DryArmour

TransPac 2019 Wx

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With one month and six days to go before the first start of the 50th TransPac, the waters in the Central Pacific are already above seasonal norms. A generally static and clear cloud pattern should allow additional warming as we move toward race day. This does not necessarily mean there will be above normal activity but the ACE values will make the "brew" available to disturbances that do spin up. I will try and post weekly updates here as we close in on Race Day.

The images below are the SST anomalies. The top image will change daily, the image at the bottom is the baseline starting today.
pac_anom.gif

 

pac_anom June 3 2019.gif

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What is it you look for as a router? The deviding line between above and below or right down the "ridge" of above normal?

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14 minutes ago, Latadjust said:

What is it you look for as a router? The deviding line between above and below or right down the "ridge" of above normal?

It really depends on the condition of the cyclone. In the early and late stages the surface flow plays a bigger role in steering.  Once the system has become a full fledged hurricane then upper level flow is more important to steering. If the hurricane progresses into the Cat4-5 range then throw the models out and pay attention as all bets are off.  The Central Pacific has seen a number annular hurricanes the past several years and these too are different in that shear plays less of a role in degradation of the structure and intensity.

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16 minutes ago, Hitchhiker said:

The lack of shear which normally protects the Hawaiian Islands (Okay, Pele really) is somewhat reduced this year. As the article points out, this is typical in an El Nino year.

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I hope to make my first trip this year if the boat gets repaired in time. Keep the forecasts coming, I am trying to learn all I can soak up.

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On 6/3/2019 at 5:57 PM, hhn92 said:

I hope to make my first trip this year if the boat gets repaired in time. Keep the forecasts coming, I am trying to learn all I can soak up.

What boat are you planning to sail on this year?

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4 hours ago, DryArmour said:

What boat are you planning to sail on this year?

Katara, J145 from Davis Island.

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3 hours ago, DryArmour said:

Water temps over much of the islands are now above the 80'F (26.5C) magical threshold. That is between 1.5 and 2 degrees above normal.  Moderate to heavy rains are spreading over southern Oahu this morning. The BREW is strong.  https://radar.weather.gov/ridge/Conus/hawaii_loop.php

I have been watching some of the NOAA wind maps over the last few days and plan to follow them right up until I leave. I saw this pattern also on Google Earth with the weather turned-on.

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Day 22 of the EPAC tropical season and still not much happening. Updates as something develops..

 

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You figure your optimal "slot" (slot car racing) then favor the south, cause if you're going to miss, miss to the south, yes?

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13 hours ago, Latadjust said:

You figure your optimal "slot" (slot car racing) then favor the south, cause if you're going to miss, miss to the south, yes?

This is part one of four.  Highly recommend watching all four. 

 

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6 hours ago, Hitchhiker said:

This is part one of four.  Highly recommend watching all four. 

 

Been wearing this series out.

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Thanks for this

16 hours ago, Hitchhiker said:

This is part one of four.  Highly recommend watching all four. 

 

 

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TransPac Tropical Update- There was a whole bunch of nothing for the first month of the 2019 Tropical Season. Then last night, things started to get more interesting at the very far edge of the forecast envelope. More later as we get closer to the first week of July.

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There's a pretty interesting low system in the NW Pacific zone, looks pretty deep with a front wrapped into it, never seen that before.

 

 

NW Pacific 06.11.19.jpg

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On 6/8/2019 at 1:13 PM, Hitchhiker said:

This is part one of four.  Highly recommend watching all four. 

 

I am familiar with the  strategy based on high and low pressure systems but what I'm asking is how does sst affect that strategy?

 

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4 hours ago, ~HHN92~ said:

There's a pretty interesting low system in the NW Pacific zone, looks pretty deep with a front wrapped into it, never seen that before.

 

 

NW Pacific 06.11.19.jpg

 

There is a reason why you have not seen the likes before.  TransPac 2019; Its Going To Blow Dog’s Off Chains!

 

The last TransPac where one could say it was consistently windy was 1977.  So after over four decades of light to medium breeze, Actuarial Science would dictate that the 2019 TransPac is really going to blow. 

