I am in love with sailing once again! It’s amazing how four months away from the sport can blur memory. This weekend we managed to steal away to the sailboat for a few hours. The weather was great for this location and time of year. The sun was shining almost managing to chase away the cold, the sky was baby blue and there was a nice east wind blowing.
While the first part of our day was spent in recommissioning the sailboat and getting the diesel engine started, we did manage to get out on the water. For a bit we feared the engine wouldn’t start as we tried repeatedly to turn it over. Surely we didn’t need batteries as we’d installed new ones last season! We checked to be sure we’d bled the lines when we changed out the filters in the fall. Then we warmed up the fuel via glow plug for about a minute and vaaroom, she sputtered to life.
Yes, we did run the engine for a while as we thought maybe our charger wasn’t able to keep up do to the cold weather of winter. 2000 rpm for about half an hour had her running nicely warmed up. Then we cut the engine and tried starting again…don’t want to get out on the water and find she won’t re-start but she fired up real quick.
We cast off the line with yours truly at the helm and ventured onto the Columbia River for the first time since October. Not too much current right now which made leaving the club pretty easy. We we weren’t the only ones out on the water. It wasn’t overly warm maybe about 60-65 degrees and with the east wind blowing (remember Mt. Hood isn’t too far off and has lots of snow) it was a bit chilly.
I wanted to make it easy for our first sail of the season, Lord only knows how much our old brains have remembered, so we rolled out the genoa and left the main alone. It was a great choice because we managed 5.5 knots against the current. While I like to wet the rail my hubby doesn’t plus we all know your best speed isn’t dragging your toe rail in the water….
It was a great day on the water even if it was only a few hours. We have begun to learn more about Whisper, our Newport 30 sailboat and I felt more in control of her. There were a couple of times where I needed to yield the right of way and not only did I know I was the give way vessel, I knew how to. So even with frozen fingers and clown red nose I brought us back into our berth with a relaxed sense of pride and feeling of accomplishment.
It was a great day on our sailboat, far too short but still…a great day.
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