Posts Tagged 'wind'

week 2 of junior sailing camp

man time is flying by this summer! my 2 older boys just finished up the 2nd week of sailing camp this year.  conditions were similar to week 1, but Monday was stormy with high winds – my older son sailed only a short time in the morning, and my younger son didn’t sail at all that day.

PYC monday

the rest of the week generally played out about the same each day:  winds were mostly lighter, less than 10 mph each day.  my younger son mostly sailed the Opti, and my older son sailed mostly the FJ and the 420.

to mix it up during this second week, the instructors have a neat activity on Wednesday: the kids all have to sail to a park on the other side of the lake where they have pizza delivered for lunch at the park, and then sail back in the afternoon.  and on Friday, the instructors grill a chicken barbeque lunch to finish off the week.

all told, Ive been very pleased with the Learn to Sail program at Pontiac Yacht Club – a very impressive program, giving students a variety of sailing experiences and a great time out on the water!

week 1 of junior sailing camp

my 2 older boys just finished up the 1st week of sailing camp this year.  similar to last year, we have them enrolled in a 2-week session of junior sailing at Pontiac Yacht Club.  our 13-yr old seems to be getting a lot of opportunities to sail on 2- or 3-person sailboats, and our 9 1/2-yr old is still on the smaller boats (but he’s still a small guy, so it makes perfect sense).

Pontiac Yacht Club is home to the largest fleet of Lightning sailboats in the world (60+ registered boats). there are a whole slew of them at the docks, and a bunch more up on the shore on trailers.

a few weeks earlier, I ordered both boys a shorty wetsuit (2.5 mm neoprene) – it has been a cooler summer, and I was afraid the water temperature would be cooler.  after the 1st week, it seems like maybe they didn’t need them after all – as it has been warmer this week, and the water temperature hasn’t bothered them.

IMG_3910

Monday: 13-yr old sailed most of the day in a Club FJ with one other student, spending most of the day controlling the jib sail.  9 1/2-yr old sailed an Optimist all day, also with another student, each taking turns with the controls.

Tuesday: 13-yr old was stoked when I picked him up – he had a chance to sail a Laser for the first time, and loved it! his exact words were: Club FJ = terrible, Laser = awesome!  9 1/2-yr old sailed an Open Bic for the first time, and he loved it as well – he said he was FLYING across the water!  (I was a bit concerned that he might get stuck in Opti’s for this whole session, so I’m glad he is getting experience in other boats.)

here is a picture of the bigger boats our older son is getting some experience with — on the left is the Club FJ and to the right is a 420 sailboat.  he complains about how the FJ handles – he says it turns too slow, but he really enjoys sailing the 420.

IMG_3965

Wednesday: 13-yr old sailed the Laser some again (flipped it twice in the heavier winds!), and also got to ride in a 420 sailboat.  he mainly skippered the 420 with 2 other students riding along.  this was the 1st day that my 13-yr old wore his wetsuit – he said it worked great, and he could still move comfortably in it while sailing.  9 1/2-yr old was back in the Opti with a partner, but he skippered most of the day. here is Wednesday’s wind forecast (via the Windfinder app):

IMG_3945

Thursday: 13-yr old was only on the 420 this day, mostly as skipper, but a bit of time controlling the jib sail.  9 1/2-yr old sailed a bit in both the Opti and the Open Bic.

Friday: 13-yr old again was a mix of skipper and crew on just the 420 today. 9 1/2-yr old was in the Opti with a partner, but he skippered most of the day. he is our 9 1/2-yr old helping to put away one of the Open Bic sailboats.

IMG_3966

overall, it seems like another great week of sailing – they spend most of the day out on the water, and are getting a ton of experience with the boat handling.  I’m pretty happy for them, and a bit jealous of all the sailing they are getting to do!

 

 

launching a Sunfish in heavy waves [video]

this is a cool video showing the difficulties in launching a Sunfish in the strong winds and heavy wave conditions at Lewes, Delaware earlier this month at the 2013 Sunfish Worlds.  the wind and waves were severe enough that the racers were only able to complete 5 races during the several days of racing.

HT: @sunfishworlds

sailing log 2013-07-28: Lake Erie

just a quick post: took the Sunfish out for a short sail this afternoon on Lake Erie – it was a blast!  strong winds from the south/south-west meant I could zip up and down along the beach, bouncing up and over waves when I was heading south, and surfing on the tops of waves when I turned around and headed back north.

here is a screenshot from my GoPro video camera:

lake erie gopro

will post more details later.

great lakes current map

here is an amazing visual representation created by researchers working at the Great Lakes Environmental Research Laboratory (GLERL) that depicts how the currents are moving across the Great Lakes – this is a screenshot from today:

greatlakescurrent

but you should really check out the website, as it is constantly updating, and you can see the ebb and flow and swirling of the currents out on the Great Lakes.

this visualization is made possible with the same computer code that is being used to create the amazing wind map of the United States.

HT: Huffington Post article

a natural wind indicator?

a while back I posted about making my own wind indicator for sailing in light wind on my Sunfish that uses a piece of PVC pipe to “clamp” right onto the upper spar for my sail.

I thought I was pretty crafty, and it was just about as cheap of a home-made solution as I could come up with, but then I saw this 3rd panel in a comic called “Basic Instructions” by Scott Meyer.

apparently, I just need to sail more often with my shirt off…


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