This morning, we move Cutter Loose the short distance into the Hampton River en route to our slip at the City marina known as Hampton Public Piers. Along the way, we pause to top off the fuel tank and fill jerry jugs with a supplemental source of fuel if needed during our voyage to Tortola.
At the City marina, there is already a small gathering of Caribbean 1500 boats on the docks. After brief introductions to our new neighbors, it is time to wash the salt and mud from the decks of Cutter Loose… by-products of our four day cruise from Rock Hall.
The buzz in the marina today has nothing to do with voyage preparation. Instead, preparing for Hurricane Sandy is uppermost in everybody’s thought process. Cutter Loose is ensconced in a spider web of doubled dock lines and fenders…our defense against the pending storm.
There are many things for which we are thankful at this time. The timing for our trip south on the Bay could not have been better. We enjoyed four pleasant days of delightful Chesapeake cruising, arriving in Hampton the day before the effects of Sandy will begin to be felt. The sturdy floating docks here at Hampton Public Piers eliminate the need for constant adjustment of dock lines during the storm. Furthermore, our marina is well inland in the Hampton River and our slip is well-protected from a Nor’easter. Not more than 30 yards to the north of our slip is the seven-story Crowne Plaza Hotel with its attached four-story parking structure. These buildings will help to buffer Cutter Loose from the strongest winds which will be from the northeast, north and northwest.
There is one more piece of encouraging news. The center of Sandy will pass to our east, making landfall well north of here. This means that we are located on the less intense side of the storm. Nevertheless, the forecasted tropical storm force winds (50 knots) and projected storm surge (4 feet) are not to be taken lightly. Tonight we break from storm preparation to enjoy dinner at the Taphouse with our new Caribbean 1500 neighbors, Ken and Laurie aboard s/v Adagio.