Puget Sound vs Lake Washington - SailNet Community
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post #1 of 30 Old 07-16-2012 Thread Starter
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Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

Hi,

New to the forums. I'm trying to pick up a sailing club to join and take classes and would appreciate any advice you can provide. I've narrowed it down to 1 in Puget Sound and 1 in Lake Washington. I read previous posts and they both received favorable comments so my only concern is which body of water would be good both for learning and to hold long term interests in sailing since both clubs require at least 1 year for their memberships.

The Lake Washington club is much closer to me so would be conducive to more boat time especially after office hours but I'm also very interested in exploring the Puget Sound when I'm better qualified which means around 3 hours from the Lake Washington club and go through the locks to get to Puget Sound.

As a novice, is it better to start and do maybe 1 season in Lake Washington or should I take the longer drive (another 40 minutes further out) to the Puget Sound club right away? If I take Lake Washington, are there enough learning and exploring in the lake to make the 1 year worthwhile?

Thanks in advance for any info.
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post #2 of 30 Old 07-16-2012
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

I'd go for the closer to home club for the first year, spend more time on the water sailing then commuting either by boat or car to the Sound. . You will meet plenty of folks with boats over on the Sound to sail with, a year goes by pretty quick. Good luck!
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post #3 of 30 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

I learned to sail in Lake Washington, go for what is close and you can log the most time on. Water is water, when you want to venture out the locks it's only three hours, and a pretty interesting trip. Have fun!

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post #4 of 30 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

I too learned in Lk washington at the Neptune sailing club back in the day that it took up the property where david e brink park is. Reality is, there are a couple of programs on lk washington, and two out of shilshoal that will work for learning. As others have said, the closer may be the better option initially. IIRC it has smaller keel boats than two I know of at shilshoal. Lk washington in kirkland can get plenty rough at times.

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post #5 of 30 Old 07-17-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

Thank you for all the feedback. Good to hear the vote of confidence for Lake Washington and the shorter commute. I was mainly concerned if lake sailing will remain interesting for a full year vs the sound but looks like it's a good bet for at least my first season.
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post #6 of 30 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

For the first year you'll be too preoccupied with the actual sailing to really pay that much attention to where you happen to be doing it

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post #7 of 30 Old 07-17-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

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Originally Posted by PaulinVictoria View Post
For the first year you'll be too preoccupied with the actual sailing to really pay that much attention to where you happen to be doing it
Thanks for the advice. For the next year, I'll try not to think about images of orcas and dolphins with the Olympic Mountains in the background.
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post #8 of 30 Old 07-17-2012
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

What part of lk washington will you be in? IT can get pretty rough up near Juanita bay with a 30+ knot wind day, ie 3-4' waves, even 2-3' in downtown kirkland then obviously bigger as you go north to Juanita bay. That is the roughest area I have sailed. Altho just south/north of the bridges on a windy day with the waves going into and backwards is not fun either, so stay away from the south side plenty if a south wind, north in a north wind. I90 is usually worst in a north wind, 520 for a south wind, as the fetch is greater in those two cases. That is my experience from sailing the lake, and driving across the bridges over the years.

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post #9 of 30 Old 07-18-2012 Thread Starter
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

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What part of lk washington will you be in? IT can get pretty rough up near Juanita bay with a 30+ knot wind day, ie 3-4' waves, even 2-3' in downtown kirkland then obviously bigger as you go north to Juanita bay. That is the roughest area I have sailed. Altho just south/north of the bridges on a windy day with the waves going into and backwards is not fun either, so stay away from the south side plenty if a south wind, north in a north wind. I90 is usually worst in a north wind, 520 for a south wind, as the fetch is greater in those two cases. That is my experience from sailing the lake, and driving across the bridges over the years.

marty
Thanks Marty. I expect to be mostly north of 520 in the beginning, around magnuson park/kirkland area. I didnt know Juanita Bay can get that rough. Judging by last weekend, there was hardly any wind although the club staff assured me there's wind further out from the docks. I guess this weather pattern only lasts same amount as our sunny days.
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post #10 of 30 Old 07-19-2012
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Re: Puget Sound vs Lake Washington

I lived and grew up on the water half way between Kirkland and Juanita bay, back in the days the the little golf course was up at the north end. I could see the water, people to the south had waterfront where I kept the 8' pram I built and sailed in that area. Their would be 3-4' waves when we had some of the higher wind days. MOST of the time, figure if you see a 12-18" wave you will be doing good! The bay itself by the park on the north end, will get some of the rollers, but being as the bay is all of maybe 20' deep thru out, a majority of the waves get washed up/out before hitting the beach, but even so, some BIGGER rollers yet get thru.

The area off of shilshoal is also fairly protected as is the kirkland waterfront, so it is not too bad to learn in. If you were trying to be off of Edmonds as I am now, we weem to get some BIGGER waves here due to fetch, and there also seems to be a bit of a wind funnel, so winds will be 5-10 mph greater here than 5 miles north or south. It does pay to find out, know the area you are in, if any funky wind shifts will occur etc.

good luck and have fun

Marty

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