Tuesday, December 27, 2016

Slick Fun

I don't know if the wind Santa is still around or what it was, but we got another warm and windy day today. WSW, high tide, and a predicted drop called for a session at the Kennedy Slicks. That's one of my favorite spots. Very flat water right next to the breakwater - but it's deep, so no worries about running aground.
Nina likes it shallow, but she nevertheless decided to join me for a speed session. I rigged for the wind, which was hovering around 30 mph - a 6.3 m race sail sounded about right. That would usually mean a 5.0 for Nina, but she believed that the predicted rapid drop in the wind was just waiting for her to get onto the water. So she rigged a 5.8. That's the ancient KA Koncept with a small and high mast cutout. At the bottom of the cutout, the boom is still at Nina's eye level!
I had to struggle a bit with my 6.3 in the gusts, but kept it somewhat under control. But my fighting meant that the 5.8 was way too big for Nina - and a high boom is about the last thing you want when overpowered. But she seemed to be doing fine on her first run out.
I quickly got numbers above 30 knots on my Locosys GW-60 GPS watch. That does not happen very often, so it made me quite happy. But I stopped frequently to keep an eye on Nina, who was struggling. There's absolutely no danger at the Kennedy Slicks - the worst case scenario is that you'd drift for 15 minutes and come ashore half a mile downwind (or perhaps a 20 minute swim if you don't want to walk back). But after a second run out and a bit of struggling, Nina sailed back to shore, and called it a day.

I helped her derig, and stopped sailing a little while later, too. It was a short session with just 7 runs, but 4 had a top speed above 30 knots .. not too bad. Despite the shortness and no playing around at all with gear trim, the session ended up as my third-fastest of the year. I love December sailing!

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