What started out a casual drift up river to catch a little after-work respite, quickly turned south as the weather rolled into the ‘Ville Wednesday evening.
Now, not to say that we are the oldest or best captains of these there waters on the Ohio, but between us we have seen a good lifetime on the river. The windy conditions weren’t bad enough to keep us at bay, and we believe a little cruise out in the sun will melt your troubles away. So we turn out of the marina on calm waters and come up to the mouth where the creek meets the Ohio, pleasant afternoon ahead.
Wow, what a difference. The river was a blustery mess, choppy with small whitecaps. The local sailing brigade of sailboats were enjoying every twisty turn on wind they could catch with their beautiful big sails. A few novice sailors were having a bit of trouble with control of those gales. We had a bird’s eye view of a few standing so far over on their keels it made us nervous.
Now if you have a big enough boat, I’ll call ours “Orca”, then all you Skipper & Gilligans know that you can head right into those swells and cut them straight through with your deep V-Hull. Pretty exciting to figure out the precise configurations to place your speed, trim tabs so your Orca will plane out and run that river like she’s meant to. It’s that Leonard DiCaprio moment of “king of the world” on the bow of a boat with the wind in your hair that draws us to the water. Fresh air, sunny skies and open water is refreshing to the soul and spirit. Exhilarating.
We traveled up river to investigate the Shady Glen Club ( read my next post about their event tomorrow & Friday benefitting EDGE Outreach) and get a feel for where we will anchor out to listen to their 10+ bands from the water.
The only other traffic were a few barges headed north as well, and we noticed they were having a particularly tough time with the head winds. As we turn back, that’s when we see it, the beginning of the front.
At this point its about 7pm, so the winds have picked up and the sun is spotty but its clear sailing to the marina. There must have been 3 ft+ swells that were a bit dicey to say the least!
Pulling back into the creek its all calm again and we we prep for landing. But just as we do, we get a surge of wind that takes the aft of the boat out from under us! Holy cow, it was if God reached down and moved us like a toy boat in a bathtub. No joke this was the weirdest feeling, I was on the aft and it just swished over…
OK, plan B, try again.
All calm winds, and BOOM another surge. A downdraft of this pending thunderstorm that we were unaware of…Thankfully Skipper was particularly savvy at his twin engine work, and a dock mate was on hand and we made it into port safely.
Just as my nerves calmed, and we settled in for a nosh dockside, we heard them. The Civil Defense sirens blared over our heads from the Harrods Creek Fire Department. To the North, we had sun mixed with a little summer shower. To the Southeast, we saw the ominous dark clouds. A quick call home lead to the news and we turned on 84WHAS for info. After a dash to the house, and 4 super cells later, everyone is safe.
I dare to say if not for those sirens, we would settled in for a squat and been in the marina, on the Orca, as the storms hit.
Thanks to the men and women who keep those warning horns in working order, you may have saved us last night.