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Old 07-02-2019, 10:42   #1
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Florida to California

Need suggestions and comments. I have most of the cruising guides. I am taking delivery of a new Fountaine Pajot Saona 47 in Fort Lauderdale, FL and plan to take about a year to bring it around to San Diego, CA. We are not liveaboards and we will commute home several times. Below is an outline of timing driven in large part by hurricane season.

From February 1 through May she will sail South Florida and the Bahamas for the crew to gain experience and to determine what needs to be fixed or added. June 1 we will leave for Panama by sailing leisurely through the Bahamas with stops in Haiti and Jamaica. The trip from Jamaica to Panama will be 3.5 to 4 days and the longest non stop distance of the repositioning. We plan on arriving NLT July 1.

The boat will spend July and August in Panama with a three or four week trip to the San Blas Islands in the Caribbean. We will transit the Panama Canal the first or second week of September. September and October will be spent in Costa Rica waiting out the end of hurricane season.

Starting November 1 we will work north to Barra Navidad, a spectacular area about 150 miles south of Puerto Vallarta with stops along the Mexican mainland coast. We will depart for San Diego mid January from there with ETA around mid February.
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Old 07-02-2019, 15:41   #2
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Re: Florida to California

Fyi, your timing of your stay in Panama and the San Blas is in high peak lightning season - with lots of boats getting hit.

Your exit from Fla on June 1 is the start of Hurricane season. While typically it doesn't get really going till July, climate change has early and off season storms a much higher possibilty. Do you have any insurance restrictions?
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Old 07-02-2019, 15:47   #3
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Re: Florida to California

Take delivery on the West Coast! Most of the West Coast is a total bash against seas and winds: Leave 5 am, motor like hell until the seas and winds pickup about 2-3pm. Find a hook in the coast to anchor behind in swell rocking and rolling. Repeat above for a week or two.
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Old 07-02-2019, 15:47   #4
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Re: Florida to California

Isn't Panama to San Diego going to be a bash most of the way? Have you looked at shipping it from Golfito to Ensenada?
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Old 07-02-2019, 15:51   #5
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Re: Florida to California

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sand crab View Post
Isn't Panama to San Diego going to be a bash most of the way? Have you looked at shipping it from Golfito to Ensenada?
Except during Teahaunipec and Papaguyo blows the winds along the Pacific coast of Central America tend to be fairly light. Think lots of motoring.
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Old 07-02-2019, 17:25   #6
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Re: Florida to California

I need to be below 12 degrees north by 7/1. I have lots of Pacific Mexico experience and agree with Paul L. Winds south of Cabo are generally not a bash. Lots of motoring in light winds, though. I am looking at a possible Gofilito to Ensenada shipment. Not interested in a West Coast delivery as I want to spend a season in the Bahamas. Might ship from Florida to Ensenada. Nice to know about lightning in Panama. I'm stranded south of 12 degrees on both Pacific and Atlantic from June through October.
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Old 08-02-2019, 02:44   #7
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Re: Florida to California

Zz
Not sure how much time you have, but heres some alternative possibilty.
Leave the Bahamas at the end of the season and sail to Bonaire. Cruiser friendly, easy living, best diving in the Carib. You can stay 90 days on your visa. Then head to Curacao. Both Curacao and Bonaire have far less lightning than Panama or the north coast of South America. The summer weather is also much less oppressive.
Head to Cartegena in November. Very hot and humid, but a really interesting city. Early Dec head to the San Blas and Panama. This after peak lightning and wet season but its still there.
Transit the Canal in Dec/Jan and start working north. You'll be in high Papaguyo and Teahaunepic season, but these are much better forecasted now than in the past. Watch the big fronts that move over Texas into the Gulf of Mexico.
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Old 08-02-2019, 07:26   #8
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Re: Florida to California

Paul L - a million thanks. This is only in small part a delivery. I've cruised on and off the last 40 years Mexico Pacific from Acapulco North. I want to experience as much Carib and South Latin America as possible. I probably won't be back to the Carib side again. Moving faster north on the Pacific side, particularly Mexico doesn't bother me as I do it every year. (Oh god, to find some way home other than than the Baja Bash up Baja Mexico - I know, sail to Hawaii)
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Old 04-04-2019, 00:39   #9
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Re: Florida to California

Cartagena was amazing as was the Panama canal transit. San Blas Islands were beautiful but the Bahamas were even better in my opinion.
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