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Sketchy Yaquina Bar Rescue?


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From the sketchy details, it appears that the CG decided that the least risky way to assist this crew to enter Yaquina Bay was to have them jump into  cold water and swim to the MLB and then tow their ketch into port.  Things seem to have gone all right.  

5da9472ad6b9f.image.jpg?resize=1280,720

https://www.oregonlive.com/pacific-northwest-news/2019/10/5-rescued-from-disabled-sailboat-off-oregon-coast-video.html

It's my understanding that all the bars are considered "closed" this week and the best thing to do is to lay off shore and wait out the weather.  Which, would probably mean about a week of bobbing around out there off the lee shore while a couple of pretty nasty lows move through.  Who's up for that?  Stories I've seen haven't mentioned where the sailboat was coming from or why they were out there in these conditions.  

This exact scenario is the single biggest reason that I bought a sea anchor, but I hope to avoid ever needing to using it.  

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5 hours ago, Kenny Dumas said:

20 ft at 15 seconds, no thanks. Surprised they had them swim   Maybe punishment for being out there?

Seems risky.

However I firmly believe that being stupid -should- be painful.

And it seems to have worked out.

BTW this also helps prove that photographing rough weather really never captures it properly.

- DSK

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This situation is a good illustration of why I've never really had a desire to sail that coast.

If I wanted to go south I'd go way out and not stop before S.F.

These sort of conditions are way too common. Incredible to view from land - from a boat, not so much.

https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-d&biw=1920&bih=919&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=9mOrXe21Cszy-gTc5YzQBA&q=oregon+coast+storms&oq=oregon+coast+storms&gs_l=img.3..0i24.7802.10391..10899...0.0..0.95.429.7......0....1..gws-wiz-img.......0i67j0j0i8i30.nJFj0FjeIfs&ved=0ahUKEwjtiKywh6nlAhVMuZ4KHdwyA0oQ4dUDCAY&uact=5

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6 hours ago, ride2live said:
12 hours ago, Steam Flyer said:

BTW this also helps prove that photographing rough weather really never captures it properly.

 

Or that the estimated sea state is way off. Or not from the same place the picture was taken. 

Well, looking thru some of the sailing/cruising classics, there are photos supposedly of terrible storms and it just looks like an exhilerating day. I have a photo that I took from the bridge wing of a Knox class frigate, way back when I was in the Navy, and we were trying to continue a transit (against advice from higher up, as it turned out later) in the North Atlantic through a V-depression. The bow of the ship was going under every other wave. I don't know what the wind was at the time but during that storm it peaked at over 100. My impression was that no common cruising sailboat could have survived it.

The photo looked like a choppy day on the Chesapeake. Of course there was little to scale it to, the bow being hidden by blown spray.

So I think it's not just estimations of sea state. Nowadays people are used to video and that may make it much easier to judge.

FB- Doug

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Not clear from the article or the video what the problem was with the boat. Wave height in the video looks like about 5 to 6 feet, what with the hull of the sailboat not being hidden all that much. A bit rough for coming alongside to take people off, especially if there might be any lines in the water from a sailboat in disarray/being abandoned. Conditions could not have been horrendous if the USCG was able to tow a 50’ sailboat (unmanned?)  into a safe harbor (two miles away?).  Interesting that it seems there were survival suits on the sailboat  for everyone aboard.  At least they were prepared in that sense. 

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If they were going to get towed in, why transfer the crew to the CG rescue boat?  Why not put a swimmer onboard the sailboat to take the helm, if the crew was disabled?  Wouldn't staying aboard be safer than making the transfer? I'm certainly not criticizing the CG professionals; just wondering.

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Some people may be missing that the most dangerous point of the operation is crossing the bar.  Waves that are 10 - 12 feet in open water can jump up to 20 feet in the blink of an eye.  This is why they want people to heave to and wait it out instead of trying to enter a port.  Another thing that can happen at the Yaquina bar in heavy weather is that ships get lined up on the entrance channel, and just as they are entering, a big wave will roll up from the south and push them out into the surf north of the jetty.  Big freighters have gone to grief that way.

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3 minutes ago, IStream said:

Here's a better shot of the boat:

https://www.threesheetsnw.com/wp-content/uploads/2019/10/Screen-Shot-2019-10-19-at-8.23.30-AM.png

Westsail 43 "Sweet Cheeks".

 

 

Oh... that boat.  It’s been on Seattle Craigslist for years.  Stripped-out interior, semi-derilict-looking.  Might explain a few things...

 

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People unfamiliar with the Wet Coast may not really understand why all this happened - the sea looks rather benign in those rescue pics.

This is Yaquina bar. That's a 52' Coast Guard cutter.

image.png.70d7ba4f167400fa9a28016bf30feba7.pngimage.png.8394bdfaa1152e0ebccbd2e0adea3c10.png

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4 hours ago, kent_island_sailor said:

WTF? I have been out in worse in my dinghy??????

