Tuesday, October 02, 2007

Was it windy enough?

Winds for last weekend's Sunrise Regatta were forecast to be 10 to 20 mph, perhaps gusting to around 25 mph. But, we got a little extra bonus. Winds in Truth or Consequences and at the T or C airport were measured at 18 to 22 mph during the first half of the regatta, with gusts occasionally reaching 33 mph. This was confirmed by observation at the lake, where we saw a few gusts strong enough to lift sand off the beach, which typically happens at about 30 mph. The wind also caused some damage to boats in the race, and whipped up waves strong enough to blow a group of boys off of a submerged sandspit and into deep water. Fortunately, the winds gradually settled down after midafternoon.

The winds were perhaps close to the edge of conditions for running a safe regatta in our club. We did have a relatively small number of boats, relatively experienced skippers, and larger, mostly more stable boats, with no small dinghies or multihulls entered in the regatta. Also, we had the use of a chase/safety boat, which was able to monitor much of the race and come to assistance of boats that had breakdowns or groundings.


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