Thursday, March 26, 2015

Warm Weather Session

The forecast predicted wind in the mid-20s and warm temperatures - almost 20ºF than what we have gotten used to! No more ice on the water, either (well, at least not at Kalmus - Cape Cod Bay is a different story). Considering that my last session was a full 14 days ago, I'm sure you understand that I just had to overlook a few minor less-than-perfect details in the forecast. Who cares about rain and fog, anyway? And thunderstorms are always in the forecast when a warm front pulls through, but they rarely happen. Since the water temperatures are still near 32ºF, the actual air temperatures at the shore were closer to 40 than to 50ºF - but warm is warm!

I almost got Marty to join me, but there were too many unknowns - would the fog lift? Would the wind come at 5 pm, as predicted, or at 7 pm, when it got dark? Would we get wind at all, or would we get the dreaded decoupling?

So when the wind picked up shortly past 5, I went alone. I almost turned around when I got close to the ocean, since the fog was quite dense at spots. But since I was already in my Ianovated wetsuit, I drove on to Kalmus, where the fog was not too bad - I could see the water from the parking lot!

Out I went, with less than an hour before it got dark. The wind had picked up while I was rigging, and I was very well powered on my 6.0 in 25 mph averages. I had to think of "the deaf, dumb, and blind kid" in The Who's Tommy. Not that I felt like a wizard, no - I just did not see or hear much. Most of the time, though, I was able to see the shore. And the water state was very lovely, with nice swell coming in with the straight onshore wind, and occasionally toppling over. 

I took the opportunity to get used to the cold water. Not just once, no - at almost every jibe! Winter is my favorite time of the year to work on my waterstarts, and the high tide helped to keep my feet off the ground most of the time when I fell. But I wore a second layer of neoprene under my Ianovated wetsuit, so I was toasty and warm. Thanks to heavy use of the blow tubes, my hands stayed warm enough in the open palm mittens, and I did not need to take a hand warming break. Even after two years in the suit, it still amazes me how well the hand warming system works! 

The rain had taken a little break to let me rig and sail, but it started up again just as it was getting darker, so I called it a day. Here are today's GPS tracks:

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