The breeze is freshening, the barometer is dropping, and OCSC is preparing the fleet for the incoming storm. We’re thankful for the precipitation and potential for big snow in the sierras, but here on the docks our fleet service team is hard at work ensuring the safety of our boats. This impending storm is the product of the meteorological phenomenon known as the Pineapple Express–and no, not the James Franco/Seth Rogan buddy flick.
To understand the pineapple express, think of it like less of a storm and more of a river, an atmospheric river. The P-Express, a hallway of moisture and vapor that extends from the Hawaiian Islands to the stretch of the Pacific coastline, typically arrives every winter feeding our reservoirs and crops. This particular pineapple express offering will bring with it unusually strong winds and rains, along with the danger of landslides, floods, and broken docks.
Storm Tying in Preparation
The points of connection between your boat and the dock that are prone to breakage are the dock lines and the dock cleats. With this in mind, you want enough redundancy in your storm tie setup to keep your boat leashed to the dock if your primary dock lines or cleats break free. Standard practice is to double stern and bowlines, hitching them to a separate dock cleat than the ones used by your primary dock lines. This way, if your primary lines or cleats break free, your boat will at least be leashed to the dock.
Throughout the day tomorrow we will be suspending operations and hunkering down in our offices. We hope everyone braves the storm, California’s parched reservoirs are filled, and that we all go sailing this weekend!