Monday, July 18, 2011

mixed nuts

I bought some mixed nuts, lightly salted, at the grocery store the other day.  They were on sale and had a "good until" date sometime in 2013.  They will keep fine for the fall trip.  Mixed with the 20 oz of cranberry trail mix I have also bought - peanuts, raisins, sunflower seeds, cranberries, pineapple and almond - they will make for excellent afternoon snacks.  I'm looking at an eight or nine day trip right now which means I'll want to pack 16 or 18 baggies of snacks.  Half will be a mixture of the mixed nuts and trail mix, the other half will be dried fruit which I'll buy when the trip is closer.

I also ordered some thermal clothing for future trips.  I bought base layer thermal pants (they call them leggings) and a shirt made by Icebreaker.  I chose them based on a recommendation from Kiwibird, an admitted gearhead who has given me excellent advice on equipment over the last couple of years.  Thank you for the advice Kristen.
Icebreaker uses pure New Zealand merino wool. ( Now that I have written that sentence I realize I should not be surprised that Kristen, a Kiwi, would suggest Icebreaker. )  Merino wool, wikipedia tells me, is a finely crimped and soft  material that comes from the merino breed of sheep.  The wool is used in athletic clothing because of its ability to regulate body temperature while wicking moisture away from the skin.  Like cotton, the wool absorbs water.  But unlike cotton, wool retains warmth when wet.  The wool is known for an excellent weight to warmth ratio and has antibacterial properties - a nice feature when wearing them on a boat for a few days in a row. 

Why do I need base layer clothing?  I hope to spend a couple of days on Spartina late October up on the northern part of Chesapeake Bay.  It will certainly be cool by then, possibly cold.  The latest I've cruised is mid-October, that was last year with Paul and Dawn in coastal Carolina.  It was fun to sail in brisk winds and cool weather.  I think a fall weekend on the Delmarva Peninsula will be very nice.

In addition to the October trip, the Icebreaker gear will become a standard part of my hypothermia kit.  Right now much of the clothing in the kit is cotton.  The wool base layer should be much more efficient. I've never had to use any of the gear in my hypothermia kit and I am glad for that.  But I do want a good hypothermia kit on board, one that will keep me warm when I really need it.  Here is some good advice from the Watertribe about putting together a kit.

I did not go sailing this weekend.  I considered going Sunday, even puttered around the boat a bit as if I was going to trailer it down to the ramp.  But the wind were calm or, at best, very light.  Instead I stayed around the house, started a long term project I've been thinking about for a while, relaxed and napped.  Not a bad day at all.

  Above is the wind chart from yesterday, confirming that I made a good decision.  The purple line is the forecast, the blue line is the average.  The wind was between zero and five miles an hour much of the day.  I don't mind drifting around a bit, I did that last week.  But now I'm ready for some wind.



S R Wood said...

Steve - I have several Icebreaker garments and recommend them wholeheartedly. Chief benefit being warmth without bulk and a spooky ability to be worn for several days without smelling. They are the best!

Steve said...

Great, just want I had hoped - warmth without the bulk. I think it will be a good investment. Will you be at the downrigging weekend? steve

S R Wood said...

Steve -- Yes, we'll try to be. The timing hasn't worked out before but this may be the year. Just saw you on the list of boats! That time of year you may get a chance to try out the Icebreaker stuff.