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Old 19-08-2018, 03:29   #1
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passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

i would like to hear from anyone who has done a passage in a yacht from Hong Kong to Singapore during months august to september.

i know this is a really tough journey, and totally the "wrong" time, so i really don't need to be told this!

i really want to hear from anyone with actual experience doing this trip at this time, and any suggestions (including "don't do it!").

thanks!
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Old 19-08-2018, 05:13   #2
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

you could use the leading edge of either of the 2 typhoons,that are currently off shore and heading your way in the next week to give you a good push south whilst the wind is in the northerly quadrant............

alternatively wait till november when the NE monsoon kicks in
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Old 19-08-2018, 05:20   #3
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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you could use the leading edge of either of the 2 typhoons,that are currently off shore and heading your way in the next week to give you a good push south whilst the wind is in the northerly quadrant............
that would be the skipper's call, but in any case, just a tad too soon. boat is not quite ready.

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alternatively wait till november when the NE monsoon kicks in
that's what sensible people would do.
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Old 19-08-2018, 21:17   #4
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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you could use the leading edge of either of the 2 typhoons,that are currently off shore and heading your way in the next week to give you a good push south whilst the wind is in the northerly quadrant............
And Japan's Met Agency reckons sea surface temperatures E of The Philippines are still warm enough for more cyclogenesis, so atoll's strategy might be viable for a couple more weeks.

On 18 August, NHK reported:

"Japan's Meteorological Agency says 7 tropical storms have developed in Asia-Pacific region as of Thursday, exceeding the average number of 5.9 for the month of August.

"A storm developed for the 5th straight day since last Sunday, the first time this has occurred since record-keeping began in 1951.

"So far this year, 19 tropical storms have developed, which is the second-highest pace on record.

"Weather officials say the Pacific waters are warmer than average far southeast of Japan, where storms often develop. They say more storm-causing towering clouds are forming over the waters, and could be the cause of this year's frequent storms."

See the original (while it remains on the NHK server, which is not long) at: https://www3.nhk.or.jp/nhkworld/en/news/20180818_01/
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Old 19-08-2018, 21:29   #5
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

Here're are some examples of what a typhoon can do to the winds between HK and Sinkers, taken from 2004.

First, an example of a typhoon increasing the winds of the SouthWest (SW) monsoon from 28 Aug 2004. See wx20040828.gif.

Second, an example of how just a week later that typhoon has changed the direction of the winds so a HK-Sinkers voyage would be a little less wet and uncomfortable, from 4 Sep 2004. See wx20040904.gif.

The Sinkers agency that produced those graphics no longer does so. You can look at their replacement, which is no better than windy.com at: Marine Forecasts | Surface Winds |
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Old 20-08-2018, 02:21   #6
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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Originally Posted by Alan Mighty View Post
Here're are some examples of what a typhoon can do to the winds between HK and Sinkers, taken from 2004.

First, an example of a typhoon increasing the winds of the SouthWest (SW) monsoon from 28 Aug 2004. See wx20040828.gif.

Second, an example of how just a week later that typhoon has changed the direction of the winds so a HK-Sinkers voyage would be a little less wet and uncomfortable, from 4 Sep 2004. See wx20040904.gif.

The Sinkers agency that produced those graphics no longer does so. You can look at their replacement, which is no better than windy.com at: Marine Forecasts | Surface Winds |
thank you alan for your excellent breakdown of current weather conditions

my comment was posted,more in jest,than an actual stratergy and not one i would reccomend for a green crew and untested boat,particularly a catamaran that will find it very difficult to make any headway in to open ocean winds of over 25 knots.

however i have to admit i have used this same stratergy many times during cyclone season in the indian ocean to get south in the mozambique channel.

also for crossing the biscay where lows passing to the north bring periods of easterly winds,then calms before reverting back to SW.

however as you pointed out these typhoons do tend to spawn a secession of storms,making accurate track and intensity prediction difficult for subsequent storms following.

also unlike the mozambique channel where you would expect a period of calms between each low passing to the north ,in the south china sea the opposite happens generally bringing gale force SW monsoon winds.

couple that with few ports of refuge,shallow waters off of the east coast and a boat not designed for windward passagemaking in strong conditions ,prudence is advised
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Old 20-08-2018, 02:48   #7
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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my comment was posted,more in jest,than an actual stratergy and not one i would reccomend for a green crew and untested boat,particularly a catamaran that will find it very difficult to make any headway in to open ocean winds of over 25 knots.
Understood.

What's uncertain about a voyage plan based on cyclogenesis is how long a typhoon is going to maintain favourable winds.

