Hurricane Joaquin

We spend a fitful night watching the predicted storm track for hurricane Joaquin. Just our luck to be in Norfolk when Norfolk is in the crosshairs; the hurricane is predicted to come within 35 miles placing us well within the hurricane force wind zone predicted to top 100 mph. Even though there is great uncertainty about its path with widely divergent predictions depending on the forecasting model used, the primary one shown on the news and all our weather apps places us dead center. Our options are few and diminishing with time. We are too slow to run far. The best option would be to haul out but locals have that market cornered. So, we decide to stay put at Tidewater marina. It is well protected and is 15 miles inland from the Atlantic coast. It has floating docks and very tall pilings allowing for a significant storm surge. Our friends on Uno Mas have previous hurricane experience at this marina and suggest it will be a good spot. We are not alone; several megayachts remain on the dock, other transients are staying, and there are even a half-dozen sailboats anchored just outside the marina. By morning we are out early getting ready. We review our hurricane plan. We strip the boat of any loose gear; boat hooks, chairs, bicycles, etc. We double up on all dock lines; at least a dozen 5/8 inch lines secure us firmly to the dock all around. We put out chafe gear. Of course it is raining and we get soaked. We make reservations at a nearby hotel in the event we need to evacuate. We gather ship’s documents and valuables we would take off the boat if necessary. By noon, the latest predictions place Joaquin further east out to sea; it’s closest approach predicted by this iteration of the forecast models is now 186 miles and winds of 90 mph. We breath a sigh of relief knowing this prediction could well be wrong; but we sure like the trend! A few things remain until the last minute; closing through-hulls, shutting down power, etc. Now we watch and wait. If we are lucky the predicted winds will not be life-threatening and we will remain aboard. If the predictions are off, we will evacuate and hope for the best. Wish us luck.


1 thought on “Hurricane Joaquin”

  1. David and Vickie

    As expected you two are on top of things and taking the appropriate actions. Still, we are keeping you in our thoughts. Be safe.

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