This last weekend held the first ever Outboard Church forum meetup. Unfortunately, RD was unable to attend, so I was sent as his proxy. I’m relatively new to the boating scene, but after the fun I had shooting Desert Storm, I couldn’t say no! First stop was Paul Wallner’s (Bully’s) house for a BBQ. I didn’t know a single soul there, but these outboard-loving people welcomed me with open arms. After only a couple minutes, I had met most everyone. Great conversation and great food. Everyone was stoked to hit the water the next morning.
We all met up early Saturday morning to launch from Windsor. Forecast showed a beautiful day, apart from winds coming in later. Plan was to roam around for a couple hours and get to Pirate Cove by 11. I hopped in Bully’s Nordic 28SS and we headed into the channel.
We cleared the buoys at Thompson Bay and he gave it some gas. Now, I have never ridden in a cat (let alone ANY 100mph boat) before… I’ve seen ‘em, shot ‘em, but never ridden in one. The blades began to bite, the 400R’s began singing. Before I knew it, we were halfway to Steamboat. I noticed two things: 1) It’s probably easier to take pictures from in an actual tornado than the backseat of a boat going over 100, and 2) I’m never going to see my beloved hat again.
After some ripping around and a drone photo at Steamboat, I hopped onboard Bully’s other boat, a Doug Wright 32, and we all took off for Pirate Cove. Once we started really moving, I noticed how differently the 32 rode vs the 28. Seemed to be a smoother ride. It surprised me how much length and hull design affects the ride so drastically. As we made our way over, the group accumulated a few more boats. The ride through the gorge was gorgeous, as usual.
Boats of all different sizes and brands sporting outboards filled the reserved docks and a portion of the beach at Pirate Cove. Even with it being a windy day, 20+ boats with over 40 people trickled in and out throughout the day. Pirate Cove had a patio reserved for Outboard church and banners were everywhere. The place was filled with smiles. These people weren’t going to let some wind take away a great Saturday out on the water with good company. Most everyone knew one another, whether from meeting before or on the forum, but many new friends were made Saturday. The meet wrapped up around 3pm with some group photos and a lot of “see ya at the next one!”
I walked away from this meet-up with a ton of photos, new friends, and gobs of respect for what these outboard engines are capable of. Huge shoutout to Pirate Cove for hosting, Paul Wallner (BullheadBully) and the Reverend, Scott (War Canoe) for bringing this to fruition. It was absolute hit and I’m looking forward to the next one!
Austin Foley (FoleyLoadedMedia)