Thursday, June 30, 2005

Thursday night 06/30

The boat had a full crew tonight! Lori, Tim, Teri, Pete, Chad, Joyce, and me. Conditions were perfect, 8-12 kts out of the SE. RC was about 400 yds NE of Charles Island, giving us a course to Pond Point, back to start, to Welches Point, and finish at the RC.

Here I am steering before the race. Check out the fake look of concentration on my face as I try not to laugh.

The fleet before the start.

Chad and Lori keep watch on the starboard side.

"Spitfire", the Tripp 47, rocks toward Welches Point.

Tim is awarded with a cold beer after a race well run. Great job crew!

These are preliminary results as posted by Jim Gregory of "Spirit". Nice job getting the results done so quickly!

Sunday, June 26, 2005

Commodore's Cup Race (and kegger)

Commodore's Cup races today.

Joyce steers between races.

Conserving my energy.

Chad takes us by the committee boat.

Joyce's imitation of a new superhero: The Preventer!

"Straight Up', with Tina and Christian, along with John Jaser on a powerboat, did a great job on RC.

Joyce, seen here between races, never passes up a chance for a nap.

Post-race we enjoyed the "Commodore's Kegger" at MYC.

Preliminary race results show we got a 3rd place overall out of seven boats total. I'll have to look at the detailed results, but apparently we may have missed 2nd place by only a few seconds! Which goes to show why you never stop racing, regardless of where you are on the course.

Thursday Nite Race: June 23rd

Perfect night for racing. Secret stepped up and did a great job performing RC tonight!

We had a full crew for the race.

Joyce and Chad during the leeward leg.

The courageous captain confidently commands his crew.

Tim, Teri and Lori maintain our slight lead over "Tippecanoe", the other J/30 in the race tonight.

Here's one of the reasons we love doing this.

After an exciting finish, Tim and Lori enjoy a cool beverage at the dock.

Pete and Teri similarly partake in a post-race drink while enjoying the sunset.

Monday, June 20, 2005

Moonlight Cruise to PJ

Last weekend was our sailing club's "Moonlight Cruise to Port Jefferson", the annual nighttime crossing for a weekend-long cruise[ along with the "Summer Sailstice" event, celebrating the beginning of Summer. This year we didn't have much in the way of participation, but that didn't stop us from having fun.

We left earlier than usual, since nobody else was going over Friday night. We made nearly the entire trip in daylight, and witnessed some spectacular sunset images. (Click on the pictures below to see a larger version)

Already at the mooring were Mike and Britta with their dog Napper on "Sea Hound". We rafted up and spent a few hours chatting and drinking wine under a moonlit sky.

Saturday was a beautiful day. We took the dinghy to the beach and spent a few hours beachcombing. Back on the boat we had lunch, then Mike and Britta had to leave to be home by early evening.

Later in the day Pete and Teri showed up with their boat "Wild Eyes" after completing a cross-Sound race from Branford. We rafted up and then joined the rest of the Branford Yacht Club racers on the beach for a party.

That night the wind started howling after midnight, so it was a little difficult to sleep. At dawn, somehow a huge bunch of trees, with 5-inch thick branches and leaves, had gotten fouled in our mooring lines and on our keels. So Teri and I took the dinghy and with the help of Joyce and Pete we wrangled the trees loose and towed them into shore (to prevent them from fouling other boats down-current of us). We both got splashed in the chilly waters, but we managed to free our boats.

Around 11AM Pete and Teri left in the brisk NE winds. We followed around noon, and after a good start the winds lightened up to the point that we were down to 2 knots the last couple hours. We got back home around 5PM, sun-soaked and tired. That night I slept for TEN hours; something I can't recall doing in years. Good trip. Happy Summer Solstice!

P.S. - Separated At Birth?

Thursday, June 16, 2005

Wha' happened?!?

What happened to all the nice, balmy, summer-like weather?

It turned into this cold, windy, rainy shit!

This is the weather we had right after the start of the race. I know, because we decided not to race once the wind hit 28 kts. and the waves turned into four-foot speed bumps. Crew included Tim (he wanted to race in spite of the weather), Lori, me and Joyce.

Joyce is steering because tonight is supposed to be the Woman At The Helm race. But the weather turned crappy, with lightning on the horizon and visibility dropping to about 1/2 mile.

We're motoring back to the harbor, and we'll live to race another day. We took a look out at the gulf on the way home, and there were still about four boats out there racing. But the lightning was getting closer, and I hope they got out of there before it really turned nasty.

Hey, it can't ALL be warm breezes and sunshine.

Thursday, June 09, 2005

A Great Night for a Race

Wow, what a fun race tonight. Crew was Joyce, Lori, Tim and me, and damn was it hot in the harbor! We headed out in very light winds, thinking we'd have a boring race.

Wrong! The wind piped up to 18 kts. about ten minutes before the gun, so we decided to go with the #2 genny. We struggled in moderate chop to get the sail changed, then we got everything straightened out just at the 5 minute gun.

Good thing we switched, 'cause the pre-start was wild. We luffed up about a minute before the gun, then powered up at the pin end of the line. We nailed the start, with position and perfect timing, hitting the line just at the gun and fully powered up. The rest of the fleet was well behind us.

The course was DSES, so we needed to get to the Charles Island bell into the breeze. The winds started moderating, so some of the faster boats passed us at the mark, but after we rounded it the crew wanted to change sails. So we changed back to the #1 genny and that helped us the rest of the race.

Joyce steered the last 3 legs (from the sail change onward), and she did a great job. Here she is after crossing the finish line, with a bunch of boats behind us still racing. We can't wait to see the results from this was a blast!

Here's some pictures of the crew enjoying a post race brewski. Good job crew!

Me, Lori and Joyce

Joyce & Tim


Tuesday, June 07, 2005

First cruise of the season

Last weekend we went on our first cruise of the year, over to our mooring at Port Jefferson, Long Island, New York. It's about 13 miles South by Southwest from Milford Harbor, and with good conditions it usually takes anywhere from 2 to 4 hours to cross the Sound.

(Click to enlarge map)

The weather was absolutely PERFECT, with 6-12 kts of 75-80 degree breezes and sunny skies.

Here I am, mid-journey. Yes, I know it's a goofy hat. I don't care, I like it.

Joyce is steering us into the channel at Port Jeff.

Here's a good reason to go to Port Jeff.

Here's another.

Here's a good reason to use suntan lotion. Stick a fork in me...I'm done!
(OK, so I computer enhanced the sunburn in this still hurt!)

Thursday, June 02, 2005

Thursday Nite Race: June 2nd

We were short for crew was Joyce, Chad, and me. Since the Woman At The Helm race is two weeks from tonight, I had Joyce steer for practice.

The course was PSWS; Pond Point, Start, Welches Point, Start. We had weak and shifty winds from the ESE to start, and then they built over the course of the race. By the end it was blowing a steady 15 kts.

Joyce steered right after the start (which I blew by being caught well below the line, but with short crew we were somewhat handicapped), and when the wind shift from ESE to nearly S and picked up considerably, we started going like a bat.

Joyce eventually turned the helm over to me as conditions started getting a bit much for her. We didn't do too bad, considering our start. We'll work on getting better position at the line next week.