"Splendidum" returned to St Francis Bay resplended with mast & sails. With her shallow draft, only 3' we crossed the Krom River bar easily at half tide.
I was a Coxswain for our NSRI (National Sea Rescue Institute) boat and had crossed the bar many times in all conditions. Our modes operandi was to slow down or stop at the river mouth and observe the bar, check the route of calmest water often as much as 100 metres along the shore line inside the breakers and remember the point where the breakers are the smallest this usually denotes deeper water. The Krom river entrance is usually a 'dogs leg', however, it's the safest and deepest route.
Once you turn and commit yourself to crossing the bar and breaker keep momentum do not try to turn around in order to catch a smaller set.
Many people in quick maneuverable ski boats have been caught doing this and turned over. Your speed should be sufficient to take you over and through the waves, not so fast that your bows fly high, as long as you are moving steadily forward, large waves are not a problem only wet. Once clear of the breakers, look back at the beach marker poles and remember which number pole makes a good transit line with the single pole on top of the sand dune, as this will be your return line after a day's sailing.
Angelo Lavranos joined us in St Francis Bay and assisted with sea trials. Overall he was thrilled, our boat was exciting and responsive to sail. She would readily surf even the smallest waves and you could angle down them like a surfer.
SPLENDIDUM: ANGELO, DUNCAN& ANDY
Andy Buys with "Splendidum" moved to the BVI, where he started chartering and was known for doing adventure trips. He now runs a successful charter house from Florida.
"Splendidum" was sold to Chris Schaefer and re-named "Shanaldo" and then to Motoyuki Sato, who named her "Umineko" and has been sailing extensively and just completed his circumnavigation. Enroute he stopped off at St Francis Bay. It was a moving moment to see our first catamaran being used and still loved. Motoyuki is a wonderful generous individual, who taught me how to prepare squid for sushi with gifts of Japanese beer and saki.
Motoyuki email copy