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Gales

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Well today's plan, and tomorrow's, was to go for a little sail on Matchmaker, down the Medway from Hoo Marina to moor at Queenborough, supper at a pub, then home in the morning after a sail out on the Thames.

Sadly it didn't work out that way. I woke up to hear the general forecast on Five Live talking about a gale blowing up the Irish Sea tomorrow. I didn't like the sound of that so I got up and went to look at the Met Office Inshore Waters forecast. For the area we were going sailing in the forecast for Sunday was:

Wind: South veering southwest 5 to 7, occasionally gale 8 in north later.
Sea state: Moderate, occasionally rough.
Weather: Rain at first.
Visibility: Moderate or poor becoming good.

That's not good at all: we really don't want to be out in anything over a force 5, 3-4 occasionally 5 will do us nicely and for sea state we really want "smooth", "slight" or "slight to moderate". Moderate is 1.25m to 2.5m wave height (that's peak to peak) and with a boat on 24ft long 2.5m is quite big waves.

So tomorrow's forecast was very windy, with sea state occasionally "rough", that's 2.5m to 4m (i.e. half the length of the boat!). We're not playing in that.

The whole of the UK on the Met Office web site is currently showing red which means they're predicting force 6 or greater over the next 48 hours1. Jenny was heading back to Serenity today but she's now delayed until Tuesday as a result.

Anyway we had a nice Wrestlers for lunch and excellent bacon and scrambled egg on soda bread for supper so despite this all's right with the world at the moment.

  1. The worst is Wales where they're predicting a wind of "southerly 5 or 6 veering southwesterly gale 8 or severe gale 9, veering west later" and a sea state of "slight or moderate becoming rough or very rough". "Very rough" is 4m to 6m wave heights!

Tags: sailing Written 21/06/08

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