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Old November 5th 03, 06:56 AM
Bart Senior
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Here is a forecast from a few days back:

Forecast as of 9:00 PM EST on November 2, 2003

snip

Mon Night... SW wind 10 to 15 kt becoming variable around 10 kt. Seas
1 to 2 ft.
Tue... Variable wind around 10 kt. Seas around 1 ft. ====This one!
Tue Night... S wind 10 to 15 kt. Seas around 1 ft.
Wed... S wind 10 to 15 kt...becoming SW and increasing to 15 to 20 kt
in the afternoon. Seas building to 2 to 3 ft. Chance of showers and
fog with vsby 1 to 3 nm at times.
snip

Here is the forecast posted some hours after we ducking into Milford
Harbor.

Forecast as of 9:10 PM EST on November 4, 2003

Small Craft Advisory

Overnight Tuesday... E wind around 20 kt...diminishing to around 15
kt. Seas 2 to 4 ft...subsiding to around 2 ft late. Chance of drizzle
or rain along with areas of fog reducing vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
Wed... Se wind around 15 kt...becoming SW 15 to 20 kt during the
afternoon. Seas around 2 ft. Chance of rain or drizzle in the
morning...then occasional showers reducing vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
Wed Night... SW wind around 20 kt early on...becoming W around 15 kt.
Seas 1 to 2 ft. Fog and showers lowering vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
snip

************************************************** *******
My story.

I had volunteered to fix a friends weather fax--a preamplifer in the
antenna needed it's antenna feedline soldered back on, and also agreed
to help move this 44' sloop up to Old Saybrooke, at the mouth of the
Connecticut River. It seemed like a good idea since the weather was
warm and winds were predicted to be light 10 knots 1' seas, and
westerly. So I was looking forward to a warm day's sail, with the wind
behind us the whole way, and a chance of showers late in the day.
Nothing could have been farther from the truth.

The idea was to give the boat a head start on it's annual trip to te
islands. When I arrived at the boat, the winds were from the east and
strong. It was overcast and drizzling. I started having doubts about
going, but didn't want to let my friends down, and it looked like a
day where experienced crew would be in demand. I fixed the weather
fax, checked the receiver, and went to check the weather forecast. It
was the local weather than made me think I should flake out.
Ulitimately, I decided I would go along because I felt that the other
two, one experience, and one inexperienced, really needed another hand
along.

The skipper, a fellow named Tim, was a fine sailor. The other crew
Cecil, was a rookie. Cecil got seasick before we left the harbor, but
was helpful getting the main up.

What was predicted to be a 10 knot westerly turned into a 30-35 knot
easterly. I've never before seen Long Island Sound look like the
Atlantic.

Tim took the helm out of the harbor. Inside the protection of the
islands, the wind felt like about 20 knots. At first we just motored,
and going straight into the waves which kept getting bigger and
bigger. The current was running counter to the wind and we were
looking forward the the change over--thinking this would stop
compressing the waves. Motoring was nearly useless as the boat made
poor forward progress. Once we were in Long Island Sound, with 100
miles of fetch to the east, the seas became very big--at times 10-12
feet, breaking and square, and about 35' apart or less. Soon Tim,
without a foul weather jacket, was getting soaked at the helm.
Buckets of water in the face. I donned my foul weather jacket,
knowing he'd want to put his jacket on and would need to be relieved
soon.

I pointed out that if heeled the boat would not pound so much, and Tim
must have been thiking the same thing. he decided to motor sail and
Cecil and I hoisted the main with a single reef. The boat took off on
a port tack steering between 120 and 135, and motion was somewhat
better.

Tim was good and soaked and became very cold. He was not prepared for
such wind and cold weather, and had not brought enough warm cloths. I
soon found out that while working on deck hoisting sails made me hot,
and at the helm doping less strenuous work, I began to get cold.

Now that we were in the center of Long Island Sound, the winds were
stronger than ever. We still took breaking waves over the bow that
cleared the dodger, every few minutes. I took my eye-glasses off
since I could not see anything with them covered with salt water.
Apparent wind speeds were in the 34-36 knot range. Salt spray stung my
face. The wind and wave continued to build to a maximum of about 35
knots, and then tapered off to about 30 knots again. We were making
about 5 knots way.

I should have put on the autopilot and gotten out of the wind. Frankly
it was fun driving, and I did not realize at the time, how the
combination of the wind and the cold was affecting me. The water was
not terribly cold, but after being relieved from watch, I found my
fingers were stiff and barely functional.

