Thursday, September 13, 2018

Skull Creek: preparations

        A pleasant day with some clouds that might be fringes of the Florence system.
        I stood in the companionway last evening studying the sky trying to determine if I were at sea if it would have given me any inkling that a major hurricane was a few hundred miles away, and the answer is that it would not.  Neither would the barometer which remained moderately high and steady for the past two days.  Even now with Florence about one hundred miles off Wilmington, North Carolina, less than three hundred miles north of Hilton Head, the clouds are not threatening and the barometer has only dropped two millebars.
        Although Hilton Head Island is not expected to have more than two or three inches of rain or wind more than tropical force, some preparations have been made.  
        Yesterday afternoon when I went to have a swim, I found all of the pool deck furniture sunk in the shallow end.  I moved our patio furniture in from the screened porch this morning.
        The dozen small boats that were docked to the north of the marina pier have been moved into slips south of the pier or taken from the water and the floating docks north of the pier moved to the south as well.
        A few boats have left the marina, including a large power boat.  If you can make twenty knots you can choose your weather. 
        I have noticed a few owners checking out their boats, moving objects that might blow away to below deck, and adding dock lines, but most of the boats in the marina do not appear to have received any special attention. 
        GANNET is again the smallest sailboat at Skull Creek Marina.  I noticed the Cape Dory Typhoon’s absence two days ago.  She could easily have been taken from the water.
        I have tied the tiller down.  I have moved the spare jib halyard, the spinnaker halyard, and the vestigial spinnaker pole topping lift from where they were tied at the base of the mast and would slap noisily against it in wind to the bow pulpit.  I may double some dock lines.  I will put out two more fenders and tie a line around the jib to make certain it can’t unfurl. 
        I think that’s about it.
        I will ride out whatever Florence brings us on GANNET.  If conditions permit I may go up to the condo during the day for a few hours.  I possibly could be more comfortable and safer in the condo, but a sailor surely prefers being on his boat.