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 Post subject: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 5:45 am 
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Is there a good guide / gauge out there somewhere for wind speeds and what kind of conditions it will create?


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 5:47 am 
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Whoops I just found this old forum thread ...

https://www.myccr.com/phpbbforum/viewto ... 16&t=14275


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 6:16 am 
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So looks like 30km/h is the top end for adults - so for a Scout troop maybe 25?

I know we can judge in the moment by looking at conditions but I'm trying to develop the ability to put the real conditions together with the forecast.


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 6:54 am 
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Joined: February 28th, 2018, 10:54 am
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Location: SW Quebec
Topography plays such a critical role. We had just paddled down Rock with a slight headwind (as usual) and were waiting for traffic to clear at the Rock-Pen portage. We were hit abeam with a gust and the leeside gunnel dipped under. We managed to right it and ended up with 6" of extra ballast. Right after we got to shore, a couple put in and dumped as a result of the same conditions. Forecast wind speeds could not have been over 15km/h.


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 8:03 am 
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Location: Bancroft, Ontario Canada
I also have not found wind forecasts to be very reliable... checking current wind speeds at this site might help, before setting out.... doubleclick to zoom in once you have the area, visual indicator in movement in green and wind speed in lower left.

https://earth.nullschool.net/#current/w ... 694,44.772

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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 9:17 am 
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 8:47 pm
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
I use Windfinder for general conditions.. But it is so susceptible to local conditions The effect of wind is affected by tides and topography and bathymetry.. For me on day trips it is a planner on what day to go.. For current conditions I use a weather radio . However local conditions can vary so much.. And once out of weather radio station range you have to rely on your experience.
If it blows at night its not a good omen for the next day
If there is rain then clearing you can expect a strong north wind the following day

The issue with wind and Scouts is not so much amplitude but the scattering of canoes due to the wind.. till they are older steering is sometimes inaccurate and therefore affected more by wind. If you can keep em in line with the wind...bow directly into and stern into the wind.. Those side gusts..are problematic.. Less so with kneeling.

I have paddled in 50 kph winds. Not fun but there was nothing but water around and the only bit of dry land for miles had to be gotten to.. talk about being an inchworm


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 9:41 am 
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Location: Freeland, Maryland USA
scratchypants wrote:
Topography plays such a critical role.


Beware the funnel shape as well.

I was exiting a creek into a 5 mile wide bay, heading into strong headwinds. The creek exit opens into a wide, deep funnel-shaped cove. I was able to make incremental progress for a half mile into the wind until I reached some invisible apex, where paddling with 100% of everything I had I could manage only a standstill.

The waves were rocking and rolling at that point, and I had no choice but to head back the way I came. Not actually head back, there was no way I could manage a 180 with the canoe in those waves, so I went backwards back for a half mile, seriously wishing my boat had a rearview mirror.

That was a bay on the flat coastal plain, with no terrain elevation and little cover taller than the marsh grass. Funnels in terrain with hills or cliffs can be far worse.


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 29th, 2019, 3:44 pm 
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Prospector16 wrote:
So looks like 30km/h is the top end for adults - so for a Scout troop maybe 25?

I know we can judge in the moment by looking at conditions but I'm trying to develop the ability to put the real conditions together with the forecast.


Windy.com is another good site that gives you a general idea of what to expect where you are and what's going on nearby - at the current time and in the future.

But I don't think you can look for a rule of thumb for what is safe for scouts. It depends on their paddling competency. It depends on your canoes and whether they are dressed for cold water immersion. It depends on whether you are paddling near shore or going offshore where the danger of drowning is big.

This family dumped on Lake Superior on a day where the wind speed forecast was 7-8 knots (so well under 15 kph). It looks like they were in a Wenonah which is highly susceptible to crosswinds plus they were paddling in cold water in a place where no canoe is safe.

https://upnorthlive.com/news/local/crui ... 6pMVhRzaeo


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 30th, 2019, 7:54 am 
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Joined: December 19th, 2006, 8:47 pm
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Location: Rattlesnake Pond ME
Pictured Rocks gets a lot of use from day paddlers and they are not prepared for dumping.. Its not the canoe per se.. its the lack of attention to what if..planning ahead. We have paddled much of Lake Superior in canoes( Wenonahs!) but with a full tripping load and equipment in dry bags so that should that happen ( and it did at the mouth of the Dog when we misjudged the outflow strength of the river) you can fix yourself.