After a long two hour watch, I was very cold. Tim took over again,
since Cecil was sick. I didn't have my hat, which I'm convinced has a
signficant effect on my heat retention. I needed a few minutes
flexing my fingers before I trusted my grip to climb up to the dodger
to get out of the weather.

Off watch and inactive I found I became even colder, and started to
feel slight nausea. I was debating going below to catch a knap or
staying on deck to fight the nausea.

Now I had a good view of the Apparent Wind gauge. It topped out at
39.5 knots apparent. Typically it was 34-36 knots apparent wind speed
depending on how who well the boat was steered. I think the winds
were pretty consistent, it was the boat speed varied the apparent wind
and depended on the size of the waves that hit us and our heading,
which varied substantially. Driving while ducking bucket sized face
shots of seawater was not the best. I was disappointed we didn't hit
40 knots. I wished we were sailing downwind, we could have made it to
NYC in the same time it took to beat this short distance to weather.

I later learned some front that was expected to pass to the north came
more southerly and that is was clobbered us. None of the weather web
sites predicted what actually happened until after the event. None
of them that I could find recorded the winds we saw. Temprature at
6pm was 48 degree F.

Anyway, we began talking about bail out options and Tim revisted his
bail out destination to New Haven. We were adjacent to Stratford, but
our draft would be a problem there. We talked about Milford also.
Milfords Gulf is a nice protected "outer harbor", if we wanted to
proceed, but docking and warm food appealed to all of us.

I ducked down below to try and clean up the mess the cabin was in and
and to fetch a chart. I managed to do that, but that time spent below
turned my stomach, and some time later I discovered that barfed up my
6 hour old breakfast of eggs and toast. Those eggs stuck like glue to
the deck, and added a little color to what had become a dreary day!
Later, I had some dry heaves and Cecil decided to help me sing a duet
in parallel. Hehehe! I feel bad that being sick made him sick, but I
laugh about it now.

Knowing we had to decide quickly if we wanted to make port in
daylight, and with one person very sea sick, and another (me) somewhat
seasick, but functional, and all three of us cold--especially Tim, Tim
bumped up our target to Milford Harbor, and I agreed as I was thinking
along those lines myself. Cecil was beyond caring, unable to comment,
but at least he was warm with a nice knit hat and protection from the
dodger..

I eased the main as we reached off and the boat became more
comfortable. Once we hit the lee of Milford, the sea calmed, even
Cecil felt better.

Later we saw a fireboat, blasting through the waves, completely
obscured as it punched through each wave. One crewman saw us heading
for Milford, and later stopped by at our berth to chat about the
weather when we got in. Every yard worker came out in the drizzle to
ask us about the conditions. Tim and I both told the same story, it
was the worst sea's we had ever seen Long Island Sound, and the 100
mile fetch made it seem like we were in the Atlantic.

Somewhere during the day I decided to haul my boat out for the season.
I don't care how nice the forecasters say it will be this weekend, it
is time to quit for the season.

My brother drove over to Milford and met us, drove us to dinner, paid
for by "glad to be alive" Cecil, and later gave us all a ride back to
our cars.

After going through this with Tim, I feel like I've made a friend for
life. Neither of us had ever seen Long Island Sound that rough. And
we talked about the event. I told him before we left I was considering
"not going out" and he told me he would have gone out, but surely have
turned back sooner without me. Knowing when to quit is good.
Perhaps knowing when not to start is even better. Still, I would not
have given up the experience, because I made two good friends, and
spent and enjoyable dinner with them and my brother Dwight who went
out of his way to help us all out.

In the mean time another more serious story was playing out which we
discussed over dinner...

Another friend of ours, who shall remain nameless, wearing only
shorts, a shirt and foul weather jacket, left about the same time to
pick up a "free" Sabre 28 near Liberty Landing. He planned to pick it
up with a whaler w/40HP motor. He had recently done a quick and dirty
patch to the hole in the boat that sunk it originally. So that is how
he got such a good deal. The motor did not work because it had sunk,
and at this point the mast was not stepped.

He motored to Jersey City in the whaler, then hip towed the Sabre
using the outboard for propulsion and the Sabre's wheel for steering,
which allowed him to duck behind the coaming for some protection.
I've towed like this, it is very tough steering and requires lots of
helm to stay on course. Soon he was past Hell Gate and starting to
feel the wind, and waves. He spent the whole trip worried about
whether his patch would hold or not.

He nearly bailed out at City Island, but instead contacted a buddy of
ours at Mamaronek, using the last of his cell phone battery, and
ducked into his yacht club.

