Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Friday, December 24, 2010
Wednesday, December 15, 2010
Sunday, December 12, 2010
Breaking News- Wiki leaks just released The Mitch Report. It's full of extremely sensitive, previously undisclosed reports, pictures, and data on windsurfing, surfing, kiting, and SUP in and around Pt. Judith R.I.
Revere Mist- I got a brief session in today in rain, mist and fading light. My foggy glasses kept me from seeing anything but I was glad to be out there for a quickie.
Revere, Kitesurfed, ESE, 20-30, 10M Bularoo/ Surf 148, with Waller, Skyrocket, others.
Tuesday, December 7, 2010
- Okespor 2mm- Average quality spring/fall bootie.
- Pro Limit 2mm- Average quality spring/fall bootie.
- Billabong SG 7mm- My favorite Winter bootie. Split toe, fleece lined, comfortable. Keeps my toes warm down to 32 temp. No toe jamming problems. This is the warmest bootie I've found. Lasts several seasons. Winter.
- O'Neill Round Toe 7mm- Good boot. Keeps my toes warm down to 32 temp if I duct tape the top of the boot to my drysuit so no water infiltrates. My toes can get jammed painfully into the front of these, guess it's not a perfect fit. Lasts 1 season. Spring, Fall, Winter.
- Neopsort Hi Top 7mm zipper entry- This is the best zipper entry bootie I've found so far. It has a velcro tab to keep zipper zipped. Mediocre quality zipper though.
- O'Neill FX-5 Firewall 5mm zipper entry- I would like this boot for a zip bootie, good quality zipper, but it has no velcro tab to keep the zipper from unzipping during the session, too frustrating.
- 2mm Palmless Mitts- I cut the palm out of standard 2mm Neil Pryde Mitts. I can put my hand out completely or pull it in. Excellent grip of course, but only good for taking the wind chill off, late Spring, early Fall.
- Glacier Glove 2mm standard- Very flexible, soft, great grip, external wrist seal, lasts 1 season. Spring & Fall.
- Glacier Glove 2mm Fleece Lined- Very flexible, soft, great grip, external wrist seal, lasts 1 season. Can't really see fleece lining. It may be a fraction thicker & warmer than the standard version. Spring & Fall.
- Level Six 2mm Neoprene Mitt- Very flexible, good grip, nose wipe panel, no seal or wrist strap. These mitts are surprisingly warm for how thin they are. These are the only neoprene mitt I've found to come in size XXL. I think the roomy size makes the mitt less restrictive. It also leaves enough room for wearing Thinsulate glove liners to add a little more warmth. Lasts 1 season.
- Body Glove, 3mm Claw- Very flexible, somewhat soft, o.k. grip, lasts 2 seasons. I can pull my forefinger and thumb into the mitt part to warm them up. Not much warmer than than Level Six 2mm mitts and more restrictive but claw is nice.
- O'neill 3mm- Very flexible, soft, great grip, nice internal wrist seal, lasts 1 season. Not as warm or flexible as Level Six 2mm mitts.
- O'neill 5mm- Very flexible, soft, great grip, nice internal wrist seal, lasts 1 season. No warmer than Level Six 2mm mitts.
- Ion/NP Surf 3 Finger 5mm- Very flexible, soft, great grip, nice external wrist seal, lasts 1 season. Feels thinner than 5mm. This is warm enough for most people for extreme cold but I need the 6mm Hyperflex mitts when it gets under about 35 or 40. I buy the XL, just big enough to pull my thumb and finger in to warm up. Expensive.
- Henderson Hyperflex 6mm Oven Mitt--Less flexible than the above. A little hard to get on and off but they work. Very warm and I can still hold onto the bar. This is the first really thick mitten I've found that works. I only had slight numbness in 29 F and I could warm up my hand by pulling my thumb in while kiting. Should last a few seasons.
- Dakine Cold Water Mitt- Nylon palm has little grip and little warmth. I found these gloves useless.
- Excel, Infiniti 3mm- Flexible, not as soft, not very grippy but usable. Will probably last 2 seasons.
- Body Glove, Vapor Lock, 3mm- Somewhat restrictive, not very soft for 3mm, not very grippy but usable, barely.
- Rip Curl, F-Bomb 5MM- Very thick, rigid, too restrictive. Not usable.
- O'Neill, 5mm Mitt- Very restrictive, inflexible, too rigid. Barely usable.
- Excel, Infiniti 7mm Mitt- Thick and restrictive but more flexible than O'Neill 5mm mitt, not very grippy but usable.
Saturday, December 4, 2010
Sunday, November 28, 2010
I seemed to be a poor judge judge of wind today. I went to 2 different spots, put up 2 different sets of gear, but couldn't get it right. The wind looked good but I shlogged both times. I thought that I was losing my grip on reality such as it is. I finally gave up and went for a stand up paddle thru Center Street Marsh and Bass Hole.
