Erie T-Storms - 7/22/2005
Erie T-Storms - 7/22/2005Report Abuse
Last weekend our plans to sail to Conneaut, Ohio, got changed by the weather. Instead of facing a long, hot day of motoring, we decided to sail off Erie and were encouraged by Tim and Amanda Sample. They are budding students of sail and were excited to learn more. Well, they got more than we expected! Saturday was mostly light winds until midafternoon. Kevin Wells proved to be a great instructor in addition to being his always enjoyable crew member. Unfortunately, Nancy was unable to join us as she was working at camp through the weekend. Tim and Amanda took turns sailing Kelly III under full main and 150 Genoa jib. While we were about 4 miles offshore, an onshore thunderstorm formed, did its thing and blew away. As the “know-it-all” skipper, I proclaimed we had dodged the weather and would be able to enjoy the balance of the day with more light air sailing. Well, the storm gods decided differently. Just a few minutes later, Kevin pointed out three (yes 3) thunderheads that were building up simultaneously! In less than 30 minutes we had one storm inshore of us, another storm offshore of us, and a third storm chasing us down the lake! Being surrounded by storms made it easy to decide to drop the sails and motor for home! Fortunately, only the storm that chased us actually caught us. While it did dump multiple buckets of cold water on us, there wasn’t much wind. After a shower and change of clothes back in the marina, we had a nice meal at Smuggler’s on the Erie waterfront. After dinner, we motored to the Marina Lake in Presque Isle State Park and anchored for the night. Sunday morning we were all on “Island Time” and had a lazy morning that started with a nice breeze and sunshine. After a quiet breakfast, Kevin led the guys into taking a cooling dip in the water. As we prepared to raise the anchor, we noticed that the remains of Dennis were again scattering gray clouds across the Erie Lakeshore sky. We decided to sail inside the bay and continue the sailing lessons with Tim and Amanda. The winds were strong enough that we had a reef in the main and raised the 100% jib. Both Amanda and Tim tried all points of sail, and Tim even ran Kelly III Wing-and-Wing! Yes, the Boombrake (new this season) got a few tests! For about an hour we sailed to avoid the racers from the Erie Yacht club and recognized a few familiar boats including Wavelength and Magic. In fact, at one point we found ourselves in a position where we had to cross the path of the tightly packed fleet. Given how close together the boats were, I took the helm as we crossed in front of Bill Hertel’s “Magic”. I hope we didn’t cause you to slow down, Bill! Tim and Amanda proved to be natural sailors by getting a good hand on the tiller. That is especially impressive to those who have experienced the wobbly tiller on Kelly III. As I told Tim and Amanda, they are welcome aboard Kelly III anytime! It was great to sail with Kevin again, as we always enjoy our time together.
Remember, All plans can change depending on the weather! We do this for FUN!