I have my doubts, KDA. I think an experienced crew could do what you're proposing if it was more a delivery
than a cruise
, but to undertake such an ambitious voyage on a delivery
schedule defeats the pleasure aspects of the trip, seems to me.
Assuming you can time it so you're ready to head
south from New York
by, say, the end of September to avoid getting caught in any cold weather
, then tip-toeing into hurricane
territory in October (you're assuming a risk, but a calculated one), you could, with luck, be down in S. Florida
and preparing to jump across to the Bahamas
by early November.
risk will have decreased quite a bit by then. Let's say you make it to the Bahamas
by mid-November: If you're on a casual, cruising schedule, you can use up a lot of time enjoying the Bahamas. When the Schultes, aboard Bumfuzzle,
started their circumnavigation
, they were about as green as you and your friends, so they took their time cruising through the Bahamas, getting to know their vessel and learning
to sail her.
They were having such a pleasant time of it that when they started planning to depart the Bahamas, they were already a week past their six month permitted stay period. It could easily happen on a cruising schedule.
When you say you want to go "around the Caribbean," I take this to mean that you want to island-hop all the way down to Trinidad and Tobago
, then cruise
through the Venezuelan islands, the ABCs, the Colombian coastline and finally reach the northern terminus of the Panama Canal
at Colon. That whole section of the voyage, from the Bahamas to Panama
could easily take four to six months.
Let's say you somehow manage to get from NYC to Panama
, one way or another and without any delays to fix virtually inevitable break-downs, and you've managed to do all that in six months. And let's say the delay to transit the Panama Canal
is minimal, and you somehow find yourselves in the Pacific, ready to head
north. If it's already May, you'll be heading up into another hurricane zone. If you don't manage to get north of Cabo before June, and preferably as far north as San Diego
, you could find yourselves stuck south of the zone until November, waiting for another hurricane season to end.
If your time is so short for such a voyage, you need to think if terms of a delivery schedule, meaning you're on the move even when the weather
is iffy - not a good idea, especially for novices. And you would most likely want to cut directly for Panama and forget the island-hopping. When you do clear the Panama Canla and head northward, you will quickly learn that not all sailing is pleasant, down-wind cruising, with warm southern breezes and sundowners of the after-deck.
Sailing up the Pacific coast of the Central American countries, Mexico
, and the US will take a severe toll on you, the rest of the crew, and your vessel. Many people prefer sailing to Hawai'i from the Canal
, then riding up over the N. Pacific high to reach the PNW
just to avoid the bash up the coast. Of course, this will add many more weeks to your voyage.
My guess would be that a novice
crew cannot accomplish what you propose. If you want to sail in the Caribbean, do that. If you want to get to Vancouver from New York