THE RED SEA ADVENTURE BEGINS
Take a look at Balmacara, a Corbin 39, running downwind in the Bab Al Mandeb.
There are forty-five knots of wind coming up the stern, short steep seas, blowing desert sand, and freighters in the haze welcoming us to the Red Sea.
The Bab Al Mandeb lies at the southern entrance of the Red Sea and is seventeen miles wide.
This patch of water won't disappoint you if what you're looking for is adventure.
The mountains on both sides of the Bab al Mandeb create a wind acceleration zone that frequently pumps the winds up to fifty knots. And fifty knot winds in the desert would be incomplete unless they picked up some dust and created an awesome duststorm that reduces your visibility to less than a mile. On top of that throw in a couple dozen freighters steaming by at full speed through the haze.
Once you make it through the Bab, you can remain in the wind acceleration zone for as long as thirty-six hours if you are unlucky.
That means a relatively sleepless night as you bounce along in the darkness with steep seas coming up your stern, or your other choice is to anchor behind a headland in Eritrea, and immediately achieve the status of illegal aliens.
We chose to go the illegal alien route and anchor behind a deserted headland, Ras Terma.
The last three miles to Ras Terma had 38 knots of wind on the nose, but with both Yanmars at full throttle, we put our anchor down in ten feet of water several hundred meters from the beach.
Then came the full force of the sand storm.
For two days, stinging sand polished our bows and collected in our cockpit.
We could either sit inside the hot salon of our battened down cabin, or lounge in the cool and comfortable cockpit wearing sand goggles.
When we were in Thailand planning the next leg of the circumnavigation, we had misgiving about sailing up the Red Sea. We debated whether we should sail south around the Cape of Good Hope or face the rigors, rumors, and red tape of Red Sea cruising.
We chose the Red Sea and sailed through the Bab Al Mandeb.
We had a True Adventure.
Awesome music video that captures the essence of what it's like to sail offshore in a catamaran around the world when conditions are less than perfect. David Abbott from Too Many Drummers sings the vocals, and he also edited the footage from our Red Sea adventures. This is the theme song from the Red Sea Chronicles.
Sailing up the Red Sea is not for the faint of heart. From the Bab al Mandeb to the Suez Canal, adventures and adversity are in abundance. If you take things too seriously, you just might get the Red Sea Blues.
If you like drum beats, and you like adventure, then have a listen to the Red Sea Chronicles Trailer.
Flying fish assault Exit Only in the middle of the night as we sail through the Arabian Gulf from the Maldives to Oman. And so begins our Red Sea adventures.
Sailing through Pirate Alley between Yemen and Somalia involves calculated risk. It may not be Russian Roulette, but it is a bit of a worry. Follow Team Maxing Out as they navigate through Pirate Alley.
Stopping in Yemen was just what the doctor ordered. We refueled, repaired our alternator, and we made friends with our gracious Yemeni hosts. We also went to Baskins Robbins as a reward for surviving Pirate Alley.
After you survive Pirate Alley, you must sail through the Gate of Sorrows (Bab Al Mandab) at the southern entrance to the Red Sea. The Gate of Sorrows lived up to its name with fifty knots of wind and a sandstorm that pummeled Exit Only for two days. Life is good.
Join Team Maxingout as they sail through Pirate Alley and up the Red Sea
See what it's like to cruise on a catamaran before you spend a bazillion dollars purchasing one
After watching the Red Sea Chronicles you will be able to see yourself sailing on the ocean of your dreams
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