Sunday, May 31, 2009

Thursday I was at the Sanibel causeway and was about to rig an 8.5 on my formula board when I started talking to Claus a local windsurfer. He pointed out that the wind was shifting more westerly and would be better on the east island, north side. He also said the water was to shallow for the fin on my formula board. So we moved to the east island and I rigged a 7.0 on my 118L board. The water was flat and some nice gusts were coming through. Claus also warned me about an oyster bar and a few manatees that were feeding in the area. I came across several and swerved around them. I had a good time sailing but wished I had a weed fin.

Monday, May 25, 2009

Last week we had a tropical wave to our south combine with a front that created some weather. In fact we went from drought to deluge. For the most part the wind would build and then drop as a rain cell would pass through. On Wednesday from 5 - 7 pm there was good wind, but I missed it. On Thursday at 5 I arrived at the causeway as Henry, Art and David were finishing up. Alex and Jon were out and Dino was on his way. I rigged a 7.0 on my 118L board and headed out to the House of Refuge. I was out about 20 minutes and catching some huge gusts on flat water and was having a blast but found I was getting over powered. I went to the spoil island and flattened out my sail and headed back to the island. Jon had left and Brandon was out and Dino was rigging. Dino rigged a 5.8 and I went to a 6.0 on my 92L board. I was getting used to the board and switched to a larger fin. The wind stayed up and at times I wished I had rigged a 5.0. We ended up sailing till 8:30 and figured we had better quit as we were becoming a hazard to navigation.

Monday, May 18, 2009

Austin heading towards the House of Refuge

New Toys

Finally, after about a week, (seems longer) of sailing the big stuff, (8.4m+ sails), we had a day where the winds kicked up to a respectable 16-20mph at the causeway. Austin and I showed up at the peak time, ~ 4pm. Andrea was sailing the West Island, while Art, Henry and Dick launched from the East Island. It looked like a perfect 7.2m day for me and Austin opted for a 5.8m sail based on Andrea's observation that her 6.5m sail was becoming too much for her. Battling the chop and waiting for the boat traffic to clear the channel was the worst part of the day, (we should have launched on the East Island). Once we got closer to the House of Refuge, the water was flatter and sailing spectacular. Austin was able to get into both foot straps so he was heading up wind almost as high as I was. We saw Art heading back and later we saw Dave and Brandon trying to come up to the "House", but the wind started dying off by then so we headed back. Dave and Brandon showed up as we were de-rigging. Apparently Dave just made a trip to the West Coast and picked up his new Mistral Syncro, a 92l, 245cm long and 59cm wide board that promises to make Dave into a wave sailor. At the very least, he is ready for the hurricane season.

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Sunday - Arts heading in
We have been experiencing thermals starting to build around 1pm and then fading at sundown for the past 6 days or so. Sunday I was on the water at 3pm and sailed my formula board with an 8.5 for an hour. I was well powered and was tiring out so I switched over to my 118L board and went out for another hour. David and Art were on the water.
Monday after work I arrived at the causeway just as a storm let loose over Palm City. The wind had died and a few sailors were schlogging/swimming there rigs back to the island. Just 30 minutes before the wind line said 21 – 27 out of the south. Now we were getting down drafts out of the north, I was bummed. I was talking with Jon, Dorian, Fred, Ron, David and after a while the wind started to build out of the south. Art who was out previously grabbed a bigger board and headed out. I rigged a 7.0 on my 118L board and followed. Ron on a 9.0 and James on an 8.5 also came out. At first I thought rigging a 7.0 was a mistake but I was fairly well powered. We blasted around out near the House for almost two hours and then the wind backed off. I thought I would have to schlogg back but the wind came up. I ended up making some runs back and forth across the river just in front of both islands. The sun was setting and there was a lot of smoke on the horizon, I guess from the Indiantown fires.

Sunday - Art finishing off a jibe.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Sunday afternoon was better than expected!! I planned to meet Sarah and Frank at the west island so they could continue honing there windsurfing skills. I arrived around 2:00 and the river was covered in white caps and the railings on the bridge were buzzing. Windline said 26 out of the south. I was figuring 10 - 15 and didn't have my 88L board, so the learning session was scrubed. I rigged a 6.0 on my 118L board and pounded my way out to the House of Refuge. Art was already there and we were soon joined by Dino, Austin, Dr Connelly, and Andrea. The water was flat near the spoil island and when you cleared the sandbar heading west you could almost point south because of the wind shift. As you started your jibe occasionaly you could catch huge wind coming down the channel. Heading east it got choppy halfway to the House and flattened out near the east side. We had a great time!

Friday, May 1, 2009

Thursday Dino and I went out before the wind started to slack off. I rigged a 7.0 on my 118L board. We headed out to the House of Refuge and was nicely powered. Made it to the flat water and was making some nice jibes and some nice gusts were coming through. Then the wind seemed to slack off but filled in some as I headed back to the causeway.