We did ride out our FIRST FLORIDA COLD FRONT last night which arrived at the usual o’dark hundred, or 3am to 5am Sunday morning December 16, 2007. This front was well forecasted and we know that it was bringing 30 knots of wind from the Southwest, then the West, then Northwest, so we were ready. Ready was, we had out 100 feet of 5/16” chain and a 44 Lb Bruce anchor set well in 10 feet of low tide and 14 feet of high tide. When the 5 feet from water to bow roller is added to these depths, we had a scope at low tide of 100’/15= 6.6 to 1 and at high tide we had 100’/19’=5.2 to 1. Needless to say, we did not move or drag when the winds peaked at 30 knots. What is odd was the way the 2+knots of current effects how the boat swings on anchor. It seems that with an Island Packet’s full keel underbody, the tide has more effect than the winds. So the boat will tend to point bow into the current and then the second effect is the wind, which will push the boat’s stern downwind a little bit. So this means that the boat may not be facing into the wind, it may be off at an angle. The other odd effect is that the bow may be facing into the current yet the anchor is behind or near abeam of the boat as the wind drives the boat downwind. This was the case last night and we found it rather interesting to study. At 3 am we used our Verizon Broadband network to see the Jacksonville live radar and tornado warning areas! Yes, we had tornado warnings for our area for about 2 hours! That was not fun, but lucky for us, they passed north of us and we only had heavy rain and high winds.
Today with the front passage came clear skies and a brisk north wind and a high of 65 degrees. We were getting spoiled by the 85 degrees and 65 degree nights where were above normal. We took the dinghy to town to meet up with IP owners, Debbie and Craig Roser, IP440 Charmed, and had wonderful Cuban sandwiches and coffees at Columbia on St. George and Hypolita streets in old town St. Augustine. It was great to catch up with our good friends and visit over lunch. Tomorrow we head out at o’daybreak hundred to go 50 miles south on the ICW bound for Daytona, Fl.
Sunset St. Augustine, Fl w/old sailboat (a work in progress)