SailingDog is apparently confusing the discussion at hand with heaving-to in heavy weather. We were discussing thunderstorms and squalls, where high winds, breaking seas, but not swells, are the norm. And it's all of relatively short duration.
Bare poles and 50hp ready to hand are nothing to sniff at. And a relatively underpowered sailboat, with a sea anchor deployed, will find it easier to orient her bow to oncoming breaking seas. Manoeuvering as CD describes will be made easier. Ian describes the possibly optimal course of action, assuming an ample supply of Lifeboy bar soap. A good time to break out the old soap on a rope!
“Scientists are people who build the Brooklyn Bridge and then buy it.”
Wm. F. Buckley, Jr.