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Coast Guard Motor Lifeboat vs. big wave

Large storm swells reached Morro Bay California on December 4, 2007, bringing 15-20 foot swells with some plus sets.
A U.S. Coast Guard 47-foot Motor Life Boat was out for practice maneuvers in the large surf, which is not unusual.
However, a large wave hit that was probably more than they bargained for...at least it's the hardest I've ever seen them get hit.
The air was filled with mist, and they were quite distant, so at times were just a shadow in the mist. I've adjusted them for better visibility, however the quality of the photos is not the greatest due to the above conditions, and futile attempts to keep the lens dry.

Note on comments: Comments are very much appreciated, but please keep them appropriate for a photo gallery. This is not the place to solve issues or second-guess anyone's judgment. Thanks.
Regarding the waves: This was a set of 2 or possibly 3 waves that were significantly larger than any that had preceded them. I had waited, expecting some more "normal" photos of more normal big-wave Coast Guard action, and the waves weren't really large enough for the photos I wanted...probably mostly in the 15-foot range.
I did see these approaching in the distance, however I had a considerably higher vantage point than they did. By the time they could spot these waves from the boat, I seriously doubt they had many choices as to what action to take. The first wave of the set passed by them without incident, but the second, much larger one followed very quickly. The fact that no one was hurt or killed, and that the boat made it through and was immediately operational really attests to the competence of the crew and the equipment.


Reprints or information You can contact me via email at gary at rshaw dot com for print or publication information.
This doesn't look so good...
This doesn't look so good...
Hang on...
"Hang on..."
Ouch!
Ouch!
They're in there somewhere
They're in there somewhere
Vertical
Vertical
This is not looking good...
This is not looking good...
A bit worrisome...
A bit worrisome...
They're up!!!
They're up!!!
Time to go home...
Time to go home...
Meanwhile, inside the harbor...
Meanwhile, inside the harbor...
Escort
Escort
Boy, do we have a tale to tell...
"Boy, do we have a tale to tell..."