Looking through my collection of the relevant surface streamline charts, I found some years where cyclogenesis took place in September right on the rhumb line Honkers to Sinkers! That's not good.

In late September 2004 for a few days, a cyclone in the Bay of Bengal created favourable winds for a fast HK-Sinkers passage. Other than that, about the earliest date likely is in October - and that's only if the ITCZ moves south (as it theoretically should) to be around the Equator for the equinox on 22 Sept. The N Hemisphere has been v hot, as you know and as the continued cyclogenesis in the NW Pacific shows, so where the ITCZ will be in late Sept or early Oct is anyone's guess.

Here're are two more Singapore surface streamline charts to show the possiblities: one from 25 Sept 2004 when a cyclone in the Bay of Bengal created favourable winds; and the other from 2 Oct 2004 when the ITCZ stood for a while just N of the Eq (but I must say that the ITCZ danced away just days after, pulled way N by cyclogenesis to the E of The Philippines).
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Old 22-08-2018, 02:29   #8
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Alan Mighty View Post
And Japan's Met Agency reckons sea surface temperatures E of The Philippines are still warm enough for more cyclogenesis, so atoll's strategy might be viable for a couple more weeks.

<snip>

"So far this year, 19 tropical storms have developed, which is the second-highest pace on record.

"Weather officials say the Pacific waters are warmer than average far southeast of Japan, where storms often develop. They say more storm-causing towering clouds are forming over the waters, and could be the cause of this year's frequent storms."
For anyone planning a voyage in the NW Pacific or the South China Sea, here's an update to the above from the Japan Met Agency:

"According to the Japan Meteorological Agency (JMA), 12 typhoons were formed from the beginning of this year to the end of July, more than a normal year. This year's 15th to 19th typhoons developed for five consecutive days from Aug. 12 to 16. Typhoon Cimaron, the latest tropical storm and this year's 20th, was formed on Aug. 18 -- the second fastest pace since 1951 when statistics became available. The fastest pace was recorded in 1971 when the 20th typhoon appeared on Aug. 8.

"The year 1967 saw the forming of a record 39 typhoons, and that year's 20th typhoon developed on Aug. 25.

"This year, most of the necessary conditions for the development of numerous typhoons were met in August. The temperatures of the surface of the sea far east of the Philippines rose to about 30 degrees Celsius, 0.5 to 1 degrees Celsius higher than a normal year, making it easier for cumulonimbus clouds to be formed.

"Moreover, the Asian monsoon that brings the rainy season to India and other areas has been blowing from the west more strongly than normal, joining easterly winds along the edge of high pressure systems along the Pacific Ocean. This makes it easier for atmospheric vortexes moving in a counterclockwise direction to be formed. Such vortexes develop into typhoons.

"Moreover, westerly winds have also contributed to the formation of more typhoons than usual. Westerlies are meandering above the Pacific Ocean and generating atmospheric vortexes moving in a counterclockwise direction, which move south and lead to the formation of typhoons.

"The current atmospheric conditions are expected to change by the end of August, but experts say they are unsure of whether the pace of the formation of typhoons will decline."

The original is at: https://mainichi.jp/english/articles...0m/0na/019000c
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Old 22-08-2018, 03:53   #9
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

Hi Gary, I have not done this passage but you did ask for suggestions.
I just looked outside and its raining like crazy, thunder and lightening all around. Crazy looking weather on the weather channel all way from Taiwan south to Malaysia. So, unless you really have to go now, don't.
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Old 22-08-2018, 06:17   #10
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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I just looked outside and its raining like crazy, thunder and lightening all around. Crazy looking weather on the weather channel all way from Taiwan south to Malaysia. So, unless you really have to go now, don't.
Hmm ... The Joint Typhoon Warning Center does have a HIGH likelihood of something nasty developing just between you and HK, 台中man.

