Monday, March 17, 2014

2014-05 Tillamook Bay, to Cape Flattery, to Anacortes, Washington

Monday, March 17, 2014: Evaluating the Tillamook Bay Bar for a 1:30 AM Departure.

This afternoon the seas on the bar were not passable.  We hope they improve by 1:30 AM when we plan to cross.  See the video below.  The bar is closed for crossing as of 2 PM today.

We met with the US Coast Guard Tillamook personnel today who gave us valuable information regarding our crossing.  We will notify the Coast Guard at 12:30 AM.  They will give us an updated bar report tailored just for our departure.  The CG will also stay in communication with us as we cross, if the bar is open early tomorrow morning.

Should be an interesting challenge.

8 PM Update:  Tillamook Coast Guard has opened the bar to vessels over 40-feet.  After a visit to the Wild Blue earlier this evening to keep us informed, the CG officer called my cell at 7 PM to inform me of the opening.  He will recheck the bar for us at 1 AM and standby during our exit from Tillamook Bay. WOW! What an impressive,  highly-functioning and totally communicative organization.

Tuesday-Wednesday, March 18-19, 2014

By 12:30 AM Tuesday the Wild Blue was thrustering off the dock.  After checking with Coast Guard Tillamook, the Bar remains open and the 47-foot motor lifeboat is on station monitoring it.  Once out into the channel, the 3.5-knot flood current slows are water speed from 8.8 to 5 knots.  The crew, wearing life vests, takes their stations: Dick to Port and Elliott to starboard.  Coast Guard 276, the 47-foot motor lifeboat, stationed on the north side of the Bar calls on the VHF to say they will make "one more pass" across the Bar.  They start their pass just and we reach their stern, providing us a a clear path across. The video below documents the crossing.  Best to view in a dark room!

Update: 3 AM Wednesday, March 19, 2014

This morning we are around Cape Flattery and pointed easterly towards Anacortes in the San Juan de Fuca Strait.  The winds have come primarily from the Southern points of the compass, and the ocean swells are nicely-paced with just some occasional 2-foot chop.  Expect to be docked at Anacortes by 9 AM this morning.  All-in-all looks to be a comfortable last 32-hour leg to the Seattle area.


  1. Looks challenging. How did the crossing go?

  2. Thanks so much for relating your west coast journey. That Tillamamook entry was the scariest movie (and most instructional) I've seen in a long time. Was the trip up the coast at all fun, or was it an uncomfortable bash?

    Alan Muskett

    1. Hi Alan. I would say the cruise north was somewhere between "fun" and a "bash"
      It definitely was instructional. We could have chosen a better time of year to go north. Alex