 

Gird your loins ladies and gentleman, because almost everyone in the race is going to have to quickly adapted to heavy weather downwind sailing for days on end (think Roaring 40’s, Macquarie Island to nearly Cape Horn).

 

Disagree.  Please recall the last blow in 1977; nice westerly at the start, which held around the West End and strengthened as you got west of the Island.  That first Saturday night, boats were overpowered with double reefed mains and blast reachers.  In the coming days, as the wind clocked, it did not abate to a nice trade wind.   The 2nd Saturday night, from 11:00 to 13:00, five boats were dismasted (a steady 25+ knots with gusts in the low 30’s and swell trains from three directions linked up periodically, kicking sterns around…, and over she goes).  Boats took their kites down and rung headsails out on spinnaker poles and sailed that way for a day or two.  If you have memory of a windier TransPac since 1977, there may have been periods of big breeze, but could you really call it consistently windy most of the way. 

 

Many will say they want a big blow, but they should be careful what they wish for.  The Mod 70’s will do what Mod 70’s do in anything over 20 knots (slow up or blow up).  Chubasco is going to quickly bring strong men to tears when the wind comes aft of the beam, clearly demonstrating why rudders attached to the back of keels went out of style.  The schooner America is going to love having that bone in her teeth, unless she meets Goodwill’s fate of almost dropping a top mast through the bottom of the boat.  The Shock 40, well, enough said.  But worst of all, the daily roll call won’t conclude with the charming stylings of “Tokyo Rosy”, encouraging all yachtsmen to “turn back, turn back”.  This year she will be saying; “don’t go, don’t go”…, from the dock.

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1 hour ago, Latadjust said:

I am familiar with the  strategy based on high and low pressure systems but what I'm asking is how does sst affect that strategy?

 

Edit.  IIRC someone poses that question in Episode four.  

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2 hours ago, timmytwinstay said:

 

There is a reason why you have not seen the likes before.  TransPac 2019; Its Going To Blow Dog’s Off Chains!

 

The last TransPac where one could say it was consistently windy was 1977.  So after over four decades of light to medium breeze, Actuarial Science would dictate that the 2019 TransPac is really going to blow. 

 

Gird your loins ladies and gentleman, because almost everyone in the race is going to have to quickly adapted to heavy weather downwind sailing for days on end (think Roaring 40’s, Macquarie Island to nearly Cape Horn).

 

Disagree.  Please recall the last blow in 1977; nice westerly at the start, which held around the West End and strengthened as you got west of the Island.  That first Saturday night, boats were overpowered with double reefed mains and blast reachers.  In the coming days, as the wind clocked, it did not abate to a nice trade wind.   The 2nd Saturday night, from 11:00 to 13:00, five boats were dismasted (a steady 25+ knots with gusts in the low 30’s and swell trains from three directions linked up periodically, kicking sterns around…, and over she goes).  Boats took their kites down and rung headsails out on spinnaker poles and sailed that way for a day or two.  If you have memory of a windier TransPac since 1977, there may have been periods of big breeze, but could you really call it consistently windy most of the way. 

Many will say they want a big blow, but they should be careful what they wish for.  The Mod 70’s will do what Mod 70’s do in anything over 20 knots (slow up or blow up).  Chubasco is going to quickly bring strong men to tears when the wind comes aft of the beam, clearly demonstrating why rudders attached to the back of keels went out of style.  The schooner America is going to love having that bone in her teeth, unless she meets Goodwill’s fate of almost dropping a top mast through the bottom of the boat.  The Shock 40, well, enough said.  But worst of all, the daily roll call won’t conclude with the charming stylings of “Tokyo Rosy”, encouraging all yachtsmen to “turn back, turn back”.  This year she will be saying; “don’t go, don’t go”…, from the dock.

Lovely write up.  

I don't necessarily disagree with your forecast, as members of the team I'm with, will attest. But, I'm keeping my opinions to myself.

However, to your point in bold. 1997 (I was on the Andrews 56 Med Man) may not have been windier in terms of absolute velocity, but it was consistently windier over the whole course than 1977.

