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I don’t know how they did (do) it! I am referring to those couples who apparently, with virtually no experience, just buy a boat and sail around the world. Don’t think it’s possible? Check out Slapdash, Bumfuzzle and I am sure there’s a lot more! I am impressed, but personally would like to be a tiny bit more prepared before we cast off.

This morning I was inspired to look into the whole issue of weather forecasting. I have read multiple references to people downloading GRIB (GRIdded Binary) files, which supposedly, through some cryptic code, can show the forecast for wind. Wind is the kind of thing that sailors consider pretty important, so I guess we should too. Have you seen a GRIB file? It looks like this…

WTF is that all about???

Well, I just came across the following chart, and others like it. Now their little code makes a bit (just a bit) more sense.

It is possible to download these GRIB files from multiple sources. That is one of the uses of SSB radios and Sat. phones while at sea. Because I remembered seeing some reference to weather files in the menus of our GPSNavX program, I fired it up and connected our GPS to the laptop to see if I could get it to work. Was I able to download a GRIB file? Yes, but the scale was way off so it didn’t make much sense. Just 1 more thing to figure out. How many times have I said that?!?! Perhaps, as one of our blog readers recommended, we should look into taking the course on the subject offered by the Canadian Power and Sail Squadron.

In the meantime, the following method is more my speed…

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