STUART — If his 2-week-old baseball cap is all he loses in Hurricane Isaias, Pat Dooher of Stuart will consider himself lucky.
Dooher and his wife, Nancy Dooher, went to Chastain Beach Saturday morning to check out the wind and waves from the approaching hurricane. As if to show how hard the wind was blowing, Pat Dooher was standing on the end of the observation deck, when a gust whipped the cap off his head and into a nearby bush.
More: Here’s what to expect from the storm on the Treasure Coast
The cap could be seen in the leaves but was about 10 feet from the deck and about 20 feet above the beach.
“No way I’m going to get that without a ladder,” Pat Dooher said.
“The wind has really picked up in the last 10 minutes,” Nancy Dooher said.
Waves at the popular surfing site appeared to be in the 4- to 5-foot range, but the water was choppy. Still, three intrepid (maybe foolhardy) surfers were catching what they could as ominous clouds built over the ocean to the east, perhaps the first signs of Isaias.
Access to several beaches along MacArthur Boulevard at the southern end of Hutchinson Island, including Bathtub Reef Beach and Santa Lucea Beach, was blocked off Saturday morning.
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Tyler Treadway is an environment reporter who specializes in issues facing the Indian River Lagoon. Support his work on TCPalm.com. Contact him at 772-221-4219 and [email protected]