One of the hardest things to do is to wait for a Hurricane to pass. Harder still when you are in Canada and the boat you try to protect is in Florida. There was a post on FB that said waiting for a hurricane is like being stalked by a turtle, perhaps a drunken turtle. During Ian’s trek from Cuba through to Florida, I suffered and or endured stages of emotions.
When Ian crossed Cuba I was encouraged that Ian would miss Fracas and hit Miami. When you have a boat it is amazing that you lose perspective about things, but you know what I mean. This feeling of ‘whew’ was short-lived. My boat Fracas was always in the cone of uncertainty for Ian’s path. ‘A‘ above. It’s not like it should have been a surprise.
Then Ian wobbled, taking aim at Tampa Bay. ‘B‘ on my chart above. I was still feeling pretty good about Fracas. The eyewall would likely miss her. She was still in the cone of uncertainty though. All day long I had a sense that Fracas would get nailed, but it will never happen to ‘you’ right?
Then through ‘C‘ and ‘D‘ in the image Ian just worked out the target acquisition and resolution for the Fort Myers and Port Charlotte area. The eyewall made official landfall at Cayo Costa State Park (Pelican Bay). Pelican Bay is or was one of our favourite (favorite) anchorages. Once the eyewall made contact with Fracas the wobbles and turn Ian took left the area in the eyewall for hours.
In the local area where Fracas was stored, there are four yards and close to 750 boats stored on land. We are in J & R Marine Services yard. The two other larger yards are Charlotte Harbor Boat Storage and Safe Cove Marine.
My conservative estimate is that 50% of those boats are on their sides. Easily another 25% are damaged. Fracas lays on her port side. The mizzen mast is a pretzel-like contortion of aluminum. Who knows what may have happened inside when she fell? There could easily be a stand poking through the hull.
It will likely be a couple of weeks before it makes any sense to go down to check her out.