End of an Era - Racing 3-18-17

by Pam
Saturday marked the end of an era at White Rock Lake.  Bruce and Frank have officially retired from Butterfly sailing.  Although Frank sold his boat some time back to focus his sailing energy on the Flying Scot, when Bruce recently called it quits, it sort of became the official retirement from Butterfly sailing for both of them.  

We had a small gathering after sailing to honor them but it was sadly inadequate simply because they have done so much.  Bruce and Frank, together with Tom, Gary, Sandy and Burton, are "my guys." I credit Frank with getting me on a Butterfly and Bruce, Tom and Gary with keeping sailing one.  Whatever I needed, they were there.  For me, they are, and will always be, the face of Butterfly sailing and sooo much more.  Frank put me on my first Butterfly and shoved me away from the docks to 'fly' even though I had expected him to sail double-handed with me.  He always made it a point to offer encouragement or instruction when I was near him on the race course.  Bruce has repaired my boat, lent me his, and on the rare occasion when I found myself in front of him on the course, reminded me which way to go and pushed me to get that thing moving and get out of his way.  The two of them were there to help me launch my newly restored 40+ year old Butterfly and they watched as I hit everything in sight trying to get out of the harbor.  I'm sure we'll still see them around but they will be greatly missed on the water.  Thank you both for everything that you have done for me.  You have had a bigger impact than you may realize.

Oddly enough, on this day that Bruce and Frank leave Butterfly sailing, some old familiar faces came out and said they intend to start sailing again (me included).  We even had some new faces that are interested.  Time marches on and it's great but it also sort of sucks.  

Three races today and the weather went from a little overcast to plenty of sun.  We went from a very gentle breeze to nothing with boats looking like they were frozen in place.  Here is a reflection of Cathy in the water.  Kind of cool!

We had 13 boats and John, Sandy and Gary each won a race.  Cathy had a 2 2 3 making her the winner of the day.  Gary had some lousy starts and some impressive comebacks. Here are just a few pictures of the folks sailing.  It's been ages since I posted on the Butterfly site so I'll have to figure out where to upload more pics later.

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Racing 3/4/2017

more photos                                                                                                                                by Cathy

Start of the 1st race. Photos by Kurt.
We've been pretty lucky for February. Paraphrasing Jim's comments from the last two weeks:  Two weeks ago we had very pleasant weather but the wind died during the first race, it was shortened, and there were no more races for the day. Last Saturday's weather was delightful.  Winds were variable in intensity and direction.  But, winds were generally light or moderate.  We had zero capsizes.

For today the prediction was about right:   Winds about 10 to 15 mph from the SSE.  Mostly cloudy skies and temperatures in the upper 40's.

It might have been warmer than that but sure didn't seem it. Paul even commented it was the coldest he'd been on the lake this year. In spite of that we had a great time but during a capsize and rescue in between the 1st and 2nd race, Jim and Gary went in.  That left only 4 of us and the wind had picked up quite a bit by then. Burton's boom vang arm broke during the 2nd race, leaving only 3 of us. It was that kind of a windy day and no way to sail out there without a boom vang. No one wanted to stay for a 3rd race so we all went in and warmed up! 

Joyce also came out for a while to get in a little practice. Warmer weather is coming soon so hope to see her and more Butterflyers out there next time!

Thank you to Cameron and Kurt on race committee and Kurt for taking the photos!

Jim after rounding the jibe mark. 
Sandy, impressively finishing the 2nd race, though a little wet! 

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Racing 01/28/2017

more photos                                                                                                                         by Cathy

Start of the 3rd race.
Jim was right. He characterized the weather forecast as: Crisp.  Temperatures in the lower 50s.  Sunny; with winds from the NW about 10 mph.  Lovely conditions for a sail.

We had 6-7 boats on the line with some stronger wind in the afternoon. 

Laurie and Nancy.

Sandy, trying out the new sail provided by North Sails.

Rounding the leeward mark.

Lasers joining us for the last 2 races.

Paul, crossing the finish line.

Sandy and Burton coming up to the finish line.

Bob on RC and Nancy coming up to the finish line.

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Racing: 21 Jan 2017

It was wonderful weather for Butterfly racing last Saturday.  Winds were delightful for the first two races, but wind speed and gusting picked up for the third.  This third race included two capsizes.  One was self-rescued, and the other was quickly handled by the race committee, Bowman and John.  Many thanks!

Race 1 - Sandy and Paul headed to leeward mark

Race 2 - Fleet on reach leg

Race 2 - Paul trying out new sail provided by North Sails.  (If you are interested in testing it, contact Paul.)

