Monday, November 14, 2011

Doubled lines: Good.

Last week we got the last of our secondary dock lines installed, and we had already added our "winter" fenders, all to be ready for the winter storms.

And as it turns out, not a moment too soon.

As I write this, Seattle is being lashed by one of the spiralling tails of the winter hurricane that just finished with Nome, Alaska.

Hurricane?  Alaska?  I can hear you folks in the Caribbean and Mexico muttering, "Popycock!"  And other words, perhaps with fewer letters.

But consider this:  The central low is/was at 943 hPa, similar to a category three hurricane, according to Cliff Mass, one of our weather prognosticators here in Seattle.  And the winds were sustained at 60-70 kt, with gusts recorded at 85 kt.  This wind produced significant wave heights of nearly 40 feet.

Thankfully, here in Seattle we have not seen that kind of wind.  But it hasn't been exactly calm here either.  Here's the NOAA chart for West Point, just south of the Shilshole Bay marina:

I note that with this storm (unlike nearly all others) we had the most severe winds as the barometer was falling.  Usually, we experience the strongest winds as the barometer is rising, which to me is counter-intuitive.  Perhaps someone with innate weather knowledge can explain that to me.

And they are predicting the possibility of snow at sea level by the end of the week.

I am glad we are all snugged in for the winter.
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1 comment:

Rado said...

I don't have a special meteorological insight, but common sense combined with Math suggest that you can have a simultaneous rise in wind and pressure, if the pressure gradient also increases. That would be the case if say, pressure at Alki Point was rising faster than at West Point into the afternoon on the 12th - or falling faster further north. Unfortunately, I can't find pressure data to corroborate that - maybe airport observations history? Actually, you can see from the graph that  the pressure sort of levels off and then plunges as the wind really piped up. The Kingston ferries were actually consistently recording 40+ kts into Saturday evening, so that was an solid opening night performance for this winter's storm season.

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