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Go Back   SailNet Community > General Interest > General Discussion (sailing related)
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  #1  
Old 12-11-2011
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Inside Passage

I'm considering a summer cruise north through Alaska's Inside Passage, and I was hoping to get some information about the prevailing wind direction and wind speeds during this time of year. I have read that the wind is Southerly during the summer. When does the wind shift to a North/Northwesterly direction like what seems to dominate most of the time? Thanks for your help.
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Old 12-11-2011
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Here's a link to an NOAA site with historical data from a central Gulf of Alaska buoy.. maybe not totally relevant but it's some data... you can navigate to other buoys from there, I'm sure.

Not sure where you're planning to start from, inside Vancouver Island in summer winds are typically light, esp in the tighter passages and inlets, also generally in settled conditions any winds tend to die out overnight which makes for mostly pleasant anchoring.

North of Desolation Sound you'll need to be resigned to more marine weather systems, with rain, cloud and/or fog much more predominant.. often low cloud cover that may burn off by midday only to reappear the next morning.

If you're starting from the North, Ketchikan or some such place that may be a slightly different story.. we do have an Alaska based member here on SN (sailak).. hopefully he'll chime in.
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Old 12-11-2011
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I don't have any experience in the inside passage.
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Old 12-15-2011
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alaska/inside passage

howdy wanderlusting. i have been thru the inside passage by power boat and fished for 12 years in the gulf of alaska.i brought my contest 32 across the gulf last year from juneau to seldovia where i live. i ditto the post about the currents and tides being the important things to know and worry about. i know people who have done 360's in wrangell narrows in power scows(and a peddle boat)! my own experience there had been light winds but much fog. where i live the predominant breezes are a sw day breeze and basically se when lows come in. the northerlys start oct. or so. also be aware that any glaciers can have a fearsome wind rolling down them. pick up a copy of maria coffey's SAILING BACK IN TIME, a non-fictional account of an older guy who spent a lifetime in those waters and sailed/sculls a junk. there may be some good info on weather-been a long time since i read it. a great read either way. also bill hopkins was a state ferry capt who wrore several small tomes about that area. good luck. ck.
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