How do you know when something is important to you? When you do whatever it takes to participate. For this Sunset Race, I started out in Port Lavaca, Texas. I woke up at 3:30 am in a hotel room after the Texas Water Safari. I thought I would start driving the day before, but I was wiped out!!! So I got up early, fired up Google Maps and started driving. Its just over 900 miles for this drive. I drove as far as I dared until I got tired, then pulled my van over and slept on the side of the road till I woke up. It helped that I shut off the van, so it got warm fast. With about 5 of these cat naps along the way, I arrived around 8:30 pm in time for the half way point of the race.
At one point near home, the wind and rain were so bad, I pulled over cause I wasn’t sure if the boat would stay on top of my van. Or the top of my van for that matter. Eventually I made it to have some beer with friends before going home and crashing for the night. While it can be done, I don’t recommend it!
I can’t say I was sad that I didn’t paddle this one!
It was highly recommended that we have a spray skirt on our boat for the Texas Water Safari. I wasn’t too worried, but Jo Jo took care of us. She planned a day and came over to help us out. We started out by putting T in the front of the boat and cutting a hole for her.
It didn’t take long before I was in the back with a hole cut out for me as well.
And Jo Jo went around with the rubber cement and glued us together!
If you’re wondering about the materials, its rip-stop nylon from a local fabric store and some rubber cement glued on Velcro strips. And maybe some duct tape for good measure. Jo Jo came back a few days later to help me reinforce the material. And it held perfectly for the race and packed up very small. Its great having handy friends!
We needed a great light system to do the Texas Water Safari. In order to get the lights on the boat, my co-worker Eric said he would 3D print a holder. Here is the initial fitting.
These 3 photos demonstrated the initial fit before final printing took place. Everything looked good and I gave Eric the go ahead to print the rest of it.
On June 1, Eric delivered the finished 3D printed light mount.
This adjustable light mount was going to be our secret weapon. We would have enough light to cruise through the night and place well in the race. If you’ve read the blog, you know that didn’t turn out as expected! I”m still glad Eric made it and we tried it. Maybe next time 🙂
Another Sunset race. We got there early and a guy backed a race boat down the ramp. He said he was breaking in a new motor. I was excited at first as I do love motorized things, but my joy changed. He was using racing fuel and left a fog of spent fuel and fumes when he left.
I paddled with T and we grabbed a barrel while we were out!
With the upcoming Texas Water Safari race, it was important that I got training in. T and I went out for several training runs. We collected many tires and barrels.
We collected the barrels three outings in a row and put them in the same spot at Greentree ramp to be picked up by the city. They had to be getting tired of us!
And you know you paddle too much when you even randomly meet friends out on the river!