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Wildwind: reaching in Vassiliki Bay cross-shore


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What we came for: Reaching a Hobie 16 in Vassiliki Bay cross-shore, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker. Reaching a Hobie 16 in Vassiliki Bay cross-shore, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker.

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Mildwind week 1


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Wildwind 31, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker. This Hobie Fox with me at the helm is beam reaching with spinnaker, chasing down a Laser Vago, and without trapezing too. This should not be possible — beam reaching with spinnaker that is — because there should be more wind and it is a powerful boat. Wildwind? This week it has been “Mildwind”, but fun nonetheless with a good crowd of sailors. The one cross-shore blast of 20-25 knots was exciting in the […]

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The weather is a cruel mistress


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Vassiliki Bay Panorama, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker. Too little wind this morning and a storm this afternoon, so we took a stroll, discovering this magnificent grasshopper (cricket?). Grasshopper, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker.

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Wildwind photos


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Photos from Wildwind, 21 Jun – 5 Jul may be found here.

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Wildwind day 2


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Good breeze this morning and another good sail in the Fox. Still no heroic photos: maybe tomorrow. Wildwind 135, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker.

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Wildwind day 1 (yesterday)


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Wildwind 47, originally uploaded by stevenjbaker. Shortly after this photo was taken, the wind picked up to a gentle force 3, enabling a brisk sail in a Hobie Fox, a fast Formula 20 catamaran. We achieved some hull-out broad reaching with spinnaker and the crew on the trapeze, which was ideal. Sadly, circumstances have spared you a photo of these heroics, so I’ll have to ask you to make do with this stock image of a close-hauled Fox: A superb […]

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The RNLI Christmas appeal


The RNLI Christmas appeal arrived this morning. This year, the RNLI assisted 7,834 people at sea. The men and women of the Lifeboats have now saved 137,500 lives. I have never needed them, but sailing around the Isle of Wight on a rough day in a fast catamaran, we were glad to know they were there. You can donate here. Please consider giving regularly.

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Wildwind day 4: peace persists


A steady force 2 all day. A touch dull. Practice races all day of one lap, windward leeward. Far too small for a Tiger, but not a bad way to get practice starts. Mostly won, although humilated by a Hobie 16 (no gennaker) helmed by an Olympian. Cross-shore tomorrow I hope. And the jeep was fixed too 🙂

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Boat choice


Monohulls can be ruled out. They are either too boring or too unstable. Rule 1. The Fox – Formula 20 – is too much unless you need it to support crew weight. So rule 2 is don’t overreach yourself. (Never tried a Tornado, but they have the advantage of a broad beam.) The FX One is a great single-hander, if perhaps a little heavy. The one here has no gennaker, so running is a bit pointless. Rule 3: have a […]

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Wildwind day 2


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Hired a Suzuki Vitara (it’s a total lemon), relaxed with a book and waited for the cross-shore breeze to kick in: one of the cool kids now? The wind duly arrived at 14:30. Took a Pacific 18 – like a Tiger, but simpler and a little heavier – and hooned around with a splendid fellow who only learned to trapeze yesterday. Great fun. Then hooned around at the helm of a Tiger with another good guy. Mostly reaching and beating: […]

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