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  #1561  
Old 10-19-2009
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I'd point out that his rescue was facilitated by the fact that he was sitting on the flipped cat's hull—which is much easier to spot than a person floating all by themselves in the middle of nowhere.
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You know what the first rule of sailing is? ...Love. You can learn all the math in the 'verse, but you take
a boat to the sea you don't love, she'll shake you off just as sure as the turning of the worlds. Love keeps
her going when she oughta fall down, tells you she's hurting 'fore she keens. Makes her a home.

óCpt. Mal Reynolds, Serenity (edited)

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  #1562  
Old 10-19-2009
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bubb2 has a spectacular aura about bubb2 has a spectacular aura about bubb2 has a spectacular aura about
Scott, I am glad to all is well.

Back in my younger days I was crewing on a Chi-Mac race. A cat got turned over by a gust right as they were entering the straits of Mackinaw. A crew member did not make it out.
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  #1563  
Old 10-19-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
I'd point out that his rescue was facilitated by the fact that he was sitting on the flipped cat's hullówhich is much easier to spot than a person floating all by themselves in the middle of nowhere.
Yeah, Scott, tell the owner of the boat to re-think that black bottom paint next time. Perhaps something in a fluorescent yellow?
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  #1564  
Old 10-19-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by painkiller View Post
Yeah, Scott, tell the owner of the boat to re-think that black bottom paint next time. Perhaps something in a fluorescent yellow?
I have a theory that black hulls can attract whales. Anyone else with any experience/comments of this?
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  #1565  
Old 10-21-2009
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One of the scariest things is swimming back into the cabin thinking there is an air pocket inside. The air pocket was under the cabin sole. There was nothing but boat soup in the cabin. You might as well not have safety gear on board if you can't find it or get to it. You would be surprised at what I sailed with on my person for the next year until the fear tapered off to a healthy respect.
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  #1566  
Old 10-21-2009
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Just another voice to say that we're glad you're OK. You wear whatever you need to feel comfortable.
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  #1567  
Old 10-21-2009
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A couple of years ago my brother and I took off after breakfast in an old fiberglass boat with a new 4-stroke on totally glassy water. We diagonaled over a small boat wake and the boat rolled 180. We had been sitting on our jackets. They stayed stuck to the seats and the old, non-compliant boat went straight to the bottom with the jackets. It was a 1-1/4 mile swim to shore. I doubt we would have made it but were picked up by a fisherman. I wear my jacket now. Its amazing how fast things can turn to crap.
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  #1568  
Old 10-23-2009
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Okay - XS is obviously too humble to pimp the story so I'll be happy to do it...it's just too insane to not have here...

(I've X'd the last name to cut down on the groupies that would otherwise be following him around)

Waterspout flips 32-foot catamaran
July 19, 2006

Scott X knew he might be in trouble when he saw the white wall of water. A tornado had just skipped off land into the Atlantic off Jacksonville Beach, Fla., and it was churning toward him.

“I had only a couple of minutes to react,” says X, 43, who was delivering a friend’s 32-foot sailing catamaran April 9 from upriver of Jacksonville to St. Augustine, Fla. Anticipating some big gusts, he eased the traveler and main sheet. Then the unthinkable happened.

The twisting tower of water “lifted the boat up 20 to 25 feet in the air, and it started rotating,” X says. The waterspout flipped the Gemini and slammed it deck-down into the water. X was thrown from the aft end of the cockpit into the cabin.

“I had to swim out,” he says.

As he struggled out from under the boat, his leg became tangled in loose radar arch cables. He ripped most of the tip off one finger and gashed his thumb trying to free himself. After surfacing, he climbed onto the underside of the deck between the hulls.

He was wearing just a T-shirt, shorts and boat shoes. It was 5:30 p.m., and a front was moving through, bringing cold rain and wind. The Gemini had capsized four miles southeast of the St. Johns River, 2-1/2 miles off the beach, but it might as well have been 50 miles. X says he knew if he was going to spend the night out there, he would have to keep warm.

“It was all about fighting off hypothermia until somebody found me,” he says. It also was about staying with the boat. That night he would look longingly to shore and see traffic lights changing and the flashing neon signs of the beach bars. He was tempted to try and swim to shore or take the kayak he had lashed to the back of the boat.

But he resisted the urge. “Stay with your boat,” X had always told his sailing students. He decided to follow his own advice.

He dived back under the boat and into the cabin to find a life jacket and warm clothes. He searched for the PFDs he knew the owner had stowed somewhere on the boat but couldn’t find them. He tried to find his own life jacket, which he had left on the chart table. It had flares, a flashlight and a strobe hanging on it. He couldn’t find that or the hand-held VHF that also had been on the table. All he could grab in the few minutes he had to swim through the cabin on one breath of air were a foul-weather jacket and a 4-foot-long foam seat cushion.

