Hurricane Beryl’s impact on stratification of Ocean Biogeochemical parameters near Petit Piton, Saint Lucia

Meeting Hurricane Beryl, which evolved from a tropical depression to a Category 5 hurricane in just 42 hours, was one of the most intense experiences of our nearly year-long sailing trip. We decided to moor under the protection of Petit Piton (743m) – one of the famous volcanic peaks of Saint Lucia, which we had the good fortune of climbing earlier.

The mooring buoy was installed at a depth of 50 meters, which was crucial for our successful survival of the tropical storm. The destructive impact came not only from the wind but also from the high waves generated by the passing hurricane Beryl. These waves, coming from the opposite direction of the wind, created a particularly damaging effect on the coast. Our sailboat’s position at a depth of 50 meters allowed us to perform CTD casts directly from the mooring. It was fascinating to observe the changes in ocean biogeochemical parameters before and after the hurricane’s passage.

Fortunately, the eye of the hurricane passed just south of us, but our location was still significantly affected by the tropical storm, with winds reaching up to 45 knots and swells of 3-4 meters. We completed the CTD casts, processed the data, and it is now ready to be presented and analyzed.