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post #11 of 16 Old 08-29-2008
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Charlie,

All of that, and no one is tied to the boat? That's a scary description. People go overboard with a lot less weather. I for one was tosssed from my own boat while single-handing. My harness saved me. Everybody on Joy had an Angel sitting on their shoulder that day.
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post #12 of 16 Old 08-29-2008 Thread Starter
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Yep, they had PFD's with strobes but no tethers yet as I didn't have any. This weather came up much harder than was supposed to but hey, that's the way it gets up here I've found. I've learned a few things since then and having tethers for the crew is one of them.
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post #13 of 16 Old 08-29-2008
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A couple of years ago on one of my first "skippering" trips we sailed out of the South River in Annapolis with my 25-year-old nephew (rookie), a gal from my sailing club (thought she was experienced) and a friend I knew from my wife's foxhunting group who I also thought was experienced.

The first hint of what was to come was when a powerboater coming in pulled over to us and shouted that we were gonna love it outside -- it was really blowing. This wasn't quite what we were looking for, as we were loaded with picnic stuff and planning on having a nice lunch on the bay, but we soldiered on.

As we exited the river the winds picked up to a good 20kts, gusts up to 25 or so, coming straight down the Bay and kicking up 3-4' swells. The boat was doing great, but I made the mistake of asking my nephew to go below and make sure everything was secure, and by the time he came up he was green at the gills. The gal was already tossing cookies overside. My other "crew" was sitting placidly in the cockpit like an admiral in his barge.

It was obvious there would be no picnic lunch on the Bay this afternoon, so we decided to head up for the Severn where might find some quiet water, but as soon as we tacked the mainsail split right along a seam. I put her as close to the wind as I could to drop the main; but I had one seasick gal, the Admiral, and my seasick nephew to help. Who's going forward?

My nephew dragged himself forward to the mast, as sick as he was, and sat there clinging to it as he pulled the main down. The Admiral deigned to tied it up once it was down, and by this time my nephew was barely hanging on -- when we came around again he actually fell backwards (PDFs were all on), but managed to grab the mast and hold on until he could crawl back.

We sailed on the jib back to the South River, then fired up the outboard to go back to the marina. By the time we got back everyone felt better, and we had our picnic lunch on their tables.

Pretty good behavior from a seasick rookie, I'd say.
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post #14 of 16 Old 08-29-2008 Thread Starter
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Yep, sometimes the least likely ones step it up.
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post #15 of 16 Old 08-30-2008
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CharlieCobra View Post
Yep, they had PFD's with strobes but no tethers yet as I didn't have any. This weather came up much harder than was supposed to but hey, that's the way it gets up here I've found. I've learned a few things since then and having tethers for the crew is one of them.

Just a thought but with some spare rope and carabiners, shackles, or in a pinch, just spare rope you can make jacklines, harnesses and teathers. I did this once when I was greener and caught in a full gale. Worked great, though I did go buy real harnesses after that experience.

Run a rope from a cleat in the cockpit to the mast and back, or to a sturdy bow bit = jacklines.

Short sections of rope (6ft or so) with a bowline tight around the waist and another arond your "jackline" = a teather.

The tether allows you to walk forward and the bowline will slide along the "jackline". Be sure to calibrate your tether shorter rather than longer as your "jacklines" will deflect some if you load them to the side.

Staying safe = staying on board!

MedSailor

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post #16 of 16 Old 09-01-2008
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Charlie- I do agree with you generally, but have to take exception with one point. ...a guy who's only experience was dinghy sailing the Great Lakes. Sailing in salt water doesn't require anything different than Great Lakes sailing. You ddn't describe anything that doesn't happen on the Great Lakes everyday. That's why the call them GREAT Lakes.
Ditto that. My last trip across Lake Michigan, we had 10-12' seas and 20-25+ kts of wind the entire way across. That may be on the extreme end of things for summer, but once we get into fall and the fronts start pushing down from Canada, it'll be like that but cold, too.

Sure, we may get more than our fair share of days where you can set your beer can or wine glass on the cockpit rail and not worry about it tipping or spilling, but we also get days like that last crossing, where my crew called out, "I think I just saw the Andrea Gail go by trolling for fish!"

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Belmont Harbor, Chicago, IL
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