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Old 29-03-2003, 19:46   #1
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Join Date: Mar 2003
Location: Thunder Bay, Ontario - 48-29N x 89-20W
Boat: (Cruiser Living On Dirt)
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Do it NOW

Someone has to get this ball rolling - so I'll be the first "fool".

The "Storm of the Century" (March '93) caught "Southbound" anchored in Governor's Harbour, Eleuthera (Bahamas).

Friday night, we learned of a weather system in the Gulf of Mexico that was expecterd to deliver some weather our way, by sometime Saturday.

We were scheduled to exchange our present guests for a new couple on Sunday morning.

Although we new Governor's Harbour to have very thin holding, and no protection from anything but North - we decided to stay over Friday night, and see what the morning brought. We hoped to ride out what ever came our way, and effect a convenient passenger transfer on Sunday morning.

Friday night was a little "bumpy" (but not too bad), but started picking up by 8:00 AM Saturday. We could (now) see that our anchorage would become untennable.

I dinghy'd our female guest (Linda) and all their luggage ashore, and left them at the nearby police station. Her husband (Gordon) was still aboard "Southbound".

Upon returning to the boat, I found both anchors dragging (no surprize - the bottom is about 6" sand over rock).

Unable to re-set an anchor, we decided to escape the harbour for a (reletively) nearby safe anchorage. We'd get Gordon ashore & reunited with Linda "somehow" later.

By this time, we were facing 60 knot head-winds and 10' seas (within the harbour).

To make a long story short - we didn't make it out (that day), blowing out our head-sail, and seizing our engine.

We abandoned ship, and safely made shore.

Thru' the heroic assistance of Captain Fou, and others, I was able to reboard "Southbound" and get her towed to a mooring, where she weathered the storm without further misshap. Over the next week, we effected the neccesary repairs, and eventually returned to Ft. Lauderdale for the summer.

(Some of the) LESSONS LEARNED:
1. Pay attention & act EARLY. Do it NOW (whatever it is you think should soon be done).
2. Prudence "trumps" convenience, EVERY TIME.
3. Don't go where you know you shouldn't .

Learned some mechanical lessons that I'll (eventually) post to "Equip. Failures"

Gord May
"If you didn't have the time or money to do it right in the first place, when will you get the time/$ to fix it?"

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