Saturday, February 19, 2011

It's not sailing but at least we used the stove!

We caravanned up to the Cascades today with 5 of the 6 grandkids, one Mom, one Dad, one Tia (auntie) from Mexico who'd never been to the snow, and another couple and their two kids.  The Dad and 2 of the 10-year-olds rode with me in the truck; the Admiral rode with the Mom, Tia, and the 3 other grandkids in the van.  Our friends drove their own SUV.

I should have known we were in trouble when, despite the WX forecast that called for sun, we hit snow 1/2 way up to Tombstone Pass.  We soldiered on though, and actually found 3 parking spots in the snow park at the top of the pass.  We then undertook the most strenuous one mile hike I've ever been on, seeking a sledding hill we'd used in the past.

It's amazing what a difference 20-30 inches more snow makes when you don't have snowshoes!  Last time I was there I think we had 24 inches of snow.  This time it's 58!  Two of the 10 year olds and I did the full 1/2 mile in, only to find the trees have grown since our last trip and the hill is unusable.  I was blowing like a whale by the time we got there.  We slogged back to the rest of the group, who'd stopped to rest a good 1/4 mile back, and we all returned to the vehicles.

Here's the Admiral and our friend before we turned back.

Our friends, in their SUV, lead the way back onto the highway, headed for Benson Snow Park on Santiam Pass.  A couple other cars pulled out at the same time so we ended up bringing up the rear and falling behind due to slower cars in front of us.  Twenty minutes later, as we came around the corner at the Hwy 22/34 junction, we saw an accident ahead.  It turned out to be our friends who'd lost control, crossed the westbound lane, and half-climbed the snowbank.  Thankfully there was no traffic coming the other way when he lost control.

Nobody but the SUV was hurt (crunched the grill a bit) and in about 10 minutes, after we'd pulled him out (4-Low Rocks!), we all continued the trip up to the top of Santiam Pass for some sledding!

While we were out on the hill, the Admiral stayed at the truck with the handy Origo stove.  She said it took a while to get going but eventually the lighter heated the alcohol up and she got a steady enough flame for hot chocolate when we got back. 

Note the steaming pan of hot chocolate and the trusty Origo just inside the canopy where it's protected from the wind.

The run home was uneventful except that our friends missed the turn at the Hwy 22/34 junction so they ended up taking the long way home. 

Not saying I wouldn't rather be in Havasu for the Trailer Sailor meet, but it was a fun day and at least part of the boat was involved!


Saturday, February 5, 2011

Shredded sails . . .

That doesn't even look like it had sunbrella on it!  I see folks who don't cover their sails at our marina each summer and just shake my head.  I can't imagine how much quicker the sails die in SoCal than they do in Oregon.

While I'm not a stickler for 100% ship shape all the time, I do believe in doing as much as you can afford to maintain your boat/gear and I just don't understand how people who can afford to keep their boat in a marina can't at least do the basics. Why wouldn't you remove the jib from the furler if the boat's on the hard?

Our Capri 16.5 had red/white/blue sails and you couldn't remove the jib if the mast was up.  The prior owner didn't cover them and there was significant fading, especially of the blue.  It costs $100 for a genoa sleeve kit from Sailrite and $126 for a mainsail cover kit.  If you're going fork out over $8K for a new boat why wouldn't you spend another $250 to protect your investment?  I only spent $4K for it 4 years after it was new and the first thing we did before we started mooring with the mast up was order those 2 kits!  I know those covers were a big part of the reason I got more for the boat than we paid for it!

Last year we replaced mainsail and tiller covers on our Capri 22, plus we added a cover for the main hatch/companionway.  It cost less than $250 for the whole thing!  Not peanuts, but certainly less than a new sail and we even get to keep the @#$@ wasps out of the cabin!

This year I'll be rebedding the tabernacle and other deck hardware.  I doubt I'll spend more than $250 including the tools.

I just don't get it.