By the time we’ve decided it’s time to leave, of course the weather decides it’s not time to leave and blows stink right from the direction we’d need to sail. Everyone knows sailboats don’t sail right into the wind. So we’re on hold … waiting for an easterly breeze 10-12 with 1-2 foot waves to allow us to overnight & easily make it to the Florida Keys.
We have a “Goin’ Cruising Checklist that we use in the final days leading up to when we’d LIKE to depart, and after that it’s all weather. Our list is broken down into 3 separate categories, “The Boat”, “The Crew” and “The Day Before”. Your list will likely be different than ours, but this is a good starting point.
As you can imagine, “The Boat” involves things like topping off fuel tanks and propane, making sure all our electronics are still functioning, insuring that I can get e-mail and weather via the ICom M802 SSB radio and Sailmail, and even mundane things like re-charging anything aboard that might need it — the Iridium phone and handheld VHF’s come to mind.
“The Crew” focuses on us — prescription meds for 90 days, provisioning, and any tax requirements handled.
And “The Day Before” is stuff we won’t do until the day before we leave – or even the morning of if we decide on a mid-day departure due to tides or arrival timing at the other end.