My experience is more from the Carib... but my take on your situation (Heron) is:
- Too much exposure at the dock and not enough riding room. For a small blow, yes, but a big one no.
- I am not a fan of hauling: storm surge, too many boats, lots of windage, cost, etc.
- I would go with the creek alternative as you can have long lines for better riding/stretch (you can rise way up and down) and a softer landing should Heron break loose (assuming creeks are lined with trees, bush, mud).
On the creek idea, my suggestions:
- Plan now... go scout a spot in a dink with a sounding pole. Your 2' draft is a huge bonus. Look for large trees close to the water. Measure the amount of line needed now, not when it is blowing 40.
- Get some form of a rat stopper for all lines... assuming you have rats in your cricks.
- For lines and chafe, old fire hose works well for long runs through trees.
- If you have a keel stepped mast, devise some way to back up cleats or the lines to the mast. Yes, it will cause damage to lifelines, etc. But if your cleats break out, you have much more to worry about.
- get to know the people who use the creek you plan on using and try to work together. It can be stressful on the day of tie up and tempers can flare. Better if you already know the one who is going off. Now Dave, it is just a Cat 4, it will be ok... ;-)
Good luck with the process. We are looking at TD 2... lots of unknown at this point, but best to be ready.