Boaters’ Weather

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We will have clear skies both day and night this weekend, which will be perfect for outdoor activities and boating.  The daytime air temperatures will be in the low 70s along the coast, and nighttime temperatures in the low 50s without the evening cloud cover.

Nighttime clouds actually help to hold in the radiant heat that escapes from the Earth into outer space, which is a vacuum, but not a perfect vacuum since there is a low density of particles.

But, I digress.

These conditions are ripe for the winds to clock around to the northeast, creating Santa Ana winds and offshore wind conditions.  Sailors should keep an eye out for shifting winds, and you can usually tell the winds are getting ready to shift by the sudden change to dry and calm conditions.

Also, watch the landing approach of the aircraft going to John Wayne Airport.  It is common for the Santa Ana winds to blow in an upper inversion layer first before dropping to sea level.  Therefore, the pilots will fly inbound to the airport over the harbor into the northerly winds, which is the reverse course of the normal pattern of the planes taking off over the harbor.

But I digress again.

Otherwise, we can expect the prevailing winds about 10 knots in the afternoon, and the Pacific swells will be a small 2-foot roll from the southwest along the coast.  Mid-San Pedro Channel will have 3-foot seas.

As always, with an eye to the north, boaters off Point Conception will encounter swells averaging 10 feet with winds gusting over 20 knots on Saturday.  Traveling around Point Conception will remain risky for northbound traffic and also for most southbound, depending on your boat, your skill level and/or your sense of adventure.

Remember, to always check the sea and weather conditions before you leave the dock, and show your guests where the lifejackets and safety equipment is stowed aboard your boat.


Safe Voyages,

Mike Whitehead, Capt.

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