Preparing for Blanca

Blanca is the earliest major second named tropical storm since NOAA’s accurate data collection started in 1971. It’s headed our way. And we are probably lucky.

No, I am not crazy. Read on.

This is the first in a series of four posts covering our experience in preparing and weathering the remnants of Hurricane Blanca in 2015. 

 

The hurricane season started less than a month ago here on the NE Pacific. Since then, two systems became tropical storms, and both grew into hurricane status. That’s a 100% “success rate”, within 3 weeks. Quite unsettling.

The first, Andres, went well off into the ocean. But his younger sibling, Blanca, had a totally different attitude. First off, she remained stationary many days over a hurricane-nutritive area. That caused her to quickly gain strength. In fact, she was upgraded from Tropical Storm on to Hurricane category 4 within less than 24 hours. To make things worse, weather forecast models were predicting that after Blanca became very strong, it would start moving North-northwestwards, and track well on to the Baja California peninsula. At one point, its eye was forecast to pass right above us. The scenario was getting gloomy.

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A time lapse sequence showing Blanca smashing against the Baja California Peninsula, as forecast for Sunday. Times are GMT. Images and forecast from passageweather.com

 

So, where do I see good luck in all this?

Basically for three reasons:

  • first, because the same forecasting models predicted that once Blanca got near the Baja peninsula, it would meet very unfavorable conditions, and rapidly loose strength and downgrade into a Tropical Storm again before making landfall
  • second, as days went by, Blanca got less strong than the models originally predicted. So, if originally we were expecting winds of up to 60 knots at our current location, now we are probably looking into 30-40 knots at most.
  • third, since Blanca spawned, we have been safely moored inside the well-protected harbor of Puerto Escondido. By not having to move for shelter, we could invest the time in preparations

 

As I write this, the sun has just set behind the Sierra de la Giganta mountain range, closing a perfect blue-sky day, making it difficult to believe that in less than 48 hours we will be dealing with the remnants of Blanca – mostly gusty winds and drenching rain.

I will try to post updates along the weekend.

Have a great one.

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2 Replies to “Preparing for Blanca”

  1. Hola ALex! Que increible y linda aventura!! Me pasaron tu blogg hoy y estuve leyendo algunos de los pasajes que relatan este increible sueño! Que maravilla que lo hayas podido hacer con tu familia! A lifetime experience que marcara para siempre un antes y un despues!!! Sigan disfrutandolo!!! Beautiful pics too!!!! Suerte con Blanca y keep sailing and living live to the fullest. Have a safe trip!!! Rapha!

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