For example in 1977 the average windspeed over the course was 16.85 knots based on 0 hour Grib data.

in 1997 the average windspeed over the course was 17.23 knots based on 0 hour Grib data.

However, the average windspeed over the course taken from my log book  was 20.7 knots. And, of course, it goes without saying that 1997 was the first year that Merlin's record fell.

With regard to ~HHN92~ 2016 Pac Cup had a lot of SST driven cyclonic activity.

Edit for the edit:  Sorry I mis-read your post.  I'm talking with regard to the activity in the lower right of the image you posted. 

That race included a finish that required playing chicken with Tropical Darby.  Quite a few boats had to take evasive action to not finish when the storm hit Oahu.

The average windspeed across the course in that race was 21.6 knots.  A large part of the fleet got hit by a monster squall on night 5 with W/S in the mid to high 30's, even 40.  That one took out our A4. We posted several days of 200 + miles and finished the course in 9 days 22 hours 11 minutes on an Express 37.

I spent the early part of this year completing a study correlating significant weather events in California to windy and non-windy Transpac races and Pac Cup races.  Pretty interesting really.  But. it could also be complete bullshit!

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9 hours ago, ~HHN92~ said:

There's a pretty interesting low system in the NW Pacific zone, looks pretty deep with a front wrapped into it, never seen that before.

 

 

NW Pacific 06.11.19.jpg

Ok. So sign me up for epic fail Tuesday.  The above image does not show any thing that could be considered the pre-cursor of cyclonic activity, because.............. it's too far fucking north!  

The below images could indicate the start of something interesting.

Screen Shot 2019-06-11 at 6.49.49 PM.png

Screen Shot 2019-06-11 at 6.50.33 PM.png

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Thank you for all of the replies. What a fantastic group of sailors with literally decades of experience to share.  Much appreciated.

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Well all I know is we've paid our dues with slow races this year. Cabo was super slow. Ensenada was slow. Even the So Cal 300 was not a barn burner. So, yeah I think the probability favors a faster Transpac. But, then again the weather does pay much attention to random chance.

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Just in time. NOAA upgrades the GFS model

https://www.noaa.gov/media-release/noaa-upgrades-us-global-weather-forecast-model?fbclid=IwAR2edZnNH8hBh3x7v1KBxKj5QGR9_DcjHVDc35owmfcEylFbOkLX8XEOWbk

June 12, 2019 NOAA’s flagship weather model — the Global Forecast System (GFS) — is undergoing a significant upgrade today to include a new dynamical core called the Finite-Volume Cubed-Sphere (FV3). This upgrade will drive global numerical weather prediction into the future with improved forecasts of severe weather, winter storms, and tropical cyclone intensity and track. NOAA is committed to getting forecasts accurate at least 50% of the time.

Ok, I made up that last line.

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3 hours ago, Zonker said:

Just in time. NOAA upgrades the GFS model

https://www.noaa.gov/media-release/noaa-upgrades-us-global-weather-forecast-model?fbclid=IwAR2edZnNH8hBh3x7v1KBxKj5QGR9_DcjHVDc35owmfcEylFbOkLX8XEOWbk

June 12, 2019 NOAA’s flagship weather model — the Global Forecast System (GFS) — is undergoing a significant upgrade today to include a new dynamical core called the Finite-Volume Cubed-Sphere (FV3). This upgrade will drive global numerical weather prediction into the future with improved forecasts of severe weather, winter storms, and tropical cyclone intensity and track. NOAA is committed to getting forecasts accurate at least 50% of the time.

Ok, I made up that last line.

Now that is funny right there.  Looking WAYYY out on the edge of the forecast envelope:  ALL QUIET ON THE WESTERN FRONT.  Cold pools off Cabo and much of the west coast. Things usually start to get peppy the first week of July (Like 5-6-7).

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On 6/12/2019 at 7:40 AM, Tom O'Keefe said:

Well all I know is we've paid our dues with slow races this year. Cabo was super slow. Ensenada was slow. Even the So Cal 300 was not a barn burner. So, yeah I think the probability favors a faster Transpac. But, then again the weather does pay much attention to random chance.

