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March 12, 2007

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Up here in the NW, we get water temps around 48 or so (with the exception of places where icy runoff dumps into the bays, but that tends to be very localized). So even in the winter, I tend to sail barefoot a bunch, but I'll still wear a neo beanie b/c of air temps. I've set my personal cut-off around the low 40's somewhere - that's the point at which I simply can't do it without gloves anymore, and I haven't found gloves/mittens that actually work for me - even the palm-less ones.

Air temps in the 30's sounds nasty - not sure I'm up for that.

Hey, I just remodeled my blog a bit and moved it to google's blogspot. Added a link to yours - really enjoy your stuff.

-Andreas

I may sail with air temps in the 30's, but I sure as heck am not barefoot. Even in the 40's that must be...refreshing! I'm in high booties in those conditions.

Thanks for the good words...I'll be checking out G-42 you can be sure.

64.5! You guys are cold core! Last time I had icicles falling off my wetsuit was during a 1990 winter session at Cadorus St Park in PA!

If any of you make it down here to the OBX soon, it will feel quite balmy! Yesterday, we had 4.7m N wind, air temps at 55 deg and water at 48 deg. 103! You all would be trunks only! : )

I wait for the air or water to hit what the combination of the two hits when you guys go out! 50 degree Water Temp is what I usually wait for. Again, not to many people can be expected to be out before April, which I prefer for safety since I'm beginner-intermediate. So last year I was able to get out April 19 (coming up!). Obviously air temp is much more important and I have been meaning to superimpose air temp on those graphs but haven't gotten to it.

If you didn't guess I am an engineer and this is what 6 months of anticipation does to a windsurfer. Notice I don't even start the graphs until April. This is for two reasons: 1) The sensors are usually break down during the winter 2) I didn't think anyone windsurfing would possibly be interested in temperatures that cold - you proved me wrong.

Chris, your point on safety is an important one. I'll point out that most of my coldwater sailing is done in shallow water in an enclosed bay (so if a mast breaks I can walk out, and if I stay with the board I'd drift to shore fairly quickly.) Also, in these conditions I'm always sailing with windsurfers who are solid people and who look out for each other (this is particularly important for ocean and deeper bay forays.) We have fun, but the sessions require focus and commitment.

Water temp is particularly important if things go wrong (ie you break a board in two, or lose your board and have to swim.) It's why if you get a day when the air is 60 degrees but the water is 38 you can have a great day sailing, but you still need to dress like your life depends on it (which it can if you get into trouble offshore.)

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