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Old 09-19-2013, 12:32 AM   #1
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Question Weather Hold?

OK I need some advice from those that look at weather. Below is the weather forcast of Omni Bob. He is saying wait, MAY improve by Thursday next week.

However, my seasoned captain says if we leave Sunday we can at 10kts make Crescent City CA in 26hrs. We may or may not need to stay but if we do it would be about 10 hr layover. Basically he is saying we would be in front of the weather making its way up the coast. He is using NOAA and Sailing Weather - Marine Weather Forecasts for Sailors and Adventurers - PassageWeather


To: Captain Teseniar - M/Y INTERLUDE Fm: O.M.N.I./USA Home: Ocean Marine Nav Welcome to the Ocean... Tel: 302-284-3268
1720UTC 18 SEP 2013


The start of the trip early Sun/am should be met with weak high pressure ridge extending E-ENE across the northern California area. However, north/west of the weak ridge a broad gale low center is expected across the northern Gulf of Alaska. This low in combination with the main high cell well to the south will produce a moderate to rough long period WNW-NW swell northward along the coast of northern California to the Columbia River. In addition to the rough swells, a trailing cold front is expected to move eastward through Sunday reaching the WA/OR coast during Sun/night then weaken inland through Mon/am. The passage of the front will allow for shifting winds and for increasing WNW-ly sea/swells to build along the coast through Mon/23.


The low should weaken as it tends to move ESE toward the central British Columbia coast. At the same time, high pressure that was further south will tend to build north/east across the eastern Pacific with ridging extending ENE across the WA/OR coast through Tue/night-Wed/am. South of this ridge the winds will shift/veer to a more NW-N direction off northern California/southern Oregon, while easier northerly winds/seas develop along the central and northern Oregon coasts through Wed/25 and for most of Thur/26 due to this high ridge pattern.


Overall, this will be a challenging ride as conditions will likely encounter either rough swells or increasing wind/sea conditions from departure to arrival. Waiting does not seem to be a advantage as NW-N winds of 28-35kt, gusty/40-45kts are possible across northern CA and southern Oregion during Tue/pm through Thur/26


Basis your ETD early Sun/22-am northward toward the Columbia River along a coastal transit, expect:


Sun/22: WNW to NNW 10-18kts, could be as low as 05-12kts during the early morning hours (to sunrise). Seas 2-4ft. Swells: WNW-NW 6-8ft, 10-12sec. Winds tending to back WNW-WSW 10-17kts, seas 3-4ft with swells WNW-NW 8-10ft and period 9-11sec along the northern CA Coast through Sun/eve-night.


Mon/23: Winds shifting during the early morning hours WSW-WNW 15-20kt to as much as 25kt-30kt, gusty after the front moves through. Seas increasing 5-8ft with WNW-ly swells 8-10ft, 8-10sec early, increasing 10-13sec after the front through Mon/eve-night. Combined sea/swells of 10-12ft are very possible through the day along the coast.


Tue/24: Gradually veering WNW-NW to NNW 15-20kt, likely upto 20-25kt, gusty/30kts still possible through the morning. Seas 5-7ft. Swells WNW-NW 8-10ft (10-12sec) through Tue/midday. Winds tending to subside some near the Columbia River entrance during Tue/night-overnight; 12-18kts. This should help lower the sea heights to 4-5ft, maybe 3-4ft. Swells also come down during the day with a long period WNW 6-8ft Tue/pm.


Wed/25: Winds become fresh/strong along the California coast NW-N, even some NNE 25-35kt, gusty/35-45kts while slightly easier NW-N 15-25kts, gusty along the southern and central coasts of Oregon. Seas 7-12ft along the northern California coast while 5-8ft still possible along the Oregon coast.


Outlook data does seem to indicate some improved wind/sea conditions after Wed/25 as well as into the coming weekend through Sat/28 as the high ridge weakens and before a new cold front moves eastward across the NE Pacific Ocean. This might be just enough time for easier NW-N winds of 10-18kts and seas of 3-4ft and longer NW swells of 6-8ft developing along the coast from central-northern California to the Columbia River


You may wish to consider delaying your departure from Sausalito and northward to the Columbia River if the trend for the rough weather described above continues. We do suggest at least one more update prior to your ETD early Sun/am. Updating as requested. Please keep us advised of any changes to your itinerary. B/Rgds, Bob/OMNI



What is your expert guess? Go or wait until late next week?
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Old 09-19-2013, 02:24 AM   #2
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If you could leave very early Sunday, like pre dawn you, could possible beat the weather.

