Sailing Across an Ocean on a Catamaran - Bluewater 50 by Discovery | Sailing Blog - Technical Hints and Tips - Sailing Television

Sailing Across an Ocean on a Catamaran - Bluewater 50 by Discovery

In mid-November we set sail from Las Palmas, Gran Canaria, in the Canary Islands to make our 8th transatlantic crossing but this time we did it on a catamaran - a brand new Bluewater 50 Story coming soon…
We had very light winds for this passage and ended up flying the spinnaker for many days. Winds were from astern as expected on this route but often under 10 knots true - which is lighter than the typical 15-18 we have experienced on this crossing before.
The first 2 days out from Las Palmas we had the more typical winds at 15-18 and she roared along at 10 knots showing how powerful and easy it could be. The winds were to be much lighter for the rest of the cruise!
I had planned that most of the passage would be done with our twin headsails. This is my favourite rig for our monohulls where we fly one jib on a pole and the other using a block on the end of the boom. On the wider catamaran we barber-hauled the jibs out to the beam and moved along well dead downwind. This rig was also perfect for night sailing as it doesn't need the management of a spinnaker, and can be easily reefed if a squall comes by. (Photo Courtesy of Craig from CruisingOffDuty who bravely flew his drone to get get the aerial shots)
This is actually an asymmetric spinnaker but we flew it two different ways.
1) as a symmetric spinnaker we ran both sheets to blocks on the two bows
2) as an asymmetric spinnaker we ran one sheet to the bowsprit, and the other sheet aft to a block by the stern

In this picture we're flying the spinnaker off the two bows.
From the masthead you can see how the spinnaker is running to both bows. This was our most common rig and worked well dead downwind.
Flying the spinnaker from the bowsprit here you can see the sheet running aft on the starboard side.
One day the wind dropped below 5 knots so we went for a swim. Sheryl stayed on board and I went down below to see how we looked from underwater. Its 3 miles deep right here and the visibility is about 200 feet!
We shot a TON of video on this crossing! I'm currently working on the footage and will get something up on YouTube shortly.

blog comments powered by Disqus