02 December 2022
by Steve Schroeder
Hampton to Beaufort, NC. Hatteras, known as "the graveyard of the Atlantic" is one of those places you do NOT want to be at the wrong time. The warm water of the Gulf Stream is not far away to the east, providing a source of energy to weather disturbances. I've seen large thunderstorms park themselves over the stream for hours and hours. The water shallows up rapidly as you get closer to land, this will make dangerously large breaking waves under the right (or wrong) conditions. Then there's the Jet Stream above bringing rapidly changing weather.
We started out from Hampton with NW wind 25-30 knots. This gradually weakened and clocked NE and as we neared Beaufort shifted SE then S. Perfect for our route and we even made outbound tide at the Chesapeake and slack tide at Beaufort although we had to go in at night. The shallow Chesapeake bay was much rougher than the water offshore in that wind.