The odds are 50:50, but there’s only a 40% chance of that!

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Right on schedule. The impulses should begin around July 5 (At least from what I am seeing). Could be a taste earlier.

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The south looked pretty soft over the last week if I am reading the NOAA charts correctly, almost made the northern route look good. The lows finally headed off to Alaska/Canada and it looked pretty wide open today with 30's offshore of Cali.

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2 hours ago, hhn92 said:

The south looked pretty soft over the last week if I am reading the NOAA charts correctly, almost made the northern route look good. The lows finally headed off to Alaska/Canada and it looked pretty wide open today with 30's offshore of Cali.

Be patient JEDI.  The impulses will come. The question is how close do you dare sail.

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Very little cloud cover over the Eastern and Central Pacific continues to add energy to the brew...There is plenty of gas. All there needs to be is a spark in the right place.Second week of July...

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1 hour ago, Zonker said:

A bit early, but just a TD

 

two_pac_2d0.png

GFS doesn't know what to do with that. It's also on again, off again with a TS/H1 behind it forming around the 6th. Kinda a fitful start but lots of powder awaiting the right spark.

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13 hours ago, weightless said:

GFS doesn't know what to do with that. It's also on again, off again with a TS/H1 behind it forming around the 6th. Kinda a fitful start but lots of powder awaiting the right spark.

Yup, mixed messages from the atmosphere and available ACE.

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ITCZ very hot and active it looks like, the islands are caught in a prolonged kona system.

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20 hours ago, Bruno said:

ITCZ very hot and active it looks like, the islands are caught in a prolonged kona system.

Yes, at least for the next 3-4 days. Very odd for this time of year.

The parade of tropical systems is about to begin. Alvin turns right early and sputters out so I am not counting him. The next system starts to gain latitude but then gets bent back to the west. It is likely to be an "exciting season". Pay close attention racing teams.  I already have a system in the forecast that will cross the TransPac course around July 12. Please note that this is well beyond the reliable forecast horizon but it is worth a mention.

All of the Hawaiian Islands are now surrounded by 27'C temp waters. Well above normal.

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On 6/25/2019 at 9:13 AM, Zonker said:

A bit early, but just a TD

 

two_pac_2d0.png

Somewhere, on one of the boats in the race, a Dave will be screaming Alvin!

Hopefully, this will not have too much of a negative influence on the race, either inducing too much or too little pressure.

- Stumbling

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The racetrack does not look too bad today, obviously way too early to count on. The extended Kona wind sure is odd at this time.

 

TP Racecourse 06.27.19.jpg

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It makes the channels a crap shoot not a sleighride, had a Kauai Race a couple years ago where it was just completely west favored, nothing elsewhere.

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This kinda shape has been trending on the long range GFS for a few runs. It's a long, long, long way out but particularly in this environment I think it's worth keeping an eye on. 20190711gfs.thumb.png.ac0537dbd695493f559e715b01cf130e.png

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The long range forecasts are terribly suspect (Yes, even the new and improved GFS) but the Pacific is getting a strong start on the tropical season if they are even close to correct.

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5 hours ago, weightless said:

Here's a "better" graphic from tropicalTidbits.com (an excellent source of graphics and interpretations):

gfs_mslp_wind_cpac_47.png

i missed levi's soothing voice, it'll be nice to have him back.

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12 hours ago, bigrpowr said:

i missed levi's soothing voice, it'll be nice to have him back.

The latest runs look a lot different. The low opens up and is swept through the islands as a disturbance as opposed to a Tropical storm/Hurricane.

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Certainly much too early to expect the model to be anything more than suggestive. 

The ensemble spread tends N towards a break in the 500mb ridge. Shear is supposed to be moderate to strong near the islands. The more southerly / faster tracks probably go with a weaker system with lower level steering. Or something... Mostly just wait and see, I think.

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38 minutes ago, Bruno said:

High finally reestablished but the ITCZ looks hot and active.

Not sure how reliable the high is going to be:

gfs_mslp_wind_namer_39.png

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The series of tropical systems from the south flatten out the gradient on and off from the 9th through the 13th and probably beyond. Departure timing will be key (As if you have a choice).

