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Home » Weather and Routing » Timing advice, Solomon islands to Phillipines

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31/08/2010 19:19:48

Jasmine Ellis<br>Canada
Jasmine Ellis

Posts: 1
We are planning on crossing the south pacific from Panama to the Philipines this coming year but are having troubles figuring out the timing for the end through the beginning of the north pacific cyclone season.

Detail´s on our trip. We will be sailing off from Trinidad (begin dec) to transit the Panama canal. Once through we plan to begin Crossing the South Pacific around mid to end of January, and should be arriving in the Marquesas/Tahiti in early March, plan to wait there until early April for the hurricane season to end then onto Fiji, Vanuatu, and the solomon islands.

next we would like to take the boat to finish the trip in the Philipines, our destination would be Dumaguette in the south.
But we are a bit hazy on timing, with the La Nina year, and the cyclone seasons.
Specifically, when does the cyclone season start in the phillipines and how far south does it normally reach?
from what we´ve gathered, it seems to start end of May early June.
When is the latest it is still safe to sail from the Solomon Islands to the Phillipines? ( southern part, Dumaguette or Davao).
Also when is the earliest time it is safe to start cruising through the south pacific from Tahiti.

Thanks for your help.

Jasmine and Ray
04/09/2010 03:00:57

Jim Den Hartog<br>Netherlands
Jim Den Hartog

Posts: 9
Hi Jasmine

We sailed part of the route you are requesting information on (New Cal to Philippines via Vanuatu, Solomons, PNG and Pulau) and posted some info on June 23rd. Have a look. The info includes the name of a website set up by friends of ours in Davao and it will be of benefit to you to visit their site and to contact Ellen.

When you sail that route we can recommend highly a stop at the Hermit islands north of PNG. Very friendly people and at the right time of the year a great place to snorkel or dive. (Not according to our experience in December as around that time of the year winds blow from the west in that region!) Caution: PNG is not everywhere and not always safe.

We will be glad to answer more questions once you visit Ellen's site.

Jim sv GAIA
10/09/2010 02:50:46

Ellen LeeKwen<br>Philippines
Ellen LeeKwen

Posts: 2
Hi Jasmine, you must be the one who emailed me. Unfortunately i deleted your mail by mistake. I seem to recall you had more questions than what is written in this thread. Anyway, typhoon season in this area officially starts late June to about November. Typhoons have been known to hit Philippines as early as May and as late as early December. It is La Nina according to what I have read, and I am seeing the ITCZ quite active. Southern Philippines (Davao Gulf area) is considered typhoon free, but the top part of the main island of Mindanao can still be hit, especially if the typhoon tracks to the central part of the Philippines. From Davao Gulf, you cannot go straight to Dumaguete. You still have to sail out of the gulf to the south, and northwards from there to enter the central islands. You can either choose the eastcoast or the westcoast of Mindanao. This is the tricky part. The eastcoast is safe, but you will be fighting the predominanly south setting current. The west coast is easier, but you will be going through what other sailors fear as a piracy prone area. The Dumaguete area can be hit by typhoons as it is part of the Central islands of Visayas. If you plan to sail your boat there, then my suggestion is to sail straight to Visayas from Micronesia (i.e. Palau). If you want to store your boat in a typhoon free area and fly to Dumaguete instead, then Davao Gulf is the best bet for you.

We sailed from NZ through Vanuatu, Solomons, PNG and Palau from August to October. From PNG to Palau, we did this early in the season in October (a transition period). There were less winds, therefore less fowl weather for us. However, the light winds were all from the west (against us) and we needed our engine all the way. We also could not make enough westing to Hermit Islands, and decided to head straight to Palau. We waited in Palau until late December to head to Davao. By this time, the ITCZ has moved south of the equator and the NE winds have set in. We had a fast and boisterous sail. If I remembered right, that year was also a La Nina year. Frankly, I didn't see any difference then compared to now. Except we really had a dry season from late Jan to June with El Nino this year.

Hope this helps. We have no experience sailing from Panama to French Polynesia as we sailed from Mexico.
Cheers, Ellen

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