Monday, March 22, 2010

Fashion Show

The latest on what cutting edge fashions this year's Pacific Cup sailor will be wearing.

Actually, this photo essay covers only the heavy duty stuff that the delivery crew will need for at least the last half of the trip, and the racing crew will need for the first 4-5 days. Anytime you are sailing in the ocean anywhere in the vicinity of San Francisco it is going to be COLD.

A good place to start is the beginning. Check out the polypropylene long johns. You will be so happy you have these (maybe bring a couple pair). Then there are the shorts and tee shirts.

I often just wear the longjohns, shorts and boots when I am below and out of the weather. As it starts to warm up (during the race) the tee shirts get rationed out so they last until the end of the race. That reminds me; it is good to have a laundry bag that is odor tight.

Next are the shoes and boots. A leaky old boot could spoil the whole trip. In addition good boat shoes  are important. Maybe two pair. Note the sequence: cotton liner socks, wool over that (poly might be better) then Gortex socks (from REI) and then the boots. Warm feet are a blessing.

Gloves and hats are next. One (or two) really good hats against the cold and one hat against the sun. Then as many gloves as you can afford. Remember, all night long it is often squally. That means that you are going to get wet again and again. Usually things don't dry down inside the boat, so if it is wet it will probably stay wet. Sometimes toward the end of the race there will be nice sunny says where things will dry out outside (and blow away) but don't count on it. Kneepads are also a good idea for those occasions when we we get into serious race mode.

The next layer is fleece. This particular pair have probably crossed the Pacific Ocean sixteen times. One pair is probably enough. Or two if you have space.

That means that this is a pretty good spot to pause and talk about space. Each person has a little more than a cubic foot of space for clothing and personal effects. This has proven adequate in the past. There is also a hanging locker (and other space) in the forward compartment for foul weather gear, PFDs, tethers and boots. There is also space for toilet kits above the (non-functioning) sink opposite the head. If you absolutely must sneak a chocolate bar (or the like) aboard, then do it. But, generally speaking people are discouraged from bringing food aboard. If you want to have something special, let us know and we'll get it.

Back to the subject at hand. Marine Fashion.

This is a "Coastal" jacket. It would do the job, but it is not very long in the waist (and there is no drawstring) so something heavier is preferred. On the fore deck, for example, when the boat is occasionally putting its bow under. So, if you have something like the "Offshore" jacket shown in the next photo, then bring it along as well.

Finally, it is time to pull it all together and make a true fashion statement. Our model has kindly agreed to don the whole outfit (in spite of the blazing sun and balmy Hawaiian weather). So this is the final product. Note the brilliant lime green of the hood and the shiny patches of reflecting tape (Required by the OSR, Section 5.)

This is probably a good place to remind all crew members of their personal responsibility to be acquainted (and comply) with the Notice of Race  the Offshore Special Regulations. These both appear on the Pacific Cup website. These documents are detailed and confusing. So, if you have questions now is the time to ask.

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