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Old 09-22-2008
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CharlieCobra CharlieCobra is offline
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Join Date: May 2006
Location: Bellingham, WA.
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I know it's up here somewhere but I'll relate it again. Up here in the PNW, we rarely get a Texas style thunderstorm but the only one I've ever seen caught me on the lake.

As I rigged the V-21, I could see a thunderhead building SW of me but it didn't look bad at all. I launched the boat, parked the truck and climbed aboard as a couple of light drops fell. Just after I hoisted sail, caught the 3 or so knots of breeze and sailed out from the dock, hail started to fall. I had put on my slicker for the rain and had the hood up but had nothing on my hands yet. Suddenly, the water erupted in geysers that looks like shots from a 20mm cannon and the gust front hit, knocking the boat on her side. She stood up and rounded as I sheeted out quickly and the lightening started going off like flashbulbs at a concert. So here I am, the only boat on the lake, in a raging storm with an aluminum lightening rod hanging in the air, surrounded by metal bits, being pounded on while I'm making maybe a knot or two to windward in this crap. My hands are being pulverized as I sail slowly to the windward side next to a dock. Seeing I couldn't make the dock, I opted for the Lee beach next to it and grounded my keel in the mud. Being in the Lee, the sails were sagging so I hopped in the cabin to avoid the lightening and hail. There I sat, lighting up a butt and looking out the port, waiting for a bolt to come down the stick, not two feet away and fry my ass. Presently, the hail stopped along with the lightening, a light breeze blew and the rain started, lightly. Sensing it was over, the boat came unstuck and started a leisurely beam reach down the lake. I came out to over three inches of ice all over the boat and liked to have busted my butt moving around. It turned out to be a nice quiet sail after that but it taught me that just because you've never seen a certain type of weather somewhere before, don't mean it ain't gonna happen when ya go sailing.
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