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Old 28-06-2011, 02:16   #1
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Eastbound Across the Pacific

Hi guys,
I hope some of you may be able to help me with this,
I am looking to take a contest 46 from phuket to europe. The owner wants to be on board for some or all of it.

I have done alot of sailing and am considering taking the pacific route instead of the conventional route through the red sea, piracy is my main concern here after being approached last time through in 2007. Is piracy a problem elsewhere? the media have caught on to it around somalia, but surely there must be some pirate activity coming up to the panama canal?

I know i will have to go round the north of the pacific to get some wind and currents
The questions I have are:
1) Are there escorted convoys through the red sea now and do they work?

2) I know there are alot of books, charts and maps out there, but can anyone who has done it give me some pointers in terms of weather conditions to be expected, seas, and stop off points. I have heard fuel is very expensive in the pacific.

3) there are alot of reports on the panama canal, but again anyone who has done it i would like to hear your reports on it.

looking forward to some replies thank you!
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Old 28-06-2011, 03:47   #2
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

Quote:
Originally Posted by Duncan aus View Post
Hi guys,
I hope some of you may be able to help me with this,
I am looking to take a contest 46 from phuket to europe. The owner wants to be on board for some or all of it.

I have done alot of sailing and am considering taking the pacific route instead of the conventional route through the red sea, piracy is my main concern here after being approached last time through in 2007. Is piracy a problem elsewhere? the media have caught on to it around somalia, but surely there must be some pirate activity coming up to the panama canal?

I know i will have to go round the north of the pacific to get some wind and currents
The questions I have are:
1) Are there escorted convoys through the red sea now and do they work?

2) I know there are alot of books, charts and maps out there, but can anyone who has done it give me some pointers in terms of weather conditions to be expected, seas, and stop off points. I have heard fuel is very expensive in the pacific.

3) there are alot of reports on the panama canal, but again anyone who has done it i would like to hear your reports on it.

looking forward to some replies thank you!
Welcome aboard CF.

The Red Sea route is still considered to be a no go area. There are some cruisers choosing to ship their boats as cargo through the area and fly to the other side. Pricey but more direct and quicker.

I assume after the North Pacific you'd be heading down to Panama, then across the North Atlantic. In theory you can go around the top of USA if it's summer and you rug up!

I guess the other option would be south through the Indian Ocean, around the Cape of Good Hope and up to Gibralta. I don't know how that compares with the North Pacific route for distance.
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Old 03-07-2011, 19:21   #3
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

thanks VV. the red sea being a no go still isnt exactly what i had hoped for but i figured it would be, i think we are going to stick with the pacific eastbound, anyone got any tips????
i hear fuel is very expensive and not always clean, is provisioning easy out there?
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Old 03-07-2011, 19:26   #4
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

If you want to avoid the hassles of the Panama Canal, etc. There have been cruising boats using the "Northwest Passage" through the Arctic Ocean. Here is a link on how to: How to Sail the Northwest Passage | eHow.com

Also there is a CF thread on the subject of the Northwest Passage: Northwest Passage

And another: Northwest Passage
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Old 03-07-2011, 19:37   #5
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

Roaring forties. Aptly named, but people do this quite often. There is no provisioning in the North or South Pacific once you commit to the route. Majuro (Marshall Islands) would be your last shot in the North Pacific, and nothing past NZ for the South Pacific unless you screw up your route and go into the tropics.

Look into yacht convoys in the Red Sea. Sometimes an escorted convoy of sailing yachts is put together then escorted by a naval vessel.
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Old 03-07-2011, 21:16   #6
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Re: eastbound across the pacific


This Panamanian pirate tried to stop me playing with my lines.

You can read about our Panama adventures on my website Our Life At Sea - Cruising in 2008 down the bottom of the page is a link to a .doc we made about it.

Or watch this video: http://ourlifeatsea.com/photos/pan.wmv featuring the pirate screaming.....
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Old 03-07-2011, 21:50   #7
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

Your proposed route, the North Pacific route, will pass through the edges of the second-most active piracy zone - Gulf of Thailand/Java Sea. Even so, it is hugely lower risk, as can be seen by the IMB Live Piracy Map. There is also inter-governmental discussions in the South China Sea regions, which is again far less than the government instability in the Red Sea regions.

Your best route is 100% controlled by the monsoons. You will be able to pretty exactly determine when to leave by figuring out when it will be possible for you to get to Japan.

If you can find it, get a copy of the 1954 or older British Admiralty Ocean Passages for the World, which has extensive notes and route planning for the region. Also get a copy of Cornell's World Cruising Routes. Determine when you *can* get to Japan, the rest is pretty straightforward route-planning.

[Edit] It may actually be faster/easier for you to sail the clipper route. South to Aus, south Pacific easting, Cape Horn, north through the Atlantics.
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Old 03-07-2011, 23:59   #8
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

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Originally Posted by osirissail View Post
If you want to avoid the hassles of the Panama Canal, etc. There have been cruising boats using the "Northwest Passage" through the Arctic Ocean. Here is a link on how to: How to Sail the Northwest Passage | eHow.com

Also there is a CF thread on the subject of the Northwest Passage: Northwest Passage

And another: Northwest Passage
Given eHow's status as a content mill I assume the inclusion of that link was a joke.
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Old 16-07-2011, 15:49   #9
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Hi, thanks for all your comments.
Amine, I will try and get those books and look into the clipper route, haven't had a chance to look at distances yet, but surely the clipper route is alot further, and in a boat where speed was not the builders main concern I'm not sure lots of wind will push us much faster than a bit of wind. However, everything is worth looking into so thanks to all that have replied and please keep the suggestions coming
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Old 16-07-2011, 16:00   #10
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

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Given eHow's status as a content mill I assume the inclusion of that link was a joke.
I don't know about "eHow's" reputation but I do know cruisers who have successfully used the Northwest Passage to get from the Atlantic to the Pacific. Each year it gets easier as the ice recedes north opening up the routes for longer periods of time.
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Old 16-07-2011, 16:06   #11
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

Why not sail her Westwards to Europe, via the RSA?

I will PM you on this one.

Cheers,
b.
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Old 16-07-2011, 16:11   #12
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

Without the pirate issue, the far quickest and easiest way is up the Red Sea.

Otherwise, just drop south around OZ, through NZ, and round the horn, and bob's your uncle!
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Old 16-07-2011, 16:55   #13
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Re: eastbound across the pacific

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Hi, thanks for all your comments.
Amine, I will try and get those books and look into the clipper route, haven't had a chance to look at distances yet, but surely the clipper route is alot further, and in a boat where speed was not the builders main concern I'm not sure lots of wind will push us much faster than a bit of wind. However, everything is worth looking into so thanks to all that have replied and please keep the suggestions coming
The clipper route is not so much further as you might at first expect, plus the majority of the route is down wind with current. Long offshore legs with brief provisioning stops in places not designed around tourists results in lower costs (and sometimes better speed over all.)

That said, it will still probably be more expensive than shipping the boat when all the costs of crew are factored in.
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Old 17-07-2011, 03:25   #14
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We r lucky on this one, we have ample crew volunteers for it, as skipper it is only my costs to cover and the expenses.
I will look into the clipper route as if it's not much further it could be a very viable option
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Old 17-07-2011, 08:44   #15
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Re: Eastbound Across the Pacific

How much will you spend on food for a multi-months delivery? wear and tear on sails, gear, port fees, etc. Delivering for the adventure is perfectly justified; but when it's a half-globe distance it probably does not make sense financially.
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