Mayflower & Chapin, Kitersurfed, Skunky, with Frank, Jamie.
Bass Hole & Center St. Marsh, SUP.
Saturday, November 20, 2010
I wanted to go to Horseneck with Jean to get a good pounding in the waves but I was supposed to meet someone at First Encounter to look at a kite. The friend with the kite never showed. I found out later that he went to Horseneck.
Well I had a nice session at FE anyway! I was getting sand blasted in the parking lot when I first got there. I did a few runs on a windsurfer, 3.5 sail on 85 liters, but the wind dropped as soon as I got on the water so I switched to a kite and launched at Hatch where there was more beach and less pavement. High tide had some jumpable chop and when the tide let out there were some nice slicks in between the sand bars. It's a fun spot but a long drive.
Saturday, November 13, 2010
Not if you're doing it right. Same thing with kiting, (and windsurfing, surfing, skiing, unicycling, playing soccer...). All of these activities demand your full attention.
Sunday, November 7, 2010
|Never drop your kite in the waves- I edged a little too hard in the waves and my board slipped out. I went up and my kite went down. This is what the waves were waiting for. They ate my lines. I felt my bar go slack and watched in disbelief as my kite drifted away across the wind blown whitewater, in slow motion. "What did I do to deserve this?!" I thought.|
Update- My kite did hit the dunes. Over 40 holes were patched by Rodrigo.
Saturday, October 30, 2010
Chris wanted some company for sailing in his sailboat and I wanted some company for windsurfing on my windsurfer so we hatched a plan to cruise around Boston Harbor together, each in our respective crafts. The adventure turned out to be a lot of fun, at least for me.
Chris had to stay in the channels and deep water so I followed his boat with my windsurfer, like a fly flitting around a mothership. There were lots of wind shadows and strong funneling gusts between the islands but I loved actually going some place for once. My favorite spot was between Long, Spectacle, and Thompson's Islands, just upwind of the Bridge to Long Island. There was a funneling area with nice peaky chop.
After about 4 hours of weaving around the islands I derigged in his dinghy, passed my gear up to him and climbed aboard for some civilised sailing.
Challenges- I wasn't so good about staying really close to Chris's boat. This made him nervous about losing sight of me or of having to rescue me if I broke down someplace that was rocky or shallow. He kept his main sail down and just flew his jib so he could concentrate more on watching me and could pick me up anytime. I only fell once but it happened when I was at a distance and he lost sight of me for a few minutes. It made him realize that he would feel pretty stupid calling the Coast Guard for help looking for my gear, or my body, blowing out to sea. If we do it again we should probably do it in an E wind.
Gear that really helped- Camelback, tow line to help with derigging process, cell phone to call from an island (I did). The dinghy was necessary for derigging while under sail.
Route-I launched near Winthrop Town Pier, Chris from Winthrop Yacht Club, we met near Snake Island, headed past Deer Island to Long Island, then between Spectacle and Thompsons, around Spectacle and back to Long Island, then back to Winthrop.
Boston Harbor & Islands, Windsurfed, SW, WSW, 12-32, 5.7/ Acid94, with Chris.
Saturday, October 23, 2010
Still a beginner- Yeah, today was a reminder. I lost my board pretty far out in the waves between Chapin and Mayflower at dead high tide. Then I tried to self land to climb up on the rock wall and look for it, hit the edge of the evil dune grass with my kite.
But I had Beginners luck. My board washed up, scratch free, a little while later on the sand between the breakwaters. I was so happy to find it! I even got back out for another 3 hours of kiting, yay! That soothed my bruised ego, except for when my kite went soft and started to collapse from the slow leak I had just created.
Chapin, Kitesurfed, W, WNW, 20-35, 15-25, 10 & 12M kites/ Surf 148, with Gerry, Flo, Brad, Peter, Jay, Rebecca, others.
Saturday, October 16, 2010
|I had no idea that this sport could be so dangerous! Sometimes you don't find out until it's too late. I'm lucky. I'll live to kite another day.|
What am I talking about? Bathrooms. Last weekend the Chapin porta-pot was open for business as usual. This weekend it was gone. So I used the dunes. I've done it before, no problem. But this time there were trucks parked down at that end of the parking lot at 7:15 AM, and footprints leading into the dunes right past my bathroom tree. I hid myself in the bush better than usual and made it out without incident.
A little while later I noticed some hunters leaving, in camouflage garb, like wannabe soldiers. There was 1 truck left. A little while later I heard 3 loud gunshots very close to the parking lot, like just over the little dune where my bathroom tree is. I had been dressed in brown, tan and green when I was back there, deer colors? I looked around to make sure no kiteboarders had gone missing. I checked myself for bullet holes.
