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Old 07-09-2011, 05:20   #136
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

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Originally Posted by Surfer Girl View Post
Once you start heading south of the 'milk run' lattitudes things get a little more unpredictable. Say you left French Polynesia for the Cook Islands and then to NZ - 1st, it's a longish passage; 2nd, Nov - Feb you could get ideal conditions or you could get smacked. I wouldn't say it would be 'dangerous' in those months (technically you are below the cyclone belt) and plenty of cruisers have done that leg (or from Tonga/Fiji) for exactly the same reason - running out of time to finish milk run to Brisbane or Cairns in the cyclone season - but I would say, if you copped nasty weather you're committed to press on to NZ.

But given your time constaints (without compromising safe passage planning too much), it is doable, with sufficient crew, you will just spend a lot more time at sea. I wouldn't worry if the production boat can handle some rough weather, as long as the rig is sound and you sail conservatively (reef early); I would worry more that you may not enjoy the trip as much and encounter fatigue.

Another alternative is to get to say Tonga, and put the boat up on the hard for cyclone season and come back the following year in April/May to continue the voyage?!?

It's a hard one to give advice on!
This idea may throw up another problem.
If you bought really well, it makes sense to get the boat back here within 12 months if possible.
That way you stand a very good chance of having your purchase price used for Duty and GST calculations.
If you go over a year, there is more chance that customs will call for a local valuation and bill you for the value here, possibly double what you actually paid.
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:29   #137
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

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Quite right, but factor in CA means no Panama expense, time and $!
Usually the Catalina owners here have well looked after yachts with many extras that charter boats are without. E.g. My 2003 C42 has all the nav gear + watermaker, inverter, 2 x TVs, 900 Ah batteries etc, etc!

Pays to do your homework!
On top of that, Southern California mostly gets light weather meaning boats from there are less likely to have been knocked around.
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:41   #138
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

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Originally Posted by VirtualVagabond View Post
This idea may throw up another problem.
If you bought really well, it makes sense to get the boat back here within 12 months if possible.
That way you stand a very good chance of having your purchase price used for Duty and GST calculations.
If you go over a year, there is more chance that customs will call for a local valuation and bill you for the value here, possibly double what you actually paid.
My understanding was that if you meandered & cruised you were less considered to be importing for a quick profit!

Just my impression!
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Old 07-09-2011, 05:51   #139
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

We can't take next year off, so keeping the boat somewhere for the cyclone season is not an option.

Jamel. I quite like the C42. A much nicer looking boat than its European competitors. To find the boat you wanted packed full of cruising gear is a real bonus.
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Old 07-09-2011, 06:05   #140
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Originally Posted by dennisail
We can't take next year off, so keeping the boat somewhere for the cyclone season is not an option.

Jamel. I quite like the C42. A much nicer looking boat than its European competitors. To find the boat you wanted packed full of cruising gear is a real bonus.
Why not sail as far as you can comfortablly get, store it for the cyclone season an then get a delivery crew to finish the journey. Then you are under less time constraints
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Old 07-09-2011, 06:21   #141
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

Sounds very expensive. I would actually like to sail to NZ. I'm not scared of rough weather, as long as I am confident in my boat.
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Old 07-09-2011, 07:18   #142
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

Would stopping here for R&R be an option? Raoul Island. Its an active volcano halfway between cook islands and NZ.

raoul island - Google Maps

Blog on a cruise to this awesome sounding place.

http://www.svfalcongt.com/?p=139

Thoughts according to cruiserwiki.org.

Quote:
Don't bother unless it's an emergency.
Seems pretty hard to go ashore.

http://www.seafriends.org.nz/issues/.../kermvisit.htm
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Old 07-09-2011, 07:30   #143
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

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My understanding was that if you meandered & cruised you were less considered to be importing for a quick profit!

Just my impression!
I don't think they give a damn if you are trying to turn a quick profit... that's not illegal.
My understanding is that if too much time has passed from the purchase, they are more inclined to take the view the purchase price is not relevant anymore, and a current valuation is called for.

From what I've read, if the purchase date is within 12 months of arrival, they tend to just work off the purchase price.
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Old 07-09-2011, 09:14   #144
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

G'Day Dennis,

FWIW, Ann and I visited Raoul in 1994. Pretty adventurous time, including weathering cyclone Lisa there and doing a SAR mission in the midst of it. The anchorage at Fishing Rock is pretty exposed and very rolly at the best of times, and getting ashore can be dicey. But a wonderful place to visit if you can deal with the possibility of getting there and then not being able to land at all.

Spending the summer months cruising NZ is the normal time frame for that delightful activity. The trip from, say Fiji can be a tough one, but going from New Cal is somewhat shorter... anyway, many cruisers do it every year. Leaving from NC and planning a stop at Norfolk to sit out the inevitable frontal passage is an option that some use.

