Welcome! NOAA Weather is pretty good at predicting NE winds at the islands. If the report is for N or Ne winds below passes and canyons I stay home. Even if the wind
does not make it out to the islands it will be uncomfortable. If you are caught out there when the Santa Ana's blow then Chinese and Forney's are both good. Potato is even better but watch the west swell and be ready to get out when the wind
switches. There are other hidey-holes but they are tricky with submerged rocks and such.
Fall and Winter are some of the best cruising out there. The crowds are gone, the weather is fairly settled between fronts, the fog
is gone, the air is crisp, the islands are green, the coreopsis is in bloom, the list goes on and on. I used to go out no matter what the forecast
and had a great time. Also got my butt kicked quite a bit. I got older, got tired of bailing out of anchorages
at 0200 and started listening to the weather reports. Haven't been surprised since.
Anyhow, you're in for a real treat! Give a shout when you are heading out.