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SVArgo 08-30-2010 07:47 AM

NYC Hurricane Evacuation Suggestions
I'm trying to determine where to relocate the boat to in the event that Earl becomes onerous for NYC. I'm at Liberty Landing Marina in Jersey City, NJ, but don't trust the piles, cleats, finger piers, or other boats.

Does anyone have any recommendations on where to take the boat, hurricane holes, protected anchorages, etc.? I don't mind anchoring if there's good holding. I'm looking up the Hudson River, Kingston looks like it has a well protected creek, it's about 100 nm upriver. And I assume that CT and LI have some spots as well.


Vasco 08-30-2010 08:10 AM

I was in Catskill putting my mast up when Floyd came through. The owner of Riverview Marina showed me a spot in the Hudson river just north and east of the entrance of Catskill Creek where I could anchor. Good spot. Whatever you do, do not go into any of the creeks. With all the rain, boats and docks (some with boats still tied to them) were washed out of the creeks and went rushing down the river.

tempest 08-30-2010 08:11 AM

Yes, you have a nice long river to head up... north...I would probably do that..

I might stay away from LI extends east and is often in the path of anything headed up the coast...

You have me thinking now...I'm in the Raritan Bay...

Floyd had route 18 in New Brunswick under dock lines are not long enough to handle a surge like that..

sailingdog 08-30-2010 08:13 AM

Why not haul your boat out of the water? Many insurance companies will pay for such a haul out for named storms. It would be wise to check what your INSURANCE POLICY REQUIRES before researching what to do. No sense in looking at other marinas if your policy requires you haul out.

SVArgo 08-30-2010 08:46 AM

Evac Plan
Rick, thanks. As for hauling out, that's something I just will not do, regardless of what my insurance policy requires, for a number of reasons.

1) I liveaboard and am not going to sit on the hard during a storm.
2) The boat is subjected to greater forces on the rig and hull due to the wind, forces which cannot be damped or resisted by the heeling moment of the hull. That can damage the rig, hull, or knock the boat down.
3)I have seen many boats go over on the hard during a storm, with a domino effect to other boats all in a row.
4) If you're in the direct path with a large surge, you're in as much trouble, or more, on the hard, as on shore.
5) I'd rather get out of the way, than pull out, sit there and take it.
6) If the yard or yard equipment is damaged, or yard workers are unable to return to work, there's no telling when you can go back in the water.
7) My boat is designed to take it, I just need to be in a place where the lack of preparation of fellow boaters isn't going to be a problem.

Basically, I'd like to take all proactive measures not to be in a position where I'm in a storm's path in the first place. Or, as Chester Nimitz once said,

"The time for taking all measures for a ship's safety is while still able to do so. Nothing is more dangerous than for a seaman to be grudging in taking precautions lest they turn out to have been unnecessary. Safety at sea for a thousand years has depended on exactly the opposite philosophy."

SVAuspicious 08-30-2010 02:08 PM


I wasn't going to answer until I read you last post. Good on you.

You should have good ground tackle you can count on. If so, get the heck away from docks, pilings, and other hard unpleasant things that can poke holes in your boat. If you can find a hurricane mooring (only with a screw anchor, nothing weight based) that's great. Otherwise you get the heck into a sheltered spot and get your tackle down. In your case, up the Hudson as far as you can go is great. A creek is good -- debris may wash down, but if you are in the river the debris from every creek upstream will be on your head.

Strip canvas, yadda, yadda, yadda. You can read the books as well as I can, and as well as all the cut and paste sailors can. As a liveaboard I simply don't have anywhere to put my main or whichever jib is on the furler. I run my spinnaker and spare jib halyards in alternating directions around the furled jib and make sure the furler is locked (check manual - most have a pin or some spiffy rope loop to hold the drum). I run dock lines in alternating directions around the main and it's cover lashed tight. Everything comes off the deck.

I don't think either of us has to worry about Earl, but I'm going to use Earl as a dry run to practice my procedures. I expect to watch lots of movies and eat a lot of food.

Big anchors are good.

hellosailor 08-30-2010 02:27 PM

Ryan, there are a number of boat clubs up near New Rochelle (you'd have to go up the East River and into LISound) that are sheltered by Davenport Neck, that are dead calm in 60+ knots. Of course if the water surges 15-20', as it can even in a northeaster, you've still got to make sure you don't come ashore. If the Neptune Boat Club is still was run by a fairly strict fellow named Tom. Straightforward, reliable, competitive operation.

You will need the charts to get in (rocks) and if you draw more than six feet you'll want to go in carefully, but it is nicely sheltered.

Vasco 08-30-2010 02:49 PM


Originally Posted by SVAuspicious (Post 638395)

. In your case, up the Hudson as far as you can go is great. A creek is good -- debris may wash down, but if you are in the river the debris from every creek upstream will be on your head.


I'm repeating myself but do not go into a creek! I saw so many boats large and small get flushed out during Floyd, it was amazing. The Hudson is very wide in spots, in some curvy sections there are what look like backwaters, like the spot I mentioned just north of Catskill. The main river flows to the west of you. If you look at a chart you'll see what I mean. The channel is to the west and north of the anchorage are flats where it is very shallow, forming a break. Good protection. There are a few spots like that in the Hudson. While I was anchored during Floyd two large (100 ft. plus) crewed sailboats from Connecticut came up the river and anchored just south of me. You're north of the main flow from Catskill creek so the current isn't as bad. The hills around that area of the Hudson are a real big catch basin and the flow out of the narrow creeks is quite daunting. And it rained during Floyd! I would not like to be in one of those creeks when the boats start flowing past. And I'm not talking just one or two, I counted over forty boats on the banks on my way south and I'm sure I didn't get them all. By the way, there was no northerly current for a day or two after Floyd. Quite a ride down the river.

hellosailor 08-30-2010 03:23 PM

Vasco, I'm not sure I'd want to "shelter" on the Hudson at all, anywhere. There's whole houses that come drifting down the Hudson in major storms, no hurricanes needed. And the river traffic, which can mean a loose barge or string. And often no way/place to go ashore if you did need to abandon the boat.

The good news is that the NYC area and north up the river, rarely see strong storms. They're usually spent before they get far inland. Then of course, there was the "hurricane of 1938" that ripped a new hole in Long Island....The area is way overdue for a hundred-year storm.

Gateway Marina (Brooklyn) or the NW shore of LI (Port Washington?) also would come to mind as better options that trying to find an empty spot on the Hudson. You can secure the boat--and get off if you want to.

Vasco 08-30-2010 03:36 PM


It's not that bad. If you pick the right spot the houses ground on the shallows before they get to you. :) I sat with one hook because I was afraid of two getting fouled in tide changes and wind shifts but the wind came from the same direction for a day and we lay to the wind all the time. The hardest part was crawling up to the bow every half hour to check for chafe.

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