Saturday, August 27, 2011


Spent most of yesterday on board. It was a beautiful cloudless windless day. A fine summer day in August.  It would be hard to predict what was coming from these conditions. It was a tad humid and hot and as a result I took a few swims in between prepping the boat for the arrival of Hurricane Irene. I got a email from Bob who writes the BOAT BITS blog and who recently had some sundowners on board his boat while the eye of the same Irene passed over St. Criox a few days ago. He mentioned that Jeff Masters at Weather Underground said the eye wall of Irene was weakening. Meaning that the storm was not strengthening. That good news was tempered with my talk with the guys at the boatyard who said that during Hurricane Gloria the last storm to directly hit the Isle of Long there were 100 boats on the beach. I'm trying to make sure that BIANKA is not going to be one of them after this storm.
There were a number of owners out preparing their boats but, not everyone. Some were just wrapping their sails up.  While others like myself and those on the moorings around me where taking them off completely.

Funny how an approaching storm can get one to focus on those little projects that one has not gotten to on board. Like replacing the temporary cable tie that was holding up one of the solar bimini frames.

I had the eye strap on board for over a week and did not get around to installing it. Irene got me focused on making sure it was installed. Cable ties are useful things on a boat. But, trusting them to hold up in Hurricane conditions is asking too much from them.

I also secured some of the wiring for the solar panels that was on my to do list too.
While on board I decided to do add some additional attachment to the mooring beyond the primary and secondary mooring line.  I was worried about my Bruce anchor which hangs over the bowsprit  could catch on an errant boats life lines or pushpit and could drag BIANKA along with it or cause a lot of damage. So I removed the anchor and stowed it below. I then used the anchor chain to act as a the "all hell breaks loose" third pennant to the mooring chain. I shackled it to a different link than the line pennants with a shackle and a swivel. It's always good to have a number of shackles of various sizes on board.

They may cost a few sheckles but, in situations like this they are priceless!  I'm also glad I took the time last year during Hurricane Earl to use some Tef Gel on the shackle threads. This made them able to unscrew easily when I needed them. I also wrapped and secured the chain around the mast. This made sure that the Sampson Post was not the only point on the bow recieving the stress from the storm pull. I feel with the anchor chain now secured to the mooring system BIANKA my drag onto the beach but, it will be taking it's mooring with it. I added some anti chaffing to the existing lines and adjusted the anti sail bow drogue I used last year while riding out Hurricane Earl in three Mile Harbor. I stayed on board until about 10:30 pm exhausted and tired having done everything I could think of to make sure BIANKA would still be floating come Monday. Now I only have to watch and wait for the storm to arrive.


Steve said...

Was she still there?

Capt. Mike said...

Though I've not seen it for myself. A fellow walked a few miles to get to the area and confirmed BIANKA and the other boats in that portion of the mooring field were still there.