Team Elsie Piddock Marches Inexorably Onward but…….

Bruce Hedrick Bruce's Briefs Paddles, Oars and Boards Sailing

It looks like the weather gods aren’t quite done with Team EP. After a lovely day of reaching in a moderate WSW breeze and sailing at a consistent 8-9 knots, the weather gods have decided to throw one more wild one in their path. First they are going to have to sail through an area of light air which as we have seen, won’t really present any kind of problem to Team EP. It’s what is coming and where it will hit them that could be very interesting.

Sometime over the next 24 hours they are going to have sail through an area that extends from the NE corner of Graham Island, Rose Point and Rose Spit, almost all the way across Hecate Strait to Stephens Island and the Dundas Islands. This where Hecate Strait meets Dixon Entrance and this area is shallow and in breeze, which will be coming in from WNW at 20-30 knots and with a two-three knot current against that breeze, this can be one very nasty place, much nastier than anything they have faced before. Right now, according to the GRIBs, it looks to be the worst at about 0300 to 1000 hours tomorrow morning. So let’s see how much the light air will hold them up and see how they do as they approach this area.

The race for second place continues to be interesting but somewhat less so as it looks like the third place boat Team MM may have taken the night off last night while Por Favor continued to sail on. The real problem for both these boats will be the long beat in breeze up Hecate Strait after the check point at Bella Bella because that will not really back off until Monday.

Bruce Hedrick

Written by

Bruce has raced and cruised the Pacific Northwest his entire life. He earned a Bachelor's of Science from the University of Washington in Biological Oceanography and learned meteorology "to keep from getting kicked around on the race course." <a href=""><img class="alignright wp-image-5597 size-medium" src="" alt="Brucekh" width="300" height="224" /></a>Bruce spent nearly two decades as Associate Publisher for Northwest Yachting Magazine, retiring in mid-2015, and was the chairman of the board of trustees for the Northwest Marine Trade Association in 2014.


  1. Avatar

    Karl Schulmeisters

    Intersting in that EP appeared to harden up or tack for roughly the last hour (5-8 miles,) but it looks as if they’ve footed off again. They will have sunrise in about 5 hrs but given how far north they are, they are still sailing in Nautical Twilight for about another hour, and will only have about 2:30 of real night.

    I think they will get through that bit of water just fine

  2. 40nm left to Rose Point and reaching at 8.3 knots. 5-6 hours to enter the passage to Ketchican.

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