Builders' Forum Archives
Re: oops 22mph
Posted by Terry Mcadams on Jun 14, 2004
25 - 28 knots is a good stiff breeze that will make seas that are challenging for small craft and will blow some spray and foam around and definitely require sail reefing to avoid overpowering most sailboats, but might be manegeable for an experienced kayaker. 10-15 will make some smaller waves if there's fetch room and it's been blowing awhile, and some whitecaps, depending on current relative to the wind. I think most folks could tell the difference, if they had occasion to study the water in a variety of wind speeds.
The 25-28 at Annapolis can generally mean more manageable seas than the same wind blowing out of the south up near Harve-de-grace with an ebbing tide down the Susquehanna. The wind can make some very steep waves that smack the hell out of most boats and rattle your teeth. Would, I think, make for a very interesting paddle that would require a sound boat and considerable paddling skill to do safely. These conditions generally don't exist at the mouth of the Severn.
Many of the navigation and piloting books have scales that explain how the water behaves at different windspeeds. I find these a good general guide, particularly for a sailor like myself who was too cheap to buy an anemometer. But again, local currents, hills, shallows and storm tides can make these charts wildly inaccurate.
Of course, when I kayak, I always have a gentle, 10-knot tailwind. Always. Yeah, right.
In Response to: Re: oops 22mph by LeeG on Jun 14, 2004