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Old 10-04-2006, 21:11   #1
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Caribbean Hurricane Season

We are picking up our new boat in the Bahamas in May and will be moving out of the Caribbean during hurricane season. We understand most head south to Venezuela; however, we are thinking we would rather go to the west side of the Yucatan at Campeche. This appears to be safe in view of hurricane rotation and the huge landmass it would have to pass over before hitting us. Is this a reasonable assumption and is anyone else heading in that direction for the season?

SV El Shaddai
Tayana 42 Vancouver
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Old 11-04-2006, 12:29   #2
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Your summer season on the Yucantan's W coast could of course be absent a single storm, but I don't think your logic is sound. I notice the Yucatan landmass measures 170NM W-E at the latitude of Campeche while storm systems are much larger than that; the Yucatan landmass may reduce a storm's strength a bit but it would hardly be a source of protection. You might want to spend some time researching storm tracks (and the details of the respective storms) to test your theory. As I recall, one of the hurricanes that killed the most people in the USA, Allen in 1980, swept right past the N tip of the Yucatan Since such storms are steered by the large continental land masses' pressure gradients and the jet stream, I would think it's unrealistic to expect that local geographic features are going to noticeably influence these storms.

I also remember reading on the NHC site that the Mayans provide the first recorded history of hurricanes...and they lived predominantly inland.

Good luck with the new boat, and also your storm planning.

WHOOSH, Pearson 424 Ketch
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Old 11-04-2006, 12:55   #3
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When in doubt consult your insurance agent. They tend to draw the line more exact and it has changed over the past two years. If you expect coverage you would be best to make sure first.

The west coast of the Yucatan is between 20 and 19 degrees N lattitude. That really isn't that far south. 10 degrees would be safer. They may rotate in the same direction but they can hit the Yucatan from either direction though it wouldn't matter much. As Jack notes 170 nm isn't really very much protection.
Paul Blais
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