Hurricane Irma Update

Our last look at our girl as we evacuated Key Largo

Hey everyone! I have been very bad at keeping you up to date on our recent adventures, and I apologize! We have been in Key Largo since March and decided instead of hurrying off to the Bahamas and rushing through them, we chose to weather hurricane season here.  The main factor in our decision was the great hurricane hole less than a mile away from our anchorage.


Our great hurricane hole! We are the circled boat. First ones in, last ones out.

At one point hurricane Irma was forecasted as a category 5 direct hit over our anchorage.  We knew we needed to do everything we could to survive the storm, so we moved to the mangroves and secured our boat.

This was the predicted path at one point. When i saw this my stomach turned. Luckily Irma made landfall about 100miles SW of us sparing us the worst of the storm.

We went above and beyond stripping our boat of anything that could create windage including sails, boom, bimini, lifelines, stanchions, dorade vents, EVERYTHING! We evacuated to East TN to visit family and hoped for the best.

Ragnarok stripped down!

When we returned we found Ol’ Gnar Girl right where we left her, safe and secure with absolutely no damage from the hurricane.  Unfortunately looters got to her before we could.  Erik had thought of this possibility and also stripped the boat of our smaller electronics (EPRIB, VHF radio, SSB radio).  They just grabbed all of our liquor (which at this point was the stuff I didn’t really care for and we had been hauling around for over a year), personal strobes for pfd, and our old barometer that didn’t work.  However they couldn’t figure out how latches work, so instead they just ripped our cabinets right off the hull.

Damage from the looters.

We feel pretty violated and upset that people would take advantage of folks during this time of crisis, but we also feel humbled from all of the love and outpouring support from the community as well.  We know we are lucky to still have a boat and a home and we hope to continue the adventure!

The view coming back! Sight for sore eyes.

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5 Responses

  1. Bob Beswick. Aly Ada Too 156 says:

    Great picture of your Hurricane hole. Sorry to hear they looted and destroyed your cabinetry.

    • cgrabens says:

      Thanks! Luckily we were able to repair it to almost as good, which we were pretty excited about! And that is probably the best hurricane hole we’ve encountered on our journey, so thankful we had it. Definitely crucial in how we came out unscathed.

  2. Holly says:

    That’s neat. So that what you call the place where you hold up your boat for a hurricane? Or did you make this term up? That is unreal how thorough looters are in a crisis? Don’t they have anything better to do and/or worry about?! Like surviving?!

    • cgrabens says:

      Yep any spot that is protected from a hurricane are called hurricane holes. Mangroves do an excellent job and shielding from wind. And I said the exact thing about the looters! It was a serious hurricane I had no idea people would have time to loot. I think they were bored from when the hurricane hit and realized they were the only ones here. They wouldn’t let us return until 3 days after the storm. So that’s our best guess on when they got to it.

      • donald says:

        why in the world would law enforcement restrict you for ANY amount of time to get to your personal property? maybe THEY are the looters?!?

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