Bob’s blog 16 Feb 2020



Compiled Sun 16 Feb 2020

Bob McDavitt’s ideas for sailing around the South Pacific.

Disclaimer: Weather is a mix of pattern and chaos; these ideas are from the patterned world.

No extras this week, just the basics


The Tropics

The latest cyclone activity report is at and TCFP tropical Cyclone Formation Potential at (but not this week).


Last week, Tropical Cyclone USEI managed to remain mostly offshore as it travelled south from west of Vanuatu, past NW New Caledonia, then south across the Tasman sea to the far SW of New Zealand (as a wet and windy mid-latitude low).

At present GABEKILE is in the mid-Indian Ocean. Tropical depression 93P is starting to form between Fiji and Samoa and may develop into a Tropical Cycle that may go SE and affect Samoa/Tonga Niue and Southern Cooks over the next few days. Keep checking.


Weather Zones (see text) as expected Wednesday 00UTC showing isobars, winds, waves(magenta) STR, and SPCZ. Pink area = lightning likely (high CAPE)


SPCZ=South Pacific Convergence zone.

The SPCZ is active this week mainly from Fiji/Samoa to Southern Cooks, worth avoiding.

The cyclone risk remains high in the South Pacific.


Accumulated rainfall for next week from (isobars are for Sunday night).

Subtropical ridge (STR)

HIGH to east of NZ should remain slow-moving near 45S 160W until mid -week and then fade/go east.

Another High is expected in South Tasman Sea by the weekend.

Tasman Sea /NZ/Aus

Low is expected to deepen off Sydney area by Tuesday and move off to Se/S, feeding strong NW/westerly flow and large swells over southern NZ for Thursday /Friday.

OK for Noumea to Australia.

As for sailing east across the Tasman: probably a no-go this week due to easterly winds.

That mid-week trough does offer a brief gap in these, but maybe not long enough for sailing the whole way.

From Panama to Galapagos/Marquesas:

Northerly winds to around 4N, these may fade near 4N next week.

Forecast SW wind to north of Galapagos from 19-21 Feb so take the track south of Galapagos to get to Marquesas.

Weak ITCZ and variable winds from 3N to 1N. Then light to moderate S/SW winds to 3S.


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