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By mwatson71
#2302374
So the forecast was a little off. Winds were forecast to be 5-7mph through about 3am. We hit the water a little after 11p after a storm blew through. Last time we did this, it was calm the rest of the night. Not so this time. When we made it out to the open water, we could tell the current and wind were going to be a problem under the lights. We caught a couple of quick fish and moved into the canals.

It was pretty slow for the first couple of hours. The solunar had a major feed from about 12:30-2:30 so it was kind of to be expected. At 2a I landed my first keeper, a solid 22" speck, with the Vudu shad ripping her in the gills and bleeding everywhere. My yak looked like a scene from Dexter. I was pretty stoked. A couple of minutes later and a few lights away, I got slammed by another hard fighting fish, stripping drag and turning me in the Hobie. A 25" redfish into the net. I radio to Shoffer to come down to this end of the canal, as I think I have found the fish. He was too busy landing a 21" speck. We fish a little longer then decide to call it a night.

And that is pretty much where the fun ended.

If anyone happened to look at what the weather actually was this morning, they would see that the wind between 3a and 5a was blowing at 30mph and gusting up to the mid-30s. So once we made it out of the canals and back to the bay to head back to the launch, we were screwed. We actually pulled into a canal to wait it out and tried to find a way to walk back to the launch and drive back to pick up the kayaks. No luck. We pedaled back through solid 2' waves with a lot of chop. Into the 30mph winds. Against the current. Waves crashing over the bow and sides. And it sucked. We made it back to the launch, soaked, tested by Mother Nature, with fish in the bag, and thankful to be back on solid ground.
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By YakRunabout
#2302376
Ouch - no fun dealing with that kind of weather!! At least you got some fish for your troubles. Those are some nice specs, and fat this time of year!!

. . . tried to find a way to walk back to the launch and drive back to pick up the kayaks.
We did exactly that one night a few years back. We were on the southeast side, a strong incoming tide and a strong east wind put a stop to our plans to go around that wall on the SE side. Then we remembered seeing a boat ramp nearby. There is a small one at the SW end of Long Reach Dr. So we went there and I walked back to get the car. A lot easier that dealing with the winds and waves. I do not know of another ramp on the island, so if on the north side - options are limited.

Glad you were able to write the report!!
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By shoffer
#2302383
Yes, it was hairy. The wind was, to begin with, much stronger than forecasted - 18-22 mph directly under the Galveston Causeway in our faces. I would not have even gone had I known the wind was going to be at this level, but the forecast was good (Windalert is usually never wrong) and it did not feel bad at the launch.

So we head to Tiki for calmer waters. We found calmer, protected waters in the canals, so we had a respite and made the most of it. As we started to leave, though, a storm had moved into East Bay, and the downdraft is what caught us. We came back into 30+mph wind in our faces, with lightning in the distance:
Windy.png


Seems like one of these trips happens to me about once every 6 years or so. I don't go out when the wind that is 15 mph or more (unless I know I have protected shoreline the whole time), but Mother Nature throws us a curve every now and then. If the waves had been sideswiping us, I would not have tried it and just waited in a canal until conditions improved, but taking waves head-on is much easier than dealing with waves hitting you in the side, or quartering your rear.
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By Ron Mc
#2302385
Pucker time.
Just saying - wind planning. We've ridden out 35 kt with drift sock deployed at stern, but that's downwind-home.
And without the drift sock, it would be instant windcock and capsize.

Glad you guys made it home safe, and even some nice fish.

this water is only 1-3' deep
Image
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By kickingback
#2302390
Great report guys. :clap:
Sorry to hear about the bad winds but at least you caught some keepers!
Shoffer, did your TM help in the wind or was it that hard to even use it?
Michael, your kayak is more slim it's surprising that you had a hard time in your kayak with the wind.
Glad you guys made it back OK though. Thanks for sharing and posting! Good to get reports while everyone else is stuck at home during these virus times. Wish I still could have gone with you guys. Did you leave the senior captain at home with his wife? :lol:
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By Ron Mc
#2302396
The problem with any boat in that wind, is the wind wants to turn your hull sideways - you have to fight it constantly and anticipate the waves.
If it does catch and turn you sideways, the next wave will flip you.

