Sunday, March 23, 2014

Sailing on Ice.... 23 degrees here today.

Sailed Gull Lake Today!

It has been 2 years since I've had a chance to get out and ice boat.  The stars aligned today and we had a good time.  Gull Lake Ice Yacht Club was hosting a party.  This is a great group of guys very welcoming.  They had a great set up down at Gull Lake Yacht club with doughnuts, chilli, and hot drinks in their club house.  I can't say enough about what a great club this is.

Today we sailed for about 6 hours.  The wind was gusty and the ice a bit bumpy but very sail-able although a bit scary when hiking.    For those of you who don't know what hiking is.  This is when the wind lift your boat up and tips it to one side.  In wet water sailing it's not to big a deal.  If you hike and tip your boat over you get wet. On an ice boat hiking is fun if you can control it but if you flip over you have a good chance of going to the ER.  The gusts and ice conditions where a bit much for me today.  If the boat hiked up I would hold it for a little while but let out on the sheet line to bring the runner back down.  Check out this video.  FYI the phone survived the crash.



Saturday, March 8, 2014

Shot Gun Parakeet.



I found this fun song by the Flannery Brothers check it out while you read.

So on my way back from Torresen Marine's spring thaw I saw this parrot riding shot gun down US 31.  Sorry the photo isn't that great but at 70 mph down the express way you just have to take what you can get.  I think it is a sign of spring when you can take your parrot for a car ride and kudos to who ever this guy is, having an un-caged bird sitting next to you chatting.   

Each year Torresen Marine puts on a big season kick off "Spring Thaw" event.  Torresen is the big sailing source here on the east side of Lake Michigan.  I've purchased boats through them, parts and attended seminars on motor maintenance over the past few years.   This year the event was great.  There was a Harken representative on hand who was very knowledgeable.  I'm working on tracking down a few pieces for a project I'm working on and was surprised to find out Harken didn't make them, luckily Ronstan does.  It also turns out another part I was looking for is produced exclusively for the Laser as a preparatory part so the search continues. Any one out there have a Laser your parting out?

I attended a power squadron safety class while I was there.  Don did a great job presenting this year.  It's always good to have a little refresher class after the long winter.  

One of the big reasons for going up to Torresen today was to drop off my forestay.  This has been one of those things I've been needing to get taken care of.  The previous owner to my boat made the one I currently have and it has worked so far but it is fraying up at the ends pretty bad and is just not right.  I met with John today one of their lead riggers and he says they'll have it pressed out for me this week and ship it back to me with a new turn buckle and all.