As I sit here typing this, Emet is rolling a bit in her slip. The wind is blowing at approximately 26 knots with gusts to over 33 knots.
We’ve sailed in this type of weather several times. A little worse even. I don’t think I ever wrote a post about it, but one of those times our steering system broke. Nothing like having waves breaking over the bow, flying over the dodger, and landing in the cockpit to go with a sailboat that suddenly has no steering. AND then try furling in a genoa with that type of wind. I was told that I was either a weakling or our furler was broken if I couldn’t manually roll it up in wind at 35 knots. I politely told those sailors to visit Davey Jones’ Locker and I went and purchased winches to add to the cockpit coaming behind the jib sheet winches. The furling winch has definitely come in handy. And I’ve even seen other sailboats with two winches in tandem like we now have.
It wasn’t a real problem, the steering system breaking, as we have an emergency tiller that connects directly to the rudder post. The steering has long since been repaired. I probably should have written a post about it.
Weather like this is soothing. The gentle rocking and swaying of the boat. The sounds of the waves lapping at the hull and the wind howling through the rigging. We’ve anchored out on a couple of nights like this as well. Those started out relaxing, but they quickly turned into a mad, chaotic scramble. On both occasions we were part of a raft-up: several boats tied together to form a “raft”. After our third raft-up, Jodi and I decided that they are great ideas, but they really should remain just that: an idea. We won’t participate in any more of those. I suppose if you have a completely windless day in a 360 degree protected anchorage with water that is glass smooth, a raft-up might be OK. Otherwise, it’s like contracting typhus.
It’s a windy night. I’m relaxing to the sounds and reminiscing.
Sipping on rum helps.