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Northeastern University’s sailing team took to the Charles River Wednesday to practice as temperatures crept into the seventies on a spring-like day toward the end of a mild winter.

The students, who decided to stay in the city for spring break, whipped and twirled their sailboats, emblazoned with the red and black Northeastern logo, around on the choppy waters as they practiced tacking and downward wind transitioning drills.

This time last year, said the team’s head coach, Jonathan Farrar, you could have cross-country skied across the Charles River. It was mostly frozen.

But on Wednesday, with a cloudless blue sky overhead and the sun beating down, conditions on the river were perfect.


“It’s been great,” Farrar said, standing on the dock of the MIT sailing pavilion, where the students launched their sailboats. “It feels like Florida conditions right now.”

After the practice ended with a race between the five two-person teams of students, sophomore Jacqueline Berlin peeled off her life vest.

It was a good feeling to get back on the water, she said — and to try to put winter behind them.

“It was a ton of fun, and it’s it’s beautiful and it’s warm,” she said. “The conditions were great.”

Steve Annear can be reached at steve.annear@globe.com. Follow him on Twitter @steveannear.