Saturday, August 25, 2007

Kalmus, Windsurfed, SSW, 10-20, 5.7/Acid94

A great forecast that didn't happen; Iwindsurf was calling for wind in the low/mid twenties for the afternoon. I had a feeling it wasn't going to happen. For one thing, it would have made 2 windy Saturdays in a row. That goes against all laws of probability for New England in the Summer. It was good wind in the morning, which I missed, then light wind all afternoon. The wind finally picked up around 5:00, accompanied by fog, and I had a blissful 1 1/2 hours of planing before I had to pack up and high tail it over to a Barby-Q for Ben's little league team, (being held conveniently in East Dennis). Never mind that I had planned on stopping at 5:00 and that I was 1 1/2 hours late for the party. It was worth it. I guess that Iwindsurf wasn't that far off on the forecast. It just came in a little later and lighter than expected.
Air Time; I got the usual chop hopppers when the wind picked up. I hit one jump that was better than the rest. I was up in the air long enough to notice that I was there. The thing that strikes me during a jump like that is the silence. One minute the board is slapping across the chop and then it's in the air and everything is quiet. It's like a freeze frame in time. One long silent second. Then the board smacks down and normal time resumes. But it's that frozen second of hang time that stays with me. It's what I'm thinking about when I'm driving home, and when I'm drifting off to sleep at the end of the day.

Saturday, August 18, 2007

Lake Quanapowitt, Windsurfed, NW, 0-32, AMCer's, 5.2/Acid94

Lake sailing; Massive holes and gusts, dramatic wind shifts, and a water surface that can be dead flat one run and jumpable chop the next, good ol' lake sailing. This was an AMC day trip to West Dennis that we changed to Lake Q due to the forecast for light NW winds. The NW part was right. I was surprised to get a lot of chop-hopping in for such a small body of water. One minute I would get some jumps on starboard, then there would be a wind shift, and the jumps would be on port. It felt soo goood to plane again after the recent drought of weekend wind. My arms really cramped up after about 2 to 3 hours of sailing, not sure why. Maybe from the jumping. I may be pulling myself up too much with my arms to try to get higher. I always prefer to think that any body part failure is technique related rather than age related. Picture- unknown sailors lining up at Lake Q.

Sunday, August 12, 2007

Nahant/Lynn, Land-boarded, ESE, 0-10, 5.2/landboard

Great Location for the land-board in an east wind! Wide, hard, smooth beach, crowds weren't too bad down at the far end. I got there fairly late in the day to catch 2 hours before 6:00pm low tide, only $3 to park. Somebody told me there was a sign saying NO LAND-BOARDS and that the police sometimes enforce it but I had no problem. There were 2 guys out on "landboards?" with kites. The lifeguards were so far down the other side of the beach that I couldn't even see them. Wind was light to very light with some stretches of complete calm. One of these days I'll get out in some decent wind again. Just to the north was another beach that could be good for the land-board, Kings Beach. There are no lifeguards, on street parking. I'd also heard that there are tidal flats on the inside of the causeway at Nahant, starting at the boat launch. There are some bars there at low tide but they are not very accessible or very big. They didn't look land-board friendly.

Sunday, August 5, 2007

Crows Pasture, Landsailed, N 10-15, Solo, Landboard/4.2

Dry Land sailing; The winds were light this weekend so I had the bright idea of heading to Chapin, low tide, for some land sailing on the tidal flats. The only problem was that Chapin was full by 10:00. So was Mayflower and Corporation. I ended up at Crows Pasture Conservation Area, parking on the side of a dirt road and walking my gear in. The smoothest and hardest sand was all the way across the bar to the waters edge, more walking. There were numerous soft spots and areas with deep ripples but it was still sailable, boardable?. Next time I could try letting some air out of the tires for the soft areas. I went for a long cruise to Cold Storage Beach and back. There were plenty of little tidal inlets that I had to cross. When I hit them at speed, the water splashed up in a shower. By the end the board was completely cemented with wet sand. I got some "planing" duck jibes on the hard smooth sections. Had a long walk back after the tide came in because I had to go where the sand was too soft to roll. It turned out to be a lot of effort for a pretty short session. The Cape beaches are a people magnet on a hot summer day. The 4-wheel drive crowd at Crows Pasture was amazing- probably 100 to 200 cars spread out on the beach. They all had to bunch together when the tide came in. Picture- salt marsh at Crows Pasture.