Starting Friday night, and continuing into yesterday morning, the rain fell and the wind blew hard, kicking up some high nasty conditions out at sea. So naturally, I could not resist just going right out into the middle of it! I headed out Nantasket Roads and tried to get out as far as I could before the pounding surf sent me back in. Here is a video I took while navigating breaking swells of up to 8 feet just East of Allerton Point Saturday morning:
A check of wunderground.com showed that the 44013 buoy was reading 6 ft dominant wave height with a 5 to 6 second interval- so pretty big, tight chop. Since I had just written a bit about boating in the fall and the higher probability of encountering rough conditions, I thought I would put my advice to the test a little bit. I headed out Nantasket Roads and attempted to take the rough weather head on.
Once we got a bit beyond Boston Light, the swells started to break, which can be real trouble if they are big enough. I was looking back and saw a couple guys in a 26 foot Regulator appear and dissappear in the big swells- they finally called it quits and headed back. My 28 foot Whaler was handling it well, so we ventured out a little further. After a wave of about 8 feet crested and started to break in front of me, I had second thoughts. (I didn’t get to film this one as I had to keep two hands on the wheel). The way up was fine, but on the backside, the boat dipped hard…..almost buried the bow platform. I decided to turn around, but you can’t just turn a boat in breaking swells like these: get caught by one broadside and you could get flipped! So I waited for until I was on top of a well, and cut hard to the starboard, making sure the next one hit my stern at no more than 45 degrees.
I headed back in and ended up fishing around the marker at Sunken Ledge just to the Southwest of Peddocks Island. I had no luck fishing, but it was a lot more pleasant than being out in those breakers outside the Harbor.