Honestly I think day tripping is far riskier than extended trips.. And we are always wary of reflecting waves that can upset you.. I venture that the family cited above had not enough experience between their ears..


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 30th, 2019, 8:14 am 
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Location: Bancroft, Ontario Canada
Wind funnelling through a narrows on a large lake, Bark lake SE of Algonquin.... the wind forecasts had been for calm weather and there I was, windbound on an island, night coming on, with freezing cold water right after iceout, wondering about the geniuses at Environment Canada making that forecast. As always, the photo doesn't adequately illustrate the strength of the wind... not much fetch there and more dramatic at the downwind shore... waves smashing against rocks.

Image

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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: June 30th, 2019, 5:10 pm 
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Location: Winnipeg
I see you have lots of replies already. I will re-iterate one item that a lot depends on Fetch - distance in open wind. Most of the wave size markers assume deep water, and long (many km) of fetch.

Shallower water and shorter fetch can mean shorter steeper waves.

In some cases when you are further from the shore, with a long fetch you only have larger swells - but getting to shore can be an issue because of the changes to wave length, and depth, along with reflected waves.

I see the Beaufort scale has already been mentioned - I find it useful when in the lee or not directly in the wind for getting an idea of what the conditions are like further out. Unfortunately it takes time to build in what some of the conditions actually mean in 'real life'.

I usually limit inexperienced to less then 20km/hr winds. This is pretty variable depending on the route/conditions/fetch, etc... Anything above 30km starts to get problematic.

I use Windy.com to get an idea of the wind and expectations.


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2019, 6:06 pm 
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OK looking at windy.com and can't tell how fast the wind is. There are the little moving things which represent the wind - are they supposed to be the same colour as something on the key in the bottom right. Right now the forecast says 10km/h where I am going tomorrow, and I'm a bit colour blind but even my wife is looking at it and says the colour of the moving things does not match the lower end of the key scale in the bottom right. She said it is more like the 70 or 80 which I know is not the case

https://www.windy.com/?44.954,-76.806,15

EDIT: forecast for going in tomorrow is 15km/h with gust up to 24, but in our backs. I'm thinking that should be fine.

It is me, 1 teenager of mine and a 9 year old in one canoe, and my buddy and his 7 and 9 year olds in the other. Only paddling like 500m to the campsite and can hug the shore and go around maybe 2km if need be, rather than going across open water


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: August 22nd, 2019, 6:19 pm 
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AHA! Just figured it out - if I click anywhere it tells me the wind speed


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: August 23rd, 2019, 9:16 am 
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Great topic!
few years back we got stuck in Kawartha when paddling into Cold lake from a small creek, waves were so strong that we could barely make it 100 meters and decided to go on shore to the nearest cottage. No one was there so our only option was to walk around the whole lake in a hope that someone drives by and pick one up and drive to get the car. After 40 minutes of walking a lady was driving by and we stopped her and asked for help. She was visibly scared by some strangers , she wasn't even a local resident but a person conducting census of the area. It all ended well but ever since then I am afraid of big waves.

Has anyone capsized and what did you do in that case?


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 Post subject: Re: Wind speed forecasts
PostPosted: August 23rd, 2019, 11:19 am 
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Location: Freeland, Maryland USA
Prospector16 wrote:
forecast for going in tomorrow is 15km/h with gust up to 24, but in our backs. I'm thinking that should be fine.

It is me, 1 teenager of mine and a 9 year old in one canoe, and my buddy and his 7 and 9 year olds in the other. Only paddling like 500m to the campsite and can hug the shore and go around maybe 2km if need be, rather than going across open water


Gusts to 24 kmh and only 500 meters to go should be OK, but don’t discount the hazards of a tailwind. As several posters mentioned in the wind thread you linked to, a tailwind, especially with long fetch waves, can be challenging if not downright dangerous.

The closest I have come to losing or sinking a boat have been with a loaded canoe in tailwind waves.


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