I’ve made a video to clarify the likely route of messages in bottles in the Atlantic Ocean. Check it out:
Sorry it’s so dark! But compare my map with the one depicted in this CBS Early Show segment.
I know it seems crazy to think that these messages in bottles travel in a big circle around the Atlantic, but it really is the most likely explanation. You can google around and find better maps of the currents–but they all say basically the same thing: stuff in the Atlantic circles clockwise.
Heck, ships have a hard time swimming against the Gulf Stream! Imagine a wee little bottle trying to fight that force! If you ask me, it is much more likely that bottles go with the flow.