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Hurricane Barbara is tightly wound and likely to rapidly intensify over the next 24-30 hours, 

Hurricane Barbara July 2, 2019 0600PDT.jpg

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1 hour ago, DryArmour said:

Barbara is now a category 4 hurricane....

impressive and getting impressiver (tm).

I gather the official working theory is that Barbara will suffer when it gets into slightly cooler water and if the predicted wind shear fills in.

Predicted wind shear at tau 96 (Barbara is the 998 L):

gfs_shear_cpac_17.png

SSTs:

cdas-sflux_sst_cpac_1.png

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Sorry for a brief hijack - I have used the Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecasts for many years using this url: https://pzal.ndbc.noaa.gov/collab/jtwc/

Recently it has been timing out or giving a variety of error messages.  Does anyone know how to access their forecasts? 

I think their forecasts are the best for Pacific storms, I especially liked the Prognostic Reasoning saying what the different models were predicting and why they were favouring some over others.

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25 minutes ago, Tunnel Rat said:

Sorry for a brief hijack - I have used the Joint Typhoon Warning Center forecasts for many years using this url: https://pzal.ndbc.noaa.gov/collab/jtwc/

Recently it has been timing out or giving a variety of error messages.  Does anyone know how to access their forecasts? 

I think their forecasts are the best for Pacific storms, I especially liked the Prognostic Reasoning saying what the different models were predicting and why they were favouring some over others.

My link is https://www.metoc.navy.mil/jtwc/jtwc.html

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1 minute ago, Tunnel Rat said:

Thanks for that, but it will not let me open it.  I've tried using IE, Edge and Chrome.  Can you open it, and if so what browser are you using?  

MacOS and iPad: Safari

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7 minutes ago, El Boracho said:

MacOS and iPad: Safari

Hmmmm - yes, that works - the only browser available to me that I did not try.  Thanks for that.

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6 hours ago, El Boracho said:

 

6 hours ago, Tunnel Rat said:

Thanks for that, but it will not let me open it.  I've tried using IE, Edge and Chrome.  Can you open it, and if so what browser are you using?  

 

6 hours ago, El Boracho said:

MacOS and iPad: Safari

BTW, opens alright on my Android tablet, both in Chrome and Firefox.

 

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Is there a race tracking link ?

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1 hour ago, BravoBravo said:

Is there a race tracking link ?

There will be once the race starts.

Most likely Yellowbrick.

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alright mark, we know you cant spill all the beans, with your routing profession and all, but what are the three start days looking like?

oh, and any exciting weather potentials as they cross.

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From my seat. Wednesday looks to be the slowest.  Friday next and Saturday the fastest.  

There is still a lot of weather to  account for.  Could well be a lighter section toward the middle which, right now is at the end of the reliable data range.

Nothing big on the radar from south until maybe the 18th and it looks to be well east of the fleet.

For fun only and all subject to change:

Wed start. Average WS across the course: 13.49 knots.

Fri start. Average WS across the course: 14.65 knots.

Sat start. Average WS across the course: 15.56 knots.

Btw, Did some one invite Eddy to the party Saturday morning?  Asking for a friend.

 

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Start windows closed up a bit this morning, with Friday taking the lead by 7 hours and change. Good luck to today's starters!

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Conditions are breezy at the start but less so offshore until they hit the 320 breeze line.

TransPac race start 1 July 10 2019.jpg

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2 hours ago, DryArmour said:

Conditions are breezy at the start but less so offshore until they hit the 320 breeze line.

TransPac race start 1 July 10 2019.jpg

So much for it blowing dogs off chains this year.  Is the "320 breeze line", the line between Concepcion and Todos Santos.

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It is looking like Wednesday was not a bad day to start. Most of the teams made it out into the NW flow with even the Hobie 33s making 8.6 knots in the early morning hours.

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Just in time for Roy and John's arrival in the outer coastal waters...A GALE WARNING IS IN EFFECT FROM Monday at 3PM....20-30 knots G 35. Ugg.  Can we get these guys a break?

 

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