For those of you opting not to drive to Harrison Lake Labor Day weekend for the Hobie Div. 4 Championships, you missed a doozy. Harrison is highly regarded for its dependable medium breeze and flat water. If you like to trap out and put the bow down, this is the place for you!
And this year did not disappoint! With 5 double-trap races on Saturday and 4 on Sunday, all of the sailors were all smiles. But because it wasn’t ‘white knuckle’ sailing, you hit the sandy beach with energy left over!
Saturday started out not looking good. Smoky skies from the fires and a northerly (wrong direction), along with predictions of ‘stagnant air’ had many of the sailors worried of a long day on the beach. The AP went up at 1100, but by 1230 it was down, boats were off the beach, and racing was on.
Harrison is a tricky spot tactically. Sometimes the left pays, sometimes the right, and sometimes the middle. The left is the traditional, safe bet. But this weekend it was the middle and right that consistently paid dividends. There were a few capsizes and pitchpoles to emphasize the puffs coming down. On particular race Peter Nelson augered in with Todd Morrill, following right after Will’s footsteps with Josh Markovich. Like son; like father.
The crewing situation was a mixed bag, particularly in the 16 fleet. When JJ Hoag showed up sick with food poisoning, she turned the reins over to Kailey Jones while JJ’s dad, John, provided tactics and coaching support. Meanwhile Peter was crewing (sometimes) for Todd, while Laura Sullivan was with Al Jones, and Matt Markovich jumped on Paul Carter’s boat.
On Sunday JJ returned to smiling form. But Laura was out with a sore back after being thrown into the mast during a capsize on Saturday. So John and Al jumped on one of Paul’s 18s and proceeded to load their ‘Hobie pistol’ with bullets.
The 18s had a good showing, with far less crew movement, with teams from Kelowna, Seattle, & Vancouver. The 17 fleet saw a resurgence as well with about 6 boats on the line. There were even 2 Waves and a 20 that graced the waters.
Paul Evenden’s wife, Debbie, made a delicious dinner for the sailors Saturday night, and it was mowed down by the voracious sailors. Everyone was in shirt sleeves and it was warm and pleasant evening eating dinner with friends at the beach. Tough to beat.
Harrison is a fantastic venue if you like flat water, double-trap breeze, tactical waters, beaches, and warm weather. Thanks, Paul, for organizing it and making it so much fun.