2010 PDRacer World Championships - Same Day, Different Place RaceBy Doug Day (retired) #1 "DUB"
My favorite lake to sail my PD on is Tempe Town Lake, but a little while ago the dam popped .....
....and it is currently empty.
Yes, that lake can be viewed as a HUGE intex swimming pool, but hey, most of the time it is filled with water.
So I looked over the other available spots of water and Chaparrel Lake in Scottsdale was my next best bet. It is relatively flat around the area so any breezes that might pass through have a good chance of finding my sail.
The only catch is the lake (well, I should call it a big pond) is long and skinny, running north and south. As I was heading out, I checked the weather and luck was on my side! The breeze was coming in from the West, so I would be able to sail length wise.
I arrived at the lake (pond) which is in the middle of a park with jogging and bicycling trails all around it, and many picinic tables. Many families were out enjoying the afternoon. As I sailed back and forth, a lot of people would wave to me. I always found that interesting, people like waving to sailors.
Noticed something strange about the geese at the lake - some of them had collar tags on their necks! I wonder if the city is now requiring the birds to get permits to stay at the lake? Seems like everything needs permits these days.
Back and forth I went, back and forth some more. I loaded up my MP3 player with audio books and was listening to them most of the time, then I noticed that some of the aeration pumps in the lake had little black buoys attached to them.
I sailed up to one and it was a toilet valve float. So, I kept up the puddle duck tradition and slapped it. Well, I didn't slap it, I kind of flicked it with my finger. I made sure to flick all of the floats atleast once.
This started back during the first Texas 200, when the duckers on that trip got bored while sailing, and decided to sail up to all the channel markers and buoys and give them a little slap. I don't think you are supposed to do that, but I doubt that anyone would complain if we get caught, and it sure is fun.
The only excuse a ducker has ever given as to why we do it, is: because we can.
Back and forth, back and forth some more. The wind was just a breath most of the time. I was creating a new definition of "drifting". Few gusts, few steady puffs, few dead periods. After 3 hours had passed, I started trying to remember how long Steve Condie's SDDP run was from a couple years ago and was convinced that I was heading to take over his record. My official time is -- 2:12pm to 6:31pm, 4:19 elapsed time to cover 5 miles with an average speed of 1.16 mph. I thought for sure I had it in the bag, but NO!! Steve did it again and his record this year is 1.13 mph. Dang it, there is another world championship placing that was right within my grasp, and slipped just out of hand!. My hat is off to you Steve, you just edged me out 6 minutes! AARRGG!! There is always next year....