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Old 04-01-2014, 03:11 PM   #1
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Adios

The liveaboard folks a couple of slips away from me have put their boat (38’ Bayliner) up for sale. They are in their late sixties.

They have just returned from a run down to Florida and back. Apparently, on the way down they hit some pretty nasty conditions crossing St. Andrew Sound and the wife got the crap scared out of her. She told me that her husband had definitely “lost control” of the boat several times and they were very close to “going over” a couple of times. As soon as they reached Jacksonville she jumped ship and flew to her sister’s. He said that the conditions were pretty rough, but they were never in any danger.

After a week he was able to talk her into coming back to the boat to finish their trip. Their destination was somewhere on Florida’s west coast. They made it as far as Lake Okeechobee, where he agreed to turn around and head back. I chatted with them a couple of days after they where back in their slip and I could tell there was definitely something wrong. So now, a week after returning, their boat is for sale. The husband doesn’t want to sell it and is pretty pissed about the whole thing.

It’s really too bad because I know she was excited about going on their “voyage”. They had been talking about it and planning it for at least a year. They had made several overnight trips down the Waccamaw, but they never poked their noses out on to the ocean.
When we crossed St. Andrew Sound it was pretty rough and I can see where it could be somewhat “scary” in some boats.

On a lighter note, the folk’s right next to me left yesterday to start their “Loop” trip on their Fathom 40. They are heading north to spend a month exploring the Chesapeake area.

I hope they have better luck. KJ

ps casual observation; northbound traffic on the ICW is definitely picking up every day.
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Old 04-01-2014, 03:38 PM   #2
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That is a sad story. Probably a moral to it, but not sure just what it would be.
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Old 04-01-2014, 03:45 PM   #3
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Apparently, on the way down they hit some pretty nasty conditions crossing St. Andrew Sound and the wife got the crap scared out of her.
Been there. Under the right (wrong) conditions it is a shallow, white capped, confused mess. It saddens me to quit because of one bad passage.

After our encounter I tried using part of the so called "small craft route." On a mid-rising tide the one shoal isn't a problem. Follow the magenta line as if you're going out into the sound, then head up the Satilla River between Green ICW 29A and Red 2. Follow the marked channel upstream to Floyd Cut. Floyd cut returns you to the Cumberland River and back to the ICW. I see this as a great alternative to going all the way out to sea and rounding the marker.
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Old 04-01-2014, 03:56 PM   #4
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Greetings,
Thanks for that Mr. KJ. Let me preclude my statements with "I don't know the capabilities of the Captain in question nor the conditions experienced."
There are a few occasions that turn an "oopsy" into a "holy sh*t!". Failure to investigate and analyze the weather, over confident captain and crew and ill found vessel to name a few (I'm sure other, more seasoned mariners will add to the list) BUT by far the BIGGEST reason for a cock-up is a schedule. We were harbor bound in Bridgeport CT. (Yup, the marina that used to be just east of the ferry dock) for three days due to a nor'easter. We DID have to be in a certain place at a certain time but when it's man against the sea, the sea ALWAYS wins.
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Old 04-01-2014, 04:03 PM   #5
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I think the moral of the story is that some people are just fair weather sailors. Generally, the boat will handle rougher conditions than what the crew can handle. (even a Bayliner)
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Old 04-01-2014, 04:19 PM   #6
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Been there. Under the right (wrong) conditions it is a shallow, white capped, confused mess. It saddens me to quit because of one bad passage.

After our encounter I tried using part of the so called "small craft route." On a mid-rising tide the one shoal isn't a problem. Follow the magenta line as if you're going out into the sound, then head up the Satilla River between Green ICW 29A and Red 2. Follow the marked channel upstream to Floyd Cut. Floyd cut returns you to the Cumberland River and back to the ICW. I see this as a great alternative to going all the way out to sea and rounding the marker.

They actually did turn around and take the “bypass” route.