This second guy could not stop laughing. I'm laughing right now,
thinking about this unbelievable day he had, that made mine seem tame.

We were about to call the Coast Guard for him since we lost
communication with him at 3pm, and we knew he was cold, had a dead
cell phone, and no radio. But at this point, he managed to make it
into port in the dark to everyones relief. "Balls the size of
coconuts" was one of the phrases used to decribe this trip. Only a
very competent seaman, or crazy seaman, could have or would have
attempted to do what he did, and made it as far as he did. Still, I'm
simply glad he bailed out and I'm glad is alive to laugh at. The
patch could have failed, the motor could have died, and he might have
been stuck anchored somewhere overnight with inadequate clothing.

Bart Senior

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Old November 5th 03, 02:41 PM
Jeff Morris
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

"Bart Senior" bartsenior wrote in message
...
Those eggs stuck like glue to
the deck, and added a little color to what had become a dreary day!


A great story! Thanks.

-jeff www.sv-loki.com
"The sea was angry that day, my friend. Like an old man trying to send back soup at the
deli."




  #3   Report Post  
Old November 5th 03, 06:17 PM
Bart Senior
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today


I've often wondered how an Adkins type diet would hold up in nasty
conditions. I ate three eggs before 8 am. I drank two cup of
cranberry juice. I didn't have any toast. My buddy Stu spent several
seasons working in the Bering Sea on a fishing trawler. I asked him
if anyone there tried a high proteit diet. My untested theory was
that low carb diets need less water and hence there would be less
dehydration when seasick. I'll have to call him and tell him he was
right to tell me not to try it.

I think it was after 3pm that I got sea sick. At that point I would
have thought the eggs would have passed out of my stomach. That is
about 7 hours later.

The weird thing was I felt more nauseous at the dock in Miford, where
it was calm, wiring a splice in the VHF antenna. Later at the
restaurant and driving home I still felt nauseous. Once on land I
never feel seasick unless I have an ear infection. This happen once
in the Bahamas while scuba diving. The cause of the hole in my ear
drum was a bad infection from diving that blew a hole in the drum.
I'm still very suseptible to ear infections on that side. I'l have to
wait and see if another one is coming on..

The other interesting thing was the correlation between being too hot
and or too cold with sea sickness. While getting pitched around on
deck, hanging on to boom preping to raise the main, I was all zipped
up and felt very hot and started to feel a little ill. I unzipped my
foul weather top and it passed fairly quickly. That was the main
reason I keep my jacket unzipped while on watch. The cooler air
helped me feel better.

At the helm, my bibs and foam lifejacket kept me fairly dry, and later
when I wanted to zip up the jacket, I was busy steering. A short break
to partially zip it would have kept me a bit drier--I probably could
have steered with my feet for the time necessary to do that. At some
point being too cold is as bad as being too hot.

Bart

On Wed, 5 Nov 2003 08:41:08 -0500, "Jeff Morris"
wrote:

"Bart Senior" bartsenior wrote in message
.. .
Those eggs stuck like glue to
the deck, and added a little color to what had become a dreary day!


A great story! Thanks.

-jeff www.sv-loki.com
"The sea was angry that day, my friend. Like an old man trying to send back soup at the
deli."




  #4   Report Post  
Old November 5th 03, 07:17 PM
Scott Vernon
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Maybe I missed it, but, where did you shove off from?

Scotty

"Bart Senior" bartsenior wrote in message
...
Here is a forecast from a few days back:

Forecast as of 9:00 PM EST on November 2, 2003

snip

Mon Night... SW wind 10 to 15 kt becoming variable around 10 kt. Seas
1 to 2 ft.
Tue... Variable wind around 10 kt. Seas around 1 ft. ====This one!
Tue Night... S wind 10 to 15 kt. Seas around 1 ft.
Wed... S wind 10 to 15 kt...becoming SW and increasing to 15 to 20 kt
in the afternoon. Seas building to 2 to 3 ft. Chance of showers and
fog with vsby 1 to 3 nm at times.
snip

Here is the forecast posted some hours after we ducking into Milford
Harbor.

