Friday, January 15, 2010

Wild Ride

Wild Ride

“We’re enveloped in an explosion of spray as the increasing speed of the boat smashes the wave everywhere, spuming through the trampolines, curling over the top of the bows, and racing down the gunwales. Everywhere except in the cockpit which remains completely dry. Conditions here are somewhere between exhilarating and orgasmic, at no stage do any of us feel any kind of fear, concern, or anything approaching a worry that we are in jeopardy. It’s simply the experience of a sailing lifetime, an adrenalin rush like none of us has ever experienced.”

SO IT WAS ON JULY 13, 2009 when I helmed my 12m catamaran, Saltonay over the Southport bar and made news headlines with the effort.

I have owned Saltonay for almost eight years ... Sailed her up and down Australia’s east coast and taken her as far south as Port Davey onTasmania’s rugged south west coast, in every way she is an outstanding vessel.

Bar crossings are a fact of life which every cruising sailor who travels Australia’s east coast will have to deal with at some point of their cruising career. The Southport Bar, entrance to Queensland’s Gold Coast, is a barred entrance which at times can be very dangerous and quite treacherous. Both these adjectives were used by the VMR observation post atop the Seaway Tower on the day Saltonay arrived to transit the bar.

Having now seen the film taken by a Channel Seven news team, I can easily understand why people seeing this vision are polarized in their opinions of me as a sailor. I decided to write this piece after I received a text message from a mate of mine. The text was meant as a humorous comment, but it had an impact. The message read. “Jesus loves you, everyone else thinks you’re a dickhead."

-- Part 2 continued at Cruisers Forum

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My dream boat, Star Chaser.

Please everyone, think shiny, happy thoughts for c and her new boat. ;)