Now I’m out here running mostly on hope. It’s blowing a big 4 mph, gusting to 6, with lulls in the 1 to 2 range. So keeping this thing cruising requires skill, something I’m still chasing. Time to settle in and get sensitive. Start with the ever so smooth little carves upwind and down, searching for that tiny blip of power that’s there when you find the sweet spot. Instantly sheet in ever so slightly, and get rewarded with another micro burst of speed. Search again, and repeat. Now start to choose the surface. The super smooth ice offers so little resistance, and it’s needed to keep spooling up the speed. Gracefull arcs between the drifts and bumpy bits are required to keep drag at bay. Do it all right, carve the perfect line downwind in the odd 8 mph puff, and I’m able to produce 25 kts of exhilarating boatspeed.
The flip side is the lulls. This is the essence of ghosting, making every action as smooth and gentle as possible, so as to not scruff of speed. Quick glances at the telltales to make sure the sail is producing power, however little. Let her glide til the next puff shows….
I can manage about a 30 minute session before I’m looking for warmth. First time out and I don’t have my gear fully dialed in, forgot a few things. Jump in the rig for a while, crank up the heater, take on some fuel, and head out agin for another round. I get in three runs before the ground fog shows up and sucks the last life out of the breeze. Pack her up, and hit the road home in the dying light, grinning again. An early season score!
The title a convenient excuse by the Editor here to foist his trendy music choice on you. Skrillex is still trendy, right?