Different boats also behave differently.
When we were crossing Estes Cove on a starboard tack, NNE 25-28, my Tarpon 160 would let me steer upwind when I needed to avoid a wave.
My buddy's Revo 16 (paddle + turbofin) wouldn't make headway into the wind gust when he needed, and he flipped 3 times in Estes Cove (3' deep)
Lou in his wider-lower Emotion Fisherman also had no wind worries on that crossing, though he took on a lot of water through the giant floor hatch.
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By Ron Mc
#2302415
JW FunGuy wrote:Ron’s comments above however I think are all 95% operator error. :wink:

Stevo has been kayaking longer than anybody I know, and his first boat was puckering fast Aquaterra Kahuna, which he used in rivers as well.
Phil Shook photographed him kayak fishing Cedar Bayou Flats in '94, and his photo was published in FR&R and Texas Parks & Wildlife that year (he had a beard).

There's a deep keel effect from the turbofin on the narrow Revo that lets the wind pivot the hull on that keel, and it's impossible for the rudder to overcome - even with the help of a paddle - in bastante wind.
It's exactly the same phenomenon as knockdowns in a sailboat, only you're the sail.
This has happened twice to Steve, both in Estes Cove I described, and 3 years earlier while my photo above was being taken at Big Cut. Before, he was taking up his drift sock while the wall-cloud squall hit - that was operator error.
Image
I know he's planning to buy an Outback, without actually saying he's giving up on the Revo. And of course he'll keep the Revo for his speedy play boat.
Last edited by Ron Mc on Fri May 08, 2020 8:08 am, edited 3 times in total.
By mwatson71
#2302424
kickingback wrote:Great report guys. :clap:

Michael, your kayak is more slim it's surprising that you had a hard time in your kayak with the wind.


I was actually able to stay headfirst into the wind but the water was still coming up over the bow.

I don't know that there was ever a point that I felt truly in danger (and not because of a lack of respect for Mother nature but I felt like I had my kayak under decent control). Reading Ron's point about the rudder acting as a pivot point is good info to have for future reference. I think the fact that we had the current coming against us probably helped keep the kayak straight now that I think about it. It was only when I made the turn into open water for the 250 yard pedal back to the entry into the main canal that was really hairy.
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By Ron Mc
#2302427
it was actually the deep keel effect of turbofins in the too big wind, and the rudder (even with added paddle) couldn't overcome it.

As I replied on our earlier Estes report, there are better boats than Tarpon for techniques that involve standing up, but few others with the speed combined with good manners.
It was, afterall, designed by a naval architect.
Last edited by Ron Mc on Fri May 08, 2020 9:17 am, edited 1 time in total.
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By JW FunGuy
#2302429
All of this would be a great topic for another post so not to totally step on the OP.

I don’t care how long someone has been sitting in a kayak most get in for the first time, learn how to make it go forward, hopefully in a straight line, try some in reverse, kind of make it turn when they want to and call it good. They don’t know what a forward or a reverse sweep stroke is, how to do a low brace or a high brace without tipping over. Or that when a wave hits you sideways they don’t know how to do those to keep from getting knocked over. Or that you don’t lean away from the wave but into it or you will get the keel effect. And get knocked over. These are also things that need to be practiced, it can save your life.
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By Ron Mc
#2302431
well damn it, I'm going to stand up for Steve's skills - he's still spent more time in tippier SOT kayaks than most.
We chose to go out in that wind that morning, and we all felt pretty confident in our skills to meet it, but that was 16-18 NNE.
We also believed NWS that the wind would shift to light E by 10am - our ticket home - which never happened all day. Instead, the NNE wind kept getting stronger.

