I have never watched the weather as closely as I have begun to today. Five days from now, the Monomoy Pulling Boat's crew will attempt to cross Chesapeake Bay from Cape Henry to Cape Charles - a trip which relies heavily on the weather to cooperate. So, for the next several days as the last minute preparations are made and finalized, the only reporting I'll be doing is re-posting the weather and its expected impact on our crossing, both Northbound on Satuday and Southbound on Sunday.
This is still several days out, so accuracy cannot be expected until we get closer.
Partly Cloudy, 20-30% chance of rain
WINDS: Westerly at 6-10 knots
Assessment: GOOD. Fair sailing until we reach Fisherman's Island, when we'll need to beat off a dangerous lee shore, dotted with fish traps and guarded by Lattimer Shoals - a minimum depth of 3 feet, dangerous even for the Monomoy.
Plan: steer NxW and cross the bridge/tunnel as soon as possible. If possible, keep off the Eastern Shore far enough to reach downwind on the approach to Kiptopeke.
ETA Kiptopeke: 1300
Same as above
WINDS: North shifting Northeast 8-10 knots.
Assessment: EXCELLENT. Not only will we be able to stand out and away from Kiptopeke under sail, but we'll have freedom to choose where we cross the bridge tunnel without worrying about position on the other side. Expect a smooth crossing entirely under sail.
Plan: Use the tide to run down the North Channel toward the Atlantic, then turn due South and run downwind on a starboard reach to compensate for the cross current in Thimble Shoals Channel.
ETA First Landing: 1200
Not too shabby, but keep your fingers crossed.