Seattle to New Zealand – More comments added

Published 15 years ago, updated 5 years ago


We have moved from near Seattle to New Zealand, but left our C&C; Landfall 38 back there. We’d now like to bring her down, but there doesn’t seem to be a straightforward way to do so. This would be more of a delivery than a cruise, taking the least time possible, as we have many commitments at home.

We’ve read World Cruising Routes over and over again and have come up with a couple of possibilities. First of all, there doesn’t seem to be a continuous, non-stop route from Seattle to New Zealand that would avoid North Pacific winter storms, North and South Pacific hurricanes, and winter storms off New Zealand.

What we’ve come up with is leaving Seattle at the beginning of June, to Hawaii and then to the South Pacific, either Samoa or Fiji, by mid-July, and then leaving the boat until October, after which we’d continue on to New Zealand.

Alternatively, we could go straight from Seattle to Tahiti, leave the boat there, and then fly back for the last leg in October. We’d really like to leave the boat on the hard, and the only possibilities for dry storage we can find are in the South Pacific are Tahiti and Fiji. Samoa might have in-water storage at the marina in Apia. Leaving the boat on a mooring for a few months is out of the question.

Do these scenarios make sense? We know that we should be cruising the South Pacific from July to October, but we just don’t have the time right now.

Any other ideas on where to store a boat in the South Pacific?

Would some other time of year be better?

Thanks for your help.

Gary D. Niemi

Dunedin, New Zealand


You are wrong: there is certainly a solution to your dilemma. When is the earliest you want to leave Seattle… and do you have an absolute time you need to arrive in NZ?

Jimmy Cornell

Hello, thanks for the prompt response.

We probably couldn’t leave before the beginning of May. There is no absolute time to arrive in NZ. What do you have in mind?



The most attractive route, leaving Seattle in May, is: direct to Marquesas, then Tuamotus-Tahiti (July)-Tonga-Fiji-New Zealand (leave Fiji October).

A quicker and more direct route would be: Seattle-Hawaii-Northern Cooks -Nuku’alofa(Tonga)- NZ.

Yes, there is a slight risk of N. Pacific hurricanes between June and October but they very rarely affect Hawaii. You should keep an eye on the weather while en route to Hawaii. From there it should be easy.

I would not suggest leaving Tonga (or Fiji) too early, but I have done it in September and also later and you may get some strong NW winds with an earlier start, but nothing dangerous.

Good luck.

Jimmy Cornell


Message from James (23rd Feb 2009):-

Just adding to the post about the couple looking to move their C&C; To NZ from Seattle.

Just finished Oregon to Auckland a couple months ago and went to Hilo, HI than the Line Islands, on to Pago Pago, Samoa, to Tonga and finally NZ. If you’re really hard hitting you could skip the Line Islands which would leave a 2,400-mile passage from Hawaii. Great winds for a beam reach all the way except a lull near the equator.

We did it in a Newport 30′, but Jimmy’s definitely right, even October is early for NZ. Good Luck!

Read and Post Related Comments

Related to following destinations: , , ,

Related to the following Cruising Resources: ,

You must Login or Register to submit comments.

  1. November 21, 2018 at 2:47 AM
    Data Entry says:

    I just realized after 3 years that I didn’t follow up with the story of our actual delivery. We left the Strait of Juan de Fuca on 15 June 2010, bound for Hilo. After a brief foray into the north Pacific high, we arrived in Hilo after a easy, relaxing 21 day passage.

    4 days later we left for Pago Pago, Samoa. After crossing the equatorial convergence zone in about a day, we averaged a good daily 110 miles over the whole passage. We resupplied in Pago Pago and then sailed for 7 days to Nandi, Fiji, arriving on about 8 August.

    We left Selkie at Vuda Point Marina (fantastic, by the way), and then flew to New Zealand to wait out the winter. A month later, we flew back for a three-week cruise in Fiji and finally made the last jump down to Opua in a quick 7-day passage. We had perfect conditions for that last, fast passage – really an 1100 mile beam reach!

    Thanks for your advice.
    Gary Niemi