A Small Bit of Long Weekend Sunshine


The Victoria Day Long Weekend was a bit of a write off here in the Lower Mainland.

However, we played our cards right for an afternoon sail – we found the perfect weather window in an othewise dreary and wet weekend.  And we had a lovely breeze to make the wait worthwhile.

This shot is actually a still from a new video camera I’m using.  It’s a HeroHD mini from GoPro, and so far I’m really impressed with the quality of the video and the images.  I didn’t treat this picture at all – it’s exactly the way it came out of the video stream.

The HeroHD also shoots stills, but because it has a nifty waterproof case, I’m using it as a video camera on the boat – and I’ll be posting some of my experiments over the summer.

Madsu Meets the GoPro from robert ouimet on Vimeo.


Beating Both Ways


Spring sailing in Howe Sound can make for some interesting day trips.

Today I headed out into a freshening inflow (southerly) and worked my way along Bowen Island toward the Straight of Georgia.

An hour-and-a-half later, the wind pulled a 180 and I found myself on the same point of sail, going the opposite direction.

Madsu was really comfy with a full main and the 100% jib up.  We were doing a smooth and steady 5 knots both in and out.


Poor Man’s Nav Station


Madsu’s a fine little pocket cruiser, and I can’t honestly say I feel the need for any more navigation help than I currently have.

The GPS is an immense time saver.  I could probably do with a slightly nicer looking time piece, but it all works out just fine.  At the end of the day, I can pop the board out, and put everything away, out of the weather.


A Little Squall


A little squall is making its way towards Howe Sound from the Straight of Georgia.  It was just  a little one, but I did manage to head in before I got wet.

Madsu On The Water

Low Tide


We’ve some some really low tides this weekend – .4 metres on today (Saturday) at the afternoon low.

This rusted out pile is usually well covered with water – today it’s clearly covered in starfish.


Reefed and Ready


I had a lovely mellow sail in Howe Sound today.

It was windy when I got down to the docks, but a few small fixes to various bits on the boat kept me from leaving for an hour or so.  The wind had died down substantially by the time I got out, but with a single reef in the main and Madsu’s 100% North Sail jib, we were doing about 4.5 knots and nice and flat.

I shook the reef after about half-an-hour when it was apparent the wind wasn’t about to pick up – though I stayed with the small jib.  The wind did pick up a bit and with some high cloud I had to put a sweater on and actually wore my wool hat for the last bit.


Summer is Now Here


It was a lovely afternoon to be out in Howe Sound.  The wind freshened through the afternoon, and I beat out against the southerly inflow.  When it came time to turn back and head in, the wind was brisk and Madsu flew along at 6 plus knots on a broad reach (reciprocal course to the one I was on when I took this picture).

Shorts and bare feet today means summer is here.


Shake Down Cruise


We aren’t setting any speed records, but just enough wind so I can get everything hoisted and check that I put Madsu back together properly.

When I haul out in the fall, I unstep the mast and remove all the standing and running rigging and any hardware that’s not bolted down on deck.  It’s a bit of extra work, but the gear stays clean over the winter and it also gives me an opportunity to check all the gear closely.

In the spring when I launch, there’s always one or two small bits I’ve forgotten in a gear bag – so a light wind day for the shake-down cruise is welcome.