Sailing The Texas Championship

Hull #646
Allons Canard
Cajun Man

Texas State championship didnít go as planned because our path from the Dike North was disrupted by a North easterly wind that would not let us sail North. We could have tacked an Sailed all day but to let all the sailors who donít know including myself, when the wind is blowing across a body of water and you are planning on sailing the lake on the side where the wind is directed. The wind can pick up the water all the way across the lake making big waves or at most choppy waves. For our little boats, the optimum sail is to be on the side of the lake where the wind is just coming off the land hence the lake water will be pushed away from land. This normally will make the lake in that area glass. This sounds easy to understand but since Iím new to sailing it is something to mention.

Our decision to sail on the south side of the dike was determined by above said instance. The south side of the dike was calmer than the north side but still had some choppy waves at times. The wind was ENE at around 11 mph. This is a great wind mph to sail the puddle duck in besides some of the waves.

The south side of the dike was a little nerve racking for me since the ship channel is very close to the dike. In a lake, the pdracer doesnít have to worry about getting run over by a large barge or ship. 800 foot boats are hard to stop. Once I started going everything was fine and I calmed down. I had reefed my sail about 2 feet at the bottom. You can see a picture on the right. This worked out great. I was faster than all these guys and I didnít have all my muscle out(Sail). HeHe

We sailed the half mile or so across the ship channel and stayed close to a rock wall for about 2.56 miles which made me feel comfortable since land was 80 feet away. Eric was in the lead at this point followed by Roy and myself. Eric couldnít hold his boat close haul like I could. He tacked away from the rock wall while I kept going along the rock wall. This is where I took the lead and kept it for the duration of my sail.

Once the rock wall ended there was a 2 mile stretch of water with no shelter which made the waves choppier. We were going to sail to the island for lunch. The wind started turning more easterly and I got tired of sailing by myself and started back before reaching the beach. I also had a football game to watch. GO LSU.

During my sail northerly you can notice in my track that I jogged to the west. The reason was I was eyeing a large 650 foot barge coming down the ship channel that was a few miles away. I was thinking it was far enough that I can make it to the dike before the ship came by. I think we canít tell distance that well on the water and was tempted to beat it to the channel but then I thought. What if the wind died? What if something happen? The boat started looking larger and larger as it neared me and I kept seeing that the dike was getting closer. But in the end, I felt like I couldnít beat it to the channel and decided to jog westerly. It was my best decision of the day. Donít ever try and beat a boat to the corner. You know we donít have an engine on these little boat to make us go faster when we have calculated the distance wrong and are stuck in the middle of the channel.

I want to say I have more appreciation for the people who have finished the Texas 200.

Here is a link to see the jog away from the tug. You see me going north then move westerly.

For the annual miles challenge

8.71 miles Texas city dike
22.9 previous Total miles
31.61 new Total miles