I'm glad to be alive. Hunters scare me. They shoot themselves. They shoot others. How can any town in their right mind allow hunting right next to the Chapin parking lot?! Kiteboarding is more dangerous than I thought.
Honkin' Wind- I was on my smallest board and my smallest kite, fully depowered most of the time, and I was close to being maxed out. The gusts/ lulls had about a 20 MPH spread, which made it a little intimidating at first. The waves at Mayflower were fun. Nice 4 hour session.
Nice Tide- The tide chart showed 2 ft less tide than usual, both on the high and low ends. That 2 ft of extra water at low tide meant enough water for kiting in the pond still 1 hour before dead low. It's usually getting dry 2 hours before dead low.
Chapin, Kitesurfed, NW, 23-42, 7M kite/ Surf 148, with Robert, others.
Saturday, October 9, 2010
|Throw Down #7- Phil's kiting event was blessed with great wind! It was also blessed with an astronomical high tide. For about an hour the shore break was washing right up to the dunes. Parked kites were getting pulled into the water and launching and landing was not for the faint of heart. With the big crowd it made for some excitement. But it was all part of the fun and before and after dead high tide was kiting perfection!|
First Gybe- After kiting for 1 year and 3 months I got the courage to try my first gybe. That's where you carve the board thru a turn like a windsurfer and then switch your feet like a windsurfer. Most beginner kiters (that's me) ride twin tips, unlike a windsurfer, a reversible plank that never needs gybing. I'm trying to get used to riding a surfboard. Surfboards need gybing. So Gregor (I think) told me the secret. Switch your feet before you gybe. It works! I was whooping it up. I did a bunch of gybes, some even without crashing. Progress that you can measure is something that is hard to find in life, easier to find in windsurfing & kiting.
Chapin Beach, Kitesurfed, NW 17-29, 13-23, 12M Kite/ Slingshot Surf 148 & Caution Surfboard, with Frank, Jamie, Paul, Skipper, Netto, Ben, Matt, Flo, Amine, Phil, Johnny D, Gregor, Kristof, Chris, Others.
Saturday, October 2, 2010
|Like a bird- As the wind was dropping off at Chapin today a flock of paragliders set up, launched, and flew off over the horizon. All of us stranded kiters, left on the beach without wind, watched with envy. We were thinking that paragliding is just like kiting except that you have a fan to make your own wind. It's perfect for when we get skunked! Oh yeah, and you're up in the air a few thousand feet... I might have to think about it some more.|
Up on my toes- Awright! My toeside riding seemed to click today. That doesn't mean it was pretty, or effortless, but I could do it as much as I wanted and mostly not lose too much ground to leeward. The only thing I was doing differently was keeping my power strap set for a little more power than I might normally ride with. It was a killer on my legs though.
Chapin, Kitesurfed, NW, 18-28, 13-22, 12M Varial Kite/ 6' surfboard, 132 Ply Board, Sligshot Surf 148, with Sammy, Andre, Colleen, Skipper, Paul, Gerry S, Others.
Saturday, September 25, 2010
|What a great session at Hardings! This was one of those days when the kite and board felt perfect for the conditions. I didn't want to stop.|
I landed my first jump to toeside! It was a complete mistake. I messed up a jump. The board spun around in the air and I thought that I was going to eat it but I landed on my toeside, fully powered up, and kited on, as smooth as butter. I quickly looked around to see if any of my friends had seen it. Of course not.
Hardings Beach, Kitesurfed, WSW, 20-30, 18-23, 10M kite/Surf 148, with Jean, Frank, Jamie, Andre, Colleen, Ron, others.
Saturday, September 18, 2010
Sunrise- Only a mad cow could love a morning like this. I got a quick sunrise session in at Mayflower and made it back for a fantastic breakfast with the AMC crew at the Lighthouse Inn. I knew the wind was light but I was surprised to check the meter later and find it was a steady 6-12 when I was out. This is a new low for me.
Picture- Ben and Barbara dress up our cottage at the Lighthouse Inn.
Sunday, September 12, 2010
I see white caps when nobody else can. It's a special talent that I have, like x-ray vision.
Revere, Kitesurfed, ENE, 10-17, Slingshot Octane 13M/ Door 64, then ENE, 8-15, 15M Flysurfer/Mad Cow with Frank, Paul, Flo, Colleen, Others.