Back on the overturned boat, he wrapped his torso in the foam cushion and zipped the jacket on around it. Then he flipped up the hood and drew the strings tight around his head, and slipped the T-shirt over the jacket.

X was ready to hunker down and wait for rescue. He thought the storm would send a lot of anglers scurrying back to port, but only one came his way — just 50 yards distant. The helmsman was bucking head winds and seas and driving rain. X is sure he never saw the cat. That night two freighters passed within a stone’s throw of him. X at first was hopeful someone would spot him on radar, but no one did, which scared him because then he thought the ship might run him down.

Cold rain and hail pelted him. Lightning struck on the water around him. Winds that night shifted from onshore to offshore, kicking up 3- to 5-foot seas. Waves knocked him off the overturned hull eight times. Each time he crawled back on and tried to dig his fingers into the space between the retractable centerboards and the side of the keel box to hold on. His hands became numb, and he shivered uncontrollably.

The catamaran’s mast was dragging on the bottom, the boat drifting in a mile-diameter circle. The tide wasn’t carrying him out to sea, nor was it taking him ashore, as X had hoped.

In Charleston, S.C., where X has been working as shipwright on the tall ship Spirit of South Carolina, his wife, Karen, was worried. He had left a float plan: He would be sailing close to shore — no farther out than 15 miles — and he would be into St. Augustine by 8 p.m., no later than 10 p.m. He had told her if he hadn’t called by midnight, something was awry.

Karen X called the Coast Guard shortly after midnight. The agency sent a helicopter out before dawn — X heard it — and a C-130. The 87-foot cutter Kingfisher based out of Mayport, Fla., set out about dawn to search between Jacksonville and St. Augustine. On its first pass south just 10 minutes out of Mayport, the Kingfisher crew spotted X.

“He was sitting on one of the hulls, and as soon as he saw us he stood up and started waving his arms at us,” says Lt. j.g. Matthew Baker, Kingfisher’s commanding officer.

Kingfisher’s small-boat crew took him aboard. “The amazing thing about this story is that he was in the water for 15 hours,” says Baker. “When we picked him up, he still was in excellent condition, all things considered.” The water was 68 degrees. X’ body temperature had dropped 2 degrees, but he was alert and moving about.

“This is always a rewarding job,” says Baker. “But it’s extra special when we can get someone back to their family like this.”

X, whose home is in St. Augustine, was taking the boat from 60 miles up the St. Johns River to St. Augustine for repairs and delivery to Annapolis, Md., for sale. The capsized Gemini eventually broke its mast and grounded upside-down on the beach with most of its cabin torn off. Flipped right-side up and dragged off the beach, the water-logged boat eventually sank in breakers in 25 feet of water while under tow.

X sums up the passage gone awry: “It was a long, cold night.”
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  #1569  
Old 10-23-2009
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Humble, now there's a word not often used to describe me! I've single-handedly crossed both the Atlantic and Pacific, kayaked many a first descent over 50-75ft waterfalls, climbed to the top of the tallest peaks of most of the continents, and braved marriage not once but twice. The point I was trying to make in my post is that whether you go looking for it or not, given enough time on the water, IT will find you. I am very methodical in all that I do.[Karen and others who know me say I'm anal or at least an a$$] No matter how proactive you are on the water, you are still only perfect here on Sailnet. On the water , you can only hope to understand the rules well enough to stay in the game, you'll never win it. I was fortunate to know enough to get to go home to my wife, son , and unborn daughter. We all read about people we think did stupid things, paid the price, and we say "What an idiot, I would never have done that!" We all have our moments. I was glad that I didn't spend the night out there with anyone else.Don't get me wrong, I'm never one to back down from much of anything, but when it's back in my face, should I be surprised? When you read about someone having "a long, cold night," remember that , in time , they may be reading about you. No matter how well you plan,life can always come up with something you never even thought of.
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  #1570  
Old 10-26-2009
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bubb2 has a spectacular aura about bubb2 has a spectacular aura about bubb2 has a spectacular aura about
It's been a while, That I have taken the boat out on a overnight sail. I left the dock at 5:30 pm Saturday knowing that storms were being called for. The only the thing storm really bother was the Yankee's ball game. I got soaked and it was a little rough for a bit, however I was enjoying myself.

I love sailing at night as it clears my mind. Just me and the boat. I just haven't done enough of it this season. Last night reaffirmed why I love sailing after all these years. It is magical. The sky cleared and the stars were out when I was pulling back into the Marina at 4:00 am this morning,

I am sorry for the quality of the pics. It was blowing and raining and the boat was moving. The bigger truth is, I need to learn how to use my wifes fancy digital camera.

New York's First Lady


Ground Zero from the water
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Last edited by bubb2; 10-26-2009 at 06:04 AM.
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