Monday, 4 August 2014

HISC drag race

Bit breezy today...

A contrast to last weekend where there had been very little wind; when I got to the boat today it was blowing force 4 with occasional wicked gusts coming through.. took the decision early to reef the main so put in two rolls. Reefs in, and it had been so long since I've had to do this (September last year according to my logs) that I made a schoolboy error, more of which later...

I was early but managed to get off the mooring by about three hours before high tide..

With a WSW it was a good direction and having motored up wind off the mooring I hoisted main as I approached the bridge (and the new main halyard, ex-topping lift, was an improvement..) and the engine went off almost immediately as I turned, for a fast run down the channel; averaging 2 and 3 knots down wind and against a strong tide..  the gusts were the issue and I noticed that some of the sail slides were out of the track, yes that was the schoolboy error...  when I reefed on the mooring I'd hoisted the sail, removed the clip that holds the slides in the track when the sail is down, reefed, and then dropped the sail but had forgotten to put in the clip so three or four had dropped from the track... didn't matter as I had too much main anyway, so I need another reef.

For the first time in Sparrow I hove to (successfully..  most chuffed!), dropped the main slightly so as to put the slides back in, rolled in another reef, replaced the clip (!) and off we went...  brilliant, was very pleased with myself..

That was largely it..   a quick trip as I only had two or three hours; I managed to get to HISC, against a big tide, inside of an hour and a half superb conditions, an easy beat all the way down the harbour... the wind was the perfect direction.

Just off HISC I turned for home and the wind direction then became a broad'ish reach...  with the last legs of the tide under me I clocked 7.3 knots over the ground, she was flying...  most of the way she didn't drop under 6...

Bore up as I entered Northney channel for a beat to Sweare Deep, and then engine on for a return to the mooring as the wind continued to rise..  brilliant afternoon.


Distance: 9.47 miles (cumulative total in the 2014 mileage tab at the top of the page)
Wind: WSW Force 4, later force 5 gusting 6..
Sail Plan: Reefed main and genoa - engine for manoeuvring....
Speed: GPS track says max speed was 6.5 knots (that was under sail, and I saw 7.2/7.3 under sail a couple of times) - average speed 3.4 knots

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