I was talking about a deep water open ocean situation. As SD said about the shallow water scenerio, if you are on a lee shore in a storm you've done something incredably stupid. It's the scenerio always thrown out there like the Star Trek 'Kobiashi-Maru' test - the battle scenerio that could not possibly be won anyway. A legitimate question though. No technique is a silver bullet for every situation. It depends. Commander on station has to decide what will work, this time. Which lee shore? What sea state and how fast winds? What boat LWL vs beam? What distance to lee shore? How many crew? Crew condition? Engine? Water depth? Storm coming in or going away how long before it will pass? An example:
My son was on his way to Bahamas Nov. '05 in his Watkins 27 and got caught off Cape Fear, NC 25 miles out in 60mph onshore winds winds in 50' water depth. A Watkins is a strong boat but slow as snot into the wind. I own a 25' Watkins by the way. First I told him not to go 'outside' the ICW into the North Atlantic in Winter in his boat until Savannah. So He did something incredibly stupid and he said he learned alot of lessons in one night that he was putting into action immediately. Now he KNOWS why they call it Cape FEAR! Running was not an option, not enough room. Lying to a sea anchor was not an option drift would have had his butt on shore by morning. Sailing and/or motoring was nearly impossible due to shallow water creating 10' seas. It was 5pm, getting dark and the crew were exhausted. He was 25 years old at the time 6' tall 200lbs and in incredibly good physical condition. He had been sailing since he was 3 years old. His crew was his former college room mate who got his degree in Outdoor Leadership, was an associate EMT and was also in incredibly good physical condition. His choice? The only one left - 0ne 22lb Danforth HT, 100' 5/16 proof coil chain and 300ft 1/2 nylon twist rode. They set the anchor, marked their position on the GPS and hunkered down for a sleepless and very uncomfortable night. Next morning the winds calmed and the sea state improved. He checked the GPS and they hadn't moved an inch. They motorsailed to Winya Bay, into the ICW anchored and got some sleep, there are no Athiests in a foxhole or a cockpit in a storm. They were lucky but used what they had to handle a bad situation.