Thursday, February 19, 2015

Key West - 40 kt winds!

Look at all the anchored boats, no protection at all
There was never a time we were more grateful to be at a marina than last night. The winds averaged 30 kts with gusts to 40 kts! We have two piers and several rows of boats between us and the entrance so it wasn't so bad but it's nice to be safe and secure in such winds. The boats out at anchor had no such protection and we found out this morning that six boats broke free and dragged to shore. Whatever the strength of the wind is at 20 kts, it's four times that at 40 kt, it's another whole ballgame. The winds did not abate during the day, averaging 20 to 30 kts all day long (we had another gust to 35 kts).

Typical 60 degree wear in Key West
On top of that, the high today was only 60F. Now you have to appreciate that the locals are not used to any temperatures below 70 and to them it's freezing and they dress appropriately (in their opinion). Down filled parkas are not uncommon, long pants are the norm, hoodies with the hood pulled tightly over their heads is seen everywhere.

Note the Key West hoodie
With that we did boat chores (filled water tank, pump out, laundry, dewater the dinghy, adjust lines to keep off the dock, etc.)  We did get out for a walk and we stopped by the local fish market to buy dinner, a pound of mahi-mahi which Ann prepared after wine on the back of the boat (with our ceramic heater going full blast in the cockpit). It is definitely cooler than last year but still comfortable. It's due to warm up starting Saturday with the winds dying off to more like a normal 10 to 15 kts. The snow back home is just amazing, we look every morning on our webcam. I read an article today that predicted the winters we've had the last two years is the new normal due to global warming. Of course, everything bad seems to be blamed on global warming whether it's too hot or too cold or too wet or too dry. Time will tell.

Great fish market about 500 ft from our boat.
Meanwhile, we had a fine mahi-mahi dinner.