Thursday, January 31, 2008

Sometimes It All Works Out

Taking a windsurfing session is a gamble with high stakes. You get adrenaline pumping ecstasy if you score; lost time and money if you miss the wind. Yesterday I hit it just right at Carmine Island on the York River.


I happened to sail precisely when the wind was strongest, between 11 am and 1:30 pm, using a tiny, 4.2 meter squared sail. (It was a little windier at Carmine Island than the Coast Guard Station where the wind is measured, but the trend was the same.)

Around noon a flame-orange Volvo station wagon with darkly tinted windows pulled up to the launch site.


It was "Gloucesterfarian" Paul Dovel, the perpetually-stoked windsurfer turned kiter. I helped him set-up his 9 meter squared kite. We barely avoided disaster launching it because 2 of the kite's 4 lines were reversed, sending it into uncontrollable spirals across the water. Paul was yelling, "Please grab it! Oh God, PLEASE PLEASE grab it!" as it lurched towards a rock bulkhead. But I wouldn't go near it until it settled down enough to assuage my legitimate fear of being entangled and strangulated / dismembered by the flailing bridle lines. Yikes! Eventually I did get the kite, Paul fixed the lines, and we rode for a short while before the wind dropped and I went back to work.


Catapulting Aaron said...

Sweet ride! Did you end up riding the little board in those gusty 4.2 conditions? Seems like you might need some float...

James Douglass said...

Yep, I rode the little yellow board. It's actually not too bad to shlog as long as there is enough wind to keep some forward motion. I uphauled on it one time, but I don't know if I could repeat the feat. Especially not if anyone was watching.

PeconicPuffin said...

Nice rims.