Forecast as of 9:10 PM EST on November 4, 2003

Small Craft Advisory

Overnight Tuesday... E wind around 20 kt...diminishing to around 15
kt. Seas 2 to 4 ft...subsiding to around 2 ft late. Chance of drizzle
or rain along with areas of fog reducing vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
Wed... Se wind around 15 kt...becoming SW 15 to 20 kt during the
afternoon. Seas around 2 ft. Chance of rain or drizzle in the
morning...then occasional showers reducing vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
Wed Night... SW wind around 20 kt early on...becoming W around 15 kt.
Seas 1 to 2 ft. Fog and showers lowering vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
snip

************************************************** *******
My story.

I had volunteered to fix a friends weather fax--a preamplifer in the
antenna needed it's antenna feedline soldered back on, and also agreed
to help move this 44' sloop up to Old Saybrooke, at the mouth of the
Connecticut River. It seemed like a good idea since the weather was
warm and winds were predicted to be light 10 knots 1' seas, and
westerly. So I was looking forward to a warm day's sail, with the wind
behind us the whole way, and a chance of showers late in the day.
Nothing could have been farther from the truth.

The idea was to give the boat a head start on it's annual trip to te
islands. When I arrived at the boat, the winds were from the east and
strong. It was overcast and drizzling. I started having doubts about
going, but didn't want to let my friends down, and it looked like a
day where experienced crew would be in demand. I fixed the weather
fax, checked the receiver, and went to check the weather forecast. It
was the local weather than made me think I should flake out.
Ulitimately, I decided I would go along because I felt that the other
two, one experience, and one inexperienced, really needed another hand
along.

The skipper, a fellow named Tim, was a fine sailor. The other crew
Cecil, was a rookie. Cecil got seasick before we left the harbor, but
was helpful getting the main up.

What was predicted to be a 10 knot westerly turned into a 30-35 knot
easterly. I've never before seen Long Island Sound look like the
Atlantic.

Tim took the helm out of the harbor. Inside the protection of the
islands, the wind felt like about 20 knots. At first we just motored,
and going straight into the waves which kept getting bigger and
bigger. The current was running counter to the wind and we were
looking forward the the change over--thinking this would stop
compressing the waves. Motoring was nearly useless as the boat made
poor forward progress. Once we were in Long Island Sound, with 100
miles of fetch to the east, the seas became very big--at times 10-12
feet, breaking and square, and about 35' apart or less. Soon Tim,
without a foul weather jacket, was getting soaked at the helm.
Buckets of water in the face. I donned my foul weather jacket,
knowing he'd want to put his jacket on and would need to be relieved
soon.

I pointed out that if heeled the boat would not pound so much, and Tim
must have been thiking the same thing. he decided to motor sail and
Cecil and I hoisted the main with a single reef. The boat took off on
a port tack steering between 120 and 135, and motion was somewhat
better.

Tim was good and soaked and became very cold. He was not prepared for
such wind and cold weather, and had not brought enough warm cloths. I
soon found out that while working on deck hoisting sails made me hot,
and at the helm doping less strenuous work, I began to get cold.

Now that we were in the center of Long Island Sound, the winds were
stronger than ever. We still took breaking waves over the bow that
cleared the dodger, every few minutes. I took my eye-glasses off
since I could not see anything with them covered with salt water.
Apparent wind speeds were in the 34-36 knot range. Salt spray stung my
face. The wind and wave continued to build to a maximum of about 35
knots, and then tapered off to about 30 knots again. We were making
about 5 knots way.

I should have put on the autopilot and gotten out of the wind. Frankly
it was fun driving, and I did not realize at the time, how the
combination of the wind and the cold was affecting me. The water was
not terribly cold, but after being relieved from watch, I found my
fingers were stiff and barely functional.

After a long two hour watch, I was very cold. Tim took over again,
since Cecil was sick. I didn't have my hat, which I'm convinced has a
signficant effect on my heat retention. I needed a few minutes
flexing my fingers before I trusted my grip to climb up to the dodger
to get out of the weather.

Off watch and inactive I found I became even colder, and started to
feel slight nausea. I was debating going below to catch a knap or
staying on deck to fight the nausea.

Now I had a good view of the Apparent Wind gauge. It topped out at
39.5 knots apparent. Typically it was 34-36 knots apparent wind speed
depending on how who well the boat was steered. I think the winds
were pretty consistent, it was the boat speed varied the apparent wind
and depended on the size of the waves that hit us and our heading,
which varied substantially. Driving while ducking bucket sized face
shots of seawater was not the best. I was disappointed we didn't hit
40 knots. I wished we were sailing downwind, we could have made it to
NYC in the same time it took to beat this short distance to weather.

I later learned some front that was expected to pass to the north came
more southerly and that is was clobbered us. None of the weather web
sites predicted what actually happened until after the event. None
of them that I could find recorded the winds we saw. Temprature at
6pm was 48 degree F.

