Sunday, June 26, 2011

Sail #7: The Puppeteer Run

7.4 nm, average speed 3 knots, elapsed time 2:23:31

Very little winds (but NO rain).  Out with Torch, Fly-Bye-Wire, Baby Bird and Midnight Magic for a quiet evening cruise.  The wind was blowing at roughly 5 - 6 knts when we first got out and quickly dropped.  We did have a nice reach across to Malagash and back.  Torch lost the wind completely on their trip back from Cape John.  I attempted to fly the spinnaker but struggled to keep it full in the dropping breezes.  One of the other boats called me a Puppeteer, gien that I was playing with the spin sheet off the stern.

Saturday, June 18, 2011

Sail #6: Summer Solstice Season Opener Race

7.0 nm, average speed 6 knots, elapsed time 1:15:32

Wind warning was in effect for the Northumberland Strait later in the afternoon with mid day winds from 15-20 knots, gusts to 25.  The race fleet agreed to start the race with reefed mains over a shorten course (Start - UD4 - BHYC2 - UD4 - Finish).

We had a full crew (Alan - Judy - Daniel - Mark and Alison M - and Allison) who looked great in their new Exploits t-shirts.  Allison later commented that she was happy we got the quick dry fabric since she spent the race on the rail and got more than one wave over the bow!

The adventure started as we tried to leave the dock.  Strong gusts pushed us sideways and almost into the finger pier.  While we made it out with no damage, Fly-Bye-Wire did take a dock in the side and put a nasty mark in the Awlgrip.  I believe she also left the marina stern first after getting bucked about in the gusts.  Once out in the starting area, we struggled with the reefing set up on the main (which I subsequently changed the minute we arrived back in the marina).  The gusts made it a challenge, however the roller furler made setting the headsail a breeze!

The fomat for the race was a Pursuit start with boats starting according to their handicaps (slowest to fastest).  It's a fun race since in theory, everyone finishes at the same time.  Abigale started 3 minutes ahead of us, followed by Between The Sheets, a minute after them.  Gaila started with us and Fly-Bye-Wire was next and  Nut Case, the fastest baot in the field, started last.

We battled with Gaila the whole way around.  She got on the inside at the first mark (UD4) and took it with ease.  Abigale was still out in front as we made our way to BHYC2.  Nut Case worked her way up wind on the return leg beautifully and shorten the course by almost a 0.5 nm from the rest of us.  She crossed well ahead of the rest of the field.  Fly-Bye-Wire struggled to get the headsail furling to hold and dropped off from Gaila and us.

Gaila had to tack just short of the finish line in order to take the mark on the starboard side.  We opted to fight up wind for the last 100 feet and nosed out Gaila for second place.  In fact the crew noted that our nose crossed first, but Gaila was completely acrossed before we were.  It was an exciting race and an even more exciting finish.

A positive start to the racing season for Exploits.  Many stories were told on the docks after the race as we enjoyed the rest of the afternoon with the great folks at BHYC!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Sail #5: Sunday Brunch With Ally

Soccer schedules and the tides were working against us on Sunday.  Ally wanted to get out for her first sail of 2011 so we headed out very early in the morning in order to be back by noon'ish.  The wind was extremely light, but it was a bonus to have sun on a Sunday so no one seemed to mind.  The crew of Nut Case  and  Fly-Bye-Wire set the race markers and got in with 1 inch of tide below their keel.  Thanks Mikey and Doug.

4.9 nm, average speed of 3 knts, time of 1:47:20

Saturday, June 11, 2011

Sail #4: Go Fly a Kite

Light winds and dropping.  However, it was a bonus to even get out out with Fly-Bye-Wire who had the crew of Baby Bird on board.  Thanks to Fly-Bye-Wire for taking the picture of our new kite!

9.80 nm, average speed of 3 kts (booze cruising), time of 2:52:27.

Sunday, June 5, 2011

Sail #3: Sunday, June 5

Cloudy with a couple of sunny periods.  Still cool.  Nice breeze out of the north, with 1 - 1.5 foot chop (no whitecaps).  Travelled 13.7 nm out to Jollimores, across to Malagash to the end of the point and back to BHYC.  Just Jude and I.  We did reef the new jib for a bit...because we had to and because we could.

While we were out there we got a call on the VHF that we were being moved from our spot at the marina.  Seems marina etiquette is that if you had a slip 2 owners ago but never used it for 2 years while your boat sat on the hard, you can reclaim it if you launch your boat.  We moved and I very much doubt I'll be partying with the crew of All Set any time soon.

Saturday, June 4, 2011

Sail #2: Fly da Kite

Overcast day with light breezes. Jude and I had lunch as we made our way to Jollimores.  We made the turn right in front of the cottage and made for BHYC before the tide stranded us (the channel is getting cleaned out Thursday).  On the way home it seemed like a good idea to fly the spinnaker, a first for us in any boat.

It took me a couple of trys to get it rigged right.  It went up like a charm and the the snuffer made taking it down very easy.  We're gonna love the new spinnaker.  Oh yah and my jury rigged set up worked great...thanks Commodore Joe for the suggestion!

The new guy got wedged in the marina channel, three times.  It was quite a gong show for a while.  It didn't help that he has a bad engine.  It was entertaining if nothing else.