"Jump off and swim"

"NO"

Yeah, but you would have never called the Coast Guard to begin with.  They wanted to be off the ocean and out of the situation for whatever reason yet to be explained.  Once you decide you need rescue, you generally do what they tell you, cause you've already decided you can't handle things on your own...

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Twenty years in the Bering sea and the worse wx and seastate I have seen has been Wa Or coast, plus Mendocino.  I would have a hard time secound guessing anything on that stretch.  Mendocino scared the crap out of us on our boat coming down, was pretty certain a broach was on the way and certainly considering a security call to USCG if it got worse.  The only thing worse than being totally ignorant is having some inclination as to how fucked you might be. I can't post them but I have pics of the 300' boat I used to Chief with it's bow and wh almost buried off coos Bay.

Unless you have sailed there or are a crazy south African hard to be judgy.

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2 hours ago, SASSAFRASS said:

Twenty years in the Bering sea and the worse wx and seastate I have seen has been Wa Or coast, plus Mendocino.  I would have a hard time secound guessing anything on that stretch.  Mendocino scared the crap out of us on our boat coming down, was pretty certain a broach was on the way and certainly considering a security call to USCG if it got worse.  The only thing worse than being totally ignorant is having some inclination as to how fucked you might be. I can't post them but I have pics of the 300' boat I used to Chief with it's bow and wh almost buried off coos Bay.

Unless you have sailed there or are a crazy south African hard to be judgy.

There could have been some horrific bar crossing out of the photo frame, but just from what I can see in the photo I would be worried mainly about the dog bouncing out of the dinghy if I went too fast.

Swimming might actually beat getting your leg crushed between boats though, might not be the worst idea.

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3 hours ago, SASSAFRASS said:

I would have a hard time secound guessing anything on that stretch.  Mendocino scared the crap out of us on our boat coming down.

I once talked to a highly experienced Canadian Navy Commander - he drives military ships.  He’s crossed the Pacific many times - in craft ranging from large military ships, to a 50-ish foot cruising boat, and racing boats, including a very large one.  He said Mendocino was really scary when they were headed down the coast as a family, on their cruising boat.  A guy like that saying that made me really pay attention...

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48 minutes ago, IStream said:

Lots of things get a lot scarier when the family is involved.

For sure.  But what I meant was his description of totally unforecasted and very rough (I recall 50+ knots) conditions off Mendocino was eye opening - a guy with his level of experience (he was teaching an offshore weather and routing course) being shocked by conditions made me realize this coast can be pretty serious...

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On 10/20/2019 at 1:09 PM, toddster said:

Some people may be missing that the most dangerous point of the operation is crossing the bar.  Waves that are 10 - 12 feet in open water can jump up to 20 feet in the blink of an eye.  This is why they want people to heave to and wait it out instead of trying to enter a port.  Another thing that can happen at the Yaquina bar in heavy weather is that ships get lined up on the entrance channel, and just as they are entering, a big wave will roll up from the south and push them out into the surf north of the jetty.  Big freighters have gone to grief that way.

Problems crossing a bar in some conditions are well known. In this case it seems that  the CG was able to safely tow this vessel to harbor, apparently with no one at the helm, since they had taken everyone off.  That would seem to indicate that crossing the bar was not a problem - that there was some other issue with the vessel. 

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2 hours ago, PaulK said:

Problems crossing a bar in some conditions are well known. In this case it seems that  the CG was able to safely tow this vessel to harbor, apparently with no one at the helm, since they had taken everyone off.  That would seem to indicate that crossing the bar was not a problem - that there was some other issue with the vessel. 

Exactly.

There is always more to the story.

Except for the FH.  Everyone except Lil'Murray knew how that was going to go.

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4 hours ago, PaulK said:

Problems crossing a bar in some conditions are well known. In this case it seems that  the CG was able to safely tow this vessel to harbor, apparently with no one at the helm, since they had taken everyone off.  That would seem to indicate that crossing the bar was not a problem - that there was some other issue with the vessel. 

I've long felt that the colloquial or alternate meaning of "Crossing the bar" should tell people something.

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Looking at the pic it certainly leans towards a overwhelmed crew who did not feel they were in control of the vessel, sails barely contained in what looks like a manageable seastate.  Shoulda woulda coulda's aside if you are not in control calling for help early is the right way to go IMO.

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Forward roller furling sail has been dropped on deck - that takes a lot of work, and they even have it all on board & tied down (tho there does seem to be a scarcity of sail ties on all sails). Inner jib partially furled & flogging - maybe not enuff turns on the drum or a snarl? Main & mizzen both down, altho both seem to still have a halyard attached to headboard. So some issues.

    I delivered a sistership from HI to CA, slow but capable sailing hulls. With stsl & main it would have made 4 - 6 kts of speed in those conditions.

