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Old 07-03-2008, 08:48   #31
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<I just want a rough guestimate and I hoping to find a resource that can teach me how to consider time and distance…>

For no cost fun; you can try Google Earth as Sonosailer suggests, then go to Tools > Ruler > Path, to chart your proposed routecurrent version allows you to set nautical miles, don’t think the earlier ones did… Then divide that by whatever your usual 24-hour run might be – for planning purposes I use a semi-convoluted calculation this roughly amounts to 0.8 times (or use whatever 0.70, 0.75, etc…) the square-root of the waterline times 24 hours…

I’ve done this for quick and dirty – Google earth does great-circle routing, but if you have specific ports or even lat/long you want to transit through, just plug `em in as waypoints…

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Old 02-06-2008, 16:40   #32
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Have you tried using Google Earth (Google Earth)? You can put in a start point, an end point and measure distances. You can even plug in waypoints and it will give total trip distance.

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Old 23-07-2008, 18:27   #33
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Great circle distances

San Diego to the Marquesas, according to "Uncle Jimmy", is 2560 nm. Then another 760 nm to Tahiti. Best time is late March - April.

By memory, you stay north of the equator (in the NE trades) until you are well to the west, to find a shorter route through the belt of light winds.

If you need a shakedown cruise, go to Mexico. But I do not think you will shave any serious miles off the trip ... so go the route that fits your schedule and gives you the most fun
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Old 23-08-2008, 09:01   #34
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I have used a russian copy of CMap on my laptop since 1992. This is freely available around the cruising scene in Australia and SE Asia. I have used it from the east coast of australia to the phillipines, thailand, malaysia and indonesia. Never let me down. it has a route planner that will calculate time, distance and direction of each leg.

Also I have bought cheap ($60) USB GPS from hong kong, got cmap to talk to the GPS and created a chart ploter with a 17' screen for a comparatively small outlay

If you cannot find a copy, email me at and I will post it to you.

Also I strongly urge you to find a few Navigator courses as the passage that you are planning is not a simple one and you will need more than a bit of electonics


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Old 23-08-2008, 11:30   #35
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Strongly recommend Virtual Passage Planner - takes the standard monthly averaged wind and current info from the planning charts, and allows a calculator to do what ifs and recommend the best options including great circle and rhumb line calcs. Keep trying to persuade the software author to allow this to work with gribs.
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Old 23-08-2008, 13:52   #36
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Originally Posted by MV View Post

Is there a web site that offers approximations of time of passage to various destinations? My boat supposedly does 5/6 knots. I want to get a rough estimate of the time it takes to get from Los Angelas to Cabo San Lucas to the Marquesas to the Cooks to Hawaii and to LA.


Dont know of one guide that would show all routes and times estimates but I do know that LA to Cabo is about 750 nautical miles and Cabo to Marqueses is just aunder 3000 nautical miles.

Figure about 140 miles per day with no stops most boats in your speed range can make it to Cabo from LA in about 5-6 days without stops and 7-10 days making one or two stops. I would plan to stop because rest at anchor is nice.

Most boats take 3-4 weeks from Cabo to Marqueses in your speed range.
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Old 26-08-2008, 07:41   #37
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My little 30footer averaged 100 miles a day From S.F to Cabo. Your Dolphin should come close to doubling that. Unfortunatley I did it in 93, and the winds were reversed.....OUCH!!!!!!
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Old 26-08-2008, 08:30   #38
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Lightbulb As the crow flies online calculator

If all you need is a quick estimate for distance, consider the "as the crow flies" online calculator at:

How Far is It
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Old 26-08-2008, 18:56   #39
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Here is the heart of the question: I am saving my leave and so far I have about 180 hours saved. Come next May I ought to have about 3 months of leave saved.

This is the squirrel in my brain: At what point do I suck it up and set sail given how much is in the bank, how much time do I have, and how far can I go in what is apparently a nicely slow boat?

I am tempted to do the Haha -- but my lack of experience hesitates me -- but I would only burn a month of leave.

If I were to wait till May..... I might actually be able to get to Tahiti. AND spend some time in the Cooks. Course, there would be no time to get the boat back to the US!


But I am in a good spot. I have options.

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Old 27-08-2008, 01:07   #40
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Originally Posted by MV View Post
... I am tempted to do the Haha -- but my lack of experience hesitates me -- but I would only burn a month of leave...
I don't think you'd do the Baja HaHa, AND get the boat back North (Baja Bash) in a month.
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Old 27-08-2008, 02:06   #41
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I just took a months free copy of 'VPP2'. It only does January as a trial demo but it helps by providing alternate ports for weather avoidance, breaking down trips into manageable sectors and so on. Gives a fair idea too of trip time in sailing days which will vary with weather. You input your own polar data in 45 degree sectors for sailing speed and a minimum speed at which you'll run the motor. I set mine at 3 knots, others will use more. The full system is a bit dear but if sailing time is limited it does suggest and help define what is feasible for your next holiday.
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Old 27-08-2008, 03:41   #42

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This has turned into a very handy thread. My previous posts here had hoped for a nice, software solution for just "playing around" with route ideas, rather than actual route planning, as the original poster had hinted at.

Some of these suggestions work wonderfully for this purpose.

A big thanks to the posters!

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