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post #8 of Old 07-17-2009
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Originally Posted by Sabreman View Post
On a side note, I think that everyone should be able to sail up to their slip. It's not necessarily easy, but an important skill to develop.
Nice in concept, but not always possible and certainly not always wise. Our slip is in a... hmmm... I'd guess maybe... 100' (30.5m) wide canal (I'm estimating this based on feeling it's about three of our boat-lengths across), with boats on both sides, we're at the end of the canal, and there be rocks there. Certainly possible with a smaller boat, but not with anything 30' (9m) or more--not when the slip is 90 deg. to the length of the canal, anyway. With a stiff wind from the "wrong" direction, it can even be a challenge under motor. (Besides which it's a private canal and I suspect the other residents would probably raise Cain about us doing such a thing. The Sheriff doesn't even want us sailing up/down the much wider creek leading to it or the even-wider-than-that river "next door," and have ticketed sailboats for doing so unnecessarily, I understand.)

Originally Posted by Sabreman View Post
I just hate to rely on a powerboat to tow me home. How degrading....
*shrug* You gotta do what you gotta do. I guess I don't have the abhorrence for power-boats that many sailboaters do. (Good thing, because we own one of those, too .)

Yeah, getting bailed-out by a power-boat is embarrassing. Had it happen twice in our first season. There's a small "island" in the middle of a lagoon that connects our canal to the creek that leads to the lake. Depth drops from 8' to 3' (2.4m to 3m) in no time, if you get too close to that thing. We draw 5' (1.5m) . First time a small power-boat pulled us off. Second time two outboard-powered dinghies pushed us off.

I'll never forget the 1st time. I'd been at the helm. I'd just looked at the depth gauge. I had thought I'd been giving that lump of dirt and weeds sufficient berth. The depth had been remaining relatively constant at the distance I'd been giving it. Just after I looked up from the depth sounder, Abracadabra just kind of slowed to a gentle halt. Looked down at the depth sounder just in time to see it go from 4' (1.2m) to "I can't measure this" mode.

The funny thing is The Admiral (who had given me a bit of hell for running us aground) did the same thing the next time out!

In neither case were we grounded hard. I probably could've kedged us off, and would have, too, had volunteers not shown up to help.

(We seem to have a penchant for running new-to-us-boats aground. Just a couple days ago I managed to "find," with the outdrive on our new-to-us little power-boat, an uncharted and unmarked sunken, rock-laden barge some jerk had put down there 100 years ago to reduce shoreline erosion .)

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