Re: Southern Cross
I've been in two dinghy racing situations with violent thunderstorms. One of them had a 100 boats or so. As I recall Lightnings were the largest. Some people saw it coming and were capsized even with their sails down. The wind was strong enough to turtle boats just from the pressure on the capsized hulls. Second case was similar in internatonal canoes where the wind pressure on the sliding seat after the boat capsized was enough to turtle the boats even against the drag of the sails. Both were quite a mess and mild compared to John's; in neither case was there enough fetch and duration for seas to present a problem. One of the advantages of a traditional rig in sea boats that were set up to raise and lower masts fast like whaleboats is that you could drop the mast in an instant. I've done so in my tittle ducker, just going forward which was dicey, grabbing the whole rig (unstayed) and throwing it overboard, but never in the violence that John experienced.
Ran Tan, Liten Kuhling, Vernon Langille, Josef W., Merry Mouth, Imp, Macavity and a quiver of unamed 'yaks.
"Bound fast is boatless man."