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Old 05-12-2016, 22:07   #1
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Is this possible? Hawaii to California

Is it foolish for me to want to sail from Oahu to Newport California in 2 1/2 years? I have no experience sailing whatsoever; I am going to look at a boat next weekend to buy and liveaboard and I will hire someone to teach me how to sail, then I will practice over the next few years by sailing to other islands and around oahu.

I am in the Navy and plan to learn all about navigation through people I know on the boat. I've read that the best time to go is like late July or early September. I get out of the Navy November of 2018, or late September 2018 if I take terminal leave. So my option would be to take terminal and leave right away or get out in November, stay in hawaii and leave in July; which i am leaning towards this option because then I will have a lot more time learning to sail. Any advice on this?
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Old 05-12-2016, 22:30   #2
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

https://youtu.be/28TAdDu5L6U
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Old 05-12-2016, 22:33   #3
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

For some reason I cannot post the link, but it's completely possible, check YouTube.."alone together"
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Old 05-12-2016, 23:01   #4
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

Yeah watched that already, Im just asking will 2 years be enough to gain enough experience to do this? I think so; I think experience can really only be gained by taking advice and well actually experiencing things.

My dad says im stupid for even thinking about it, but I think it will be something that will teach me a lot about myself
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Old 05-12-2016, 23:35   #5
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

Here is what you need to do. There are two or Waikiki Yacht Club - Crew Finderthree yacht clubs in Oahu. They have races all the time. Someone is always looking for "rail meat" I will put some links. If you crew in a lot of races over the next two years you will have plenty of sailing knowledge at which point you could get invited to do a return trip after one of the Transpac races. If all you want to do is sail in a boat to Newport. If you want to sail your own boat to Newport you will need to find a deal on a really good boat because you won't have enough time to fix up a boat and learn to sail.
http://www.hawaiiyachtclub.org/boati...w-list/http://
Our Club - Kaneohe Yacht Club
Racing is the fast track to learning sailing skills. Buying, berthing, maintaining and upgrading a boat is expensive and time consuming. There are a lot of junky boats there for sale. You need a boat that is "offshore ready". I think that a lot of the races there are on Friday evenings. If you get stationed on Kauai they are on Thursdays. There are also offshore races on weekends. Hopefully that fits into your schedule. Good luck!
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Old 05-12-2016, 23:48   #6
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

What makes a boat offshore ready? I'm currently looking on Ala Wai Yachts. Going next weekend to look at a few of them.
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Old 06-12-2016, 00:58   #7
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

In the right boat, very little grog, no drugs.....you'll do it on yer ear.
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Old 06-12-2016, 02:34   #8
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

The passage from Hawaii to California can be a tough one, and later in the year (September onward) it can be harder yet. It typically starts with a long, hard windward leg northward, beating against the trades. Once somewhere around 40 north or so you should encounter the NWlies, and then life gets better as you broad reach towards SF or thereabouts. Later in the year depressions from up north start impacting this route, and can make life difficult. The worst ocean passage in our logs was from Kauai to SF, around the first week in October. Five depressions in a row passed over us, and we had 16 days of gale force or above out of a 24 day passage. This was before we had access to decent wx info, and in the same situation today we could have adjusted our course to ease the conditions... as you could, if you knew enough to do so. I didn't!

So, if you really want to make the voyage, start in the right season... of course, keeping your eyes peeled for hurricanes, for that is hurricane time too! But lots of folks make that passage every year, and some of them enjoy the experience!

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Old 06-12-2016, 03:07   #9
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

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Originally Posted by odeapt View Post
Yeah watched that already, Im just asking will 2 years be enough to gain enough experience to do this? I think so; I think experience can really only be gained by taking advice and well actually experiencing things.

My dad says im stupid for even thinking about it, but I think it will be something that will teach me a lot about myself
Easy... Take a couple of ASA lessons to take the edge of the 'unknown' and you'll be OK. Also my wife and parents think I'm nuts also... But that's another thing altogether...
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Old 06-12-2016, 04:14   #10
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

You're going the wrong direction. From Hawaii you're supposed to head to the South Pacifc, from there to New Zealand and Australia, and so forth and so on...
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Old 06-12-2016, 04:40   #11
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

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The passage from Hawaii to California can be a tough one, and later in the year (September onward) it can be harder yet. It typically starts with a long, hard windward leg northward, beating against the trades. Once somewhere around 40 north or so you should encounter the NWlies, and then life gets better as you broad reach towards SF or thereabouts. Later in the year depressions from up north start impacting this route, and can make life difficult. The worst ocean passage in our logs was from Kauai to SF, around the first week in October. Five depressions in a row passed over us, and we had 16 days of gale force or above out of a 24 day passage. This was before we had access to decent wx info, and in the same situation today we could have adjusted our course to ease the conditions... as you could, if you knew enough to do so. I didn't!

So, if you really want to make the voyage, start in the right season... of course, keeping your eyes peeled for hurricanes, for that is hurricane time too! But lots of folks make that passage every year, and some of them enjoy the experience!

Jim
Done that leg 4 times and never had an easy time of it. As you beat north to get over the top of the high the lows start tracking right along your path. If you have a large capacity of diesel then you can motor through the high and it's a much easier trip but I've never owned a boat that could motor that far. You need to be well dressed for that trip, we even ran into sleet on that leg plus lots of dense fog.
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Old 06-12-2016, 08:05   #12
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

Yes you can do it but better make sure you want to. Sailing between the Islands is a good test of your dedication. The passages West to East are against strong tradewinds, the current in very steep 6'-10' seas. Sail to Molokai or back from Kauai a couple of times and you'll get something of the experience of sailing when weather isn't for you.

I did what you are planning on doing with a boat when I was stationed in Hawaii and have done thousands of miles of open ocean sailing since. The experience of sailing between the islands put me in good stead to sail much longer passages. Have not done the Hawaii-West Coast Sail because I have been allergic to cold weather. Have done it the other way solo. Still thinking about a circumnavigation of the NE Pacific, Hawaii-Alaska-Inland Passage-back to Kona.
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Old 06-12-2016, 08:17   #13
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

Correct me if I am wrong, but I have heard that Hawaii is not the most accommodating place when it comes to live aboards and cruisers. I would be doubly and triply sure of where I was going to keep a boat before I bought it. I would also be sure I know how and where essential services are and what restrictions there are to working on the boat, by yourself or others, in any potential berth. Look hard at the hidden costs (taxes, registration, insurance, etc.) Hire a surveyor who is familiar with the requirements for safe offshore passages. Include the cost of new standing rigging in your budget. You may not need it but likely you will, if only for peace of mind.

I think the passage itself, while certainly daunting, might not be the most challenging endeavor you will face if you do this correctly.
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Old 06-12-2016, 08:37   #14
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

Still thinking about a circumnavigation of the NE Pacific, Hawaii-Alaska-Inland Passage-back to Kona.[/QUOTE]

If you do, stop in for a coffee or tot!! I'm at the south end of Discovery Passage.

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Old 06-12-2016, 08:50   #15
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Re: Is this possible? Hawaii to California

As has been said, crew on race boats before you buy, and a really good way to learn if you want to do the passage to the west coast would be to crew on a delivery from Hawaii to the west coast before you spend a bunch of money on a boat. I dont know how much leave you get, but you could probably do it on your leave. Just a thought. _____Grant.
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