The Scribbler

15 June 2006

Sailing – day two

Filed under: sailing — The Scribbler @ 22:26

Kielder was like a mirror as we arrived, with barely a ripple on the water and the sun just as bright as the previous day.

Once kitted up, we were soon trying to remember what we'd learned the day before about rigging the boats. I'll have to put in some knot-tying practice, as the only one I'm confident about is a figure of eight, which I already knew from climbing. I never was very good at 3D puzzles!

There were more people at the club on the Sunday as there were races taking place. We were also witnesses to a very special event – the launch of a brand new boat belonging to the club commodore and her husband, Viola and Mike Scott. We were all invited down to the foreshore to toast the launch with champagne and chocolate covered cherries, accompanied by the sound of the bagpipes – it was quite a celebration and a good start to the day.

Julie was our instructor this time as we set out on our boat. I was surprised at how much we were able to remember from the previous day. I thought I'd be too exhausted to have taken anything in! But tacking was becoming a bit easier and more natural and we sailed through most of the points of sail. It started to make a lot more sense, when we were doing it for real and you could see the changes in the sails, rather than just imagining what they would look like.

There was a hot lunch today, provided club members in the clubhouse who managed to feed dozens of hungry sailors in from racing or training. Once refuelled, we had a classroom session learning to gybe. This meant we could sail a triangular course in the afternoon.

We managed pretty well until I got confused between pushing away and pulling in the tiller as another boat approached and we had our first (and hopefully last!) collision! Thankfully no one ended up in the water and the only thing hurt was my pride!

But don't think we got off too lightly. The last exercise of the day was capsize drill – learning how to right and get back in boats which topple over in the water. Gary and I were the last of the course to have a go, which meant we had the benefit of watching all our course mates successfully turn their boats the right way up. It felt very unnatural to deliberately topple the boat, but it had been so hot all day that it wasn't too much of a shock to find ourselves swimming in Kielder. And our instructors were absolutely right – it really wasn't as bad as it sounded. I even managed to do a double capsize in the Topper (one of the smaller, single-handed boats), after I tipped it over getting back in. And the dry suits stayed dry!

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  1. Well your drysuit might have stayed dry, but I had a rather embarrassing-looking wet patch down my leg. And, yes, it was most definitely a result of the capsize, rather than simply the thought of it beforehand!

    Like

    Comment by Gary — 17 June 2006 @ 18:44 | Reply


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