Cruisers Forum
 


Join CruisersForum Today

Reply
 
Thread Tools Rate Thread Display Modes
Old 11-01-2010, 18:44   #1
Senior Cruiser
 
maxingout's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Dec 2006
Location: Fort Pierce, Phoenix
Boat: Privilege 39 Catamaran, Exit Only
Posts: 2,606
When to Anchor for a Hurricane or a Tropical Storm

I lived in Puerto Rico for five years and each year I faced the same decision. Every time a hurricane or tropical storm threated, I had to decide when I was going to anchor my yacht before the storm hit.

When storm warnings came, everyone rushed out into the harbors, nooks, and crannies to anchor their yachts. It was a fairly chaotic situation, and I had big misgiving about joining the waves of concerned captains. What bothered me the most was two things.

1. The best locations quickly filled up with yachts to the point that there were too many yachts in a confined area, and if the storm hit, the yachts themselves would participate in a giant demolition derby from yachts smashing into each other during the storm. That particular scenario was a very good argument for a steel yacht.

2. No matter where you anchored, and no matter how good your ground tackle, if someone with inadequate anchors and poor ground tackle anchored to windward of you, all of your preparation went down the drain. When they dragged anchor, they would obliterate your boat. A friend of mine did just fine in a Pacific hurricane until another boat dragged into his and puched a hole in the hull sinking the yacht.

Because of these two facts, I came up with my own saying about storm anchoring. HE WHO ANCHORS LAST, ANCHORS BEST.

This method always worked for me. I waited until everyone else had their anchor down, and then I went out and laid my anchors and placed my yacht so that nobody else could drag into me. I never worried about other yachts dragging into me, and I never had other yachts crowding around me because I was the last person to put the anchor down.

What is your strategy and timing of anchoring for tropical storms and hurricanes?
__________________

__________________
Dave -Sailing Vessel Exit Only

http://SailingUNI.com
http://maxingout.com
http://PositiveThinkingSailor.com
maxingout is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2010, 19:01   #2
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2008
Location: In transit. Currently in the Caribbean.
Boat: s/v Zero To Cruising. PDQ 32 Altair Classic Catamaran
Posts: 81
I have no opinion on this subject being a newbie who is not yet "out there." I just wanted to say thanks for always posting such thought-provoking questions.

Mike
__________________

__________________
www.ZeroToCruising.com
mikeandrebecca is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2010, 19:38   #3
Registered User
 
s/v Moondancer's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Fiji but heading for Alaska
Boat: Tayana 55
Posts: 1,225
Tied in the mangroves...
__________________
Phil

"Remember, experience only means that you screw-up less often."
s/v Moondancer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 11-01-2010, 20:08   #4
Senior Cruiser

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Aug 2009
Location: between the devil and the deep blue sea
Boat: a sailing boat
Posts: 17,314
1) Dig the hole, hire the crane, plant the boat. Out of surge's reach.

2) Drive her into the mangroves.

3) Clear out from the area to be affected.

But we like your attitude to anchor last - makes a lot of sense. Unless there is space left when you come, which is often the real problem in places like the West Indies.

b.



b.
__________________
barnakiel is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 03:34   #5
Registered User
 
bewitched's Avatar

Join Date: Sep 2009
Posts: 885
Images: 3
I can see some logic of anchoring last, but I would prefer much more time to set up.

Extra early - 2 days before: Try to get on a mooring - if you are in an area where RTS are common, the moorings are likely to be designed accordingly. Check the mooring (dive). Add your own chain to the mooring block if necessary. Minimum 4 lines from mooring to boat in a protected anchorage (the more the better)

Early - the day before: If no mooring, you have no choice but to anchor. I will usually dive the bottom if there is time and see if there are any large rocks, crevices to take advantage off (wrap the chain around rocks a coulple of times, jam anchor into crevice by hand etc.).

Anchoring last and you will most likely be the most exposed and if the RTS goes over the top of you, the wind will do a 180 and then everyone else will be in front of you, and their anchors are likely to be breaking free, chains twisting and all that horror show.

