Saturday, August 20, 2005
Current: ebb 1138 North Hill, spring tide
Wind: SE at 4 to 6 kts Course: 3 laps, WL 143 degrees at 1.7 nm
Distance: 10.2 nm
Crew: BB, BF & RW
Windward legs- 1- 43 minutes 2- 25 minutes 3- 26 minutes
Downwind legs- 1- 57 minutes 2- 44 minutes 3- 61 minutes
Elapsed time: 4 hours, 16 minutes

We had a good starboard start in clear air at the committee boat and held starboard till the tacking to clear Horseshoe. Our strategy was to maintain the shallow side of the channel to Groton Long Point avoiding the last of the flood. I now see we did not stick to the north side well enough, which must have hurt some. We actually crossed Jolly Mon on our second port tack out (which was a first and maybe a last). We were enticed by what looked like better wind towards the center of the channel and felt the current would be near slack there as it was. Yet, we probably should have stayed in to benefit from the nescient ebb near shore. The flood began a couple of tacks prior to the windward mark.

Eight tacks got us to the windward mark and after the rounding we favored the right side of the course and made the leeward mark in six jibes. The wind backed significantly for the second beat, turning it into a near reach to the mark.

Jibe setting after the mark, we then reached up on port along the Flat Hammock reef. This turned out to be the hot ticket. Wish we would have thought this on our first downwind. We planned on doing again on the last leg, but with so little wind, chickened out.

Approaching the windward mark for the third time, the wind dropped to less than four knots. Seeing that we were about to be swept down-current of the mark we quickly set the spinnaker to starboard and were able to slowly clear the mark on a port reach. Once clear and down-current, we jibed around to starboard and began an hour?s long slog to the finish by way of a long starboard down into the bay west of Groton Long Point with a port jibe up to the finish. The committee boat left about ten minutes prior to our finish. We had a good time at the Mason Yacht Club though.

PS: This turned out to be Bob?s last sail of the year as he & Cindy were in a serious car accident on Sunday at noon when a car crossed the median line and hit them head on.

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