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post #351 of 3327 Old 10-06-2008
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Hey Still,

I don't think anyone was singling out your story. No need to apologize for anything.

I have mixed feelings about this thread, too. But I think it's not a bad spot to post some good sailing stories like folks have been doing.

From time to time, some of us will go back and forth a bit about wind and wave conditions -- some of it is meant as a friendly challenge, but most of it is just good natured ribbing for the most part.

I've sailed up your way, and taken a few ferries across some seriously windy patches of water. It can be intimidating - especially with that thick cloud cover and rain crushing your spirit. You PacNW American and Canadian sailors are a hardy bunch!

It's interesting to hear a common theme emerging: Those who've seen the 40+ knot conditions are pretty universal in their desire to avoid them in the future!

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post #352 of 3327 Old 10-06-2008
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Yep! 30's fun, 40's are work and 50+ just plain SUCKS!
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post #353 of 3327 Old 10-06-2008
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I'd not take it personally-at least from my end-I'm just questioning some of the wind speeds "documented". What type of damage was there on shore?

Storm knocks out power in Puget Sound area -

S.V. Nikko
1983 Fraser 41
La Conner, WA

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Boating for over 25 years, some of them successfully.
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post #354 of 3327 Old 10-06-2008
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Still- what most people don't realize about the winds around the PNW is that there is no such thing as open water. We live and sail in a vast network of venturis (islands with tall, steep sides). When we get the official wind reports they are from places like Smith Island which is in the middle of Juan de Fuca. In the narrows between islands that are oriented with the wind, as you were on Saturday, it can be significantly higher. We regularly see sailboats come through Peavine from Rosario where it might only be blowing 10-15K, and get knocked down to 50+degrees when they get hit, with all sails up, by the "Eastsounder" coming down through Orcas Is. at 30+K. It was just plain nasty Saturday, I was glad I wasn't out in it. IMHO if you have time to be takin' pictures, it ain't that bad (when you're short, or single handed).


SV Laurie Anne

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post #355 of 3327 Old 10-06-2008
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John is correct on this, as we do get a lot of funnels where the wind can be stronger coming out of a channel and do some damage. I know of many folks that have been doing just fine going north where Jody was, get near where Hood canal hits admirality st, and get knocked down as there will be a gust going twice what it is in the open area.

The back side of bainbridge island from what I understand, can have SW winds go up and over, and on the way down to the water pickup for short periods going off shore to double what is normal.

This makes it a bit tricky around here. I know the wind was shifting on my upwards of 30*. Lulls at one angle, guts shift to starboard and all of a sudden you would be on a reach when on the starboar tack. Over you go! Port tack was almost as bad, as then you were hitting the waves head on, at least on starboard tack you were angled forward to slightly abeam.

I know some of the folks with Moore 24's really got hammered to a degree coming back from the FWB bouy.

ANyway, it was fun to a degree. Fortunetly for me, nothing broke etc etc.


on edit, here is a link to the damage photo's that were taken last saturday at the FWB.

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Last edited by blt2ski; 10-06-2008 at 11:03 PM.
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post #356 of 3327 Old 10-06-2008 Thread Starter
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Wow. At the end of this fine day, which gave us quite a melee, what can I say. Well, let me quote some BFS scripture which puts everything into perspective I believe...

From BFS 26:258 (King Jeff Version)

Originally Posted by Jeff_H View Post
Even those of us who have sailed for decades have a point at which the hair on the back of our necks stand up and we begin to think that we may have overdone things a bit. The difference between more experienced sailors and newbies is that we have a few more tricks in our repetoir and we also have a better sense of how close we can get to the edge before we fall off, which may also mean that we get closer to the edge and so may actually get slammed more frequently than a sensible newcomer.

