Friday, September 28, 2007

Blown Forecast

I was all set to go for a solo sail yesterday. I checked the NOAA forecast on (great one stop resource for bay area sailors) and the forecast had gone from 10-20 to 5-10 kts for the day. Bummer. Maybe I won't go. Went for my daily run in the hills by the bay and there was some pressure coming from the NW. It felt like your normal morning build to a 15-25 kt day. Got home and there was an email from the local TV station saying the fog was back and to expect a cool down. Now how could it be foggy at the coast and only 5-10?? Did some work and kept looking at the real time updates and by 11am it was up to 17 kts. I look again at the NOAA forecast and now it too has been updated saying 15-25. I am going sailing! I get up to Emeryville at 1:30 and it is howling with whitecaps all over. I double reef the new mainsail and head out. Once out of the channel, I set the sails and I am off in winds of 25-30. 5-10 my arse! The fog is flooding the bay and the waves are big. I have just a sliver of the jib unfurled and I am doing 6-7 on a reach. It's almost too much wind! I head for the Bay Bridge to get a little bit of a break using the wind shadow off of TI. It mellows out a little but as soon as I peek out the other side it's blasting again. I tack and get sucked under the bridge with a nice ebb tide flowing. I take a nice reach up the side of TI and it is really strong with winds over 35 and very large waves. The Addiction is loving it and so am I. The city is shrouded in fog and the BofA building is mostly covered. I am out on one of the windiest days of the summer! I have been out for about 3.5 hours and decide I have had plenty and head in. As I am surfing in, the speedo hits 8.5. Not too shabby! For a day when I was not going to go out, this was an amazing afternoon! Check out the windspeed chart from windandtides below and you will see the gusts were approaching 40!!!

1 comment:

Mark said...

I've got a couple of reliable sources for you. I am glued to these all day and get sms updates on phone if it gets over 20kts.

One is sailflow dot com
(i don't work for them and don't want to push them, but check out the my sailflow page, which you can get via free signup)

The other thing I do is track this NOAA buoy data showing pressure vs. wind at 46026
It's 18NM west of SF, and it's fun to watch pressure affect wind, and then compare to what's happening at Pt. Blunt or wherever you are to see what's happening inshore.

I can guarantee you that while I was checking yesterday at Sailfl it was 32 kts with gusts to 35 or so, and it was realtime. No surprises there, it's usually accurate.

Enjoy, and let me know if there's more stuff. I have a ton of good links on diigo which we could share if you like.