Hurricane Isabel Photo Caption
We were late leaving Florida. Mid June we started our passage north with a sense of urgency, the need to be north of Florida and the Carolinas before the active hurricane season. Traveling through southern Florida, the urgency increased as we passed towering high rises completely enveloped with hurricane shutters and devoid of life. The days were long with daylight, the Inter-coastal Waterway was barren of other boats, and the bridges were no longer on restricted schedules. We pushed hard and made great progress.
At the end of July we reached our final destination, Windmill Point Marina, on the mouth of the Rappahannock River, Va. We looked forward to a wonderful, relaxing stay. Time was spent touring, visiting friends, and doing a lot of maintenance on Gypsy. However, a concerned eye was always kept on the weather because Windmill Point was very exposed to the open waters of the Chesapeake.
On Sunday Sept 14, 2003, our worst nightmare was coming true....Hurricane Isabel's most likely route was forecast to go right up the Chesapeake Bay as a category 5 hurricane. We decided it was better to act early then to wait. Phone calls were made to local marinas. We lucked out, Gypsy was put on a haul-out list. That Sunday, five days before Isabel was to strike Virginia, we evacuated Windmill Point as life went into fast gear preparing the boat and ourselves for the hurricane.
Jay helped out jacking boats at Yankee Point Marina once Gypsy was secure. The marina was able to haul 75 boats and secure their entire complex for the storm. Hurricane Isabel hit the area as a Tropical Storm with 60 knot winds. There was a 10 foot storm surge at Yankee Point. Gypsy was 20 feet above sea level. The Northern neck sustained incredible damage, tons of trees were down, power was out everywhere for weeks......