Saturday, September 4, 2010
|It was as windy and gusty as snot today! The bumps in the deep water were as big as baby elephants. I started on my smallest kite gear but I was feeling a little freaked out by the gusts so I eventually switched to my smallest windsurfing gear. After a lot of fine tuning of my ancient 3.5 sail I finally got comfortable out there. Then I couldn't stop. I went until the light ran out, a good day of punishment for my aching body.|
Kiteboard rescue- While I was windsurfing, I located and towed back a lost kiteboard for a fellow kitemeister. I found that towing with a long rope didn't work because the kiteboard would submarine and stop me like I had hit the emergency brake. A short tow rope worked best. The boards owner had drifted far downwind, past the windsurfing area. He was extemely appreciative to get his baby back! To the tune of a couple of cold beers. This was just my puny effort to try to improve relations between the diverging cults of windsurfing and kitesurfing.
Kitesurfed, WSW, 22-38, 7M kite/Surf 138, With Frank, Flo, Sam, Andrey, Colleen, Paul, others.
Windsurfed, WSW, 22-38, 3.5 sail/RW 85, With Sandie, others.
Thursday, September 2, 2010
|Everyone was complaining about the wind being gusty at W Dennis today. I learned to kite at Waq Bay. I expect it to be gusty. If it's rock steady I get nervous, like maybe Mother Nature is trying to trick me. I was loving it out there today!|
W Dennis, Kitesurfed, WSW, 15-25, 12 M Kite/ Slingshot Surf & 132 Ply board, Johnny M, Others.
Picture- The walk to kite point is shorter now that Plover season is done.
Wednesday, September 1, 2010
Nahant, Surfed, Acid94, others.
Tuesday, August 31, 2010
I'm back to vacation mode! No wind today but I wasn't completely despondent. I kept reminding myself that the forecast is calling for 5 days in a row of wind later this week.
I got out surfing at Nahant on glassy set waves. Mostly the waves were small but I got an adrenaline rush on each ride and the biggest ones were still a little intimidating to drop into. I'm a surfing wimp.
Nahant, Surfed, Acid 94, Others.
Thursday, August 26, 2010
This makes 5 days in a row of windsurfing and or kiting! Who would have thought that Boston in the Summer could be a destination vacation hot spot for wind-water sports? All it takes is a lot of luck. And today there wasn't even any torrential rain.
I located and brought back a lost board that was floating around for a fellow kitehead. I got the idea that I could do this from an article in International Kitesurf Magazine (ikitesurfmag.com) about how to carry a board while kiting. It made me feel good, like maybe I'm not a rank beginner anymore. Maybe I'm a seasoned beginner.
Dog Beach, Kitesurfed, WSW 16-25, 12 M kite/ 132 Ply Board, then 13-20, 15M Flysufer Kite/152 Ply Board, with Andre, Colleen, Paul, Tom, Others.
Wednesday, August 25, 2010
Rain- An inch an hour. I couldn't see much thru my glasses but it was O.K.
Tuesday, August 24, 2010
Mostly little forgiving waves but lots of fun! I windsurfed briefly then kitesurfed to get more power out of less wind. Even with the kite I had to to do a long slow downwinder to stay above the water. I walked back the whole length of the beach but I didn't care. I had a big smile on my face. Playing in the waves with kite gear is such a kick!
Revere Beach, Windsurfed (5.7/Acid 94) & Kitesurfed (12M kite/Surf 148), NNE 4-19, with Larry.
Monday, August 23, 2010
I got punched on my first run, broke a boom and blew out a panel in my sail. Why does this stuff always happen on the first run?
Picture- Scott, not breaking anything.
Sunday, August 22, 2010
I got a chance to ride the Mad Cow with the new straps and fins today. It works! It definitely extended my lower range by a few MPH and got me planing on my 12M kite when I normaly would have been taking a nap on the beach.
Revere- was gusty when the wind shifted to E and picked up. It was a really good session though. Low tide made it very forgiving and gave me the confidence to use the surfboard for awhile. I got some toeside rides but it was tiring so I switched over to the Surf 148 at the end.
Revere Beach, Kitesurfed, ESE 10-14, ENE 10-16, E 12-24, 12 M kite with Mad Cow/ Caution Surfboard/ Slingshot Surf 148, Frank, Skipper, Paul, Peter, Flysurfer Fred, others.
Saturday, August 21, 2010
You know the wind isn't happening when it's hard to keep a 26 meter kite in the air!
Staycation- This first day of my 2 week stay-at-home vacation didn't win any trophies for wind. After the non-session, I gave Flo a ride home to Watertown then did a little SUP on the Charles River for a consolation prize. No worries! The next 3 days are supposed to be windy. Believe it or not...
Revere Beach, Skunked. SUP on Charles River.
Saturday, August 14, 2010
I feel like I'm cheating when I take advantage of a sweet Summertime thermal. It's sunny, warm, a beautiful Summer day. The beach is full of sun worshipers, the bathrooms are open, the outdoor shower isn't ice cold, there isn't a storm cloud in sight... And it's windy! Living is easy.
Revere Beach, Kitesurfed, ESE, SE, 12-18, Flysurfer 15/ Surf 138, with Florian, Skipper, Paul, others.
