Hurricane Florence September 2018
11 September 2018 | Whortonsville, NC
When we left Whortonsville after the Labor Day Weekend tropical storm was out in the Atlantic. Since then she has churned into a very dangerous hurricane. We had been checking the tropical weather forecast all weekend. After having watched the behavior of major storms and surviving a few we have noticed that the longer the weather forecasters stick to the same track, the more likely it is to be accurate. Nobody really knows where Florence will land but she is sure to land close enough to be of great concern.
Monday September 10, 2018
We returned from a wonderful trip to Banner Elk, NC with Judy’s friend Carol. Wow it was great to get away from the brutal if even for a couple of days. We were of course watching the tropics the whole weekend and unfortunately every forecast got worse and worse. I had decided that we would need to go to Ensign Harbor to do all we could to prepare the boat what will probably be the worst storm coastal NC has seen in many years. I got an email from my friend Art who told me he was going down on Monday morning to deal with his boat. I decided to go on Monday also instead of waiting until Tuesday. With both of us there we could help each other if needed and Judy would not have to go. I left early on Monday and arrived about 1 pm. I noticed an unusual number of boats on trailers headed west already. Art, Chuck and Joey were there when I got there and I started working right away. The heat was just as brutal as the Labor Day weekend if not worse. I removed the headsail first then proceeded to take the main down. I was not trying to be neat, I was just trying to get the sails off and get them below. I also removed the bimini top and the wheel and instrument covers. The idea is to remove everything that would help make the boat less wind resistant. Art and I helped each other as needed. The best we can do as far as tying the boat to the dock is to leave all lines as long as possible without allowing it to bang into the dock or another boat. The water will certainly be high so the lines need to be as long as possible.
By the time I finished I was really tired. I was sweating really bad had had to drink lots of water. A cool shower helped but not much. Art, Chuck and I went to the M&M in Oriental for dinner. When we returned several other dock mates had arrived. Don and Trish and others were doing the same thing, storm prep. I had left the boat closed so a sudden shower would not flood the V-berth. When I opened the boat the inside temp was 91 degrees at nearly 9pm. I went to the cockpit for a while to hang out with the guys while the boat cooled down. It was still hot an hour later but it was bearable. I did not want to deal with the air conditioner so I crawled into the berth with a big fan blowing directly on me. I slept better than I expected but then I was near exhaustion.
Tuesday September 11, 2018
I was up early. Art and I helped Don and Trish get their dinghy off the bow of their boat and safely tied to a tree behind the bathhouse. I decided to remove the spinnaker pole from the boat and take it home on the Nissan’s luggage rack. It is just one more thing that could get loose and do damage. I think we (collectively) talked one of the dock mates out of riding out the storm on his boat. That is an exceedingly bad idea. Not only is it dangerous, you never know how long it will be before the roads are passable so you could get out. Dave who owns two boats at the marina and lives across the street in a nice house was planning to stay during the storm. He changed his mind after hearing the 5am weather forecast. This is a monster storm and unless something changes on Wednesday we are in for some incredibly dirty weather for several days.
I left mid morning and noticed a lot of gas stations were completely out of gas. I also noticed an unusual number of empty boat trailers headed east.
I have done all I can for the boat. Now we wait. Stay tuned…