Friday, April 15, 2011

a beautiful sail

Out for a very nice sail today.  Mid-60's, wind at 15 knots and nice blue skies.  Just my second sail of the year, it felt good to be out there with a good breeze.

The only snowbird in Crawford Bay was Gulliver out of Montreal, headed back north after what must have been a nice winter in the tropics.  The crew were very well-tanned.  We had just a brief exchange, complimenting each other's boats, and then a wave goodby.

The wind was very crisp at times, an unusual wind out of the ESE.  I sailed with a variety of sail combinations -  all sails up, single reefed with mizzen and jib and, at time, just mizzen and jib.  After a long winter I was happy to feel so comfortable with the sails.

I brought along some cruising gear - the SPOT and the gps.  To me neither is very intuitive to use and I wanted to test them both out.  For the SPOT you hold down the "ok" button for five seconds or more to start the tracking service.  With the gps I wanted to see how the tracking was working - again, it is not obvious to me how to set and then reset the tracking for each day (with my old gps I could indicate "save track since midnight" to give me each day's track, but that is not an option on this model).

Above is the SPOT track for today.

And here is the gps track.  The gps is of course much more detailed, taking a mark every three minutes as opposed to the SPOT marking every ten minutes.  You can see I launched from my usual ramp in downtown Norfolk, sailed north on the Elizabeth River to the James River and back again.  I covered, according to the gps, 22.9 nautical miles in five hours and 48 minutes.  My top speed was 8.8 knots, average speed was 3.9 (I'm happy with any average over 3.0).  I will be happy to have those numbers on any cruise.

This last photo is for Dawn.  She is planning a post-retirement adventure, paddling from Key West to Norfolk on the ICW.  The destination would be "Mile Zero" of the ICW, which is right in downtown Norfolk.  The buoy says "36", but as far as the ICW is concerned, that is "Mile Zero".  Start in Key West, keep the continent to your left, barrier islands to your right, stop when you see the marker above.  Sounds easy enough.



Darwin said...

Hi Steve, I am a follower of the blog for some time, in fact I think that be causing a red highlighted already in my country! I really enjoy reading and photos, tb. I'm considering building a navigator, for now just a dream! Well the reason to write well is to request a video greeting for those beautiful journeys, with the new camera I can.
My greetings and congratulations!
Darwin Barreiro

Steve said...


good to hear from you. You will love a Navigator, it is a great boat. I plan to do a little video in early summer. For now you can see some from last summer here....