Sunday, August 8, 2010
I sailed for 4 hours straight without being overpowered or underpowered once! Did I dream it or did it really happen? I'm not sure.
I was in the zone, only took one 5 minute break to drink some juice pouches that I had stashed in my harness. I didn't stop until the wind got sleepy, just before sunset.
W Dennis Notes- In S wind you can really cruise the coast so I went all over searching for the best chop hopping- upwind and downwind of the rock island, towards Kalmus as far as the breakwater by Lewis Pond, South Village and the point beyond, in front of the Lighthouse Inn. The waves weren't really happening so I took what I could find for ramps. I was very tempted to just keep sailing towards the horizon, either to Kalmus or Chatham but I didn't have a ride back lined up and, luckily, reason prevailed.
West Dennis, Windsurfed, S, SSW, 18-23, Low Tide, 5.7/ Acid94, with Gary, Sam (kite), Andre(kite), others.
Tuesday, August 3, 2010
|I got out windsurfing in Boston Harbor for 2 hours after work tonight, 7 to 9. Sunset was at 8:00. It was beautiful sailing with the lights of the city shining off of the water! The white hulls of moored boats, bobbing in the black water, helped me stay orientated when it was getting too dark to see much else. Great session!|
Boston Harbor, Windsurfed, 10-30, SSW, SW, 6.2/ Acid94, with Peter, Dave.
Saturday, July 31, 2010
Revere has a great Summer scene- people of all sizes, styles, and shapes enjoying the beach, swimming, rollerblading down the sidewalk, playing volleyball, hangin' out at the many restaurants and ice cream shops, and asking endless questions about this newfangled sport- kitesomething.
This is where the untamed sea brings some wind and wilderness into the city, and it's a sweet kite and windsurf spot. I think I'm going to really enjoy getting to know this beach better.
Wednesday, July 28, 2010
|SSW was side shore, a little gusty, but very nice after work session!|
Andre and Paul stayed out after sunset to try to take advantage of a full moon but the moonrise was too slow. They gave up when they could just barely see enough to derig.
Revere Beach, Kitesurfed, 10-20, SSW, 12M kite/ Slingshot Surf 138, with Andre, Paul, others.
Sunday, July 25, 2010
The end of the road at W Dennis is still closed for Plover protection so we made the 1/2 mile schlep on foot to kite point. During the walk the wind really picked up so I had to turn right around and do it again for a smaller kite & board.
Then the wind got up to 20-30 and my smaller kite and board were too big. I had some nice crashes though.
Sunday, July 18, 2010
Alright, I finaly tried my Mad Cow. I made this massive board, (180x60), months ago as a half joke, half experiment, didn't bother putting straps or fins on it. It's pretty hard to water start like this. I got 1 run on it and decided it was crazy. I guess I'll have to put straps on, maybe fins too.
Fun Session! The gustiness of Waq Bay didn't bother me that much today. It felt just strong enough to keep me going on my 152 board. I even got some jumps and very short toeside runs during the gusts.
Waq Bay, Kitsurfed, 10-22, SW, 12 M kite/152 Ply Board, with Frank, Rich, Alex, Amine, Others.
Friday, July 16, 2010
I've been a little scared to kite at Pleasure Bay because it's supposed to be experts only. I'm no expert. I can't even body drag back to my board effectively. If I lose it, I usually really lose it. And I know how ridiculously gusty this place can be from windsurfing here.
So I took my time pumping up, considered bailing out and rigging a windsurfer instead. In the time it took to set up, I saw 2 separate line crossing episodes, with the ensuing yard sales and swimming after gear. This place is crazy!
While pumping I noticed that the wind was completely blocked by the wall. It felt like there was no air movement, glassy water and all. I had to launch the kite a little hot to get it up into some wind. The minute the kite was up it was really solid, very strange feeling. For about 1 hour the wind was super steady! I couldn't believe it.
I didn't try any jumps or tricks for the pony show. There was some great action happening from everyone else. I was just happy to successfuly weave thru the crowd, about 10-15 kiters on the water in very limited space, and not cross anyone's lines or drop my board or kite.
Then a thunder boomer moved in and shut us down. Not bad for an after work session and my first time kiting in the high speed P Bay traffic jams.
P Bay, Kitesurfed, SSW, 12-24, 12M kite/ 132 Ply board, with Sammy, Greg, Johnny, Skipper, Amine, others.
Sunday, July 11, 2010
Got skunked, didn't have much time, so I went for a sit down paddle from Plymouth Beach to the mouth of Plymouth harbor. I'd heard that there was a windsurfing/kiting Shangri-La out there somewhere with miles of secluded sand bars, waves and channels waiting to be explored.