We anchored overnight in Umbrella Creek between Little Satilla and Satilla Rivers. Nice breeze kept the bugs away. KJ


RTF "There are a few occasions that turn an "oopsy" into a "holy sh*t!". Failure to investigate and analyze the weather, over confident captain and crew and ill found vessel to name a few (I'm sure other, more seasoned mariners will add to the list) BUT by far the BIGGEST reason for a cock-up is a schedule".


Rufus, did I miss some new/old nautical terminology? “Cock-up” = ? KJ
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Old 04-01-2014, 04:30 PM   #7
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My preaching about rough water seamanship practice is for the Admiral too.

Start out easy, build skill for both the captain and the admiral.

Then there are no suprises.
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:48 PM   #8
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Greetings,
Mr. KJ. "Cock-up" Sorry, one of my momma's phrases (British war bride). She met daddy in hospital after his evacuation from Omaha Beach (D-Day).
Cock-up - Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary
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Old 04-01-2014, 06:50 PM   #9
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Greetings,
Mr. KJ. "Cock-up" Sorry, one of my momma's phrases (British war bride). She met daddy in hospital after his evacuation from Omaha Beach (D-Day).
Cock-up - Definition and More from the Free Merriam-Webster Dictionary
Normandy father!! Thumbs my friend.
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Old 04-01-2014, 07:33 PM   #10
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My preaching about rough water seamanship practice is for the Admiral too.

Start out easy, build skill for both the captain and the admiral.

Then there are no suprises.
It's much like a car. Driver takes a curve quickly and thinks nothing of it. Passenger wants out.

Obviously we agree with you on the Admiral part. If she was better trained, although perhaps he needs to be as well, and realized what the boat really can handle, it would be easier.

If the man wants to try to salvage it, I'd suggest hiring an experienced captain for a trip to both train and comfort them. Perhaps that would help the wife get over some of what happened.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:04 PM   #11
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I have been through there in all kinds of conditions. You actually are out into the ocean as you make the turn back. I believe the wife was right to figure they were in danger. With the limited experience they had, they never should have been there. There is a shoal that has caught many boaters that have been pushed upon it. It can be so bad out there that the towing services will not come to get you.

I have been on trawlers on the Chesapeake Bay when the short, steep seas made them roll so badly the keel could be seen. The sea entrance to St. Andrews Sound can get like that. They should have held at Jekyll Harbor.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:10 PM   #12
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I have been through there in all kinds of conditions. You actually are out into the ocean as you make the turn back. I believe the wife was right to figure they were in danger. With the limited experience they had, they never should have been there. There is a shoal that has caught many boaters that have been pushed upon it. It can be so bad out there that the towing services will not come to get you.

I have been on trawlers on the Chesapeake Bay when the short, steep seas made them roll so badly the keel could be seen. The sea entrance to St. Andrews Sound can get like that. They should have held at Jekyll Harbor.
The decision should have been to stay put even if they were safe, which they may not have been. You recognize safety, but also your own personal tolerance for conditions and ability to handle them. If you're someone who panics or gets scared easily then be more conservative.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:31 PM   #13
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It's much like a car. Driver takes a curve quickly and thinks nothing of it. Passenger wants out.

Obviously we agree with you on the Admiral part. If she was better trained, although perhaps he needs to be as well, and realized what the boat really can handle, it would be easier.

If the man wants to try to salvage it, I'd suggest hiring an experienced captain for a trip to both train and comfort them. Perhaps that would help the wife get over some of what happened.
I hope they do something like that.
From the story, it's also not really clear what the conditions actually were.

At thier age, it stop doing something you love, leads to a very sad end.

I truly feel for them.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:31 PM   #14
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Except if the local weather didn't account for offshore rollers coming in over the bar...

Granted a reall good skipper might have seen it coming...but once you enter a situation like that...it gets worse but not predictable because it's on the nose then when you 90 degree turn...it is not only on the beam but also past the bar where the rollers could be bigger because the tops weren't reduced by the bar.

