A series of unfortunate events can and will eventually happen to anyone in any boat at any time on the water. What can make the difference is how prepared you are and specifically how much you have practiced for various situations. This can mean many things in many different situations but the big one is capsize recovery and what will you do to self-rescue your boat! The goal of the "capsize camp" gathering is to practice capsizing and recovering and to disseminate as much knowledge and information related to capsize recovery, self rescue, and sailing skills as possible. All boats of any make or model are welcome to participate. What we are offering is the chance to discuss methods and skills and practice in a controlled (just off the dock) environment. If you can't attend this year we hope to make it an annual event.
We'd like folks to bring their boats (Class 4 boats particularly for you watertribers) and full expedition load or whatever you normally take on the water for a weekend of camping at our shop with day sailing in the Bay River and focus on the stuff that you don't usually get to focus on when you take time out of your busy schedule to go out for a sail. We want this to be the time where you WANT to capsize your boat and self-rescue. Kayaks have the advantage of being able to do it dozens of times in a paddling session using an Eskimo roll but sailors typically try to avoid capsize and anytime you don't practice something you forget how it works. This is also a perfect opportunity for anyone who is not sure of themselves on a sailboat to practice capsize in small boats in controlled conditions. Bring the little ones and get them comfortable on the boat KNOWING you are going to capsize and it will be OK. The water is warm, best time to do it.
Some topics and skills practice will include things such as: -Securing gear and Stowage, how does my system stack up? -Reefing on the water, can I improve my system? hint the answer is always yes. -Capsize recovery. Do it now! -Re-boarding your boat, I hope I can! -Will my boat go turtle? A great time to try it with a full load. -What does it take for me personally to self-rescue? and CAN I DO IT? -What makes a boat "ship shape" and why does it matter? -Navigation -Sailing Tactics -Shallow water sailing -Knots, when and how to tie them. -Proper securing of boats at the dock -Sailing into a dock (who doesn't need practice with that?)
Here is a picture of Graham back in the day doing some capsize testing of his Core Sound 17 off the bank at the shop around the time he first entered the Everglades Challenge. We want to see everyone doing this close to shore and getting to know their boats better and getting WET! JOIN US.
Day 1: We had a successful test of our new mast head float. Matt let us lash a float to the top of his mast to test. Here is the video from the day's testing.
Here are two more videos from Saturday (day 2) of the event. The first is featuring Richard and Michele's CS-17 Mark 3 'Avocet' and the second features Taylor and Alan's CS-17 'Soutbound' using the new mast float.
Some observations on the 17mk3. The main one is that the boat was very easy to right from a capsize and the self draining cockpit and tall cabin make her float very high and no bailing was required. As is apparent from the video the boat was not quite able to "self-right" with her ballast tank and centerboard alone and still needed a little help from the crew. A mast head float would be a good idea to have on the Mark 3 to prevent the boat from going turtle in the event the boat ever capsized with the ballast tank empty. We tested that righting capability with the centerboard retracted but were not able to right the boat without assistance. A small line attached to the lead tip of the centerboard would have made it possible to pull the retracted board out after the uphaul was uncleated.