Just a few days ago at the Vanderdome we were lamenting the lack of Iron Pier sessions. Iron Pier is epic because you only go there when conditions are epic, and the Pier serves it up!
Never sailed Iron Pier? I know what you're thinking: You don't want to. You imagine blowing a jibe and then having the current drag you into iron pilings covered with rust...they rip your wetsuit and lacerate your skin as you catch tetanus. Your rig gets destroyed too. That's what I always imagined, anyway. Then I sailed there.
There's no Iron Pier at Iron Pier. It's fine. Big rampy wavy Long Island Sound sailing, and as Bill says, you only go there if you're going to be on a 4.7 or smaller sail. Five meter? Go to Sebonac Inlet.
Sunday we were mostly on 4.2's. Oh Yeah! Me Frank Jan Bruce Scott Bill John Hulse the Wolf Tomas Joe Peconic Jeff & Kurt. 4.2's. Yes the beach break was challenging when we arrived (high tide) and there were some rejections and landing humiliation, but it got better. The ramps and waves I'd rate as 7 out of 10 on the Pier scale, but it was still "ten times better than Sebonac" (quoting Jan). Imagine that Sebonac Inlet and Gardiners Bay had a love child. Land of the Giants Sebonac. That's Iron Pier when it's working. Oh yeah.
We sailed to exhaustion (I did anyway). Until my arms no longer had the strength to control the 4.2. You don't want to be outward bound at the Pier and not feel strong enough to handle surprises. A great day...my body is in sweet pain as I type this post. More please!
(Top: What I lack in jumping ability I make up for in enthusiasm. Middle: John Hulse catches a wave whilst Jan motors through. Bottom: Iron Man Frank on a 4.6. Photos by Jeff Schultz.)
"We're waiting for you to leave. Or at least release your downhaul"
Ah. They wanted more wind.
I was on the early shift at Sebonac Inlet. Needing to accompany Mrs. Puffin back to NYC in the early afternoon I had to take what I could get...an hour of 5.0 conditions on the 5.5 I'd rigged...before the bulk of the chimpery hit the water. Sebonac on NW is less that ideal but WE'LL TAKE IT!
So I enjoyed my solo hour, and then became the wind sacrifice, bringing 4.7 conditions to the growing crew as Joe, the Wolf, Kurt, Christian, Peconic Jeff, CPU John, Frank and Felix arrived to tear it up. My leaving was good for three knots!