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 Post subject: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 10:44 am 
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Anyone ever done the trip? Any information would be very helpful.

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 1:42 pm 
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I've only done it in a much larger trimiran. We would always leave Oahu at night so that beating against the headwinds and waves was a tad lighter. A hazard then is the tug traffic pulling barges with minimal nav lights; you don't want to get inbetween them. I was puzzled by the constant light plane traffic overhead at night... hauling contraband? Otherwise just you and the shooting stars.

Anyway we went between Honolulu and Kaun. harbors but I imagine you may go from windward Oahu to leeward Mol. and thus avoid a funnel of wind and waves just south of eastern Oahu. I remember heaving on the steering there with a ripe hernia as each monster wave yawed us... and then the steering broke.

You must have seen Paddler TV or video of the outrigger canoe races depicting downwind conditions on this return trip with 12 foot or so waves. Is your rudder string up to this wear and tear, or can you switch to a paddle as fallback rudder?



P.S. Molokai doppler radar often shows a wide "phantom" band of stationary showers in the direction of Oahu. This isn't phantom, but is the seaspray kicked up by stronger than average tradewinds. Drenching and actually cold at night http://weather.hawaii.edu/radar/radaran ... o&base=N0R

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 2:45 pm 
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Location: Kailua 96734
The plain truth is, our plastic boats were not built for those conditions, and you would be pushing the limits of your equipment, skill and luck in the Ka'iwi Channel. Even on a solid boat like the 6 man canoe, which is about twice as long as a TI.

That said, SUPs have made this crossing on calmer days, with support crews. And I heard tell of a Hawaiian waterman that did it solo on an AI. No details though.

A downwind run from Molokai is the preferred way to do it, with a 2 man crew and chase boat. Our Hobies are terrible surfing machines though, and surfing the bump is the key to the crossing.

Heck, I've invited Kayaking Bob to sail over from Maui several times, but so far he has declined. Until he makes it, I'll just sit back and watch it on Ocean Paddler TV.


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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 3:18 pm 
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Location: Kailua 96734
Today's Mid Channel Forecast, in Knots. (it's a nice day):

DATE TUE 06/02/15 WED 06/03/15 THU 06/04/15
UTC 3HRLY 13 16 19 22 01 04 07 10 13 16 19 22 01 04 07 10 13 16 19 22 01 04
HST 3HRLY 03 06 09 12 15 18 21 00 03 06 09 12 15 18 21 00 03 06 09 12 15 18

WIND DIR E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E E
WIND SPD 20 20 20 20 21 21 21 21 21 20 20 20 19 19 19 19 19 17 17 17 15
WIND GUST 27 26 26 26 28 28 28 28 28 27 27 27 25 25 25 25 25 23 23 23 20
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SWELL DIR S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S S
SWELL HGT 4 4 4 4 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3
PERIOD 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 15 14 14 14 14 17 17 17 17 16 16 16 16 15
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
SWELL DIR NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW NW
SWELL HGT 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1
PERIOD 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 10 9 9 9 9 9 9 9 9
-------------------------------------------------------------------------------
WIND WAVE HGT 7 7 7 7 8 8 8 8 8 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 7 6 6 6 5
SIG WAVE HGT 8 8 8 8 9 9 9 9 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 8 7 7 7 7 6
CLOUDS FW FW FW FW SC SC FW FW SC SC FW FW SC SC SC SC SC SC SC SC SC
POP 12HR 20 20 20 30 30
RAIN SHWRS S S S S S S S S C C C C C C S S C


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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 4:00 pm 
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Location: Maui, Hawaii
NOHUHU, don't encourage him with a mild day's forecast like that with only 30+mph winds :)

One needs high skills and/or a lot of luck for most Hawaii inter-island trips. Even Maui to Lanai (only 8 miles) can be tricky in our boats most days. A few have done it (not I yet) but always on light wind days and with a lot of pedaling during parts.

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Tue Jun 02, 2015 5:06 pm 
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Yup- it's a mellow day today.

Bob, I took the short "mini" ferry ride over to Lanai from Lahaina (on a nice day) and we took a pounding. Water was blowing up over the cabin, where I was hiding cuz we had lots of film gear.

Normally, I would prefer puking on the main deck.


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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2015 10:52 am 
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Yeah, I'm aware that it is no cake walk and not exactly what the TI was designed to do. And is that not the point of doing semi loko stuff like this?!?

That said, I believe, with the appropriate preparation the trip should be very doable. Radio, Epirb, bilge pump, navigation, etc.

I'm no Hawaiian waterman, although I do have few years of intermittent Pacific experience. I grew up on the Indian Ocean waters of South Africa and later honed my surfing skills in the cold Atlantic water in Cape Town. I even have a decade of living on the Great Lakes to throw in (the one body of water that really scares the crimminy out of me!!)... my point being that I realize it's a trip into open water and I don't take that lightly.

Does the Pacific not chill out in the summertime? Would it be possible to hit the channel on a calmer day? Surely the kraken must a take a day off every now and then, no?

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2015 12:38 pm 
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Reefmon wrote:
Does the Pacific not chill out in the summertime? Would it be possible to hit the channel on a calmer day?

Normally summer is the time for relentless tradewinds, but I guess El Nino is expected to moderate them this summer. Winter is normally the time for lulls and brief lashings by weather fronts. I have no experience picking a weather window for a long sail, but would worry about the forecast accuracy. There used to be a satellite that gave detailed wind speed/direction maps of the whole central Pacific by using doppler radar on sea spray, but it's gone. Was especially interesting to track hurricanes bouncing off volcanos, which the weather models don't recognize.

Why not explore beyond the reef in incremental steps? In my i12s case I can normally head out to sea against the waves OK, but get spanked on the way back and have to use full rudder deflection back and forth as the swells skid my (inflated) stern into S turns. I've been thinking whether I might steer better by paddle so I don't wear the rudder setup out.

Near the windward shore the waves are of course moderated by the reef, but the winds are also moderated by running into the mountains. I'm not sure how far this zone extends outward, but sea air is heavy (temperature inversion) and backs up in a stagnation zone due to reluctance in climbing mountains. Paragliders call this a "compression" zone, but I believe that is technically inaccurate. Note how most historical wind damage in HI comes on the DOWNSLOPE side of mts from gravity winds. Counterintuitive, but windward side loses most roofs, etc during times the winds reverse direction and blow offshore.

Anyway this is to try to rationalize why the channels are more hostile than they would appear. I believe the Coast Guard gets hazard pay simply for entering the channel between Maui and Big Island. The shore of Lanai facing Molokai is filled with pulverized wrecks which that forlorn beach is named after. Well, these are due to funneling effects of hill-avoiding wind which could possibly be less with different routing. I just remember being usually lashed by water and asking the captain if it was raining. No, seaspray you idiot he implied, but I knew that and wondered if we were additionally getting fresh rainwater to wash some salt crust off clothes and glasses.

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Wed Jun 03, 2015 9:57 pm 
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You talked me into it Reefmon. Let's Saddle UP!! :twisted:

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 12:30 am 
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Location: Maui, Hawaii
Then there is always Kelly's crossing videos, from a good day, and he took a beating:




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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 3:14 am 
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Nice pic NOHUHU; was that taken from another boat or a helicopter? Seriously though, I would like to round up a group to attempt the crossing if anyone is game.

Bob, those videos are what inspired me to think about this!

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 Post subject: Re: Oahu to Molokai
PostPosted: Thu Jun 04, 2015 12:59 pm 
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Location: Kailua 96734
Coast Guard Ship. :wink:

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