No matter how long we have sailed there is always a learning period everytime we get on a boat that is new to us. I typically try to ramp up slowly, sailing the boat in increasingly heavy conditions, pushing the boat into every higher heel angles to learn at what point the rudder stalls and what the sail plan looks like in high winds upwind vs reaching vs down. I look at how hard it is to reef or furl in a strong breeze and get s sense of how long it takes since there are times when shelter is near that pushing the boat to the last possible moment may mean the difference between no serious drama and getting your head handed to you. It is the step by step experimentation that teaches you how the boat behaves so that there isn't a problem going out on those days when the 'sensible and cautious' say things like "Your a better man than I to go out there on a day like today".

Thanks Jeff. Keep the faith Still.

Last edited by smackdaddy; 10-07-2008 at 10:33 AM.
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post #357 of 3327 Old 10-07-2008
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Sorry guys, I got busy at work. That is "Aspect computing" in the 1998 Sydney to Hobart race. 70 knot winds, higher gusts, 54ft boat. Not a comment on anyone's story, just a picture.

Sway, you don't see the tops blowing off because the wind had been blowing so hard for such a long period that it is flattening the waves.

Conditions, demographics, it all matters. Read the books on the race and you will learn a lot about how the sea works when multiple forces, both air and water, combine in in a tight space. Also read Willard Bascom's books on waves.

As far as first hand experience, there is much to be said about whats underwater and the topography around you. In the Bay here, you can get your ass kicked in 30+ knot winds with basically minor waves, maybe six feet at the very most. The wind can feel like its gonna rip your ears off, and your sails too. Then you can go out the gate in 15-20 knot winds, and the seas can be twice that height, and sometimes it feels safer. A completely different experience and it can even be on the same day!

Great men always have too much sail up. - Christopher Buckley

Vaya con Dios

Last edited by bestfriend; 10-07-2008 at 12:42 AM.
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post #358 of 3327 Old 10-07-2008
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IIRC the 1998 race was the one from hecko that folks write about? I am thinking that boat pictured is the one with I want to say disabled/handicapped folks? I am remembering that pic to a degree from a book I read about the race with the problems.

Correct me if I am wrong on this.


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post #359 of 3327 Old 10-07-2008
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Pretty incredible photo from Sydney Hobart. Iíve seen foam streaks develop when the wind is blowing in the high thirties but the significant wave had me confused. It all makes sense now. One of the significant disappoints in life for me was the day I got an accurate anemometer. The winds in S.F. Bay all immediately decreased by at least 10 knots. Now this is all before global warning mind you (hey perhaps my boat is the cause of it? I used to believe the wind reports too, that was until I found out that the weather station for the Bay was atop Mount Livermore on Angel Island. Again significantly higher (and faster) winds than the ones I experienced at sea level.

Big question for all of you. When you are quoting wind speed, are you using apparent or true? Giuís numbers for reefing didnít make sense to me until I converted to True, and then they were about what I experienced when I raced the Areodyne. For what itís worth, I use true wind speed, so you apparent wind guys need to add boat speed to my numbers. There is an equation for calculating wind pressure that is something like as the wind speed doubles, the increase in force is squared. The progression is geometric, not linear. So the increase in force from 20 to 25 knots is the rough equivalent of the difference between 1 and 15 knots of wind speed. That is why it is so difficult for most of us to gauge the wind speed without an instrument. All I know that 20 -25 (26-31 apparent) knots is normally a lot of wind. But the days Iíve been out in winds in the thirties and then returned to the bay where it was blowing in the mere twenties, it felt positively calm.

O.K., you studs that only go out in gale warnings Ė fess up, what kind of gear do you break. The repair bill for Fast Forwardís broach was $11 grand (30knots true). I have also blown out a main when it was only blowing in the thirties. Usually when things go non-linear, the last thing you break out is a camera so I have precious few photos of Freya in a blow. So after seeing CCís photo, how fast is the wind here? (Hint: the wind was southerly for the Bay (about 253 degrees and blowing strait from the City so assume ten miles of fetch.)

Last edited by GeorgeB; 10-07-2008 at 01:45 AM.
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post #360 of 3327 Old 10-07-2008
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From Foul Weather Race.. HG under motor.. stern look...

-- Jody

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