For me - get in early and be actively abusive to anyone who comes within hailing distance. Establish the best position and defend it jelously.
__________________
bewitched is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 03:55   #6
CF Adviser
 
Pelagic's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Oct 2007
Boat: Van Helleman Schooner 65ft StarGazer
Posts: 6,895
I have exactly the same philosophy as you Dave, if there is a crowd.

For me, finding a deep hole to place the anchor with lots of swing room is more important than maximum protection with a crowd around you
__________________
Pelagic is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 05:26   #7
Registered User
 
s/v Moondancer's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Fiji but heading for Alaska
Boat: Tayana 55
Posts: 1,225
Is this all theory or has anyone anchored in a Cat II to III to VI? and survived...Big difference once the wind gets above 100 knots!
__________________
Phil

"Remember, experience only means that you screw-up less often."
s/v Moondancer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 05:46   #8
Ram
Registered User
 
Ram's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2005
Location: Cruising Greece
Boat: Cat in the med & Trawler in Florida
Posts: 2,298
Images: 27
One things for sure, if i could not out run the storm I would stay onboard-
__________________
Ram is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 06:03   #9
Sponsoring Vendor
 
Tellie's Avatar

Community Sponsor

Join Date: Oct 2007
Location: Hollywood, Fl.
Boat: FP Athena 38' Poerava
Posts: 3,046
Can't speak for other hurricane prone areas, but I lived in Florida all my life. Been through a few big blows. Always stayed away from the known holes. Way too crowded once all the marinas empty out. If you were to anchor in a known hole, trying to be the last one in would seem to be a dangerous game to play, at least here. Bewitced makes a point well worth noting "For me - get in early and be actively abusive to anyone who comes within hailing distance. Establish the best position and defend it jelously." Late arrivals will always be treated that way here in the known holes. Crowded known holes are only as secure as the weakest anchor dropped.
Tellie is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 06:03   #10
Registered User

Join Date: Oct 2009
Location: Out cruising
Boat: Bruckmann 50
Posts: 521
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ram View Post
One things for sure, if i could not out run the storm I would stay onboard-
I have often heard that but everything I have read from people who actually did it suggest they wouldn't do it again. One guy said when the wind was that strong there was actually nothing he could physically do if something happened so it was useless for him to be there. He said he tried to just stick his head out and couldn't see or move forward at all against the wind. He couldn't even stand at the wheel so he couldn't have even run the motor if he wanted to.
I have always thought being there early during the cleanup would be an advantage as you might salvage something that otherwise would be ruined but I am not sure the risk would make it worthwhile. Maybe a concrete building on a hill overlooking the bay.

Jim
__________________
jkleins is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 07:11   #11
Registered User
 
Bill_E's Avatar

Join Date: Aug 2008
Location: New Mexico and Puerto Rico
Boat: Sunbeam, 37, Ziamar
Posts: 300
We just got our boat (finally) to Puerto Rico after a lot of miles with the wind on the nose. There are several popular places to tie and anchor in the mangroves but none of them are really close to Fajardo (our present marina). Maxingout...where did you anchor? Does anyone have any ideas about anchoring vs. tying up in a mangrove swamp vs. securely tying to the pilings in a "protected" marina and then watching for the surge?

I wouldn't stay aboard but I'd like to be close enough to get there whenever the wind was below something like 80 kts.
__________________
Bill_E is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 09:05   #12
Registered User
 
s/v Moondancer's Avatar

Join Date: Nov 2008
Location: Fiji but heading for Alaska
Boat: Tayana 55
Posts: 1,225
Wlearl,

On the hard at Puerto Del Rey marina in Fajardo used to be a good location, they dig holes for the keel and have serious tie-downs but they turned away their old customers 2 yrs ago so that they could take the Moorings Fleet...not sure of present status there.

Culebra is a reasonable anchorage but alot of boat were damaged there a few years back. It is good holding but you would need three big anchors at 120 deg all off the bow and you can get ashore easily.

The mangroves on the south of Vieques are good if you can get in with your draft but getting off the boat to real safety would be difficult.

When I was in Fajardo 2 yrs ago I went to Nova Scotia for hurricane season and had to dodge a tropical storm and a hurricane up there...

