Summer 2015 – Day 43 – Tuna Fishing Trip Cut Short

Headed out this morning to do an overnight tuna fishing trip.  Was flat when we got out of Ilwaco Channel. No sooner got all sails raised and we were bashing through big short chop hard on the wind. Worst bar crossing ever. It was just hanging on until we got across the bar as we were heeled over too far for Dan to go up on the foredeck to take down the yankee and reef the main.  Thought it would settle down after we got out to deep water, but no, just more of the same. Dan did manage to get the yankee down and the main reefed, but not without a fall backwards catching himself on the lower shrouds (and bashing his arm). We sailed out about 10 miles, heaved to and waited for the afternoon forecast and the tide to turn. Prediction was more of the same so we decided to turn around and get the bar crossing before dark. By the time we crossed the bar conditions had settled a bit, so was a pretty decent sail back in.   I was pretty sure when we were out there, and confirmed on our return with NWS that the seas were Very Steep. Not as big as we had sailing back from Neah Bay, but really short period. With the bigger seas and longer period on the Neah Bay trip we surfed(and it was downwind). Today it was abruptly falling off each crest into the trough, and immediately getting the next crest. Gusting 25-35 at the buoys and WA coastal locations. Destruction Island had steady 30 with gusts to upper 30s all afternoon (that’s damn near a gale). We certainly had gusts to 30 with steady 20-25. They forecast 10-15 with possible gusts to 20. Same with the bar conditions at 2pm – all areas 1-3 – did they mean meters instead of feet? That’s what we had going out- the 1-3 meters.

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