August 1, 2018

Ahoy Paupack Sailors,


Sailing is a metaphor for life. I remember taking the boat out for the first sail of this

season. There was a strong gust and she was leaning over and slicing through the water. There

was nothing to worry about except a couple motor boats. I hope all of us have opportunities to

live parts of our lives in this manner - filled with exhilaration and powered by nature. For many

years Paupack Sailing Club has been providing great recreational opportunities on Lake

Wallenpaupack. The Club has made a positive impact on so many members in so many ways and

to our local communities. Thank you to all the wonderful people who have participated at PSC

over the years - from all the sailors, skippers, volunteers, and committee boats who have

worked behind the scenes to provide such great experiences for everyone. And also thank you

to the friends of PSC who continue to help us over the years, some in small ways and others in

larger ways.


I can't believe it's August already. I’m hopeful that we will soon see longer periods

without rain and with favorable winds. As a bit of an aviation buff, I often think that we sailors

are like pilots. To some extent, depending on our individual situations, we are weather

dependent. This week looks to be another wash-out with more rain in the forecast. With

forecasts like these it's important that we check the weather just like a pilot, and go through a

series of checklists (even if they are just mental). We should ensure that we have all the

necessary safety equipment aboard, and that each is operational before leaving the dock. It's

also important that our passengers are briefed on what to do in an emergency, and prepare

those who've never sailed on what to expect.


We are essentially gliding above the surface of the earth 60 feet or more depending on

the lake's depth. Although Lake Wallenpaupack is not the ocean it is still important that you

have a general idea of where you're going and what areas to avoid especially later in the season when the lake level drops. When you make your approach to the dock be aware of which

direction the wind is coming from and use it to your advantage just as an airplane makes it's

approach to landing.


The science of sailing applies the same principles as does flying. Essentially Bernoulli's

principle of lift. For any airfoil generating lift, there must be a pressure imbalance, i.e. lower

average air pressure on the top than on the bottom. Bernoulli's principle states that this

pressure difference must be accompanied by a speed difference. This is most apparent when

sailing upwind as the sails are hauled in close. The difference in the pressure on the sails acts as

a forward suction, producing lift. Conventional wisdom would think that sailing into the wind

would be an impossible task. Yet with the aid of lift we can sail as close as forty-five degrees into

the wind. The same principles of lift apply below the surface as we use the keel's curvature in the same way not only to help the vessel maintain a straight track through the water but also

using lift to aid with the heeling forces along with it's weight of course. As the wind dies we

increase the curvature of the sails to create even more lift just as an airplane uses its flaps to help increase the wings curvature during slow flight. The similarities are so many, and just as flying gives one a sense or freedom and enjoyment so does sailing!


Saturday July 28th the club held its annual Bob Schmidt Regatta. We enjoyed wonderful

weather and great winds as the usual skippers begrudgingly handed over the helm to the less

experienced crews. This is the race for someone other than the regular skipper (or well

seasoned crew) to take the helm. In the past we have done a Rookie Race and Sadie Hawkins

Race. This race combines the two. Some of us didn't hold our courses too well, or were

distracted by the water guns firing back and forth at each other. It was still the most fun race,

and a great learning experience. The food was also great after the race thanks to the dishes

everyone brought and thanks to the cooking by the Fiddler's Green crew!


Although half the season is behind us we have a lot left in store to look forward to.

Sunday August 12th we are scheduled for Race 6 of the season. The crew of 100% is on the

roster for race committee, and Flip Turn is to handle the picnic duties. Later this month we have

Wally Lake Fest to look forward to. Saturday August 25th we will be providing sailboat rides

from Lighthouse Marina. This has been a tradition of ours with Wally Lake Fest. PSC provides

sailboat rides departing every hour from about noon in order to raise money to be donated to a

charity each year. We will raft up afterward at the North end of the lake. Then on Sunday August

26th we will hold Race 7, our Memorial Regatta at the north end of the lake for the Wally Lake

Fest spectators to enjoy. The final piece of exciting news is that our second order from the ships

store has arrived, if you haven't already received your PSC swag. Please let Kristen know if you

plan to attend Wally Lake Fest to provide sailboat rides and how many passengers you can fit

aboard.

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