-- Last Updated: Feb-22-13 2:39 PM EST --
...... we had spent 4 days up on the Yough reservoir camping, fishing and paddling . Didn't have any problems at all until the 4th day when the winds became really strong .
That day we launched out into a fearce headwind and it was powerful . We made the crossing just fine and stayed relatively close to the opposite shore . The reservoir splits right on that side (left on the other) , and the right split was our destination that day last day .
As we rounded the bend to the right the winds coming down that split increased even more . Not wanting to turn back and start heading home just yet , we pushed into the split and dug in hard . All I could do was laugh and we kept paddling harder . Less than a 1/2 mile of this up the split plus a sore stomach from continously laughing so hard ... we said to each other , it's been a great trip , I'm totally pooped out now , are we ready to call it and head back to camp , pack up and head home .
We agreed , been a great 4 days , time to begin our departure .
We intiated a 180 turn to the left , which was when the big surprise began to unfold !!
The canoe just seemed to lock itself solid at about 2/3's the way through that 180 . Not for love nor money could we complete the turn . I had her (in the bow) try every stroke available to keep pursuading the bow around , while I tried them all from the stern . We heeled , we paddled as hard as we could , but the best we could accomplish was and unfinnished 180 turn which was constently fighting back at us to reverse all we were doing .
Finally we got soooo pooped out I just locked the paddle in like a rudder while she did what she could in the bow to keep it from turning back .
At that point we started to do a side ways slide/skid to the left through heavy chop and waves towards shore . That skid was a ride to behold , it skidded this way for a good couple hundred yards before we got into less ferosiuos winds and water closer to shore ... and then the bow finally broke to complete the 180 turn . All the while I couldn't stop laughing , laughing and laughing . All the while she was just this side of terrified delerium but hung in there like a champ .
The remainder of the return to camp (downwind and cross wind) was uneventful .
Upon reflecting on that 180 attempt , I knew it had something to do with the extremely powerful winds , but wasn't until later I learned here on p.net that our trim was terribly incorrect for that day and that was the real culprit .
Moral to story ... adjust bow trim "before" attempting high wind turn arounds , and it's amazing to learn just how safe our canoe can be even in those circumstances (it didn't flip , 5 thumbs up for an OT Expedition 169) .