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Departure for Wilton Creek…the Hurricane Hole

Still dockside at Deltaville, and by 3AM the winds are starting to howl.   Not steady howling, but enough to wake up Soxy…who in turn makes sure we are listening to the winds.

Getting up at 4AM has it’s advantages.  We can:
– recheck the latest hurricane tracking for the umteenth time,
– charge up all of our electronics
– make a list of all the items we must do before we leave the shoreline (gas for dinghy, more food for Soxy, and maybe more chocolate just in case)
– get work done for clients
– listen to the winds howl and wonder what it will sound like at 3X
And it’s only 5AM.   aii

By 7AM – we had a few details to tend to.  Fill up dingy gas tank…jog…get more food (apples and chocolate)…one last shower.  Could be days.  I know what you’re thinking…but this is a boat.  6 gal of hot water max.  One could hardly call this a shower.

By 10:30AM, we departed land and dockside – and ventured out into Fishing Bay Harbor.  Winds were already blowing 20-25 from the NorthEast so we enjoyed (not) a bumpy ride to get to the Piankatank River.  From here, we following a winding river that gradually took us out of the winds.   Winds dropped to 12-15 knots – and it seems like we are going in the right direction.

Paddy wanted to anchor out in some open area with protection from the north, but I had my sights on the locals version of a hurricane hole – Wilton Creek.   After 1.5 hours of motoring, we made it to the Wilton.  Depths of 8 feet.  Paddy considers it claustrophobic.  It seems perfect to me.  Winds that registered 25 knots just an hour ago – show 8 knots here.  One third.  Do the math — when Hurricane Sandy blows in at 60…maybe we’ll see 20?   That’s my logic and I’m stickin’ to it 😉

After a few attempts at anchoring – which turned out too shallow – we found a few cruiser ‘friends’ and dropped anchor for our hurricane hole-down spot.   According to one cruiser (who came to visit via dinghy) the local knowledge puts the storm surge in this creek at 3 feet, and explains that winds might ‘swirl’ due to the narrow creek.   I can handle swirl.

We take in the land terrain.  High banks, lots of trees at the top of the banks.   Basically we are sitting in the “valley” – ie the creek.  This is good.   We can hear the winds howl via the trees…but our instruments still read 8ish knots of wind.

Activated the wind generator to get power.  And we proceed to obsess about each National Weather Service update regarding the Track of Hurricane Sandy.  It will be close.

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