Adventure in the Med
23 July 2011 | Kapriji Island
Weather nasty thunderstorm
Aside the daily arguments with the skipper of the Italian or French
boat that has anchored improperly very near us we have had a shortage of adventures since Scotland. Today's thunderstorm relieved that monotone. Morning light revealed dark threatening clouds where none had been forecast. Our anchor was set and tested in a rocky bottom which is always suspect both on the drop and the retrieval. Our stern was tied, double wrapped, to the rocky shore the night before and holding well. Karyn was foul weather dressed and ready for action while I watched the approaching storm on radar and Nathan captured lightening bolts with his camera. Soft rain and a consistent, light wind off shore contributed to our male, relaxed stance while others worried. We had already briefed the worst case " what-ifs" last night. This morning the steady breeze now became gusty and irregular while the lightening struck all around us. Suddenly the wind shifted 180 degrees and began to push us toward the rocks. Then it increased and Nathan, now on the bow, yelled past the whistling rigging that the anchor was dragging. Not wanting to drag sideways into the rocks I pushed the throttle of the already running and warm engine while Karyn let the shore line run out and off the transom, abandoned. For a time the wind was from everywhere and the rain was horizontal while the rarely seen rocks were ver near. Lightening crashed close by while the rain increased and visibility became near zero. While Nathan struggled to get the 150' of chain and the 88# anchor up and stowed and I tried, unsuccessfully, to keep the bow pointed into the wind. Conditions became worse. It began to hail. It began to hail large stones the size of walnuts that stung like a sonavabich. Nathan took the worst of it on the bow while Karyn found a cockpit cushion to shield me at the wheel. Unbeknownst to all except me, I had lost control of the bow of the boat. Between the power of the wind and the anchor dragging on the bottom the bow fell off and we being blown down into the narrow, rocky, unseen, idealic cove of last evening. FULL REVERSE!, invert the compass course, back into the wind, will this work? where is the shore line?, watch the depth, watch the depth, rocks to starboard-steer to port, damn the hail on bare legs, hold the wind aft, boat speed aft? barely, now we are moving, anchor is up Nate says, moving faster aft, depth increasing, depth increasing, slow the engine, under control, everyone is in the cockpit, more light in north, we can see those threatening rocks now....
This afternoon we are 20 miles north, in a perfect anchorage, tied to a mooring. The sun is shining while we are swimming and getting ready to go ashore to cute beach bar for dinner of grilled squid.
A perfect day for a wee dram.