Anyway, we began talking about bail out options and Tim revisted his
bail out destination to New Haven. We were adjacent to Stratford, but
our draft would be a problem there. We talked about Milford also.
Milfords Gulf is a nice protected "outer harbor", if we wanted to
proceed, but docking and warm food appealed to all of us.

I ducked down below to try and clean up the mess the cabin was in and
and to fetch a chart. I managed to do that, but that time spent below
turned my stomach, and some time later I discovered that barfed up my
6 hour old breakfast of eggs and toast. Those eggs stuck like glue to
the deck, and added a little color to what had become a dreary day!
Later, I had some dry heaves and Cecil decided to help me sing a duet
in parallel. Hehehe! I feel bad that being sick made him sick, but I
laugh about it now.

Knowing we had to decide quickly if we wanted to make port in
daylight, and with one person very sea sick, and another (me) somewhat
seasick, but functional, and all three of us cold--especially Tim, Tim
bumped up our target to Milford Harbor, and I agreed as I was thinking
along those lines myself. Cecil was beyond caring, unable to comment,
but at least he was warm with a nice knit hat and protection from the
dodger..

I eased the main as we reached off and the boat became more
comfortable. Once we hit the lee of Milford, the sea calmed, even
Cecil felt better.

Later we saw a fireboat, blasting through the waves, completely
obscured as it punched through each wave. One crewman saw us heading
for Milford, and later stopped by at our berth to chat about the
weather when we got in. Every yard worker came out in the drizzle to
ask us about the conditions. Tim and I both told the same story, it
was the worst sea's we had ever seen Long Island Sound, and the 100
mile fetch made it seem like we were in the Atlantic.

Somewhere during the day I decided to haul my boat out for the season.
I don't care how nice the forecasters say it will be this weekend, it
is time to quit for the season.

My brother drove over to Milford and met us, drove us to dinner, paid
for by "glad to be alive" Cecil, and later gave us all a ride back to
our cars.

After going through this with Tim, I feel like I've made a friend for
life. Neither of us had ever seen Long Island Sound that rough. And
we talked about the event. I told him before we left I was considering
"not going out" and he told me he would have gone out, but surely have
turned back sooner without me. Knowing when to quit is good.
Perhaps knowing when not to start is even better. Still, I would not
have given up the experience, because I made two good friends, and
spent and enjoyable dinner with them and my brother Dwight who went
out of his way to help us all out.

In the mean time another more serious story was playing out which we
discussed over dinner...

Another friend of ours, who shall remain nameless, wearing only
shorts, a shirt and foul weather jacket, left about the same time to
pick up a "free" Sabre 28 near Liberty Landing. He planned to pick it
up with a whaler w/40HP motor. He had recently done a quick and dirty
patch to the hole in the boat that sunk it originally. So that is how
he got such a good deal. The motor did not work because it had sunk,
and at this point the mast was not stepped.

He motored to Jersey City in the whaler, then hip towed the Sabre
using the outboard for propulsion and the Sabre's wheel for steering,
which allowed him to duck behind the coaming for some protection.
I've towed like this, it is very tough steering and requires lots of
helm to stay on course. Soon he was past Hell Gate and starting to
feel the wind, and waves. He spent the whole trip worried about
whether his patch would hold or not.

He nearly bailed out at City Island, but instead contacted a buddy of
ours at Mamaronek, using the last of his cell phone battery, and
ducked into his yacht club.

This second guy could not stop laughing. I'm laughing right now,
thinking about this unbelievable day he had, that made mine seem tame.

We were about to call the Coast Guard for him since we lost
communication with him at 3pm, and we knew he was cold, had a dead
cell phone, and no radio. But at this point, he managed to make it
into port in the dark to everyones relief. "Balls the size of
coconuts" was one of the phrases used to decribe this trip. Only a
very competent seaman, or crazy seaman, could have or would have
attempted to do what he did, and made it as far as he did. Still, I'm
simply glad he bailed out and I'm glad is alive to laugh at. The
patch could have failed, the motor could have died, and he might have
been stuck anchored somewhere overnight with inadequate clothing.

Bart Senior


  #5   Report Post  
Old November 6th 03, 04:43 PM
DSK
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Bart Senior wrote:

I've often wondered how an Adkins type diet would hold up in nasty
conditions.


According to some of my sailing friends who are on it, no better than any other diet.

Personally, my favorite sailing breakfast is bisquits & gravy, with grits & sloppy eggs
thrown in. Not heart healthy, not slimming, but gives you some calories to work with and
seems to stay in place well.


