For the past few days I have commented about the spring season winding down at the Florida Sea Base.  Here’s what happened yesterday and lays ahead:

Yesterday one Scuba Adventure crew checked in.  They depart Sunday and that will end all 2012 spring scuba programs.  Three Coral Reef Sailing crews checked in.
Today three more Coral Reef Sailing crews arrive.
Tuesday one Coral Reef Sailing crew will be on base for shore leave.
Wednesday three Coral Reef Sailing crews will be on base for shore leave.
Thursday three Coral Reef Sailing crews will be on base for the last day of shore leave this spring and one Coral Reef Sailing crew returns to base for luau.
Friday three Coral Reef Sailing crews return for luau.
Saturday three Coral Reef Sailing crews return to base and are joined by the Scuba Adventure crew for the last luau of the season.
Sunday all participants depart the Florida Sea Base before lunch.

But we are far from being done.  Preparations are already underway for the 2012 Florida Sea Base Invitational Tarpon Tournament which will be held 01 – 04 May.  This is our only fund raiser for the year.  Laying new sod is the largest undertaking.  But cleaning Thomas Building rooms, painting everything that doesn’t move, washing and prepping vessels, washing Florida Sea Base vans, catching live bait, decorating the base, and landscaping will keep the remaining staff members busy until the tournament begins.

The weather threatened rain much of yesterday.  The good news was at it was a little cooler than it has been.  Here’s the National Weather Service forecast for the coming week.

Today: A slight chance of showers before noon. Partly sunny, with a high near 84. East wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Tonight: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 74. East wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Tuesday: A slight chance of showers before 10am. Mostly sunny, with a high near 84. East wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Tuesday Night: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 74. Breezy, with a east wind around 20 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Wednesday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 86. East wind around 15 mph. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Wednesday Night: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 74. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Thursday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 86. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Thursday Night: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 74. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Friday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 86. Chance of precipitation is 10%.
Friday Night: A slight chance of showers. Mostly cloudy, with a low around 73. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Saturday: A slight chance of showers. Mostly sunny, with a high near 87. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Saturday Night: A slight chance of showers. Partly cloudy, with a low around 73. Chance of precipitation is 20%.
Sunday: A slight chance of showers. Partly sunny and breezy, with a high near 85. Chance of precipitation is 20%.

The National Weather Service has posted a Small Craft Advisory for our area.

Today…East to southeast winds 20 to 25 knots and gusty…decreasing to 20 knots and gusty. Seas 6 to 9 feet. Isolated showers.
Tonight…East to southeast winds 20 to 25 knots. Seas 6 to 8 feet. Isolated showers.
Tuesday…East to southeast winds near 20 knots. Seas 6 to 8 feet…subsiding to 5 to 7 feet. Isolated showers.
Tuesday Night…East to southeast winds 15 to 20 knots. Seas 4 to 7 feet. Isolated showers.
Wednesday…East to southeast winds near 15 knots. Seas 3 to 5 feet. Isolated showers.
Thursday…East to southeast winds 10 to 15 knots. Seas 2 to 4 feet. Isolated showers.
Friday…East to southeast winds near 10 knots. Seas 2 to 3 feet. Isolated showers.

I need to ask Chip Kasper, our National Weather Service Senior Marine Weather Forecaster, why the wind speed forecast for the water is sometimes significantly different than for land.  I realize there is the obvious issue of buildings and trees knocking down the wind, but we live on a chain of very narrow islands and there must be more to it.  Regardless of why, the marine forecast is critical to our day-to-day operations and we appreciate the efforts of the NWS scientists who do what they do to give us reliable weather information.  They don’t get the accolades of The Weather Channel, Weather Underground, Weather Bug, Accu-Weather, and others, but the NWS is the bedrock for all of these commercial outlets.

Diving for today and tomorrow may have to be limited to bay-side options but hopefully the conditions will improve by Wednesday.  A lot of the country is experiencing very severe weather.  Stay safe.  Whining about the diver’s getting “winded-out” is pretty pathetic if you take a few moments to see what the folks living in Tornado Alley are dealing with.  It is SO easy to forget how blessed we are at times.

Today is the last Monday of the 2012 spring program season at the Florida Sea Base.

Capt. Steve Willis
Professional Scuba Bum™
Aboard S/V Escape

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