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About camasonian

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    Vancouver, WA

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  1. I just bought an older used Lightning to use and race with my kids. I'm looking for recommendations for PFDs for dinghy sailing that would be an upgrade from the cheap Wal-Mart PFDs that we have now. I don't need the most state of the art expensive racing gear. We are mostly just going to sail recreationally. But something less bulky and confining than the ill-fitting Wal-Mart specials that we have now. I'm kind of a big guy (5'10" and 200 lbs) so will likely need something XL. My wife and girls are all small in the 5'1" 110 lbs range.
  2. Coast Guard friend of mine can't wait to retire and move back to Traverse City Michigan. He was a chopper pilot stationed in Traverse City, Puget Sound, Kodiak, and Juneau and wants to go back to Michigan for the sailing and diving.
  3. Thanks guys. It appears that some of the club members who are actively sailing are looking to upgrade to newer fancier boats so there are several boats possibly available that are actively being sailed and being successful raced locally and regionally. And there are some older boats sitting in the yard that haven’t been in the water or even have had their covers off in years and they will obviously require more work and more careful inspections. All things being equal, I’m more inclined to pull the trigger on a boat that is currently being raced and doing well this season as it is m
  4. Well yes. No shortage of uber-wealthy yachties here. Not everything is about the Olympics. I kind of like that ordinary kids can go out and learn to sail at most university programs without having to be world-class athletes. That is as it should be. The point of university shouldn't be to train up world-class athletes but rather provide opportunities for the students who are there anyway. University itself has gotten to be a competitive sport here among the rich as demonstrated by all the college admissions scandals recently. I expect it is the parents who are driving that s
  5. Lightning it is then. Now I just gotta find the right one. Looks like I have enough local options to have some choice of price and condition so I don't have to chase all over the country.
  6. In the US I'm sure it is 99% a funding issue and 1% to do with inflexibility at the university level. In the US there are millions of nontraditional college students attending part time, nights, weekends, seasonally, whatever. That's common. Maybe not at super elite Ivy League universities but at ordinary public universities. The more likely problem is that ordinary college students can't afford to both attend school and pursue sailing careers and there isn't the corporate sponsorship for top young athletes like there is in skiing and snowboarding. There are plenty of young athle
  7. I don't think sailing is necessarily more unpopular in the US than skiing. I'm talking about ski racing not futzing around the mountain recreationally or going on ski vacations. Yet the US does pretty well on the world scene when it comes to ski racing. There are very few youth ski racing programs limited to a very few parts of the country. And 95% of kids under 18 want to be snowboarding not skiing anyway. Why is sailing so different? Perhaps one difference is that the top US skiers basically spend all their time on tour with the Euros and that doesn't happen so much in sailing
  8. Yes, very nice facility. They have plenty of storage in the secure grassy parking area next to the ramp. Most everyone stores their boats on a trailer with the mast up and a cover on. They just pull their cars or pickups up to the boat, rig it and then tow it down to the private club ramp. Very simple and quick. You can be in the water as fast as you can hook your car up to the trailer, get the cover off, and get the sails rigged. Whole place is private and gated so no competing with any outsider users. In fact, the whole lake is almost private. No one else seems to use it other than t
  9. Has anyone ever had any kind of hassle for wearing a non USGC approved PFD? I'm not talking about for things like collegiate racing. I'm talking about out on the water running into a random local water patrol. I mean seriously, with as much alcohol and high Horsepower-fueled craziness that I see on our local lakes, I can't imagine that local water patrols have time to inspect the labels on PFDs.
  10. Towing is not a problem. I've got a V6 Highlander with 5000 tow rating that I've used to tow a 4000 lb camping trailer all over the west. Lightning should be child's play. Mostly just towing it 50 yards down the ramp and back up. Heck, I think I could do that with my wife's Prius if necessary. I'm leaning strongly towards the Lightnings. More convenient fleet location and seems like a servicable boat for what I'm looking for. Summers here aren't known for strong winds so I don''t think it will be too much boat for the girls and me. It's not like we are taking it out on SF Bay. At
  11. As a boat I think the daysailer would be my first choice of the two. But the club with the Lightnings is closer and more convenient and I think the lake venue where the Lightnings are sailed is larger and a nicer venue than the river sailing at the club with the daysailers. Of course they are now saying that Vancouver Lake could get eaten by milfoil in a couple years if they can't get ahold of the invasive plants. So if it's not one thing its another. Nothing is forever. I just gotta pick one and roll with it. I'm leaning towards the Lightnings based on location and venue. The folks
  12. I haven't actually sailed out there. Since I'd be coming from the WA side on Highway 14 I was actually looking at something like launching out of the Cascade Boat Ramp that is in downtown Stevenson on the WA side. But maybe that's not a good location for sailing. Plus the Lightning seems like a rather fussy rig to haul around for weekend sailing. Maybe I just need two boats, one that stays put for dinghy racing and a second one to haul around for weekending. But that way lies madness! Or at least dragons. I have an older daughter in college and two yet to come.
  13. Vancouver Lake is super easy. Just a straight shot down highway 14 for me and there is never really any afternoon traffic on 14. So probably 20 minute most weekday evenings. Willamette Sailing Club would be driving across the I-5 or I-205 bridge and through downtown Portland. It's a reverse commute with most of the traffic going the other direction. I"ve checked google maps a few times this afternoon and at 5:45 pm today it says 30 min. An hour ago at 4:30 it was 40 min. But if you pick the wrong bridge and get stuck you can be in traffic hell. So yes, Vancouver Lake is closer
  14. I know there are a variety of PDX area sailers here. I've recently moved my family back to the Portland area and I'm thinking about getting back into sailing after a LONG hiatus. Decades ago I used to race dinghys in college (in the Portland area and Northwest) and did a bit of crewing on larger boats in Seattle in grad school. Casual J-boat stuff. But I've been out of sailing for a long time. I have two daughters ages 13 and 16 who I'd also like to get into the sport and also just be able to get out and do some family cruising around with my wife and kids. My limitations are budget
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