..... My buddy Stu spent several
seasons working in the Bering Sea on a fishing trawler. I asked him
if anyone there tried a high proteit diet. My untested theory was
that low carb diets need less water and hence there would be less
dehydration when seasick. I'll have to call him and tell him he was
right to tell me not to try it.


Flirting with dehydration is bad no matter what diet you're on. Mild dehydration makes one
more susceptible to hypothermia & heat stress, too. Drink lots of fluids! It's a bother to
have to undo foulies to take a leak, but it's worse to start falling down, forgetting
important stuff, having cardiac fibrillations, etc etc.

Great story, Bart. How come you didn't keep the off watch below tending a kettle of hot
chocolate or soup? Anything without caffeine... although caffeine can be a Godsend, it makes
seasickness worse IMHO and definitely tends to increase the risk of dehydration.

Fresh Breezes- Doug King



  #6   Report Post  
Old November 6th 03, 08:44 PM
Rick \(Saga 35\)
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today


"DSK" wrote in message
...
Bart Senior wrote:

I've often wondered how an Adkins type diet would hold up in nasty
conditions.

snip
..... My buddy Stu spent several
seasons working in the Bering Sea on a fishing trawler. I asked him
if anyone there tried a high proteit diet. My untested theory was
that low carb diets need less water and hence there would be less
dehydration when seasick. I'll have to call him and tell him he was
right to tell me not to try it.


Low carb diets are diuretic - you need to drink LOTS of water to keep
hydrated. I've been doing Atkins for nine months (lost 50+ pounds so far),
and don't think it has any effect on seasickness. However, I am never
seasick, so I am a unreliable test datum.

There are great low-carb cold weather boat foods - chili (homemade, not from
the can), chicken soup (without noodles), fried steak on a low carb
tortilla, single malt whiskey...


--
=================
Rick Krementz
Saga 35 - Nastianna
Jersey City NJ
email address available at
www.krementz.com
====================


  #7   Report Post  
Old November 6th 03, 09:48 PM
The_navigator©
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Hey Neal, check out this "Sailing breakfast".
Cheers MC



DSK wrote:



Personally, my favorite sailing breakfast is bisquits & gravy, with grits & sloppy eggs
thrown in. Not heart healthy, not slimming, but gives you some calories to work with and
seems to stay in place well.


  #8   Report Post  
Old November 6th 03, 10:09 PM
Joe
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Bart Senior bartsenior wrote in message . ..

Hey Bart,ie: Captain Ron

Sounded like a memoriable trip. Bet you did not check the weather did you?

Go ahead admit it.

I like trips with a little challenge myself.

Sailing in perfect conditions is boring.

Joe
MSV RedCloud











Here is a forecast from a few days back:

Forecast as of 9:00 PM EST on November 2, 2003

snip

Mon Night... SW wind 10 to 15 kt becoming variable around 10 kt. Seas
1 to 2 ft.
Tue... Variable wind around 10 kt. Seas around 1 ft. ====This one!
Tue Night... S wind 10 to 15 kt. Seas around 1 ft.
Wed... S wind 10 to 15 kt...becoming SW and increasing to 15 to 20 kt
in the afternoon. Seas building to 2 to 3 ft. Chance of showers and
fog with vsby 1 to 3 nm at times.
snip

Here is the forecast posted some hours after we ducking into Milford
Harbor.

Forecast as of 9:10 PM EST on November 4, 2003

Small Craft Advisory

Overnight Tuesday... E wind around 20 kt...diminishing to around 15
kt. Seas 2 to 4 ft...subsiding to around 2 ft late. Chance of drizzle
or rain along with areas of fog reducing vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
Wed... Se wind around 15 kt...becoming SW 15 to 20 kt during the
afternoon. Seas around 2 ft. Chance of rain or drizzle in the
morning...then occasional showers reducing vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
Wed Night... SW wind around 20 kt early on...becoming W around 15 kt.
Seas 1 to 2 ft. Fog and showers lowering vsby to 1 to 3 nm at times.
snip

************************************************** *******
My story.

I had volunteered to fix a friends weather fax--a preamplifer in the
antenna needed it's antenna feedline soldered back on, and also agreed
to help move this 44' sloop up to Old Saybrooke, at the mouth of the
Connecticut River. It seemed like a good idea since the weather was
warm and winds were predicted to be light 10 knots 1' seas, and
westerly. So I was looking forward to a warm day's sail, with the wind
behind us the whole way, and a chance of showers late in the day.
Nothing could have been farther from the truth.

