Picture: John Grant windinsight.com
Its one of the warmest winters here in Southern Ontario. We are right in the thick of it and the temperatures are rising to nearly 10 degrees C in the coming days. Normally this time of year we are in a deep freeze with much of the great lakes unaccessible for windsurfing. Its hard to contemplate that we might be sailing this week.
So I’ve made a list of things important to winter windsurfing as I prepare for a sail with the crew.
- bring your cell phone battery charged.
- have friends to sail with (don’t sail alone)
- have a rescue plan; what we will do if… who we will call if…
- have fluids and food on hand
- extra clothes and blankets on hand.
- check integrity of all lines; down haul, out haul, harness lines.
- inspect universal, and all equipment (don’t sail with questionable equipment)
- winter wetsuit hooded 654 (holes patched), boots 5-7mm, gloves 5 mm
- smart sailors will sail with a pfd and or a helmet
- something to stand on in parking lot for changing (i use a rubber car mat)
- post sail hot chocolate in a thermos and a bottle of Baileys.
- don’t sail in offshore winds or sketchy conditions especially if you are uncomfortable set rules for yourself and stick to them.
I came across this great vid on some windsurfing self rescue techniques and its worth a watch. I use to sail without an uphaul line especially on my short board but after this video I don’t think I’ll ever leave home without it.