What he ran into was a specific limitation of the boat combined with the Mirage Turbofins and wind gusting over 28 knots.
The wind would shear the hull as it wanted across the water surface, while the deep turbofins dug in.
We were already crossing with a tack so we could get across the ICW and jibe down the beach to get home - that part was easy.
The boat would not let him turn upwind in gusts to address waves. He was using the paddle and his body weight correctly.
He finally got in by removing the Mirage drive and paddling in. He worked this out while he was over 2' bottom rather than the depth and waves of crossing the ICW.
Last edited by Ron Mc on Fri May 08, 2020 8:48 am, edited 3 times in total.
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By Chubs
#2302484
Glad you guys made it back safe.

Lot of good info on this post. Very interesting about the mirage drive high wind weakness. Makes sense though. Just need to be ready to pull the drive and paddle, even though it seems counter intuitive (most probably would assume the turbo fins would be better than thier paddle )
By mwatson71
#2302486
Chubs wrote:Glad you guys made it back safe.

Lot of good info on this post. Very interesting about the mirage drive high wind weakness. Makes sense though. Just need to be ready to pull the drive and paddle, even though it seems counter intuitive (most probably would assume the turbo fins would be better than thier paddle )


Thanks, Chubs.

I pedaled, paddled, and at times pedaled and paddled together. Pedaling was far more effective and I am a helluva paddler. It was like paddling upstream in a slow moving river with the wind in your face. The paddle caught too much wind and not enough pull against the water in the current. If I hadn't put my stringer in Shoffer's fish bag I would have never made it back.

On the plus side of things, my son and his friend filleted the fish and made trout and redfish a la meuniere for dinner for us.

https://www.emerils.com/127112/trout-la-meuniere
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By kickingback
#2302526
shoffer wrote:What a difference a day makes. This was the wind from the night after our Cinco De Mayo experience:
Capture.JPG
I wonder if anyone went out and caught?



Shoffer? Did you use/try the trolling motor in the wind and if so did it help any?
I like my retractable skeg on my Hobie PA14. It works well at times but with this kayak being so large and I load her down with gear my draft is about 4"-5" and all that boat underwater means more movement against the hull on sides
I think the skeg needs to bit a tad bit larger for mine.
Great looking meal there Michael! Hope you/they enjoyed it. :clap:
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By shoffer
#2302532
KB - for the first time ever, I actually drained a 100ah lithium-ion battery. I used my trolling motor all night (and it powered my 360-degree light and color fishfinder all night also. About 300 yards west of the channel where you cut through Tiki (right by where the metal fence starts) all the power died, so I had to quickly put the mirage drive into the kayak and peddle/paddle the rest of the way back. Thankfully, we had the current going under the Tiki Bridge or it could have been much worse.

So, the trolling motor got me through about 3/4th of the trip back into the wind, but I had to do the 1/4th with legs and arms. with the current on the west side of the island that was wind protected, I was doing 5 mph; back into the stiff wind, I was doing 0.9 mph.
By impulse
#2302539
shoffer wrote:So, the trolling motor got me through about 3/4th of the trip back into the wind, but I had to do the 1/4th with legs and arms. with the current on the west side of the island that was wind protected, I was doing 5 mph; back into the stiff wind, I was doing 0.9 mph.


That's a great cautionary tale. Staying in Sea Isle, I always look at the wind before deciding whether to make a right or a left out of the canal into West Bay. If the wind's out of the east, I head east so I have the wind at my back on the way home, and vice versa. There's fishing in either direction, with the nod being east toward Snake Island and Maggie's Cove.

And as tempting as it is to paddle the 3.5 miles to get to the ICW, there's no telling what it's going to look like when it's time to make the paddle back across. Plus, there's really no place over there to beach a kayak and walk for help if it gets too hairy.
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