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Old 18-10-2013, 12:46   #1
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Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

Hi
Will be doing this trip next year in a 35ft sailboat. Current plan is to follow the trades out to somewhere around 130W then head north as soon as the wind looks good, head in once N of Port Orford. Leaving the Caribbean early March so hoping to clear Panama early to mid April and be N of the hurricane danger zone by May. Alternative if the weather looks bad as we come north is to head in for San Fransisco to wait for it to settle.
Questions
Anyone done this route and have any comments/advice?
I have SSB/laptop for forecasts what reception like for weatherfax?
Is the Pacific really 'passive' compared to the Atlantic?

Thanks
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Old 18-10-2013, 15:46   #2
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Re: Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

I have only a few thousand miles in Caribbean and PNW so my answers may not be what some of my more experienced brethern would say....
If you are sailing because you love it- thru the canal and up to San Diego might be nice. From there truck it to Seattle.
If you just want to get it home- sail it to the east coast and truck it.
If you only have enough money to get it across the isthmus and insist on sailing...sail from Panama to Hawaii then to BC.
BTW the northern Pacific will make the Caribbean look tame. At least it was a revelation for me.
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Old 18-10-2013, 15:57   #3
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Re: Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

Thats because the Caribbean IS tame, 8-10 days with sun, tail wind and the waters warm! Looking forward to that bit. Trucking is not an option, needs sepearate wide load permits for each state, police escorts and that's if you can find a route with no low bridges!!!
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Old 18-10-2013, 19:02   #4
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Put it on on ship I had plan to do two years ago sail down from Ontario to Gulf then put boat on ship to Victoria Canada time was problem ended trucking to Vancouver same cost CS 40
if I had the time wold have love to sail and go by ship
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Old 18-10-2013, 19:12   #5
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Re: Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

1. George Benson has written about trips on a 27 foot sailboat from San Francisco to Seattle. Try this: George M. Benson | Racer – Author – Sailor

2. Many have cruised for SF to So. Cal. and back.

3. There's an article called the "Baja Dash" which suggests and documents a trip from Cabo to San Diego, using harbors at night instead of the dreaded "Baja Bash" which earlier "necessitated" going halfway to Hawaii. Try finding it on Cruising World's website.

Safe journey, fair winds.
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Old 19-10-2013, 08:11   #6
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Re: Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

Hello, Years ago I brought my Herreshoff 48 back from a years cruising on the east coast to British Columbia. We came through the canal in April, sailed up to Puntarenas ,Costa Rica, then sailed a great circle route to Hilo Hawaii. I seemed to recall that was about 4200 sea miles. It took us about a week of light airs to get out into the trades, then we flew along in grand style, truly one of my favourite offshore passages. After enjoying Hawaii for a couple of months we sailed north around the Pacific High and home to Canada. A great trip! I guess you have to ask yourself how much you like sailing but this is a common route to the PNW without bashing into headwinds and seas. There is the old clipper route up the coast, standing well offshore and taking advantages of any wind changes to make your northing, but this takes more consideration and tactical sailing skills.
Have you looked in Ocean Passages of the World?
good luck,
greg
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Old 19-10-2013, 08:20   #7
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Re: Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

Did the trip up from Panama a couple of years ago via Hawaii to Santa Cruz. It was a great trip--light winds at first, then trades to Hawaii and up and over the Pacific High. Get a ham license and check into the Pacific Maritime Net. We left Panama about April 15 and it took us 29 days to go the 4600 miles to Hilo, but we heard of slower boats taking nearly 60. Enjoy Hawaii for a couple of months and leave in August.
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Old 19-10-2013, 08:49   #8
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Re: Panama - Canadian NW /April 2014

Made the trip back to PNW from Hawaii several times and in my mind Panama to Hawaii and then home over top of the Pacific high is the nicest way to go. As another poster has mentioned an alternative is to be about 1000 miles off the coast and work your way north, its doable as the square riggers have done it and a pal of mine decided to try it out when we were returning from Mexico. We went to Hawaii and he did the old square riggers route. He made it with lots of windward work and was alot faster than us but he had times where he had to park the boat as it got a bit on the rough side. I would still sail to Hawaii if I was going back from the canal but I'm older now and not as excited about sailing to windward as I once was.
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