As I approach the mouth of the Bay I can see a long stretch of beautiful white sand in the distance. I can't tell if it's the fabled sand bars in the middle of the opening or a beach on the far shore of Duxbury Point. There are no people in sight anywhere, just a few boats way off in the distance.
It's the sand bars! I pull up on one that is barely out of the water, small waves breaking on the outside of it, glassy currents swirling on the inside. In the distance, I can see the long white sandbar that had been visible from far away. It is protruding much further above the water. What a fantastic playground for sailing/kiting in any E wind, with low tide! Wavesailing on the edge of the bars or gliding thru the slicks on the inside, take your pick.
During the paddle back I keep thinking about how much fun it would be to get out here in the right conditions. But how? Windsurf or kite a couple of miles to get here? Take my little boat? Hitch a ride with a Plymouth resident on the 4x4 road? Also, Is anyone crazy enough to join me for a surfari out here? These are the hard questions in life.
Note- I see from the Plymouth rules for Long Beach that kiting is prohibited on the end of the beach from April 1 to Sept 15 in honor of Piping Plovers.
Picture- my old windsurfing board is a little tippy- stand up paddle in flat water, sit down paddle in the ocean.
Saturday, July 3, 2010
Saturday- W Bay was a little light and gusty, still fun. I got to see a 19M Silver Arrow Flysurfer, Jermy I think, boosting big jumps while I was on my 12M with 152 board, and someone else was on a 9M with a 132 board, all at the same time. Typical W Bay day.
It felt good to get planing again after all these skunks!
Waq Bay, Kitesurfed, 10-20, SW, 12M Royal/ 152 Ply Board, with Frank, Jamie, Sandie, Jermy, others.
Sunday, June 27, 2010
I got a few mini rides before the wind died this time! Things are getting better.
Revere, Kitesurfed (sorta), 8-12, NE, 15M Flysurfer Foil Kite/ 152 Ply board, with Skipper & Student.
Saturday, June 26, 2010
The weather today was a trap. I couldn't get out until late but it was gonna be sunny and windy all day so no worries. I didn't realize it was a trap until I drove 2 hours to Hardings to see no wind and everyone packing up. I was caught. Lots of friends were there having a good laugh at me for pulling in after the session was done and over. It was nice of me to come by just to help them pack up...
So I went for a SUP, exploring Bucks Creek Marsh, until the wind picked up a little. Of course I raced back to the truck, pumped up a kite, and got fooled again because it started to rain and the wind died before I could launch. Another trap. Having to pack my kite up in a downpour was a nice touch. I love these little cosmic jokes that life plays on us.
Hardings, SUP on windsurfing board with kayak paddle.
Sunday, June 20, 2010
I don't know what makes me happier. That the kiting conditions were great today, or that my herniated disc, which flared up this weekend, didn't feel terrible while I was kiting. It actually felt a little better, and still does. Could be from all the Advil I've been popping.
Or maybe kiting is a cure for bad backs! There are probably some happiness chemicals that our brains release while kiting or windsurfing that anesthetizes painful spinal cords. That means that we could save $ on medical care by kiting more! This is a significant discovery for the future of kiting/windsurfing marriages. A financial incentive to get wet could make a big difference for some of us guilty husband types. Now, the question is, will anyone believe me?
Hardings, Kitesurfed, 18-25, SW, 10M Bularoo, 132 Ply Board, with Ron, Des, Luke, Frank, Peter, Florian, Rob, Andre, Colleen, Dennerson, others.
Sunday, June 6, 2010
In the early days this trip was a big windsurfing party, like the Frisco Wind Fest. The waterfront would be covered with the 70 or more windsurfers that showed up for the weekend. We had clinics, windsurfing movies, happy hours, bonfires, sing-a-longs, and the famous "Toilet Bowl Derby" windsurfing relay race named for the toilet paper that was used as a baton. I loved everything about those trips.
On my very first trip I met a lovely woman who seemed impressed by my ability to keep toilet paper dry while passing it off to a teammate on a windsurfer. She became my wife. We brought our children here, changing their diapers in the tent and exploring every inch of the waterfront. Our babies turned into teenagers, too old for uncool toilet paper races and weekends with parents. Now I've come full circle, attending without my wife and kids so they can stay home for school sports and teen friends. It feels strange being here without them.
A lot has changed in 24 years, besides the height of my boys. This trip gets a turnout of 15 to 20 now for the weekend. Windsurfing is no longer allowed at the camp without a lifeguard so we drive to Ninigret for the main activity. The excitement of a large crowd of unruly windsurfers has been replaced by a more intimate feel. This will probably be my last time here, maybe the last time this trip is run at all.
It's a bittersweet weekend, fun to be here but sad to say goodbye. On Sunday morning I'm packing up when I notice the trees starting to dance. The sun is out and the forecast is great. I want to take some pictures but I'm starting to get excited about the building wind. This camp is full of beautiful memories. It's time to go make some new ones.
