There have been a few Atlantic and Pacific row boat crossings. Poor weather is a significant risk. While it might be nice to row with the wind at your aft (back of boat), it might also be nice to have calm water and no wind for the entire trip. Assuming you have enough food can the doldrums be predicted well enough to allow for an ocean crossing all in calm weather?

The doldrums is a colloquial expression derived from historical maritime usage, which refers to those parts of the Atlantic Ocean and the Pacific Ocean affected by a low-pressure area around the equator where the prevailing winds are calm. The doldrums are also noted for calm periods when the winds disappear altogether, trapping sailing ships for periods of days or weeks. Source

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The latitudes in which they occur is predictable, the effects which range from calm to storms are not,

Known to sailors around the world as the doldrums, the Inter-Tropical Convergence Zone, (ITCZ, pronounced and sometimes referred to as the “itch”), is a belt around the Earth extending approximately five degrees north and south of the equator. Here, the prevailing trade winds of the northern hemisphere blow to the southwest and collide with the southern hemisphere’s driving northeast trade winds.

What are the doldrums?

The expected weather is variable light or calm winds, alternating with squalls and thundery showers. This band of pressure moves North and South on a daily basis according to the seasons and it can be very difficult to predict exactly where the ‘Doldrums’ will occur with any meaningful accuracy until a few days before.


Given that the zone of high pressure in the North and South also ‘breathe’ and cumuliform clouds are constantly moving and regenerating around the equator. The doldrums are continually metamorphosing, working one way on a particular day, and another the next. As such, it’s hard for the sailors to predict its extension and its density before plunging into it


They generally position themselves between 8°N and 3°N, going from the African coast to up to 35° West at times as it contracts. However, the worst thing about the doldrums remains its unpredictability. It stretches, becomes longer, retracts or expands without warning: the sailor knows when he’s beginning to enter it, but not when he’ll escape it.


The unpredictability of the weather, either no winds or potential hurricanes, made the Doldrums one of the least favorite sailing lanes back when all that ships had to power them across the ocean was their sails.


So in general, it doesn't sound like this is a pleasant place to be.

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