Saturday, November 02, 2013

Sandy Point Speed Slick

Got Speed?

Look what we found in Little Narragansett Bay, RI...
This is a legitimate speed strip out in a bay shared by Connecticut and Rhode Island. I've been "eyeballing" this site for years now and finally got the opportunity to sail it on Friday.

Peter and I discussed a location to sail in a BIG SSW wind that was due to hit us on Friday. His first suggestion was the Kennedy Slick. This is a jetty right in front of the Kennedy Compound in Hyannis, MA. (not my favorite spot due to a very short reach) His next idea was Sandy Point. I thought he was joking as it's a famous speed strip in western Australia. Then after viewing it on Google Earth, I recognized it immediately and started making plans. Peter, Nina and I decided to meet at a boat launch, one mile downwind from Sandy Point, in the Barn Island Wildlife Management area.

Arriving a little late, I interrogated the local sailors as to the conditions and lay of the land.  The wind was already 35 gusting to 40 mph and sails ranged from 3.2 to 3.7 meters. I naturally rigged my 6.3 TR-8 race sail and jumped in. :-) Sailing into a very stiff breeze and surprizingly decent weather, I headed upwind 1 mile to the point. It looked perfect!

37 knots on my first run! (that's about 43 mph)
I'm thinking this could be the day. Today 40 knots is going down...
Unfortunately the only thing going down that day was the wind, as it dropped
at a steady rate then plummeted of the chart when Peter arrived. 

Throwing down 6 or 7 runs in quick succession, I found that each one was slower then the last. Peter arrived just after a rain squall blasted through, bringing with it clearer skies and the sudden drop of wind. Planing was no longer an option and we waited patiently for enough to head back in. It could have been epic for all three of us, but it wasn't meant to be. Peter and Nina had driven 2+ hours to get there and were more then a little disappointed. 

Peter has an interesting, informational and sometimes funny perspective on his blog The Windsurf  Loop. You can read about his take on Sandy Point here:

Peter shot some Go Pro video on the way out and a quick "slingshot" around me at the slick. Check it out!

Windsurfing Sandy Point from boardsurfr on Vimeo.