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Old 02-28-2014, 02:04 AM   #21
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Hit and miss forecasts this time of year. Everything is 40-60 percent. As sunchaser said , you'd likely find some pretty square waves around Admiralty Inlet and Marrowstone Point with a 25 knot NW wind, although they would be on your bow. EC Canada is calling for NE winds which would be pretty rolly rounding the point.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:22 AM   #22
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The other part of this one is how much fun will you have on a trip to PT on a windy / wet weekend. Boat Haven can be a bear to get alongside in the wind as well. PT is a great town to visit, but I'd save the fuel and time for a better weekend.

It's really hit and miss at this time of year.
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:29 AM   #23
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As fellow new boater i will offer this...

Don't go. But do get off the docks. Go for a ride. Motor out get some experience with some weather. then go tie her back up. So long as conditions are NOT dangerous and are just really uncomfortable i see no reason to not to go gain some experience in a time and place where you don't NEED to slog on. when you have had enough come back to the dock, crack open your favorite beverage and reflect on how well you and/or the boat handled the conditions.
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:42 AM   #24
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As fellow new boater i will offer this...

Don't go. But do get off the docks. Go for a ride. Motor out get some experience with some weather. then go tie her back up. So long as conditions are dangerous and are just really uncomfortable i see no reason to not to go gain some experience in a time and place where you don't NEED to slog on. when you have had enough come back to the dock, crack open your favorite beverage and reflect on how well you and/or the boat handled the conditions.
That's why I have a "Pleasure" boat.
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Old 02-28-2014, 11:03 AM   #25
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Travel for Friday looks great, your return on Sat or Sun could get bumpy.

I'm about 12 miles from PT on the NE side of Whidbey looking at Skagit bay. Currently looks like glass on the water with a beautiful sun shining. We're expecting snow on Sat/Sun with winds 10 to 20, PT forecast is the same.

Where ever you end up, have a great weekend and Be Safe!
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Old 02-28-2014, 11:23 AM   #26
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I'm going to say stay put not because your boat cannot handle it, but because honestly if your confidence level hasnt built up to a point where the decision is a non issue, then its better to stay in port, and wait.

We all have differing experience levels. If I was planning on the trip I wouldn't even think twice about it, but I'm not you, you're not me.

Rough water seamanship is a learned skill. Anybody that tells you otherwise is full of it. It takes practice, lots of practice.

As a new boater I intentionally took my boats out into worse and worse conditions as a skill building exercise. I got to a point where in a 30' boat a SCA was a non issue, and have tested myself in some much nastier conditions. Thats how you learn and build confidence.

You might think about doing the same, a little at a time, and before long you'll know what to do, and how boats react. That experience will prepare you for not if, but when you really get in deep kimchi and need the skills. Your confidence as a captain is essential to the mental comfort of your passengers. A confident captain projects a calmness that will make a world of difference during truly bad weather.
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Old 02-28-2014, 11:29 AM   #27
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When I first started trawlering about 14 years ago I had an Albin 25. A friend, also w an Albin 25 had a rule to stay put if any part of where he was going had a forecast of 25 knot winds. On the first day of a trip to the Gulf Is from Puget Sound near Everett it was supposed to blow 25 knots in Rosario Strait. He would not go. I did. With the old "poke my nose out" philosophy. Went up the backside of Whidbey Is (walk in park) through the pass and out into Rosario Strait. Not so walk in the park. Had stern quartering seas at the worst point well over 4'. SE wind and a small ebb tide (bucking). I found out how well the little 2 ton Albin handled following seas ... very well. Had a few white knuckles but don't recall any "OMG I'm gonna die" moments. The rest of the trip was a breeze mostly.

What I learned from that was that wind and seas vary more than a lot from place to place. If you're good enough to make a landing driving around the harbor in 40 knot winds is very doable but I wouldn't want to round Cape Chacon in AK in any wind at all. Often just the tide causes big ugly waves.
But I'd run from Everett to LaConner in 25 knot winds. When they say "25 knot winds" I look closely at all the other variables and then make the call.
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Old 02-28-2014, 12:20 PM   #28
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For the size of the boat the A25 and her big sister the A27 (my boat) is an extremely capable boat.
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Old 02-28-2014, 12:28 PM   #29
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We have a very basic rule aboard: When in doubt, don't go out

It has served us very well. We are recreational boaters. We don't NEED to go or be anywhere. Worst case scenario if we stay in port is we need to take a day or two off of work to get home.

I'm too old to worry about appearing to be a "fraidy-cat" (or other similar term ;-) ). I just smile, and pour myself a drink in the cockpit.

Same rule applies for surfing, SCUBA, and other sports, BTW
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Old 02-28-2014, 02:51 PM   #30
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Eye witness news: :-)

We just crossed Puget Sound on the Kingston-Edmonds ferry (wife has a medical appt in Seattle). Lots of whitecaps and at least 4' waves in places. I'd estimate some 6-footers, too. Today would not have been very scary or anything, but more than likely would have been pretty uncomfortable for passengers. As mentioned, this weekend could be even worse.

Methinks you definitely made the right decision.
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Old 02-28-2014, 03:23 PM   #31
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Want to see what it looks like when you're out in conditions a bit less than what you described? Last summer I helped take a boat from Lake Union to Stockton, CA.

Here's what it looked like....





You decide for yourself. If it were me, I'd stay in port until things improve.


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Old 02-28-2014, 04:32 PM   #32
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Want to see what it looks like when you're out in conditions a bit less than what you described? Last summer I helped take a boat from Lake Union to Stockton, CA.

