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Old 14-03-2011, 18:18   #1
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Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

I have a dream (as someone once said). Actually it's currently more of a casual rumination - to eventually sail the Pacific clockwise. Beginning in Aus -> PNG -> Malaysia -> Taiwan -> Japan -> Aleutians -> Canada -> US ->?. Most of these areas have been sailed fairly extensively and there are plenty of blogs/articles/guides. There seems to be few accounts of sailing the Aleutians (or, for that matter, skirting the Pond in a clockwise manner). Has anyone sailed, and can give an account of conditions in the Aleutians? Is the weather often dangerous or capricious? Would a decent blue water GRP cat do it, or would a steel tank be needed? The plan would be to skip across the Aleutians in the height of summer, hopefully avoiding ice and storms. Is there a time of year when the weather is more stable? I'm imagining, admittedly in my ignorance, that the conditions may be comparable to the Southern Ocean - do-able in Summer, though can still be very wild and wooly, but virtually a no go area in winter.
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Old 14-03-2011, 18:41   #2
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea?

I'm hoping to see some replies here from folks who have done this trip as I too have been considering it.

My research has shown the downsides to be fog and the fact that low pressure systems continue to track across the North Pacific all summer long, albeit farther north than in winter and they are labelled "gale" and "storm" rather than "storm" and "hurricane". A friend who spent many summers fishing out of Kodiak reckons it would be a rough ride.

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Old 15-03-2011, 21:41   #3
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

There is a website for a group of Nordhoven power boats that did the tour going west from the USA to Japan. Can't remember the name right now.

We are also considering doing this trip in 2013 and would love to hear from some people who have done it.

We may make it a shorter trip, leaving New Zealand in April and head to Tahiti, then north to Hawaii and Alaska, with the plan to leave our boat in Kodiak for the winter.
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Old 15-03-2011, 21:43   #4
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

Here is the Nordhavn website for that trip:

::Welcome to Nordhavn.com::
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Old 15-03-2011, 22:25   #5
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

I envy you the trip if you get to it. I spent 2 years along the Aleutian chain on a 210 ft cutter... really beautiful. I wish I could contribute with good info. If there is an opportunity to stop we were able to visit a couple of great, little visited islands including one where there was an amazingly well preserved U.S. Military base. The interior of Unalaska is beautiful... The whole chain has a Disney quality (when it can be seen).
Can be some tough passages between islands if I remember.
Not my shots but:
Entrance to Dutch Harbor
Off Shishalidin
Unalaska
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Old 15-03-2011, 22:43   #6
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

I suppose it goes without saying, be sure to check with the local fishermen as you go. Kodiak and Dutch Harbor are great stops for that... As you might figure those guys can be a huge source if good info regarding the chain and it's waters
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Old 15-03-2011, 23:26   #7
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

The book "Two on a Big Ocean" has a pretty good description. After reading the description we were a bit less inclined to do it but the rugged beauty might help change our minds.



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Old 15-03-2011, 23:38   #8
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Re: Cruising the Aleutians - Bad Idea ?

Those wacky Roths! They did some amazing stuff.
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