Great Day to Learn Sailing
The 17th annual spring sailing class of WALT rose to the occasion in rising winds that started flat and grew to 15 mph over the course of a six-hour run.
Under the guidance of Williamsburg Charter Sails, the class learned the three reaches of sail. They got numerous and extensive turns on the helm as the boat heeled 10-15 degrees much of the day. At first, the tilting was awkward but the class quickly adapted and began to associate heeling with speed.
They also got to run downwind three miles on a spinnaker tack. It began on the north side of the York River, headed southwest in a diagonal toward Wormley Creek. Once on the other side of the river, the boat turned 30 degrees to head directly upriver past Yorktown under the center of the Coleman Bridge.
The class zoomed under the bridge past the Yorktown Naval Weapons Station. A lone Navy patrol boat lingered off the pier, on watch following the US attack on a Syria air field. One fellow on board, a retired Navy captain, wondered why the Navy didn’t target the runways as well. That would have reduced Syria’s immediate followup.
Fishing While Sailing
People ask, “Can you fish off a sailboat?” Two families vacationing in Williamsburg enjoyed warm breezes while sailing on the York River. One family was from upstate New York and the other from Charlotte, NC. In an unusual event, we tried fishing off the boat for the first time. It was quite an adventure.
Tyler Petty brought along a new fishing rod and cast off the stern in search of cobia, spot or croaker. The speed of the sailing boat may have discouraged the fish from biting, but it was a new experience for everyone.
My ambition was to make sure that the line didn’t foul the prop when turning the boat. That worked. We tacked several times, but instead of making sharp turns we made longer and wider turns to keep the line off the stern. Meanwhile, we stayed away from the commercial gill nets that were cast on the York. Very tricky out there.
Let’s Go for a Great Day to Learn Sailing
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