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post #8 of Old 05-26-2011
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Join Date: Feb 2011
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I'm new to sailing so I'm pretty conservative. I tend to prefer 12-15 kts, hopefully with gusts not over 20. I haven't tried to reef my main yet, but I suppose if I did I could handle a bit more. I only have one headsail, a 110 hank on, so I'm limited there.

I went out once in my ideal conditions, and while out there winds increased, 20 kts steady with gusts to 30. I was not prepared for that...not reefed or anything. I was only on the main and when it happened the boat became quite a handful. I was literally fighting the helm, the boat was trying to round up (didn't know what that was until then) heeling way over and generally scared the **** out of me. My mouth was dry, heart was racing...but I figured out really quick to work that mainsheet constantly, easing out and trimming up as needed, and as soon as I felt that strong puff to let that puppy out and spill some wind. As soon as I got under the protection of a cove I doused and had like 5 smokes before I motored back in.

Lesson learned.

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1982 Catalina 25 #2897
Eagle Mountain Lake, Texas
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