Do you have to go all the way to crescent city non stop, 260nm?

Is there a safe harbor you could make a day trip on Sunday to lay over for the next good window?

This is your first time in your new boat, a boat you do not know. I'd play it cautious. I would not want my first real day in my new boat to be a heavy weather experience. Especially not a a overnight cruise, trying to beat a weather front.

My opinion your experienced captain is pushing it. I've delivered two boats long distance, 1500nm. Two boats I did not know. Learn your boat, take it easy. Then after a few days cruising you could go out in a little, just a little rougher weather.

Don't run ahead of a building sea. Try to cruise as the sea is abating after a storm, then if something slows you down your not in a bind, with a building sea state.
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Old 09-19-2013, 04:26 AM   #3
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If you could leave very early Sunday, like pre dawn you, could possible beat the weather.

Do you have to go all the way to crescent city non stop, 260nm?

Is there a safe harbor you could make a day trip on Sunday to lay over for the next good window?

This is your first time in your new boat, a boat you do not know. I'd play it cautious. I would not want my first real day in my new boat to be a heavy weather experience. Especially not a a overnight cruise, trying to beat a weather front.

My opinion your experienced captain is pushing it. I've delivered two boats long distance, 1500nm. Two boats I did not know. Learn your boat, take it easy. Then after a few days cruising you could go out in a little, just a little rougher weather.

Don't run ahead of a building sea. Try to cruise as the sea is abating after a storm, then if something slows you down your not in a bind, with a building sea state.
I'm with Ksanders but see where your captain is coming from. I'm an instructor/delivery skipper as well as a boat owner. What is the driving force that you need to be there? From a captains point of view I sometimes have to take boats in rougher weather than is comfortable within the bounds of safety but as an owner comfort comes first. As an instructor I'm totally with Ksanders and we have a saying "if in doubt leave it out" ie if you don't really need to go then wait until you are not under pressure and I would emphasise that even more in a new to you boat. So, although I'm not offering analysis of the weather your side of the pond, I would urge restraint in the face of an approaching weather system. Good luck either way. Iain
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:44 AM   #4
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What's your plan B in case of being caught in bad weather dealing with mechanical problems? Remember the old saying " a schedule is very dangerous when cruising".
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Old 09-19-2013, 08:53 AM   #5
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...Overall, this will be a challenging ride as conditions will likely encounter either rough swells or increasing wind/sea conditions from departure to arrival. ...What is your expert guess? Go or wait until late next week?
I'd sit tight just based on the above. New boat, new crew and unproven boat systems, why push it? This is suppose to be fun.
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Old 09-19-2013, 09:20 AM   #6
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Don't run ahead of a building sea. Try to cruise as the sea is abating after a storm, then if something slows you down your not in a bind, with a building sea state.
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I too,really like Kevin's advice. With a building sea state, you relly limit your options, as you can not slow down, but must instead pound into a buidling sea. I spent 6 hours doing just that a few weeks ago and there is nothing more frustrating than seeing your SOG go down, as your ETA gets later and later.

Also, the Pacific NW doesn't give you a lot of bail out options, without having to run over dangerous bars (not the drinking kind either)
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Old 09-19-2013, 11:32 AM   #7
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If I were making that trip, in my boat, and not knowing exactly where in SF bay you are I'd...

Plan on one day from SF Bay to Bodega Bay approx 45 NM north of the SF bay entrance. This is a good first day shakedown.

Plan on two consecutive days for the approx 170 NM run from Bodega Bay to Eureka, with an overnight at Noyo anchorage. If your boat can cruise at 15 knots fast cruise you could make this one day, but remember that the wind builds in the afternoon, so cruising in the mornings is generally calmer.

From Eureka to Crescent city is another approx 65NM, plan on a day for this, or possibly hop to the next harbor depending on your speed, the tides, and the distance to the next safe port.

What I learned very quickly is that docking, or anchoring, or even running at night sucks. I have one of those night vision monoculars (first mate FLIR) and it still sucks. I would only run at night if its absolutely necessary.

