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Self Rescue

Because of what happened to me recently on my first outing on a D2/Division 2 board ... and after some discussion with Franco of Montreal, I found it appropriate and important to discuss "self-rescue".
If one goes out alone or no-one left on the water or just too far from anyone else ....

It is VITAL to be ready for the unexpected ...

Here is Tinho's take on what one can do to come back - without the sail !!!

and since ... posts disappear on the web or addresses change &^*()
i will copy that information here directly !!

and it is on a Fanatic Shark 130 that looks like my 145 = oh oh
is it an omen ??
What it means to self rescue: You de-rig while in the water, stow your rolled up rig on top of the board (or give it to someone else, and paddle your board back.

Self rescue simple rules:
1- ALWAYS stay with your board. Do not ever under any circumstances leave your board.
2- Only self rescue when you are sure you can reach safety by paddling. If you are in the middle of the Atlantic, keep your rig together with your board, it is more visible and slows drifting.
3- While de-rigging only have one loose piece of gear on your hand at a time. Secure loose items to the board as you de-rig.

Sit on the board with the legs to the side of the rig, (or straddle the board in the case of  narrow or shorter boards). Disconnect the rig from the board. From this point on, rule #1 applies!! You cannot catch a loose board in 20 knots of wind. If you fall off the board, immediately grab your board.

Move the rig around so you can reach the outhaul and clew.

Release the outhaul and be sure to place your finger in front of the cleat so the tip of the line does not get stuck on the cleat. If this happens, you will not be able to self rescue!!.

Remove the inhaul and separate the boom from the rig.
Tie the uphaul to the footstrap so the boom is tethered to the board.

Remove the downhaul completely. Use the same trick with the finger on the cleat so the line tip does not jam inside the cleat. 
Remove the extension and connect it to the mast foot, so your hands are free.

Remove the sail from the mast. Careful to keep all the pieces together. If a mast has broken, careful with the sharp edges of the mast. 

Once the mast is off the sail, hold the mast under your leg, and begin rolling the head of the sail around the battens.
As soon as you give it a few wraps, place the mast pieces inside each other if possible, or both side by side inside the roll you just made.

Roll the sail as tight and neatly as possible, keeping the mast pieces and the battens parallel to each other.
It really helps to spread the legs and keep them extended so the sail is kept as flat as possible while rolling it up.

Tie the boom front to the roll, using the uphaul, then use the outhaul to tie the opposite end

Turn the roll around and tie now the outhaul around the other side of the roll, so the boom is holding it all together

Place the extension inside the roll and use the downhaul to tie the roll securely.

And this is your complete 1 piece package, ready to stow on top of the board and begin the joyful paddle back!!

At this time, unscrew the mast foot from the board and connect it to the mast extension.

Next , maneuver the rig across the board. If you have a short board, lay down on the board and begin shifting the rig lengthwise, gradually getting on top of it. It is important to keep the boom front end facing down, and facing the front of the board, so the boom tubes stabilize the rig package.

It's time to paddle.  Do use your arms as deep as possible in the water, rest your head on the rig, and keep a rhythm.

Do practice self rescue with your equipment. You will need it one day.
I prefer to say - you MAY need it one day
Prepare for the unexpected !!

And this is ONLY one aspect of self-rescue.

MANY other things can go wrong too - broken/lost fin, broken mast, etc
For the broken fin, I have read that people have attached their harness at the back to act as a rudimentary fin.
For the broken mast this fellow suggests inverting the top and sliding into the bottom:

The next edition of the Canadian Master's newsletter carries a piece about my incident on the water:

Safety on the water - please read the article on page 6 from Joe Windsurfer. Wow he is so lucky to have survived, what a story. Joe lost his board when the rig separated from the board and almost lost his life. Make sure you have a whistle and stay with your board and always sail with a buddy are the 3 key messages. Also, for those of you that like to paddle, please make sure you have a lanyard connecting your leg and the board. Every year paddle boarders die because they fall off their
boards and cannot swim fast enough to catch up with their boards blown away in the wind.

Personally feel that it is a little exaggerated. Never did I feel close to death, but I was wondering how deep into hypothermia I was going to be. The important message again is - be careful and always be ready for the unexpected !!!

While we are on the subject of safety ...

Please check your equipment at the beginning of the season !! As I don't go out that often and usually go in light wind, I am NOT expecting too many equipment replacement issues .... And what have I been saying here ?? over and over ... Expect the unexpected !!!

This is my tendon of my Chinook mast base ... I asked how often should one replace this ?? Yvan of auventfou says to just check it annually. Jack of the South Shore says every three(3) years.

Fortunately when I picked up a used board at auventfou, I asked Vincent to check my tendon and this is what we saw !!!

Clique to enlarge
Clique to enlarge
 Bad things were about to happen !! Check your stuff !!!