Ninigret, Kitesurfed, 5-25, SSW, 12 M kite/152 Ply Board, with AMC crew & Petra Kanz.
Sunday, May 30, 2010
|The wind came up just long enough to get a few of us out on the water. I made it over to the flats but had to walk it about half of the way back. That's O.K. It's all part of the adventure. Hanging out with friends made this Summery light wind day fun.|
Hardings, Kitesurfed, 10-15, WSW, W, 12M Kite, 152 Ply board, with Des, Luke, Ron, Oliver.
Saturday, May 29, 2010
I had my first encounter with a kite eating tree. I hope it's my last! The lines looked good but weren't, kite wouldn't launch, bounced downwind twice and landed in a gnarly, washed up skeleton of a tree and stump, shredding 1 section of my kite. It was the only obstacle on that entire stretch of salt marsh. My kite was drawn to it like a guilty soul to the devil. Frank and Jamie helped me tape the wounded kite, straighten out my line problem, and get out on the water before I imploded from frustration. It's sooo much better kiting with friends!
Waq Bay- was very gusty. It was still fun but I was kiting pretty conservatively. It's hard to push my limits when the wind is jumping from 10 to 30 to 10. sometimes the gusts were so quick that the gust/lull I saw on the water was different from the conditions up at the kite.
Picture- Robert was the last man out.
Friday, May 21, 2010
Friday- A bunch of us rented SUP boards for 2 hours and messed around soundside. Then Frank and I had a great surfing session at the houses right up until the sun set. The waves were the best yet and the setting sun was making them sparkle and glow!
Hatt/PEI- How does Hatt compare to PEI? Hatt has better launches- no mussel farming bouys soundside, better waves for surfing oceanside. PEI is 3 times more scenic and has more to do and explore for the down times. PEI also has had much more wind when we've been there but that's just the roll of the dice. PEI is still my favorite vacation spot of all time, sorry OBX.
Picture- It takes 6 to sink a SUP board. We're still paddling but we aren't going anywhere.
Thursday, May 20, 2010
I felt a little out of sync today. I was missing Barbara and the boys. How do single people keep from feeling lonely?
Wednesday, May 19, 2010
I got a taste of Hatteras oceanside windsurfing! Our crew spent the afternoon screwing around with big kites and boards in fairly small Avon Beach surf. I did some skim boarding (without kite). Just before sunset the wind bumped up, so I got happy, zipped back to the house, carried my gear down the road and boardwalk to the beach, rigged, and got about a half hour in straight sideshore wavesailing. The waves were disorginized, soft, but ridable in spots. I got a little grief for sailing classic but it felt great to be out there on equipment that felt so comfortable.
Dinner was fantastic, thanks to Wo-Jo, Dan and Sandie! I counted 16 of us eating and a few more showed up for the after dinner discussion about about every detail of kiting and windsurfing that we could think of. We were all in living-is-easy beach vacation mode. Let the good times roll!
Avon Beach, Windsurfed, N, 18-25, 5.7/Acid94, with kiters- Sammi, Florian, Colleen, Andre, Bruno, Amine, Matt, Peter, Rob.
Tuesday, May 18, 2010
|This- is what I came for! It was 10-20+ for most of the day. I got up at 6:30, was on the water before breakfast, off the water at 7:00 PM., in the hot tub around 8:00, dinner was at 9:00. Nice day!|
Downwinder to Nowhere 2- I thought that I was a good enough beginning kiter to go along on a downwinder from the Avon houses to Salvo first thing in the morning. I didn't look at the wave size because my eyes were still asleep. I was relieved to get out thru head high waves, but left my board behind on my first turn. Matt rescued my board. Jamie had a similar fate so the downwinder crew was reduced to just Matt. I tried to pick him up in my truck, four wheeling down the Avon ramps onto the beach, but was always behind him. Eventually I lost him in the rain and fog. No worries, he just hitch-hiked back. He had a smile across his whole head after carving miles of waves in a perfect side shore wind!
Chimi House- We all ended up at this flat, shallow soundside spot for the rest of the day. I took turns providing newbie support and kiting. We were almost the only ones at this remote spot (you gotta walk in). When I walked back to my truck for my lunch, I could hear Frank yelling, "yeah baby!", all the way back at the truck. That seemed to be how we all felt.
Chimi House, Kitesurfed, S,SW,W,NW, 10-20+, 12M/6' surfboard, ply 132, with Frank, Jamie, Sammi, Matt, Sandie, Peter, Wo-Jo, Dan, Bruno, Amine, Nakita, Eric, Wo-Jo.
Monday, May 17, 2010
It's great to see Hatteras! I've been hearing, "Hey man, you've got to go to Hatteras!", since I started windsurfing, 100 years ago. I'm finaly here.
