Monday, July 5, 2010
Blog from Bel's perspective July 4
3rd July 2200hrs Bullers of Buchan.
The storm warnings of gale force winds means we have had to take shelter in a rocky bay.
Shockingly 35-knot winds are predicted over the next 24 hrs. Winds worse than anything we have seen so far and frankly winds that no one wants to try to handle out at sea.
We have five more hours before the storm is predicted to hit and I was hoping to get Go Commando to the River Ythan but I can't take the risk that we won't reach it.
We cannot be in open water when this hits. We've just had a crew meeting and agree that we won't make it in time because the winds have built early and our progress has slowed significantly so we've anchored up In a bay Bev and Laura spotted.
It’s so small it doesn't even appear on our scale maps. It’s also beautiful and ominous, surrounded by huge cliffs. But its shelter and were glad to have found it.
Once I'd checked with the compass that there's definitely southerly protection, we put the anchor down.
Phew, just getting round behind the cliffs in the building winds was a relief. Much calmer waters we've hunkered down now waiting for the storm.
Laura and Angela come off the blades and myself and Bev go on watch 00.00hrs Bev and I reset the anchor. Too close to rocks so moved over a bit.
This bay is incredibly dramatic with steep cliffs to the west and south. The noise of the waves and wind is drowned out by the zillions of nesting gulls, shags and guillemots
0700hrs July 4
Back on deck at 0400hrs to relieve Angela and Laura. Conditions worse by the end of our shift but not too bad.
1000hrs back on deck. Really wet and windy now. Pretty miserable weather to have to sit on deck in. Our trusty plough anchor is holding.
The weather worsens during our shift. Thank goodness we're not out at sea in this!!!!
By midday it’s awful, 35-knot winds on the other side of the cliffs, sea state even inside the bay is bumpy - see video.
Huge waves crash on rocks in middle of bay, sending spray 12ft in the air and scattering the gulls
1500hrs I'm woken up by the boat being battered by waves. It feels like the boat is being picked up by a big hand and shaken. Everyone on deck ok.
The waves and wind must be bending around the cliffs and into the bay.
Second part of blog coming after my next shift