Saturday, July 16, 2011

I have now sailed!!

 Well it appears that there will not be a post from me saying I give up and want to get an RV instead!  Unfortunately I can't say that it was the most exciting thing I've ever done, but that was due more to the sever lack of wind then anything else.  It was about 90 degrees, and there was a whisper of wind.   But during my turn at the tiller I will say we were moving better then at any other point during the afternoon.  A fact I am completely attributing to my unique abilities picking the right heading! :)  Actually I was pretty nervous when our instructor, Daryl, cut the engine, and told me to man the tiller.  But it was so cool feeling the boat respond in the water as I moved the tiller.  Practice tacking, trying to keep us at a close haul.  There were multiple moments of panic (only by me) as I saw boats that looked like we would cross paths with.  Our instructor, cool as always, said not to worry.  Sure enough, they passed us with more then enough room to spare.

Daryl gave us some things to watch for, like trying to look for where the wind is by watching the water to see where the wind was. Right of way on the water,  which side to pass buoys on.  Trying to pick a point on land to aim for to keep a steady course. 

Then it was time to give up the tiller :(  So I moved to sail duty.  Some more tacks ahead (desperately hoping that my trimming ignorance wouldn't leave us in irons on a tack.  "Prepare to come about" is heard, oh crap I think!  The other crew releases sheets, I watch as the jib starts moving from port to starboard.  I start pulling on the jib sheet when it reaches halfway, and trim the sheet.  And the boat is still moving - so  I'm happy.

Basically the rest of the afternoon was spent tacking back and forth across one little part of the lake.  We did almost insert ourselves into the race that was going on.  The first race was over, and he didn't think there was a second race.  We ended up cutting across the path of a couple boats, not quite close enough to steal what little wind there was from them, but he got a good-natured ribbing from one of the racers he knew.

I will say this though - just sitting in the boat before class with Daryl, just having the boat move with the little bit of water movement felt so good.  Just a calm, relaxing, almost therapeutic movement.  I look forward to getting out there when there is actually some wind and see what that feels like.   One of the guys in the class has a small boat on a lake, and he said I could come out sailing with him.  So it looks like I'm going to be getting some more practice!

I'll leave you with a few pictures of the day.  Not quite as pretty as the pictures from the tropical cruisers out there.  But it's a boat, and it's water!  It's all good !

Sailboat only docks - no nasty power boats here :)

A little bit of everything on this lake - houseboats, power, jetskis, sailboats

Sadly the Beneteau wasn't our boat

The morning class coming in

Our skipper motoring back to the dock

25' but still fairly room inside

Hmm - what's a mainsail again?

Tommy and Cindy getting us set up

Part of a race that was going on

The only spinnaker I saw up. This boat was in first - coincidence?

I saw a colorful sail - so 2 pictures :)

Another racer

Yours truly -anonymous no longer

This picture is deceptive.  Lots of boats were around.

Our fearless leader Daryl


  1. Nice mate! Glad you appeared to enjoy what you could. Wish there would have been more wind for you, but you got to meet someone with a boat willing to take you out! Can't really beat that, I'd say!

  2. Yeah- the wind was a disappointment. But I still can't wait to get back on the water. And I found myself wishing i was on the boat all day today. So I guess that means I really do want to be a sailor :)