And the waves at the rim of the Eye of a hurricane can reach 20 to 30 metres.
80 – 90 ft.
About this size.
Or like this:
The Eye of the hurricane is a place of high waves but often, surprisingly calm. The whirlpool of wind and wall of clouds is worst in the surrounding Eye Wall.
There are many degrees of storm that are cyclonic in nature but not quite a hurricane. The scale runs from a “tropical disturbance” to a “tropical storm” to a hurricane.
In the old days of tall ships, however, whenever there was a storm, the crew didn’t head belowdecks but up into the rigging. It made sense; sails had to be set, furled or tuned, faster than at any other time. Everyone’s survival depended on this.
In the day of the Solar Wind of course (year 2116 of the future) all the equipment is available to circumvent serious storms. But Radomir Lascek’s ship has a few special extras that make harnessing the power of a storm a great idea…
(excerpt from “The Mystery of the Solar Wind“)
The Solar Wind’s sails were closed; she lay rolling on the high surf. Radomir Lascek gestured at the sea, and the sky. “What the heck do you make of this storm, Jon?”
“Hurricane,” said Jon. Their eyes met and they both shook their heads. They had been in hurricanes before, and there was only one course of action. Submerge.
This was no hurricane.
“The Eye,” said Jon, but as Lascek started shaking his head, the First Mate continued, “should have bright skies and no precipitation at all. This is not an Eye. Ergo, it can’t be a hurricane.”
“Wasn’t a blasted hurricane when I looked on the charts,” replied the Captain. He fingered a sequence on the console, and a satellite picture jumped to view. “There, you see? No hurricane. Ordinary storm. I’d never make this bunch fly a hurricane! I’m not off my mind!”
“When was this?” asked Jon Marsden.
“This is now!”
Marsden shook his head and zoomed in until the microscopic date and time in the bottom corner became visible. “That was ten this morning, Captain.”
Lascek leaned forward into the screen as though his eyes couldn’t process what he saw there. “What! But…”
Jon Marsden’s fingers flashed across the console, tried various options. He straightened out with a disbelieving smile on his face.
“She’s done more than the radar,” he said.
Federi had been waiting so long, floating in the churning water, his purple, flared shirt billowing in the restless waves around him, he had begun to wonder if his radar had lost its accuracy.
Now they came looming out of the downpour. One, two of them; three, and more. He looked at the end of his rope; his little chemical had done its trick, the end had become a swollen and sticky glob on contact with the seawater. His hand had very nearly gone numb holding the darned rope, preventing it from sticking to anything in the meantime. He was positioned perfectly. The Schooners were bearing down on him directly. The chances that they’d spot him were miniscule, he knew. His purple scarf acted as camouflage in this dark weather; and with only the top of his head sticking out of the water, they’d have a hard time spotting him in the rocking waves even without rain obscuring the matter. Their instruments wouldn’t pick him up either; he was not wearing anything that gave off any electronic signals. And on their radar he was but a shark…
For a tense moment he thought his positioning was too perfect and he’d be run over. In the mood for a keelhauling? Hah! But the prow wave of the nearest ship, the dangerous one, lifted him out of the way. He smacked the end of his rope as high up against the hull as he could and hoped that the glue had attached properly. It was supposed to bond instantly. Well, this would be the test, wouldn’t it? He began to inch up the rope.
((C) copyright Lyz Russo, 2008)