This weekend we had our first hurricane that came up to the coast of Gloucester, hurricane Lee. In the end, it turned out to be just a storm with strong winds and surf, we probably really didn’t need to do anything, but since hurricanes are very unpredictable, and can turn at a moment's notice it is better to take precautions.
Earlier this week we made arrangements with the Harbormaster to have an inner harbor mooring for the weekend. Not only is the inner harbor protected, but we can also see our sailboat from our window.
Part of hunkering a sailboat down for a hurricane is to remove all the canvas. Meaning Birch took the dodger and bimini down and stored it away. We didn’t want to have anything become a sail and cause damage to our boat or the boats around us. The head sail or genoa sail was also re-furled and a few wraps of the sheet were wrapped around to keep it tight and snug. Lastly, we made sure that our little dinghy/tender (Agave) was also at the dinghy dock and not tied up to the boat so as not to cause something to break free.
When we grabbed our mooring, the city moorings only had one pennant, but for the hurricane, the harbormaster and those on moorings were adding a second pennant, and even a hurricane line (a third line from your boat to the mooring in case both pennants break).
This seems like so much to do to protect your boat, but we love spending time on our boat and sharing our boat with all of you. Who knows what would have happened if we hadn’t done anything, maybe she would be okay, but why take the risk when we don’t have to?
One nice thing that came of this, is the sail boating community here in Gloucester both those who are residents of Gloucester and those who are visiting all got together to help one another. We saw an anchor chain being given to a young couple who just purchased a sailboat who came to Gloucester to take shelter from the hurricane, so their 2nd anchor would have more strength. We saw visitors come by to say hi to everyone and help check that their gear was going to hold their boat for the storm. And best of all we saw many smiles on everyone's faces, knowing we were all there for each other.