait for that ideal weather in order to start the next stage of your trip to the Canary Islands.  

In our Marina we have a wide range of companies dedicated to the maintenance and preparation of your boat so that you can leave with the best guarantee (http://www.alcaidesamarina.com/en/directory/marine-services/1/)


And you can take advantage of the multiple offers of our dry dock, or in our berths. (http://www.alcaidesamarina.com/en/offers/1/)

 

Another possibility we can do is prepare the trip by stages, taking the boat to the Strait in summer and leaving it in Alcaidesa Marina until we can return to continue the trip. La Linea has good communications by plane with Europe from Malaga and with The United Kingdom from Gibraltar.

When it comes to the hurricane season, crossing the Atlantic sailing should be done in November or early December. If we delay more this departure we will have less time to navigate the Caribbean.


If we want an easy, fast and comfortable route from the Canary Islands taking into consideration the winds we should descend to latitude close to 20º N, 30ºW. An old sailor saying says: "The Southern you go the hotter it is." Doing this route, we will do 200 or 300 miles more, but you can take the trade winds before. Besides, making the direct route from the Canary Islands it is possible to take winds against or find a thicker sea because of some depression located more in the north.

 

We can start the return to Europe in April, heading to the Bermuda Islands then sail to the Azores Islands in May, and in June make the last journey back home, either in the northern Europe, Spain or southern Europe.


Within the planning for the return trip, we must take into account the fuel tanks. A good reserve of fuel can be essential, especially when crossing the Atlantic to the east, where the anticyclone of the Azores in summer can give us days and even weeks of calm.

 

When you come back from the Atlantic, we will be waiting for you at the Gate of the Mediterranean; our marina is in a key place to start the summer season in the Mediterranean. Ask for prices for long stays.

 

In total we can assume a round trip of about 8 or 10 months with enough time to avoid taking bad weather, tropical storms or hurricanes, and so enjoy the Caribbean and each crossing.

  • Type of navigation: Oceánica
  • Distance in Miles: 3800 Nautical Miles
  • Duration: 20-30 day/s
  • Degree of difficulty: High
  • Terminates in base port: No
  • Towns: La Línea, Las Palmas de Gran Canaria, Caribe
  • GPS:
  • Coast: Atlantic Ocean

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