As I lay on a sofa elevating my dinged right foot (bad landing from a jump...feels like it was hit with a baseball bat) I am reflecting on how great Saturday and Sunday were. (Peconic Jeff will tell you the good times started Friday, but I missed it, so check it out on his blog.)
Saturday saw big winds forecasted for due south. The Wolf said the ocean was not happening, and suggested Mattituck on the North Fork for a bay session. This was automatically exciting, as I'd never sailed Mattituck. I'd heard mixed reviews of Sound-side sailing there, but the Wolf assured me that bay-side sailing in a big southern blow would be good.
It was so much better than good.
Sailing with the Wolf, Jeff, and Bill B (recently returned from 21 straight days of sailing in Puerto Rico) it began as a 4.0 day. There was three-foot rolling swell with lots of steep ramps once you got out a bit from shore. Outbound on starboard (I am the world's worst jumper on starboard) the ramps were so clean and well-formed that even I was getting some air and enjoying it. About a quarter mile out on my first run I blew a landing, and found that the water was waist deep. It turns out that the Great Peconic Bay south of Mattituck is shallow for quite a ways, yet big swell from deep water has no trouble rolling through shallows in which you'd only expect flat water. You could leap to your heart's content off of open water-sized ramps, and if it didn't work out, you could just stand there and pull yourself together as if you were adjusting harness lines in the shallows. (The Wolf says the swell only sets up like that when it's really blowing.)
Well, it was really blowing, so much so that after awhile it was time to rig down to a 3.4. On shore while some of us were rigging our smallest sails, I mentioned to Bill that it was supposed to be windy on Sunday. Bill said "it's supposed to be REALLY windy tomorrow." As I prepared to bring the 3.4 to the beach, all I could think was "It isn't really windy NOW? Bill must like a lot of wind."
In the gusts I could have easily sailed a 3.0.
(Photo: The Wolf jibes a few feet from shore.)