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post #21 of Old 08-29-2013
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Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Baytown Texas
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Re: The Perils of Rafting On

I raft up occasionally, plan to do it this weekend. Learned from one adventure that it can go wrong quickly. We were a three boat raft with one boat anchored. We were mostly all in the water swimming with the anchor boat owners dingying around visiting with other friends in other rafts. A sudden wind shift due to a passing T-storm out on the bay caused us to start dragging. There were very many other boats and rafts in the area. I quickly got into my boat (a power boat at the time) and began pulling in lines we were using to keep us from drifting away while floating around and swimming. The anchor boat's owners showed up while we were trying to get squared away. He started his engine and promptly wrapped a stray line around his prop. Meanwhile we were drifting down toward the next line of rafted boats. I attemped to start my engine to try and take some tension off the anchor and slow us down so the anchor would set. I promptly wrapped my prop. So, into the water I and the anchor boat owner go to clear our props. As we were doing this, the 3rd boat in the raft began to untie and get clear of the raft but before getting clear, the anchor boat's bowsprit poked a hole in the plexi window in the side of their boat. About the time we got the props cleared and began breaking the raft up, we came down on the next line of boats. We fended off, got past them without any more damage being done and split up. we then re-anchored and enjoyed the rest of the day. I learned a lot from this incident and now own the sailboat that got a hole poked into it. I'm much more careful and aware of conditions when rafted up now and will quickly break off if I see something that looks funny or conditions begin to change.

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