Personally our boats have survived, without damage, 4 hurricanes including 2 Cat II's by being in the mangroves in Florida. This hurricane season we were in Trinidad and we are going to Cartagena next season...We would not stay in the northern Caribbean for hurricane season it is too much of a 'craps shoot'.

We view hurricane season as a reason to visit somewhere they don't have them very often; in two years time we plan to spend hurricane season in Scotland.
__________________
Phil

"Remember, experience only means that you screw-up less often."
s/v Moondancer is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 16:56   #13
Do… or do not
 
s/v Jedi's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: Feb 2009
Location: in paradise
Boat: Sundeer 64
Posts: 9,198
Quote:
Originally Posted by s/v Moondancer View Post
Is this all theory or has anyone anchored in a Cat II to III to VI? and survived...Big difference once the wind gets above 100 knots!
CAT IV-V, hurricane Ivan in Grenada in 2004. Jedi was at (single 176 lb Bruce) anchor and 90% of the damage was caused by another boat dragging into our anchor chain. The other 10% was minor like some cracked welds in the bimini frame.

The mangroves are the best option, probably 99% chance of survival without much damage... unless there are other boats around that smash you up.

We did well because we have a great big anchor and don't tend to shear behind it. We were not aboard because I would have been in the mangroves otherwise.

cheers,
Nick.
__________________
s/v Jedi is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 17:13   #14
Registered User

Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: Birsbane area
Boat: HitchHiker 42ft Sailing Cat
Posts: 23
Images: 1
Sounds like a great plan til it all turns to custard.
They actually have a Cyclone action plan for the harbour in Cairns Australia and everyone has a designated area they must take their boat and anchor. They go up into the mangroves (east/west channel preferred in our hemisphere) then they tie off across the creek so first in best dressed so to speak. the big drawback here is then you have to wait for the last person to move so you can get out. apparantly the wind doesn't get the lift in the mangrove area especially a narrow channel.

ciao

Karen
__________________
top_deck2 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 12-01-2010, 17:42   #15
Ram
Registered User
 
Ram's Avatar

Cruisers Forum Supporter

Join Date: May 2005
Location: Cruising Greece
Boat: Cat in the med & Trawler in Florida
Posts: 2,298
Images: 27
Quote:
Originally Posted by jkleins View Post
I have often heard that but everything I have read from people who actually did it suggest they wouldn't do it again. One guy said when the wind was that strong there was actually nothing he could physically do if something happened so it was useless for him to be there. He said he tried to just stick his head out and couldn't see or move forward at all against the wind. He couldn't even stand at the wheel so he couldn't have even run the motor if he wanted to.
I have always thought being there early during the cleanup would be an advantage as you might salvage something that otherwise would be ruined but I am not sure the risk would make it worthwhile. Maybe a concrete building on a hill overlooking the bay.

Jim
Jim Im also a south Florida native and have lived through just about every hurricane that has hit the area in the last 50+ years, -yes I would stay aboard run engines if needed and perhaps try and keep other boats from dragging into me with my limited mobility -the best thing is to leave the area if you can,next best is the mangroves or out of the water- but if I had to anchor id stay onboard, --away from others put all 4 anchors down and hope for the best/ I use swimmers goggles in heavy wind/rain- coated with rainx this works well so you can see whats going on-
__________________

__________________
Ram is offline   Reply With Quote
Reply

Tags
anchor

Thread Tools
Display Modes Rate This Thread
Rate This Thread:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Pre Tropical Storm Sail magic Mike General Sailing Forum 0 09-11-2009 15:30
my tropical storm hanna story scotty General Sailing Forum 26 08-09-2008 15:49
Tropical Storm Zeta... jemsea General Sailing Forum 0 31-12-2005 08:44
Tropical storm Gamma Wahoo Sails General Sailing Forum 1 19-11-2005 19:34
Tropical Storm watch online RPC General Sailing Forum 0 13-08-2004 08:12



Copyright 2002- Social Knowledge, LLC All Rights Reserved.

All times are GMT -7. The time now is 06:22.


Google+
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.
Social Knowledge Networks
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.

ShowCase vBulletin Plugins by Drive Thru Online, Inc.