Sunday, November 13, 2011


The title for this post is a tribute to Clive Cussler.  Nicole and I have been working our way through a collection of his books, given to us by a friend, (thanks Dave) and think it is hilarious that he thought it necessary to use exclamation marks in his book titles.  Anyway, we had a bit of weather blow in over the weekend and it was our first taste of Alaska in the winter.  Nothing extreme, I guess we still have that to look forward to, but it caused some excitement here at the marina.

Wind Speed (WSPD): 35.0 kts
Wind Gust (GST): 42.7 kts
Wave Height (WVHT): 31.8 ft

The conditions listed above were off  Cape Edgecumbe, just west of us.  At our slip in the marina we saw 43 gusting 56 knots, that's 50 mph with gusts of 65mph.  The waves in the marina are smaller but still significant enough to do damage.  It's humbling to think of the waves off the cape, 38.4 feet at their maximum height, as being considerably higher than most houses.
At least two boats sunk at the dock in our harbor from extreme wind and waves in the channel, and one more broke lose from the dock and washed ashore. Lots of other boats saw significant damage. We were safe and sound but got bounced around pretty good.  I happened to be working on another boat in the harbor when the worst of it hit on Saturday, and I have to give Nicole mucho credit for making sure our boat was secure and then checking on our neighbors to help out where needed.  There were lots of snapped dock lines and crushed fenders, and one sailboat across the dock from us surged up on to the dock hard enough to smash it's bobstay and break off the end of the bowsprit.
The weather continued into Saturday night with heavy winds mixed with rain and hail.  By Sunday morning it looked like things might be calming down, the wind eased and the sky cleared, but it was just a temporary lull.  By Sunday afternoon the high winds were back, this time mixed with heavy snow, and by Sunday night Sitka looked like a winter wonderland.
Welcome to fall in Alaska.

1 comment:

  1. Raised the Dancing Girl today with Diver Dave, fortunately the sprung planks were well above the waterline.