Well thankfully our buddy and local Baltimore ABC weatherman Wyatt Everhart has the hurricane Joaquin heading more out to sea now so the damage factor may be a lot less for MD. However its still gonna get windy and bring some serious rain our way.
With all this wind foretasted social media has been blowing up with talk about downwinders this weekend. If you do venture out to catch some bumps please be safe about it. We do not want to have an incident here in MD like they did in Hood River a few weeks back.
OG Basil “Chip” Tydings posted about safety and it got us thinking. PLEASE PLEASE PLEASE wear a leash, check the string that attaches to your grommet an the leash. The leash won’t do you any good if it breaks off. Also wear a PFD, I know some of the young guys think they are too cool for those but play it safe and wear one anyway.
Chip also brought up a good point about the inflatable pfd’s, when is the last time you checked your CO2 cartridge? If your like 99% of paddlers you have never had to pull it and it may have started to rust over time, if its been a couple years its not a bad idea to change it out. Replacements go for $12 on amazon and it could save your life.
Lastly and probably most important is don’t go solo. If you get in some trouble and you have a group of people they may be able to help but if something goes bad and your solo you are SOL. Just last year a local Annapolis paddler had to get rescued in Annapolis by the coast guard doing a downwinder, thankfully somebody on shore was walking by at the right time. Don’t be a hero play it safe
Here is Chips post
“There is a lot of talk in the Mid Atlantic about downwinding this weekend. I’m excited for the fun! This is also a good time to refresh that gear we bought back when we started paddling.
Now is a good time to maybe check the ol’ leg rope (leash) for wear and tear. It’s been soaking in saltwater for 4 years and probably been rinsed off once. Also, ever pulled the string hanging off your PFD you bought back in 2009? Take a look at the cartridge that is starting to rust. Does that system even work properly? And don’t forget the piece of twine you took off your Grandpa’s tool bench. Grandpa got his ball of twine at Woolworths in 1972. That twine connects your leash to your board and therefore your board to you. Ever wonder how twine holds up after 30 years and after soaking in salt water the last 5?
Go ahead and make this hurricane season your time to change out the old safety gear for some new safety gear. If you can buy a SUP you can buy a new leash and/or a new CO2 cartridge or at least get a new piece of twine…”