Hobie Forums

After Earl ... the Big Blow
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Author:  PassWind [ Fri Sep 03, 2010 7:54 pm ]
Post subject:  After Earl ... the Big Blow

Here on Long Island NY, Hurricane Earl turned out to be pretty much a non-event - but the low pressure wave that helped sweep Earl away has set up a beautiful blow for tomorrow ...

... we're set for 18mph winds in the morning growing up to 25mph or so just after mid day. The ocean is pretty churned up with high waves and such so I'll stay in our north shore harbor but I must admit, I'm almost trembling with excitement !!

I've been waiting for this since I bought my AI in May ... I dont think I'll be able to sleep tonight

Author:  Cowsgomoo [ Fri Sep 03, 2010 9:15 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Just remember - didn't happen without pics! :D

Look forward to the trip report

Author:  toomanyboats [ Fri Sep 03, 2010 10:26 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Today (Fri) we felt some of Hurricane Earl even here in western Maryland. Winds varied A LOT - mostly it stayed in the 10 to 20 mph, but we had frequent gusts to 27 mph. The boat ramp at my local lake is at the end of a fairly narrow dog leg, so it took awhile just to tack into the main part of the lake - but after that, it was great sailing. First time I ever had to use a reefed sail. It ended much too soon, when dark storm clouds came out from behind the mountain ridge. (They move pretty quick when it's blowing like that!) So much for the 20% chance of rain...

With our recent posts about lightning, I thought I better cut the excitement short - just to be safe. At least there was no worry about getting back to the boat ramp: Down wind all the way. And it didn't matter that I wasn't quite fast enough to get the AI strapped down and road-ready before the rain started, I was already wet.

Saturday promises 10 to 15, starting early in the morning, and building to maybe 20 by afternoon. I just may have to give 'er another go tomorrow. :D

Author:  whosyerbob [ Sat Sep 04, 2010 2:07 am ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Earl was a non-event for us. We were crossing the Chesapeake Bay Bridge during the peak and it wasn't raining or even blowing hard. Looks to be better down around Cape Charles, Virginia today, though…

Author:  toomanyboats [ Sat Sep 04, 2010 10:47 am ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Bob - I think the wind must come (and go) in long cycles. Yesterday, during the late morning, the wind was very nice when I decided to finish chores and go sailing. Later, as I was loading the trailer, the wind was practically nil and I kicked myself for missing a good blow. I went anyway, and lucky for me, by the time I was set-up at the lake and ready to launch, the wind came back - with a little something extra.

Today (Sat) WeatherBug predicts an even higher wind range than yesterday, and this time with gusts over 30 mph. I'm afraid that kind of sailing is now out of my league. Yesterday I was probably pushing it, compared to what I usually sail.

Don't get me wrong: I enjoyed my sail yesterday. (Exhilarating is the word I'm looking for.) But not two days in a row, with increased wind. For those that can handle it, though - Go for it, and sail hearty!

Author:  PassWind [ Sat Sep 04, 2010 9:29 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Cowsgomoo wrote:
Just remember - didn't happen without pics! :D

Look forward to the trip report

It was Fun ...


... up until the rudder pin gave up on me, then the suckage began

Actually, it wasn't too bad getting back in - it was almost a straight downwind run back to the launch, about 3/4 of a mile away. I furled about 90* of the sail and paddle-ruddered it back in. If I wasn't running, the flavor of suckage would have been quite a few shades closer to brown

but ... for about an hour and a half I was ripping. A couple of times, if I wasn't out on the tramp I think I might have gone over when the ama/aka buried and the tramp started digging in.

Seems tame compared to some of the big surf video's I've seen, but it was a first for me mixing it up with serious chop and strong winds in the AI. I'll admit, a few times I was wondering wtf I was doing out there ... but I've been a water rat my whole life and done some pretty stupid stuff before, so I figured at 48 it wasn't time to quit yet.

I know Im no video star so go easy on me :wink:

PS - the boat at ~2:40 is a police boat going to the rescue of 2 guys in a small sailboat who flipped and couldn't recover.

Author:  Slaughter [ Sun Sep 05, 2010 1:59 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Great stuff Alan. Great fun though hey. Bet it was certainly worth a rudder pin. Do you know the wind speed ? Looks like it's close to the limit for an AI. I've been in 28 knots and thought that anything more would have been more trouble than it was worth. I reckon at 30 knots tacking would almost be a backwards step.

Anyone else care to comment ?

Author:  ReefWraith [ Sun Sep 05, 2010 2:32 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Now I'm green with envy Alan. :mrgreen: My 'better half' convinced me it wasn't the best idea to tempt Earl in our TI. I should have listened to the little red guy on my shoulder! :twisted: Looks like fun!!

Author:  captain-max [ Sun Sep 05, 2010 2:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Wind increased throughout the afternoon yesterday during our outing, until I'd guess it at mid-20's. Once reefed, and not letting the ama continuously submarine, I was really moving. I think the TI could have coped OK with 30 knots, with a bigger reef in.

BUT, this was on a river, in relatively flat water. My guess is that on exposed waters with significant wind waves, it could well be a different story, and may be difficult to make any meaningful forward progress whilst tacking.

Author:  Slaughter [ Mon Sep 06, 2010 5:19 am ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Although Max, dunno what it's like in the river where you are at Port, but on Lake Macquarie, the conditions at 20 knots are alot more challenging than in the open ocean. The sea kayaker agree and practice in the Lake cause they reckon if you can handle the chop in the Lake, you're better prepared to handle the same wind speeds outside. I'd guess that the swell of the open ocean must flatten the chop.

Author:  captain-max [ Mon Sep 06, 2010 3:56 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

See your point there Slaughter. Lake Mac is no doubt 'wide' enough for the wind waves to build up. Used to sail in the Whitsundays, where you don't get an ocean swell, but we sure used to get a nasty short steep chop when the wind got up!

I think the river isn't wide enough for the chop to build up to the same degree?

Author:  whosyerbob [ Tue Sep 07, 2010 2:47 am ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Today marks the end of the Hurricane Earl holiday for us. We came down to Cape Charles just as Earl was passing through on Friday but didn't go out. We had screaming winds on Saturday and hit the highest speeds we've ever achieved with the TI (15 - 18 mph steady) - so much wind that the sail's back edge was flapping like a flag. Sunday was unsettled; we had good wind early, then it died, then it came back again for the return to the ramp. Monday - a US holiday - we had winds much higher than what was forecast and sailed halfway across the Chesapeake Bay before crossing over the Bay Tunnel and coming back in the Atlantic waters; we also encountered the roughest conditions and worst currents during this sail.

Author:  angusisthedevil [ Tue Sep 07, 2010 2:52 am ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

So is it man or machine that can't cope with 30 knots?

Any guide for a newbie on when to reef and how much?

What about downwind also??? Reef as well?

Has anyone been crazy enough not to reef in 20 plus knots?? If so what was the result?

I know in my powerboat the operational conditions are generlly not limited to the boat but the conditions of the now green passengers...as a general rule!!!

Author:  dosjers [ Tue Sep 07, 2010 4:38 am ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

They say that if you are on a well found boat there can come a time when the weather gets so bad that the crew will be down below on their knees praying to God to save them while the boat just keeps handling the weather on its own. The big problem I see with my TI is that I can't fit through an 8 inch hatch.

Author:  DoublSss [ Tue Sep 07, 2010 1:23 pm ]
Post subject:  Re: After Earl ... the Big Blow

Mitch.. I'm sure I'm not the only one waiting to see the videos!!

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