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Go Back   SailNet Community > Skills and Seamanship > Learning to Sail
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  #11  
Old 06-01-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by sailingdog View Post
The fact that you had to clarify this point speaks volumes about you...
Now that you mention it I coulda swore the guy was talking to the launch driver about some BFS....
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  #12  
Old 06-01-2009
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Hey,

Last year my family and I went out for day sail. The weather FORECAST was for nice weather, no chance of rain. On the way to the boat my wife pointed out some dark clouds and asked me if we should go or not. I assured her that there was no rain, no storms, or anything else to worry about. I checked the weather radar on my mobile phone, no storms.

On the boat, my wife again pointed out some dark clouds, again I reassured her there was nothing to worry about. We raised sail and enjoyed the day. An hour or so later she pointed out dark clouds north of us. I checked the weather radar on my phone, and this time there were storms, but they were north of us and moving further north.

So we were sailing alone, my three kids were playing, I was steering, my wife was lounging in the cockpit. Then I saw it. Then I heard it. To me, it looked like a solid wall of water was approaching us, and it was roaring like a freight train. I looked at my wife and had time to say 'oh sh*t' before the squall hit. I sent my kids below and asked my wife to take the wheel. As we headed downwind, I rolled up the headsail, then sent my wife below. The wind was over 30 kt's, but with just the main up I was able to head upwind and feather the boat. We weren't heeling too bad and five minutes later it was all over.

I now pay a lot more attention to the weather AROUND ME, and I also pay more attention to my wife.

Barry
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  #13  
Old 06-02-2009
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One thing to remember about these squalls, often the first blasts are very vertical and so simply heading up into the wind will not always right the boat. You must release the sheets. As a general strategy, if you see this coming with enough warning, reducing sail is critical. Also closing any open hatches and making sure locker lids can't open becomes critical as well, since the only real threat of a decent condition keelboat sinking in these downbursts comes from downflooding.

The cold air mentioned above is often a clue that you are about to be hit by a downburst, which is air that was heated during the day and rose to a high altitude where it cooled. Cool air is denser than warmer air and so will start to fall through the atmosphere at a very fast rate of speed. When this falling air colides with the water it fans out so the winds will be pointing in different directions around the perrimeter of the downdraft. These are very hard wind conditions to sail through with dignity. It sounds like Slayer did about as good as anyone could have....

Jeff
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  #14  
Old 06-02-2009
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Yep. Nothing quite like coming back to the marina with six feet of kelp in your spreaders.
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Old 06-02-2009
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Yep. Nothing quite like coming back to the marina with six feet of kelp in your spreaders.
Ouch...sounds like an interesting story to share??????????
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Old 06-02-2009
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Quote:
Originally Posted by BarryL View Post

Last year my family and I went out for day sail ...
my wife pointed out some dark clouds and asked me if we should go or not ... my wife again pointed out some dark clouds ...
later she pointed out dark clouds north of us ...
I looked at my wife and had time to say 'oh sh*t' before the squall hit ...

Barry
Barry,

How many decades do you think you'll be hearing about that one!?!

BTW, did you have fun cleaning out the flower garden (as penance) yesterday?
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