Unless someone was there for the planning and the "turn"...you really can't say whether a person should have stayed or pressed on.

3 times this trip NJ to Florida and return...I got into really uncomfortable (not dangerous) situations because the marine forecast winds were greater than 10 knots off.

Fortunately my crew knows me and my experience/decision matrix and lived with my decisions in misery but are usually not scared.

I have seen it plenty of times in life...people who encounter similar situations...but have different opinions of their leader...some suffer in silence and know their leader will NOT put them in danger...and others who have no trust in their leader and become panicky or worse.

Unfortunately...sometimes the combination of these factors come at the wrong time and it seems that's what happened to KJs friends.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:45 PM   #15
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Yes, it truly is sad. It sounds like a broken dream. They must have planned for this as an idealic way to retire. The decision for one to make the other sell the boat may be the worst possible outcome. It will be hard to overcome the resentment, and repair the relationship.

Many times the captains actions can telegraph the wrong message. When the passenger senses the captain is afraid or doesn't know what to do, it will panic the passenger. I wonder if anyone warned them. It is a known bad place, and the Umbrella cut off is such a simple alternative. It keeps you out of the bad area.

I hope the resentment and bad feeling between them can be repaired. There is much at stake.
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Old 04-01-2014, 08:53 PM   #16
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I truly wonder what people consider "bad conditions"?

Unless you have constant water coming over the rails...anything less is uncomfortable but hardly dangerous unless your mechanical systems or stowage is really bad.

I know my crew is miserable with anything more than 5 degree rolls and 30 degree rolls really get's them thinking.

But they know I let them know before we leave the dock, when the rolls are coming and pretty close to how bad, how long they will last, what should be done battening down before I get pissed at flying stuff....and finally where they should be for the least amount of stress on them.

They figure if I can predict all that...then they are safe despite being uncomfortable because I can foresee the issues.....usually...when it is worse than predicted....the trust is still there as they know I would warn them if anything more than uncomfortable could be forthcoming.
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:09 PM   #17
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Yes, it truly is sad. It sounds like a broken dream. They must have planned for this as an idealic way to retire. The decision for one to make the other sell the boat may be the worst possible outcome. It will be hard to overcome the resentment, and repair the relationship.

Many times the captains actions can telegraph the wrong message. When the passenger senses the captain is afraid or doesn't know what to do, it will panic the passenger. I wonder if anyone warned them. It is a known bad place, and the Umbrella cut off is such a simple alternative. It keeps you out of the bad area.

I hope the resentment and bad feeling between them can be repaired. There is much at stake.
Wifey B: I remember reading about the Nordhavn Atlantic Rally in 2004 and one of the women decided on the trip that was it for her. For sale sign went up the moment they got across. I think it falls apart for two reasons. First, they don't get adequate training. Second, the passion isn't shared. She convinced against her will, remains unconvinced still.

I feel so sad reading about it. Guess we're so lucky that we've always shared love of the same things and boating is top on our list. But other things too. We knew a girl who always said that she guessed she and her hubby would just have to get divorced when they retired since she wanted to retire to the beach and he wanted to go to the mountains.

I hope they can work it out with each other, but sounds like he'll never get his dreams fulfilled.
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:24 PM   #18
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Just looked at the charts because I'll be coming through there in a couple weeks. Definitely looks like it could get sloppy out there at the point. The alternate route looks good and doesn't look to be too far out of the way. As stated numerous times on this forum, it pays to not be in a hurry and better safe than sorry.
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:25 PM   #19
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Some people dream...when the reality of most dreams hits them in the face...dream over.....

It seems ALL relationships can fall to false expectations...it's usually the rare few that survive everything and that truly is a dream come true.
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Old 04-01-2014, 09:41 PM   #20
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There appears to be two alternate routes.
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