Saturday, July 27, 2013

Rockport State Park Sailing Report

We intended on sailing at Deer Creek again this Saturday, but we where disappointing to find the parking lot full at the day use area. Instead we continued up the road a bit to Rockport State Park. You can read more about Rockport in one of my previous blogs.

This was our first sailing trip to Rockport but it will not be our last. The weather was overcast and cool. with wind blowing consistently at 10 to 15 mph from the damn on the north side of the lake. The water temperature was warm, but with no sun and consistent breeze it made for a cool trip.

We spent most of the day making quick reaches, zipping across widest part of the lake, which is about a mile when the reservoir is full.

We also had a good time rafting down the little stream at the south end of the lake.  Later in the afternoon, the storm blew in and rain started to fall. The rain blew over quickly and a nice calm sky to pack up under.

Wednesday, July 17, 2013

Tacking the Hobie Getaway

I've read a few posts and forums threads about tacking a Hobie Getaway. This can be quite tricky for those new to sailing small beach cats. For some time on my 14 I avoided tacking altogether. However, the more I sailed with kids the more I preferred the less violent and more graceful maneuver of tacking.

From what I gather there are two methods two tacking that folks prefer, the key difference being whether or not one makes use of the jib in pulling the boat through the wind. This maneuver is called backwinding, and is my preferred method of tacking on the Getaway, simply because I have more success with it.

Here are some basic tacking steps.

1) Gather boat speed. I do this by bearing off the wind a bit to a reach.

2) Turn in to the wind and sheet in your main sail more and more until you are just about to go into irons. Make a nice smooth and wide. Avoid a sharp tiller movement as this will slow your boat speed. Keep your weight on the boat balanced between, leeward,windward and fore, aft.

3) Un-cleat your main sail just as you approach the close hauled point. If you keep your mail sail cleated, it will act like a whether vain and turn your boat back into the wind.

4) After you have passed through the wind, switch your jib and sheet in your main.  Leaving your jib on the lea ward tack until after you pass through the wind, allows the jib to catch the wind on the opposite tack sooner, pushing the bow of the boat across the tack.

Monday, July 15, 2013

Deer Creek Consistancy

Saturday made for a perfect day of sailing at Deer Creek. I must say that of all the sailing destinations in Utah, Deer Creek is by far the most consistent as far as predictable wind goes.

Wind blew between 10 to 20 mph all day long. As usual the wind blew from the south, the dam side of the lake, to the North.

Water temperature was a cozy 75 degrees a at the beach. It made for perfect swimming and great sailing.

This was my second time sailing on Deer Creek this year. The water depth has dropped quite a lot since the last trip. At this water level the distance across the lake is just about a mile.  We sailed most of the day and clocked 29 miles on the GPS with a Max speed of 15 mph.

At one point we sailed from island beach day area to Wallsburg Bay which took a great deal of tacking. We planned to stop and swim there, but the bay was crowed and the wind didn't let up.

My intrepid kidos piled in an inflatable raft and made their way across the channel at island at 'island beach'.

 The water was so low, that the island was more of a peninsula, rather then an island. This didn't diminish the trip in their minds at all.

There where a few other sail boats on the lake on saturday, a Prindle, Hobie 16 and a Dingy.  There never enough sailboats out in my mind.