Where are we going?

Updated November 13th 2008
Okay, plans change all the time. First of all, by the time I was through the Panama canal, and left for the Galapagos, two years around the world was not within reasonable reach (other than turning into a race around the world). So, it became a three year around the year plan. 2008 was used mostly to cross the Pacific. Now before December 1st I need to be in the Solomon Islands, since that is when the cyclone season starts. Northern and western part of the Solomons are outside the cyclone region.

Original plan was to go to the Philippines next. Then I met Ayako in Fiji, and that made me consider diverting myself to Japan. First though was Philippines and then Japan. Closer study of pilot charts showed me that is not the best in distance, and even a worse plan in thinking about wind patterns. So, it is now quite possible that I will leave the Solomon Islands and head straight for Japan (Fukuoka prefecture, Kyushu). Challenges to face are: crossing the equatorial doldrums (but that is included in any travel north from the Solomons), the last 600 miles have a lot of head winds, and it will happen in winter (leaving late December, arriving late January) so it is going to become cold (average daily maximum in Fukuoka in January 9 Celcius, average minimum 2 Celcius).

This is what I wrote at the beginning of this year (2008).

Starting this January I will be roughly following the schedule below, which is from Cornell’s World Cruising Routes book, for a 2 year circumnavigation.

Date Passage Predicted Days at Sea Miles
January Panama Canal 2 40
January – March Panama to Hiva Oa, Marquesas 42 3726
April / May Marquesas to Tahiti 8 770
June Tahiti to Fiji 19 1825
August – September Fiji to Torres Strait (north of Australia) 19 2150
September – October Torres Strait to Mauritius 50 4915
October – November Mauritius to Durban (South Africa) 14 1550
January / February Durban to Cape Town (rounding of Cape of Good Hope) 7 930
March – April Cape Town to Salvador, Brasil 34 3350
May Salvador, Brasil to Trinidad 17 2450

Below is what I wrote at the beginning of the year, I have done most of this, except for the Atlantic crossing. But there was no time to do that.

There is not a definite plan, but there is a rough trip plan that looks like this:

  • go to South Florida (the Keys)
  • hop over to Cuba
  • go around Cuba counter clockwise (westwards) following the coast line to the south side of the island
  • go over to the Cayman Islands (will be tough, this goes into the trade winds)
  • hop to Jamaica, depending on wind and the experiences in Cuba, I might make a tack back to Cuba to make this sailable
  • Dutch Lesser Antilles (ABC islands)
  • Margarita (Venezuela)
  • Trinidad and Tobago
  • more Caribbean Islands
  • Azores(?)
  • Netherlands (??)

The further down the list, the more unknown it is, but, it is a rough plan, where things can change depending on my mood, the wind, my experiences and comfort level, the boat, and a number of other external and unknown factors.

Anybody that thinks, hey, maybe I want to meet you and/or join you in any of these places, let me know. I am not running a ferry service (trip itinerary depends on a lot of factors), but I am for sure willing to accommodate potential crew members travel plans.