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 Post subject: Back from the Gorge
PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2003 11:20 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 28, 2002 10:01 am
Posts: 658
Location: Forest Lake
What a place of magic! Rolled into 3 Mile first day for a 4.5M session on July 8 and met by coincidence my friend from Brighton Ski Area as he had stopped on his way out of town. Bob, from American Windsurfer, joined us on his 3.5. The wind dropped off later in the day and sleeping at Tucker was heaven. Met Judd and Diane the next day, saw Jim Oakes awesome new contempory loft/house/warehouse, hooked up with Eric, did music, mountain biking and more sailing. I was suprised to see that the night spots had been taken over by kayakers, mountain bikers and snowboarders. Judd, Diane and I enjoyed a nice 'elderly' session with old time windsurfers at Stonehedge restaraunt, listening to the tunes of Mo Dixon. He still knows how to throw out a great show. The town didn't seem that busy until the weekend. Saturday was a zoo and the Hatch parking area was full when I rolled through at 9:30. I decided to go to Stevenson to watch the start of the Blowout. Pete "Duckjibe" Wagner prodded me into signing up. I sat on the fence and then last minute decided to register. It turned out to be the highlight of my trip.
It's a 18 mile downwinder to the event site. Bruce Peterson and Dale Cook had widestyle race boards with 10+ meter sails. My biggest sail was a 6.6M and the Techno 273. I barely had time to rig, get my suit on and hit the water when the start boat came down the line.
All the 8M sails and bigger were able to plane the whole way. The rest of us did the plane/schlogg through the Narrows and then all hell broke loose when we hit Viento when the winds kicked to 30-45mph. This is where it totally became a necessity to go to the present moment as I was thrashed several times. I had pretty much gotten the routine of sailing 'deep' downwind and over 80% of my trip was out of the harness lines. The 'big' sail fleet made it down the river in a little over an hour when corridor winds were 20-30mph. An hour later, when the second half of the fleet came through, the 30-45mph winds had created 10 foot swell and the sails I saw coming through Swell and the Hatch were 3.5-4M.
At one point, just east of the second tunnel, I put into a beach on the Oregon side, did some soul searching, smashed my fear and pride, put six inches of downhaul on and went back out after fifteen minutes. I could look three miles down river and three miles up river and I didn't see a single sailor. It's amazing what happens when you relax into the moment...all of a sudden I wasn't cramping up anymore, I wasn't falling down and the next thing I knew I was on my home stretch to the Event Site. There were 54 entries, 45 finished and I came in 22nd overall, 9th in the Masters. It really was one of my more challenging windsurfing events and I'd highly recommend it for others who want to "face the moment". When you're on a 6.6M, going downwind in a 45MPH gust in 8-10 foot swell, you truly come to know the meaning of 'making your appointment with life'.
Thanks to Mike, Brian, Eric, Judd, Diane, Judd, Scotty, Bart, Darren, Tom, Anita, Bill and hundreds of other smilin' sailors who made this another unforgettable trip. Sorry I missed Jeff, Peter, Shannon and the rest of the Minnesota contingent. Got back in town last night, looking forward to the next session on the water in Minnesota.

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PostPosted: Sat Jul 19, 2003 3:18 pm 
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Joined: Fri Nov 29, 2002 11:41 pm
Posts: 53
excellent post Randy! I was at Big Winds the morning of the blow out and there were folks running in and out scrambling for big sails. I too had an excellent trip. short and sweet,we sailed 3 out of 3 1/2 days. It was more than I expected given the forecast when we left MPLS. It was My brother from Michigan,my 16 yr old nephew from Madison nad my brother in law from Portland as our local wind guide. I ran into Larry at Safeway on his last day. Friday I saw Brian S. who just rolled in. Then Eric S was spotted with Judd at the Hatch. On Sat. I saw Eric S. again at one of my favorites: Doug's Beach. My brother in laws comment," Know wonder I don't know any body, everybody is from Minnesota.

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 Post subject:
PostPosted: Sun Jul 20, 2003 6:59 pm 
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Joined: Sun Dec 01, 2002 1:56 am
Posts: 171
Location: Portland Oregon
I stopped at the Event Site when Bruce and Dale came in. I asked Bruce his time and he smiled and said Dale did 1hr1min and Bruce did 1hr3min. Sounded like a good race.

Randy, if the wind is 30mph and you are going 25mph down wind, :shock: the apparent wind is only 5mph. So whats your problem? :D Good job on doing the race.

I saw Eric, Brian, and Mike at the Hatchery yesterday(Rohn, the new Windsurfing Hawaii rep and Jim Oakes too). I was walking up wind to get my sandals. I got blown down wind because the wind was so light I had to go down wave faces to stay on plane. I recognized Brian from Waconia 6 years ago. Eric loaned me his sandals, thanks.


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 Post subject: Minnesotans in the Gorge
PostPosted: Tue Jul 22, 2003 9:30 am 
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Joined: Thu Nov 28, 2002 10:01 am
Posts: 658
Location: Forest Lake
Sorry I missed you guys. Wouldn't it be great to know just what the Minnesota representation in the Gorge is? I suspect we're not far behind Oregon, Washington and California, if we don't count all the Canadians that seem to invade the place this time of year.
Crossing my fingers for wind on Thursday!

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