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That thing was on Craigslist for at least several years.  "Just a few cosmetic projects" IIRC. (e.g. all the  interior plywood was ripped out.) But somehow too much to do before listing.  Or during all the years that it was listed.  Seems likely that no other maintenance was done during those years, either.  One might speculate that the person who would buy such a project might also be just the person who would head out into the Pacific in October without checking the weather forecast.

 

 

(At least it wasn't me this time...:ph34r:

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17 hours ago, toddster said:

...One might speculate that the person who would buy such a project might also be just the person who would head out into the Pacific in October without checking the weather forecast.

 

 

(At least it wasn't me this time...:ph34r:

:D

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For some who’s never seen a bar crossing from sea —most views in vids seem to be taken from land, showing breaking waves.  Here’s what it looks like from sea: very, very spooky!!  Like you’re about to go over a cliff...

At 5:50, “Coos Bay entrance on a good day”. (Rest of the vid very well worth watching too.)

 

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Going OUT the waves look much bigger than they are. Going IN they look much smaller until it is far too late to turn around.

* headed out of an inlet one day I shoved the throttle to full to hopefully get enough momentum to defeat the huge 15+ foot wave that would surely break and launch us back into the harbor in reverse :o We easily slid over about an 8 footer and no one even spilled a drink :rolleyes:

** pro tip - don't go in when the tide is coming out

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For messed up Bars it's worth watching the Bahia Del Sol El Salvador bar. It's one I don't think I'll ever do again. A dog leg entrance and exit where you have to time sets while avoiding continuous breakers on both sides, and that was on "good days"  a surf launch in the big boat instead of the dingy why not?? You could almost see our keel in a pic of us coming out.

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19 hours ago, kent_island_sailor said:

Going OUT the waves look much bigger than they are. Going IN they look much smaller until it is far too late to turn around.

* headed out of an inlet one day I shoved the throttle to full to hopefully get enough momentum to defeat the huge 15+ foot wave that would surely break and launch us back into the harbor in reverse :o We easily slid over about an 8 footer and no one even spilled a drink :rolleyes:

** pro tip - don't go in when the tide is coming out

2 words.... Manasquan

FB- Doug

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On 10/19/2019 at 1:30 PM, SloopJonB said:

This situation is a good illustration of why I've never really had a desire to sail that coast.

If I wanted to go south I'd go way out and not stop before S.F.

These sort of conditions are way too common. Incredible to view from land - from a boat, not so much.

https://www.google.com/search?client=firefox-b-d&biw=1920&bih=919&tbm=isch&sa=1&ei=9mOrXe21Cszy-gTc5YzQBA&q=oregon+coast+storms&oq=oregon+coast+storms&gs_l=img.3..0i24.7802.10391..10899...0.0..0.95.429.7......0....1..gws-wiz-img.......0i67j0j0i8i30.nJFj0FjeIfs&ved=0ahUKEwjtiKywh6nlAhVMuZ4KHdwyA0oQ4dUDCAY&uact=5

That's accurate until you are safe inside, then things look pretty incredible from the boat!

I was in Astoria two weeks ago and drove out to Cape Disappointment, the Columbia River entrance and CG station. Absolutely beautiful day, blowing 40+ from the south with big waves pounding the cliffs at Dead Man's Cove. On the south side of the entrance on the jetty in Fort Stevens, it was high tide and the spray was epic.

It's the next bar north of Astoria, Willapa Bay, that sketches me out. But I want to cruise it because the bay and Willapa River are kinda nice. Here's a shot of the entrance:

1173113122_ScreenShot2019-10-29at9_36_47AM.thumb.png.c6e9a3f88f0f4a54f7062fa465c0057f.png

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On 10/21/2019 at 8:30 PM, IStream said:

Lots of things get a lot scarier when the family is involved.

That's true!

Hey, IStream, I saw a big Catalina 50 in Tacoma last week. Nice condition, thought that might be yours.

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1 hour ago, lasal said:

Cape Disappointment, 

Dead Man's Cove.

That didn't tell you anything? :D

A friend of my daughter's took her boyfriend for a weekend at Cape Disappointment - to tell him she was dumping him.

I laughed when I heard the story and she didn't get why - she really hadn't connected the name with the situation.

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4 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

Cape Disappointment, 

Dead Man's Cove.

4 hours ago, SloopJonB said:

That didn't tell you anything? :D

A friend of my daughter's took her boyfriend for a weekend at Cape Disappointment - to tell him she was dumping him.

I laughed when I heard the story and she didn't get why - she really hadn't connected the name with the situation.

Maybe he would have felt better if he'd know that Dead Man's Cove was also in the running?  

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3 hours ago, socalrider said:

Maybe he would have felt better if he'd know that Dead Man's Cove was also in the running?  

It's not in the running, it's in the range. That's why I feel fine running it.

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