I personally wouldn't advise storing on the hard at Vuda Pt in Fiji, but some have found it OK. Others have had rat and cockie infestations to deal with on return, and the possibility of cyclone damage is always there.

Hope that the search is progressing.

Cheers,

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Old 07-09-2011, 22:32   #145
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

G'day Jim, sounds like you had quite an adventure when you stopped off in Raoul....

Dennis's time frame doesn't really allow him to make it to Noveau Caledonie (it would be very rushed from the West Indies) and in any case, he may as well continue on to Brisbane from NC, it's not that much further.

The reason I suggested French Polynesia, Cook Islands (possibly Raoul), NZ is that it's quite doable in his time frame and gets him South of cyclone belt, albeit that he may cop unfriendly weather on the Cook Islands - NZ pasage. The bonus is he could have a very enjoyable stint cruising south through the Tuamotos (one of the most beautiful & rewarding Pacific Atoll groups IMO), before heading on to the Cook's....

For example,
Balboa to Hiva Oa about 3 weeks; 2/3 weeks stay.
Hiva Oa to Takaroa or Manhi (Tuamotos) about 4/5 days then a month slowly island hopping south through the beautiful Tuamotos to Hao.
Hao to Raivavae ot Tubuai (Cook Islands) about 5/7 days and another 3 weeks or so.
Then the long passage to NZ. Perhaps Jim could advise on how long it should take as I'm not familiar with this route... (about 4 weeks??)

So, roughly 7 months comfortably (with nice long breaks) from Balboa to NZ. I think you said you had 9 months total, so 2 months from St Maarten/BVI's to Balboa is plenty of time. A bit rushed with not much time to enjoy West Indies but doable...

No professional delivery skippers or storing on the hard needed but you'll be on a mission...

Personally, I love challenges and adventure. How long have you allocated in BVI's to kit boat out for Ocean cruising? I recommend St Martin (just down the road) for that - lot's of yacht facilities/sevices and a huge and cheap chandlery in Budget Marine (and tax free). We turned a stock ex charter boat into a cruising boat in 2/3 weeks - hauled out, cleaned and getting rid of the Sunsail green stripes, anti fouled, solar panels, new (extra) batteries, engine major service, registered EPIRB with NOAA, RIB dinghy (2nd hand from Sunsail) & new outboard (for garanteed reliability across the Pacific), sail repairs, rigging check, spare hand held GPS and Handheld VHF, toilet (head) pumps overhauled - that was a disgusting job etc, etc. Oh, and getting a custom made snubber/anchor bridle spliced from a rigger.
You can sail direct from St Maarten to Colon in about 8 days....
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Old 07-09-2011, 23:00   #146
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

I would be there in Feb, so I guess it will be late March by the time we have prepared to leave. So I am allowing a month or a bit more.

That plan sounds great. What sort of weather can I expect between cook island and NZ? My pilot charts suggest I will be reaching- broad reaching most of the way. Prevailing wind in NOV E-SE force 4. Perfect conditions. From a bit over the half way point the winds have no real prevailing direction but remain at force 4. The very last bit before NZ has a slight westerly to it, but it wont be right on the nose.

As for bad weather, what sort of systems would be a worry in this area? Fronts bringing stiff southerly wind? Force 8+ gales reported for the most of that trip are less then 1% for the month of Nov.
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Old 08-09-2011, 00:42   #147
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

Dennis, it sounds like you've done your research re prevailing weather in that region - everything I have read concurrs with what you wrote above. I have read accounts of passages with ideal reaching winds but I have also read accounts of people copping a few fronts on the nose as you have written above.
Jim has done this passage but not sure what time of year he did it in?!? Maybe he can comment or anyone else who has done it?

Personally, I would have a go - as long as you are prepared for a bit of weather on the nose but hopefully you will have a glorious, fast passage....
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Old 08-09-2011, 01:10   #148
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

Maybe it's time for a little lateral thinking.

Why not turn right at Fiji and head for the Solomons ? There are no cyclones that far North so all you need do is arrive by December. That would mean making land in Australia at Cairns. You then decide whether to leave the boat there for a while ( a young feller could do worse ) or wander down the coast at your leisure. If you head South it's probably a good idea to get to Bundaberg in January. February - April seems to be peak cyclone season.
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Old 08-09-2011, 04:23   #149
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

Hmm I will have to consult my pilot charts for that one Savoir. Surely I would cross cyclone territory on the way to Cairns? Is it an acceptable thing to coastal hop from one cyclone safe anchorage to another on the way south during cyclone season?
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Old 08-09-2011, 04:37   #150
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Re: USA to Australia in One Year Starting February 2012

You are unlikey to strike a cyclone between Solomons and Thursday Island which also has a customs office. Anyway, you would be wanting to arrive in Cairns in December and what you do after that is up to you. Cyclones are less common there than further south. You have to decide whether to stay up there for the season or head directly for somewhere south of Bundaberg.

New Years in Sydney can be fun.

There is really no correct answer to all this.
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