Here's another thought...

You indicated you have an experienced captain onboard. Thats great. You need to remember though that its your boat, you are in charge. You and you alone are responsible.

Do not allow yourself to be pressured into a situation you are uncomfortable with by someone that is "experienced". Play it safe. Have fun. Just the fact that you posted your concerns here leads me to believe that you are being pressured into an uncomfortable situation.

I would also get a copy of the publication "coast pilot" its free in electronic format. Lots of great information. The "coast pilot" is the official US guide to boating in your specific area.
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Old 09-19-2013, 11:42 AM   #8
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Tom......+1 to what they said. Unless there's a life or death reason why you have to leave ahead of a building storm, why risk it with your new boat?
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Old 09-19-2013, 12:19 PM   #9
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I'm with K Sanders on this question. But the bigger question is why trust those internet friends you don't know nor their real bona fides over the recommendation of your very experienced Captain? If you start questioning the Captain now with internet chatter best you fire him and get another to work in close consort with a well established weather router and those folks on TF.
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Old 09-19-2013, 01:00 PM   #10
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I'm with K Sanders on this question. But the bigger question is why trust those internet friends you don't know nor their real bona fides over the recommendation of your very experienced Captain? If you start questioning the Captain now with internet chatter best you fire him and get another to work in close consort with a well established weather router and those folks on TF.
On my first delivery to Alaska I took a "seasoned captain" a guy I knew from the harbor that takes 6 packs out fishing in Prince William Sound.

He was OK, nothing bad to say about him, but he didn't have the great extent of knowledge I thought he had.

"seasoned captains" are sometimes just friends with more experience than we have. I do not know who his captain is, he could be the best... He could also just be a friend.
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Old 09-19-2013, 03:34 PM   #11
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My approach in all such decisions as this is to err on the side of caution. That approach has served me well (that is, I am still alive and kicking. :-)

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Old 09-19-2013, 05:01 PM   #12
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We are on a weather hold. Like everyone has said, don't push it and I will not. Little hot here. Looking at maybe next Thursday departure from Oakley, will know more on Monday. Thanks everyone...
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:03 PM   #13
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We are on a weather hold. Like everyone has said, don't push it and I will not. Little hot here. Looking at maybe next Thursday departure from Oakley, will know more on Monday. Thanks everyone...
I think that's a great choice.
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:11 PM   #14
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Better safe than sorry. Everyone says the boat can take a lot more than you can.
No need to find that out on a new boat.

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Old 09-19-2013, 05:14 PM   #15
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Excellent decision!!!

Not sure why, but it seems like you guys are trying to make this into one or two long voyages.

Why not rethink this, and make it into a series of day trips instead?
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Old 09-19-2013, 05:21 PM   #16
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We are on a weather hold. Like everyone has said, don't push it and I will not. Little hot here. Looking at maybe next Thursday departure from Oakley, will know more on Monday. Thanks everyone...
Wise decision, IMHO. Although of course now it will turn out when all is said and done that you could have easily made it with time to spare. It is the ancient law of the sea. :-)

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Old 09-19-2013, 09:26 PM   #17
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Excellent decision!!!

Not sure why, but it seems like you guys are trying to make this into one or two long voyages.

Why not rethink this, and make it into a series of day trips instead?
I thought of that too and that will probably be the case. I am just not wanting to try and "beat" a storm because with my luck it would catch me...
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:28 PM   #18
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Good decision to wait. With a new boat (to you) are you sure of the content of your fuel tanks? One of my concerns in rough weather is what may be stirred up in the fuel tanks that could foul a filter and stop an engine. It's no fun changing filters in a hot and rolling engine room. You may well deposit your last meal on the floor of the engine room---and things can only go downhill from there. Safe travels.
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:40 PM   #19
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hmason, ASD hired a professional to spend lots of time (and lots of ASD's money) to polish the fuel, scrub the tanks and make sure the fuel system was in tip-top shape.
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Old 09-19-2013, 10:46 PM   #20
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Yes, all good advice, so why not kick back, put the telly on, and watch Oracle make a great comeback in the cup races, although being now sudden death, with TNZ only needing one more win, holding the cup is now a big ask.

Then...head off when the weather window is good to go.
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