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TOPIC: Montrose beach launching

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #1

Had my first day of windsurfing at Montrose beach, was a little light but had fun and got better. Had a few questions, mostly on handling the gear.

Where do people usually park at Montrose? I parked over by the harbor, which was a pretty big walk with gear. Getting to the bech was fine, but after a few hours on the water carrying all the gear out was a bear. Probably should have made multiple trips but I didn't want to leave anything on the beach. Can you launch by the dog beach?

Is there anywhere to hose off gear? Most of Montrose beach is now on my car and in my yard, at least as far as sand content.

Wish there had been more wind but it was a good day to start figuring out how to get around.

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #2

We park and launch over by the dog beach. It is coincidently the shortest walk to the water too. T

Technically (during the season, may-oct) we are only allowed to launch at (2 ) spots on that beach. Those spots are designated with red and green markers/buoys in the water. One of those spots are at the dog beach, and the other is at the east end of the beach in front of the lifeguard house. For the rest of the year you can launch anywhere , but most all will launch by the dog beach because it is most convenient.

No water at the beach to hose off your gear. For me, I just rinse the gear in the lake to remove the sand, and then carry it to the grass rigging area by my car. You can take several trips if needed, no one will take your stuff

BTW, there is a water fountain over by the bathrooms (100 yards east of the dog beach), i'm not sure how long it will remain on though

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #3

  • Uta
  • Uta's Avatar
  • Fresh Breeze
  • Posts: 5
I used a cart for Tybee island. There, you even have to walk over dune bridges. Reid featured it somewhere on this website.

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #4

To clarify, i'm talking about launching just east of the fence dividing the dog beach from the rest of the beach.

BTW- a word of caution of sailing at montrose. If you get around the 'point' or 'hook' (far east end of the beach) and the wind comes down, then you don't have many options to get back to shore as the chicago shoreline is all breakwalls and large boulder/rocks for at least a mile south of montrose. Also the currents get funny close to the 'hook', and they get funny at the far east end of the beach (in front of the dog beach- because the waves bounce off the breakwall and create crazy chop).

Montrose is my favorite launch in chicago

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #5

  • Mike
  • Mike's Avatar
  • High Wind
  • Posts: 49
Finally! This sport is officially starting to get some traction with the local boat sailors, and yacht riggers. Welcome, Kristian. Fun times ahead.

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #6

BTW- The picture at the top or your screens (for chicago windsurfers thread) is a photo of us sailing at montrose. That is me in the promotion wetsuit with the red shoulder. I think I see andrews older naish sail on the ground too.

Fall is here, and the N winds will soon be calling us to montrose................. :)

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #7

Thanks for the good info, and hello Mike!

I was wondering what the red buoy was for. I was trying to use it for upwind laylines to see what sort of difference the centerfin made in ~6kts. Turns out the centerfin is really good when you're new and it's light.

The cart seems like a good idea, although parking closer is probably better! We'll see what kind of cart can be made from old dinghy dollies and alloy tubes.

I was using a 6.5m sail, and weight 70kg, the board is a Bic Nova 182l. Obviously technique will help a lot, but it felt a bit slow. I have a 7.7 as well. Any guess as to what the crossover is? Coming from a sailing background but before yesterday I'd been windsurfing twice about 8 years ago. Would like to get better. Anyway, if you see a guy with a ponytail uphauling a red sail on a yellow/gray board feel free to say hello.

Montrose beach launching 2 years 4 months ago #8

  • Mike
  • Mike's Avatar
  • High Wind
  • Posts: 49
Someone posted a decent cart design a couple years ago here. It's in one of these forums. A cart will help if you launch at the east end only, as Alan notes.

At your wgt. you should start to plane with 12.5+kts steady breeze on the 7.7, but it depends on your board trim, board weight, rig weight and and waves/surface current.

Your 6.5 will require about 16.5kts steady breeze minimum, etc.

Beginner boards can usually sail at speeds over 20+ kts. when planing on a reach. First time you go over 20kts on a 182liter sailboard... well, I don't think it will feel slow to you. :woohoo: But you are accustomed to sailing fast, so who knows. Good luck!

Hope to see you out there!
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