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Old 25-04-2013, 14:34   #1
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Time to leave NZ?

We are headed to Rotuma in Fiji then to Tuvalu, and the cyclone season now coming to a close, wonder what others are thinking about date of departure from NZ.

We follow McDavitt's WeatherGram blog and are eagerly awaiting his next message next Monday, and otherwise review other web sites, especially Fiji Met and PassageWeather, and we subscribe to OCEN's WeatherNet, so have access to excellent info, but just are curious what others are thinking.

The Island Cruising Assoc.'s several rallies (Vanuatu, Tonga, Fiji) are set to depart Opua May 1st, I understand. We will be ready to leave about then, too.

We are in Whangarei more or less (Marsden Cove to be precise).
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Old 25-04-2013, 17:22   #2
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Re: Time to leave NZ?

Well, in 1991 (or maybe '92) we left Opua for the Kermadecs on about 10 May. On 15 May we were overtaken by Cyclone Lisa. Neptune does not recognize the alleged cyclone seasons!

Draw your own conclusions! But, I must say that McDavitt's reporting on the MJO cycles does help to rule out the likelihood of encountering late season cyclones...

Cheers,

Jim
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Old 25-04-2013, 23:34   #3
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Re: Time to leave NZ?

The ICA rally does tend to leave fairly early (they have a busy itinerary around the southern Pacific) .... often before the trade winds system really stabilises. NZ got the remains of a tropical cyclone system only a couple of weeks ago and the water temperature here is still about 19 deg C .... unseasonably warm for this time of year. Warm water allows energetic weather systems to retain a lot of their energy as they move southward.

Obviously everyone must make their own decisions about when to depart, but personally I would say that the first one or two weeks of May is a bit early to be leaving this year. It may be possible, but I'd be looking very carefully at the weather patterns indeed.
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