We tried to do a downwwinder from the Frisco Pier to the Graveyard of the Atlantic Museum but the wind died and the forecast lied. It was a little dissapointing to pump up and wait for nothing but we talked about every detail of kiting and windsurfing that we could think of, did a little surfing back at the the houses in Avon, and talked about every detail of kiting and windsurfing that we could think of.
Mini Surfboard- I tried using the 6' Caution kite surfboard as a surfing surfboard in the tiny waves. Bad idea. I caught a few waves but it was a struggle and I never got standing on it. The only one getting good rides was Matt on a longboard and Frank on a boogie board. I still got happy just being on the water in this place!
Drive Time- 13 hours, coastal route, stopping for bathroom and gas only. 6:00 AM- 7:00PM, Sunday-no-traffic speed. Lively chat with Sandie made the drive fly by!
Avon Beach, Surfed, knee high, with Frank, Matt, Wo-Jo.
Saturday, May 8, 2010
|Waves happen. So does perfect side shore wind. But both happening together during a wave event in little ol' New England? I wouldn't have thought it possible.|
Matunuck Wind Classic- So how was it? The wind didn't come up until about 6:00 but then it was fantastic! Small to med waves with easy sideshore riding, tons of wind, small sail and board, sunny. The event had a tiny turn out, probably due to the rainy forecast and late wind. Still it was fun to ride with some guys that are much better wavesailors than me. There were some kites there too, in spite of the difficult launch.
NW, offshore wind at Deep Hole? The Pt Judith meter says it was NW but it was nothing like the offshore NW day that I had at Deep Hole a few years ago. Maybe that was really a N wind? Today was mostly a perfect side shore wind, sometimes just very slightly side off but still plenty strong enough (except for one lull that stranded me in the hole for a little while).
The lull that stranded me in the hole for a little while- Big lull, little board and sail, I ended up in the deep hole struggling to keep the board horizontal just around sunset. The wind had dropped and shifted a little more offshore and the point blocked the wind further. I tried paddling in but was getting pulled towards the rock wall instead of the nice little sandy beach. Then I noticed that the wind had come back with a vengeance. I was back to the parking lot in 1 run. I did a few more runs in the now perfect conditions, just for good measure. This foolishness earned me the prestigious, "Warrior Award", during the very serious awards ceremony. LOL!
Overall- This session was one of the highlights of my year for the near perfect down-the-line wave riding conditions and the good company. Thanks to organizers Steve and Nate for a fun, informal event, and for getting us out there on a day that looked hopeless but turned out to be spectacular!
Deep Hole, Windsurfed, W, WNW, NW? 20-40, 5.8/Acid94 briefly, 4.2/RW85, with Steve, Nate, Hank, others.
Sunday, May 2, 2010
Today was the blessing of the fleet for motorcycles. They took over W Dennis Beach. There were hundreds of them. No stinking kites and windsurfers allowed. So we set up our own blessing next to the Lighthouse Inn. We blessed the wind.
It didn't work. The wind was just strong enough to get us going but not enough to work on much.
Location, Location, Location- The wind was spotty for the day. They had forecasted the best winds for Chatham and offshore sites like Fogland, very true. Fogland and Chatham both looked stronger thru the AM and that held all day, about 5MPH more at those spots, due to the extreme heat for this time of year apparently. It was 90 F and sunny in Newton, 58 and foggy in West Dennis when I left.
It was still fun to get on the water with the kite crew.
West Dennis Beach, Kitesurfed, SSW, 8-15, 10-20 briefly, 12M kite/ Door64 & Ply152, Frank, Sammy, Colleen, Andre, Phil, Dan.
Sunday, April 25, 2010
|The forecast was for 10-16 MPH dropping off around 8:00 or 9:00 AM with rain coming in, temp in the low 50's. I knew there wasn't going to be a crowd at the beach.|
I set my alarm for 6:00, woke up from a windsurfing dream at 5:00, was at the beach just after 6:30. It was just me, a few dog walkers and a sunrise that wouldn't quit. The wind was perfect, 15-25.
Around mid morning, instead of dieing, the wind began to build a little. So much for forecasts. There was some light rain. Kiters and windsurfers kept showing up and we had about 10-15 on the water, more on the beach. It was fun to see Frank, Chris and all the others.
At 2:00 I was done and packed up. everyone else was gone. The sun was out. I should have felt exhausted from the long session, all those botched jumps, body drags and swims, but I just felt relaxed, happy, and recharged. It was such a good session, pulled out of the jaws of a dismal forecast.
W Dennis, Kitesurfed, WSW, 15-25, 12M kite/152 ply board, Frank, Chris, Gregor, Sammy, Colleen, Andre, Kristoff, others.