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Thursday, December 29, 2011

Holiday escapades

Thought I'd post a few tales from over the break.

We went for an early morning kayak on the lake and paddled with 2 dolphins.It was lovely we were with them for about a km and once one surfaced about 10' from my kayak.You could hear them blow air out as they surfaced.
Nearing the end of the paddle there was a small fibre glass runabout half cabin with about 6 big guys in it that came flying along  did a really sharp turn and stopped. As it did one of the guys sitting in the back fully clothed did a slow backward flip off the boat and into the lake..
Hee hee...silence.
I think they were all shocked and embarassed as they knew we'd seen them..He got himself together and swam over and got back in to nervous laughter and jokes.I think they'll be a bit more cautious after that. Lucky its summer and the lake is warm.


 I noticed a joey who looked sick hanging around the house.It was just lying around and looked like it had a stomach upset. Once they are on their own like that they are easy pickings for dogs etc.

We rang the wildlife people who came out and picked it up ( clucking and growling) to check it.They then picked the ticks off it and patted it and said it was too far gone.' If we can pick them up they are pretty bad'. They put it in the shade where it was cooler and it died about 2hrs later. Once they get upset stomachs there isn't much they can do for them. It looked about the age to be freshly weaned so the stress of weaning could have set it off.

 When I'm not painting my greatest love is sailboarding.

I don't have many of sailboarding photos so I  persuaded my partner to come and take some photos and I went out in a strong wind on Tuesday. 

As the wind picks up in strength you need to use a smaller board and sail to keep in control. I used a slightly larger board than appropriate as I can sail it better and I wanted decent photos. It doesn't blow strongly enough ( 25kts +) to get to sail my smaller board much so I've only used it a few times and I knew I wouldn't be able to gybe ( turn ) succesfully on it.

Ugh..I've been hobbling around on painkillers the last few days.

The first run out I tried to jump some waves for the camera and got the sail a little far forward and got whiplashed as I was smashed over the front into the water.. I can jump but just made errors. After that I decided to play it safe after as I was a bit overpowered and on the edge.

 If the board is too big for the strong wind and big chop it bounces around, gets uncontrollable and the wind can get under them and pick them up.
Later that day the wind got under mine and threw it , plus me attached by the harness, into a downwind jump. I got smashed onto the deck thigh first. It was so painful I wondered how I was going to start and sail in .The waves were crashing over the top of me as I lay in the water ready to waterstart. (Waterstarting is when you raise the sail up into the air to catch the wind and then it pulls you up onto the board ready to sail away. My board is too small and unstable to try and stand on it and pull the sail out of the water.)

So the end result of the day was 2 whiplash injuries, an injured leg and a strained ankle when the board flipped upside down with my foot was still in the strap .
See below-
When the wind is strong you need to keep your weight in the harness to keep the nose of the board down. As soon as you unhook and take your weight out - as I have here ready to come into land - the board can ' tailwalk' and get uncontrollable. After this shot it flipped upside down  with my ankle trapped in the strap.
 This was my last run for the day. I'd been out for 2hrs and was tired and also had injuries so it was asking for trouble to keep sailing.

With the ankle I've found out that if you ignore the pain and just keep going sprained ankles often come good and this one did thank goodness.

Grr. It's been blowing for 3 days now although a lot less than the day I was out. That's rare for around here and I can't sail..

I just heard on the radio that there have been several rescues on the lake in the last few days..I wonder how many people in small boats don't check the weather forecast before they head out? 

It's been great for sailboarding and sailing.I rarely get injured sailboarding despite going out in strong winds and people who go out in those conditions have sailed for years and know what they are doing.We love it!

Here's some more pics.
As you can see the lake gets quite choppy when it blows ( hence the reference to  boaties in small boats and weather forecasts!)  It can get bigger than that. I've been out when there have been 4' waves rolling down the lake and you can surf them.Great for us sailboarders..not so good for people in small boats.

Here's a hotshot to show you what can be done in those conditions..It's a real buzz!I have done decent jumps at times  but not often lately.I was too overpowered to safely try that day. You can get slammed pretty badly if you are overpowered.
Grr I don't think I'll be doing a lot for the next few days..hurry up and get better leg!
Its now 8 days later and I regret I didn't look after my leg better earlier . I toughed it out and ignored it and only just got some crutches and anti imflammatories yesterday. I'm supposed to keep off it but I'm not really doing that as well as I should. I hope it settles soon.

Post note - It's  10 days later and I'm still hobbling around on crutches but it's gradually improving. Before my injury we have had a pretty average season wind wise - not as much as usual. 
I think I must have been a sacrifice to the wind gods as it's blown almost everyday since I got injured!

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