Here's what it looked like....

You decide for yourself. If it were me, I'd stay in port until things improve.

If you can take a video it's not too bad

On our last gulf crossing we got into a situation. A UNFORECAST situation. We even hired a weather router to help.

That video looks like Stuarts 5788. In our 4788 we, for a couple straight hours actually buried the bow the waves were so steep.

We've been in large swells, but had never experienced wind waves so large that they buried the bow on a boat that size. Blue water over the bow, and rushing up to the windshield. It was bad. There were no videos being taken that morning.

I can say that having taken the time to build rough water seamanship skills paid off that day. My son who served on a USCG motor lifeboat in Oregon was visibly scared. His experience at sea was always with someone else in charge. This was us.

When he asked what the operational limits were of my boat I calmly told him that they were clearly bigger than these seas. When he asked what I was going to do, I calmly told him that we would head into the seas and make for the lee side of Hinchinbrook island. When he commented that Hinchinbrook was about 50 miles away, I calmly told him that, I guessed its going to be a long morning.

It's hard to relate the conversation in writing , but the point is that I'd practiced piloting every one of my boats over a period of years. Yes, these were big waves, but I had the confidence, and projected that confidence that we were going to be fine.

People do not learn those skills sitting at the dock, or internet sailing, reading books, to taking classes. They learn them by practice. By taking their boat out in increasing rough conditions until they learn the skills necessary safely weather out a storm.

I used your post to reply to, and it was not meant to infer that you disagree in any way, it was just a good video, and a great time to respond.

This concept of skill building cannot be over emphasized. We are not born with seamanship skills, and anybody can be a competent rough water captain. All it takes is practice.
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Old 02-28-2014, 08:57 PM   #33
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Just curious KSanders, what speed where you making into those seas?
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Old 02-28-2014, 09:08 PM   #34
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Just curious KSanders, what speed where you making into those seas?
7 knots or so, but I honestly do not remember the exact speed.

I have used power to make running with a following sea, like surfing. I can't do it in is boat a because it's too slow for that, but in my smaller boats I was able to hit the gas and surf a wave.

That's something my son taught me. The waves are faster than you think something above 20 knots.
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Old 02-28-2014, 10:18 PM   #35
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Thanks Kevin.

There is a website I like to refer to when I'm wondering about the wind conditions in the Puget Sound. This shows the actual wind conditions on the Washington State ferry boats and is updated every half hour or so.

Washington State Ferry Weather
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Old 03-01-2014, 12:45 AM   #36
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Take a look at 7 Day Wind, Wave & Tide Weather Forecasts (including live wind reports) for Australia. Click "Sydney Weather Forecast" or another city if you like. You get graphs and predictions of wave height & period, wind direction & speed, hour by hour. It`s probably not unique to Oz, but it is good, when it disagrees with our Bureau of Meteorology, it often does, it is usually right. BOM went conservative after getting it wrong and people into trouble.
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Old 03-01-2014, 09:28 AM   #37
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7 knots or so, but I honestly do not remember the exact speed.

I have used power to make running with a following sea, like surfing. I can't do it in is boat a because it's too slow for that, but in my smaller boats I was able to hit the gas and surf a wave.

That's something my son taught me. The waves are faster than you think something above 20 knots.
Kevin, you're right. Surfing waves is a good ride. However a long period of it is very tiring-----no autopilot, and constant throttle adjustments to keep position on the wave. That is my preferred method of running inlets, but that usually only lasts a short while.
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Old 03-01-2014, 11:16 AM   #38
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Windmist VERY excellent link. I bookmarked it. Thanks.

Wonder what the ferries are doing on I-5 though.
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Old 03-01-2014, 11:54 AM   #39
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Thanks, we enjoyed a nice lunch at Chandlers Cove.

My wife and 2 young kids travel with me and we need to gradually get more experience because I have from now until around November off work and we're going to use our boat lots and not have the pressure of fixed return dates

I've more questions if you don't mind...

- Is my Californian Navigator 39 considered 'lightweight' or robust in the inland waters of PNW?
- If I were 5 years and 1000 hours experienced, what should be a reasonable safe limit to weather (trying to understand the capabilities of my boat)
- If I had said we were going to Poulsbo, Tacoma or Gig Harbor, would your responses have been similar?
- Finally, I took 2 days skipper training when I got the boat. It was very helpful but now I'm struggling with some of the terminology that is being used like...wave interval, wind on the bow, stern or quarter. I understand the terms but not the implications of the terms. Is there something I might read before better understanding these implications in practice.

Once again, many thanks for your responses. I'm definitely learning something without even turning the key
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Old 03-01-2014, 12:36 PM   #40
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The soft spot isn't the boat. . . . it's you and your crew. The boat is very well built, solid hull and will handle virtually anything but the very worse conditions of Puget Sound. Your crew on the other hand, being new to boating will physically and mentally fatigue out after and hour or two of rough weather, rocking, rolling and pitching in crazed seas.

Traveling in the straits of Juan De Fuca, Rosario, Georgia, you need to respect them. They can blow up in a hurry and make your life miserable. No matter how much you plan, sooner or later you will get a butt kicking traveling the straits.

You are right to introduce your crew to boating slowly, easily and not test their metal quite so soon. Choose your cruising weather carefully while you and they become accustom to boating. With experience, you and your crew will grow, acquire the skill, and confidence to tackle adverse conditions and rough crossings. But give it a little time.
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