We had a bit of snow on the ground this morning, but wind meter readings around 30 - what better day to test the Ianovated wetsuit again! We drove to Indian Neck Beach in Wellfleet Harbor in the morning. It's a beautiful area of Cape Cod. This little iPhone snapshot may give you an idea, although it certainly does not do the place justice:
Ianovated wetsuits. Sail sizes for the day were 4.5 and 5.5.
Once again, the "tube suit" worked beautifully. Both of us stayed nicely warm, and we sailed for almost two hours. I used the tubes a lot in the first few runs, and felt comfortable enough to go for a 5-mile roundtrip to the other side. That ended up being a small mistake - due to a few areas of wind shadows, it took me almost 20 minutes, and my fingertips ended up getting a bit too cold. As I have mentioned before, my fingers tend to get cold very quickly, and my doctor believes that I have Raynaud's disease. I needed to take a break on shore and shake the blood back into my hands, which hurt a bit - I definitely should have done this earlier. After that, my hands were fine for the rest of the session, and the only time I used the tubes was when my hands had gotten wet after bad jibes.
Nina, who has more "normal" hands, used the tubes only at the beginning, and her hands stayed toasty for the whole session afterwards. This is probably what most windsurfers who test the suit will experience. I'd love to test this theory by letting others try my wetsuit, but I have one little problem with it: I really do not want to go back to my older semidry and drysuits that do not have tubes! And Nina has similar thoughts about the size medium suit that was intended for testing...
Well, after two hours of windsurfing on a sunny day and lots of fun, I'm happy. I am still amazed how well the Ianovated wetsuit works - for the most part, it simply makes the cold disappear. I admit to sailing a tad defensively today, but we are already talking about a wave session on Sunday. Not sure if it will happen - Nina's cold has to get better, the snow/rain has to stop in the morning as the forecast predicts, and the wind has to come in as predicted. But even a couple of months ago, we would have not even considered going out for a wave session when temperatures are just above freezing. What a difference a suit makes!
My apologies for sounding like one big commercial, but even though we have sailed through a couple of winters here, I never thought that winter windsurfing could be so much fun.