Race 3 - Starting line.  Wind is picking up.

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No Racing 14 Jan 2017

Once again, the weather discouraged the Fleet from showing up in numbers sufficient for racing.  Better luck next Saturday.

The WRBC's rescue boat is out of service for at least one more week.  The gearbox of the outboard motor apparently leaked, and water froze and cracked the housing.  Many thanks are extended to Larry Kousal for tackling the repairs.

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Racing 12/31/2016

more photos                                                                                                                               by Cathy

Marshall rounding the jibe mark with Jim, Nancy, and me trying to catch up. 
New Year's Eve was good to us. We all started shedding clothes and life jackets as the weather warmed to almost 70 degrees, the sun came out, and the wind dwindled. We had great wind in the first race, then lots of shifts and a few of us sailed into holes in the second race, then managed to go back out for a final race with just enough wind to make it enjoyable.

Burton and C. were on race committee. Thank you both and especially C. for letting me sail! We don't always take a break in the winter but with tamales and chili provided by Burton, we all joyously celebrated the New Year by chowing down! Except for Nancy  . . . we tried to save her some tamales but it was not to be. Thank you Burton!

Out of 6 Butterflys, Paul took 1st in all 3 races, but in that last race Marshall was closing in rapidly. Marshall got 2nd in 2 races, and Nancy got 2nd in the 1st race. I managed 3rd in all 3 races but had to do a circle on the starting line in the 3rd race after colliding with the committee boat. Ouch. That was fairly embarrassing.

Here is hoping 2017 is a great year for Butterfly sailing. Happy New Year!

More photos from the 1st race, rounding the jibe mark:


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Merry Christmas

                                                                                                                                                  by Cathy

Miles, Jim, and Burton checking out the fog.
Driving across the Mockingbird bridge about 1:30 pm, no Butterflys to be seen and a light layer of fog was still hovering over the lake. I was returning from out of town and was sorry to miss sailing but when I checked CSC's site - the wind was 0 mph! Suddenly I was not so sorry to be arriving too late to race as I fear conditions were not favorable for racing.  

After awhile I got some photos from Bob with a message "Merry Christmas from WRBC" and then one from Paul "Crazy fog"!

Wow - that really was some crazy fog. It's about 72 degrees and Christmas Eve. I guess we almost got our white-out Christmas.

Thanks for the photos and Merry Christmas to all!

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Racing 12/17/2016

                                                                                                                                                    by Cathy

Bruce joined Jim and Sam on race committee.
The forecast was that the wind would shift from SW to W, then N and the temperature would work it's way up to the low 70's and then start dropping like a rock as the cold front arrived. Meantime the wind would be pretty nice around 10-15 mph then drop a little as the wind shifted to the W and then there was a wind advisory from 3 pm to midnight as the front began arriving. It sounded like the timing would allow us to get in some races and that is pretty much how it worked out.

There were 7 Butterfly sailors and 5 Lasers with the Lasers getting a separate start. We managed to get 2 races in before the race committee  had to reset the course but that 2nd race had a big shift as the race started. All of a sudden the committee boat turned parallel to the starting line and several of us had to circle and jibe to get back across. It was an exciting start!

As race committee was resetting the course for the 3rd race, several of us bailed out because by then the wind had shifted to the N and started to pick up. At my skill level, going in was the right thing to do.

All the Butterflys stayed upright with no capsizes. The Lasers tend to capsize but can mostly right themselves but apparently one of their fleet boats had some problems and the mast filled with water and the boat got stuck in the mud. Race committee had a challenging job with all the wind shifts and the high wind, the cold front coming in, resetting the course, and rescuing the Laser. Thank you race committee!

Race results: 1st race - Sandy, Paul, and Burton
                      2nd race - Nancy, Paul, and Sandy
                      3rd race - Paul, Sandy, and Burton

The day in photos:

Race committee setting the course for the 1st race.
Still setting the course.
Checking the wind.

Before the 1st race. Warming up nicely.
Doug P. talking to race committee, Nancy off to the right - before the 1st race.

Probably telling the Lasers they'll get their own start after the Butterflys.

Race committee on the finish line - boats in the distance have finished.  

Downwind (Gold Cup) finish - 1st race.

Finishing up the 1st race as the dark clouds roll in.

White Rock Boat Club with some nice fall color before the front arrives.  

End of the 1st race.

Mix of Butterflys and Lasers at the end of the 1st race.

Finishing up the 1st race.

Waiting for the course to be reset for the 3rd race. Then I left . . . 

Downtown from Peavy on my way home. Cold front has moved in . . .

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