The idea was to give the boat a head start on it's annual trip to te
islands. When I arrived at the boat, the winds were from the east and
strong. It was overcast and drizzling. I started having doubts about
going, but didn't want to let my friends down, and it looked like a
day where experienced crew would be in demand. I fixed the weather
fax, checked the receiver, and went to check the weather forecast. It
was the local weather than made me think I should flake out.
Ulitimately, I decided I would go along because I felt that the other
two, one experience, and one inexperienced, really needed another hand
along.

The skipper, a fellow named Tim, was a fine sailor. The other crew
Cecil, was a rookie. Cecil got seasick before we left the harbor, but
was helpful getting the main up.

What was predicted to be a 10 knot westerly turned into a 30-35 knot
easterly. I've never before seen Long Island Sound look like the
Atlantic.

Tim took the helm out of the harbor. Inside the protection of the
islands, the wind felt like about 20 knots. At first we just motored,
and going straight into the waves which kept getting bigger and
bigger. The current was running counter to the wind and we were
looking forward the the change over--thinking this would stop
compressing the waves. Motoring was nearly useless as the boat made
poor forward progress. Once we were in Long Island Sound, with 100
miles of fetch to the east, the seas became very big--at times 10-12
feet, breaking and square, and about 35' apart or less. Soon Tim,
without a foul weather jacket, was getting soaked at the helm.
Buckets of water in the face. I donned my foul weather jacket,
knowing he'd want to put his jacket on and would need to be relieved
soon.

I pointed out that if heeled the boat would not pound so much, and Tim
must have been thiking the same thing. he decided to motor sail and
Cecil and I hoisted the main with a single reef. The boat took off on
a port tack steering between 120 and 135, and motion was somewhat
better.

Tim was good and soaked and became very cold. He was not prepared for
such wind and cold weather, and had not brought enough warm cloths. I
soon found out that while working on deck hoisting sails made me hot,
and at the helm doping less strenuous work, I began to get cold.

Now that we were in the center of Long Island Sound, the winds were
stronger than ever. We still took breaking waves over the bow that
cleared the dodger, every few minutes. I took my eye-glasses off
since I could not see anything with them covered with salt water.
Apparent wind speeds were in the 34-36 knot range. Salt spray stung my
face. The wind and wave continued to build to a maximum of about 35
knots, and then tapered off to about 30 knots again. We were making
about 5 knots way.

I should have put on the autopilot and gotten out of the wind. Frankly
it was fun driving, and I did not realize at the time, how the
combination of the wind and the cold was affecting me. The water was
not terribly cold, but after being relieved from watch, I found my
fingers were stiff and barely functional.

After a long two hour watch, I was very cold. Tim took over again,
since Cecil was sick. I didn't have my hat, which I'm convinced has a
signficant effect on my heat retention. I needed a few minutes
flexing my fingers before I trusted my grip to climb up to the dodger
to get out of the weather.

Off watch and inactive I found I became even colder, and started to
feel slight nausea. I was debating going below to catch a knap or
staying on deck to fight the nausea.

Now I had a good view of the Apparent Wind gauge. It topped out at
39.5 knots apparent. Typically it was 34-36 knots apparent wind speed
depending on how who well the boat was steered. I think the winds
were pretty consistent, it was the boat speed varied the apparent wind
and depended on the size of the waves that hit us and our heading,
which varied substantially. Driving while ducking bucket sized face
shots of seawater was not the best. I was disappointed we didn't hit
40 knots. I wished we were sailing downwind, we could have made it to
NYC in the same time it took to beat this short distance to weather.

I later learned some front that was expected to pass to the north came
more southerly and that is was clobbered us. None of the weather web
sites predicted what actually happened until after the event. None
of them that I could find recorded the winds we saw. Temprature at
6pm was 48 degree F.

Anyway, we began talking about bail out options and Tim revisted his
bail out destination to New Haven. We were adjacent to Stratford, but
our draft would be a problem there. We talked about Milford also.
Milfords Gulf is a nice protected "outer harbor", if we wanted to
proceed, but docking and warm food appealed to all of us.

I ducked down below to try and clean up the mess the cabin was in and
and to fetch a chart. I managed to do that, but that time spent below
turned my stomach, and some time later I discovered that barfed up my
6 hour old breakfast of eggs and toast. Those eggs stuck like glue to
the deck, and added a little color to what had become a dreary day!
Later, I had some dry heaves and Cecil decided to help me sing a duet
in parallel. Hehehe! I feel bad that being sick made him sick, but I
laugh about it now.