See the graphic at: Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC)
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Old 22-08-2018, 16:45   #11
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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Hi Gary, I have not done this passage but you did ask for suggestions.
I just looked outside and its raining like crazy, thunder and lightening all around. Crazy looking weather on the weather channel all way from Taiwan south to Malaysia. So, unless you really have to go now, don't.
yes, situation right now is far from favourable! but when i say "now", i mean departure south within a few weeks, with an eye on the prognosis for the duration of the passage. if no weather window opens up, then that's that! i am not suggesting a foolhardy race out into a cyclone/typhoon!

apart from the issue bad weather, i was looking for someone who has had actual experience with the currents and winds during this time of year: eg, how variable was the direction of wind, and were they able to sail any or part of the way? what impact did the currents have on overall speed, and how far offshore did they motor/sail? fishing nets? ports of call? questions ike this.

so far, no-one with experience with this journey has piped up, either because no-one reading this thread has actually done it, and/or this forum is full of very sensible people who dont want to see newbies take stupid risks. i'm sure there are other reasons too.

anyway, i'm reading all your comments and appreciating the time you are giving me.
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Old 22-08-2018, 17:43   #12
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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Originally Posted by Gary Dean View Post
yes, situation right now is far from favourable! but when i say "now", i mean departure south within a few weeks, with an eye on the prognosis for the duration of the passage. if no weather window opens up, then that's that! i am not suggesting a foolhardy race out into a cyclone/typhoon!

apart from the issue bad weather, i was looking for someone who has had actual experience with the currents and winds during this time of year: eg, how variable was the direction of wind, and were they able to sail any or part of the way? what impact did the currents have on overall speed, and how far offshore did they motor/sail? fishing nets? ports of call? questions ike this.

so far, no-one with experience with this journey has piped up, either because no-one reading this thread has actually done it, and/or this forum is full of very sensible people who dont want to see newbies take stupid risks. i'm sure there are other reasons too.

anyway, i'm reading all your comments and appreciating the time you are giving me.
you are probably not getting any replies from people who have sailed the route at this time of year because nobody has!

heading into the prevailing 40 knot SW head winds is not viable at this time of year for any yacht,,,,ever

i have done the trip from palawan to singapore,in january with solid 30 knot NE winds.. and singapore to bangkok. in october.. i would not consider doing it the other way heading north into the monsoon winds even at that time of year when it is safe, despite their being little risk of typhoons
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Old 22-08-2018, 17:51   #13
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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so far, no-one with experience with this journey has piped up, either because no-one reading this thread has actually done it, and/or this forum is full of very sensible people who dont want to see newbies take stupid risks. i'm sure there are other reasons too.
Gary: look at windy.com or the Singapore equivalent Marine Forecasts | Surface Winds |

For several reasons (two of which I'll address in a moment) the situation on your planned rhumb line is too wrong to envisage. I've a monohull which has trouble going upwind against anything more than 35 knots. But there are 40 knots of SW on your rhumbline at the moment. And, unless I'm wrong, you were talking about doing the voyage on a multihull!!?!

I'm not a meteorologist, but my un-educated reading of the weather charts suggest we've a possibly short-lived surge in the SW monsoon. That surge likely is due to the 1031 hPa High pressure in the S Indian Ocean (it was a Mascarene High, now it's drifted E and perhaps is on its way to being an Australia High) at one end and a typhoon nearing the home islands of Nippon on the other.

See that ex-Mascarene High at: Indian Ocean MSLP Analysis

And keep checking the Joint (as in US Navy + US Airforce) Typhoon Warning Center chart: Joint Typhoon Warning Center (JTWC)
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Old 22-08-2018, 17:56   #14
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

Note that both Windy.com and Singapore Met show you the wind wave (Marine Forecasts | Wind Waves |) and swell (Marine Forecasts | Swell |) you would face on your voyage.

Note that patch of 3 metre wind wave off the VN coast expected for the next 24 hours. That would be fun to meet, right? Short sharp 3 m waves to try to sail into! Each wave peak would steal at least 1 knot of boat speed, yes?

At the moment, the wind wave is opposed to the swell. That would be fun, nicht wahr? Confused seas are such fun!
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Old 22-08-2018, 18:51   #15
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Re: passage Hong Kong to Singapore in September: has anyone done this?

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I'm not a meteorologist, but my un-educated reading of the weather charts suggest we've a possibly short-lived surge in the SW monsoon. That surge likely is due to the 1031 hPa High pressure in the S Indian Ocean (it was a Mascarene High, now it's drifted E and perhaps is on its way to being an Australia High) at one end and a typhoon nearing the home islands of Nippon on the other.
To make myself clear: a strong Mascarene High (with a centre around 60E) or a strong Australia High (or one in between such as the current Indian Ocean High) can each contribute to a surge in the SouthWest monsoon.

And when one or more typhoons are in the NW Pacific creating a pressure gradient with that Indian Ocean High, the SW monsoon surge may last for more than just a few days.

So what's the bottom line: you must have a rule for when you don't leave port, right? I've recently talked about just those rules here: Australia To Indonesia, Thailand, Sri Lanka, and Madagascar Route

To those rules, you might want to add "don't voyage into a monsoon surge".
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