Basic rule of thumb for boating and paddling – Never trust the weather forecast.  It’s just a prediction, not actual reality.  Sometimes they nail it but many times they don’t.

Today’s forecast on Puget Sound is the following:

PUGET SOUND AND HOOD CANAL-
900 AM PST FRI FEB 7 2014

TODAY
SE WIND TO 10 KT...BECOMING N 10 KT IN THE AFTERNOON. WIND
WAVES 1 FT OR LESS. 
Reality – (now) from NOAA..
Wind Direction (WDIR): N ( 10 deg true )
5-day plot - Wind Speed Wind Speed (WSPD): 17 kts
5-day plot - Wind Gust Wind Gust (GST): 20 kts
5-day plot - Atmospheric Pressure Atmospheric Pressure (PRES): 29.87 in
5-day plot - Pressure Tendency Pressure Tendency (PTDY): -0.09 in ( Falling Rapidly )

The last part (above) showing air pressure from a barometer basicly means it’s going get much stronger within 2-3hrs.  So possibly up to 30kt gusts.  What is air pressure and how does a barometer work?  Take a peek Here.
That’s why it’s a smart idea to double check conditions before going out especially if you’re teaching a class.  Check with a real time weather station such as NOAA and/or webcam, then go check it in person.  It is a go or a cancel?  Classic poor judgement – We’re here anyway, so lets just go!   My rule of thumb is to stay off the evening news (unless it’s good PR).  

Salmon Bay Paddle SUP Tips