As cruisers, we learn to predict the weather in our home waters with relative ease: it becomes instinctive. In the summer cruising grounds your radius from home port is likely to be only 100 miles. You will probably stay within your local seasonal weather pattern. Cruising the ICW is quite different. If you watch the local TV weather forecast in the morning, its afternoon predictions will be practically worthless as by afternoon you will be 50-60 miles away. This morning’s weather center forecast for tomorrow morning will be different from the forecast at tonight’s anchorage. In short, you will get little help from watching TV weather stations. You must become proficient at using a variety of sources to make your own predictions. Today’s forecast for tomorrow must consider that tomorrow you will be starting out 50 miles from here and end the day 100 miles from here. As you head along the coast you must be looking at the weather here today and 50 miles ahead tomorrow and 100 miles ahead the day after. You learn to be looking several days ahead and along a continually moving track.

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