Knowing we had to decide quickly if we wanted to make port in
daylight, and with one person very sea sick, and another (me) somewhat
seasick, but functional, and all three of us cold--especially Tim, Tim
bumped up our target to Milford Harbor, and I agreed as I was thinking
along those lines myself. Cecil was beyond caring, unable to comment,
but at least he was warm with a nice knit hat and protection from the
dodger..

I eased the main as we reached off and the boat became more
comfortable. Once we hit the lee of Milford, the sea calmed, even
Cecil felt better.

Later we saw a fireboat, blasting through the waves, completely
obscured as it punched through each wave. One crewman saw us heading
for Milford, and later stopped by at our berth to chat about the
weather when we got in. Every yard worker came out in the drizzle to
ask us about the conditions. Tim and I both told the same story, it
was the worst sea's we had ever seen Long Island Sound, and the 100
mile fetch made it seem like we were in the Atlantic.

Somewhere during the day I decided to haul my boat out for the season.
I don't care how nice the forecasters say it will be this weekend, it
is time to quit for the season.

My brother drove over to Milford and met us, drove us to dinner, paid
for by "glad to be alive" Cecil, and later gave us all a ride back to
our cars.

After going through this with Tim, I feel like I've made a friend for
life. Neither of us had ever seen Long Island Sound that rough. And
we talked about the event. I told him before we left I was considering
"not going out" and he told me he would have gone out, but surely have
turned back sooner without me. Knowing when to quit is good.
Perhaps knowing when not to start is even better. Still, I would not
have given up the experience, because I made two good friends, and
spent and enjoyable dinner with them and my brother Dwight who went
out of his way to help us all out.

In the mean time another more serious story was playing out which we
discussed over dinner...

Another friend of ours, who shall remain nameless, wearing only
shorts, a shirt and foul weather jacket, left about the same time to
pick up a "free" Sabre 28 near Liberty Landing. He planned to pick it
up with a whaler w/40HP motor. He had recently done a quick and dirty
patch to the hole in the boat that sunk it originally. So that is how
he got such a good deal. The motor did not work because it had sunk,
and at this point the mast was not stepped.

He motored to Jersey City in the whaler, then hip towed the Sabre
using the outboard for propulsion and the Sabre's wheel for steering,
which allowed him to duck behind the coaming for some protection.
I've towed like this, it is very tough steering and requires lots of
helm to stay on course. Soon he was past Hell Gate and starting to
feel the wind, and waves. He spent the whole trip worried about
whether his patch would hold or not.

He nearly bailed out at City Island, but instead contacted a buddy of
ours at Mamaronek, using the last of his cell phone battery, and
ducked into his yacht club.

This second guy could not stop laughing. I'm laughing right now,
thinking about this unbelievable day he had, that made mine seem tame.

We were about to call the Coast Guard for him since we lost
communication with him at 3pm, and we knew he was cold, had a dead
cell phone, and no radio. But at this point, he managed to make it
into port in the dark to everyones relief. "Balls the size of
coconuts" was one of the phrases used to decribe this trip. Only a
very competent seaman, or crazy seaman, could have or would have
attempted to do what he did, and made it as far as he did. Still, I'm
simply glad he bailed out and I'm glad is alive to laugh at. The
patch could have failed, the motor could have died, and he might have
been stuck anchored somewhere overnight with inadequate clothing.

Bart Senior

  #9   Report Post  
Old November 6th 03, 11:14 PM
Capt. Mooron
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Real Sailor's breakfast..... six raw eggs and some salt in a highball!

CM

"The_navigator©" wrote in message
...
| Hey Neal, check out this "Sailing breakfast".
| Cheers MC
|
|
|
| DSK wrote:
|
|
|
| Personally, my favorite sailing breakfast is bisquits & gravy, with
grits & sloppy eggs
| thrown in. Not heart healthy, not slimming, but gives you some calories
to work with and
| seems to stay in place well.
|
|


  #10   Report Post  
Old November 6th 03, 11:16 PM
The_navigator©
 
Posts: n/a
Default Nasty, Nasty, Crazy Day Sailing Today

Wot no rum?

Cheers MC

Capt. Mooron wrote:
Real Sailor's breakfast..... six raw eggs and some salt in a highball!

CM

"The_navigator©" wrote in message
...
| Hey Neal, check out this "Sailing breakfast".
| Cheers MC
|
|
|
| DSK wrote:
|
|
|
| Personally, my favorite sailing breakfast is bisquits & gravy, with
grits & sloppy eggs
| thrown in. Not heart healthy, not slimming, but gives you some calories
to work with and
| seems to stay in place well.
|
|





 
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