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Old 24-11-2011, 19:37   #1
DtM
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Sydney to the Bay of Islands (NZ) then Tonga

Our new (to us) catamaran is arriving in Sydney in the next month or so.

There is a vague plan coming together in my head to set off from Sydney in May 2012 with the eventual destination Tonga.

My understanding is that the trip generally is likely to be on the wind.

I was thinking Sydney to Lord Howe then Bay of Islands (NZ) and then Tonga.

Any tips on timing, weather, route etc will be gratefully received.

I am also interested in peoples thoughts or experiences of leaving a boat in Tonga for 6 months or so.
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Old 25-11-2011, 12:18   #2
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Re: Sydney to the Bay of Islands (NZ) then Tonga

Your timing seems OK but wait in May until the pattern of lows has settled down. My pick for leaving the boat would be Fiji. 500 miles downwind from Tonga.
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Old 29-11-2011, 16:15   #3
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Re: Sydney to the Bay of Islands (NZ) then Tonga

Why Fiji over Tonga to leave the boat?

Incidently just read in another thread about your 3 day downwind trip from Tonga to Fiji. Can you tell me more?
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Old 02-12-2011, 14:41   #4
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I'd say Tonga would be better. Lay up in Vava'u (Neiafu - Port of Refuge). It's well protected and said to be a good even in cyclones, which will always be a risk in this area. Nuku'alofa, the capital and main town, is much more open, and not as pretty either. Vava'u is reasonable well served for yachties.
Tonga's a great place, safe, the people are friendly (as Cook said), it's stable and you can get most everyday things. The sailing around Vava'u is supposed to be fantastic. Tongatapu to the south (Nuku'alofa) is somewhat less interesting, but you should still drop in there.
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Old 02-12-2011, 18:06   #5
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Re: Sydney to the Bay of Islands (NZ) then Tonga

Sydney to NZ you should have no problem timing your trip with a favourable weather window. You will likely go round the top end rather than via the Strait. Forecast will be pretty accurate as it is based not only on computer models but also on land-station observations.

NZ to Tonga is a different pair of goggles and can be a rough passage at times. Read up on what the perils are and time your departure according to the weather rather than to any other objectives.

Cheers,
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