Saturday, May 23, 2015

Downwind and Around an Island

7:00 AM. I'm on my way to the Cape when my cell phone rings. Peter says, "hey I just passed you on the highway. Wanna join us for a downwinder?" "You bet!" I've never met a downwinder I didn't like.

Pete at Sunken Meadow
Downwinder- Sunken Meadow, (Wellfleet), to First Encounter. 4 miles. I like. Nice moderate downwinder. No real coves or tidal pools but miles of shallow water on the inside with choppy waves out in the deeper water. Took about 2 hours, going slow, really taking our time. I love exploring new sections of the Cape!

Kitesurfed- WNW, 15-25 MPH, 10M Rally/Mako150, with Peter, Eric, Eric's student.

Lieutenant Island
Lieutenant Island- We finish the downwinder around noon, just as the wind dies, so I decide to do a 3 mile hike around a nearby semi secluded island.

Good idea at low tide. Not so good at high tide. Part way around I encounter some channels in a marsh that block my way. Boots off. Pants rolled up. I cross. The last one is too deep. Cloths off, held up high. I cross. Cloths back on before I send any unsuspecting dog walkers into cardiac arrest.

Further around, the sandy beach turns into a rock wall for 1/3 mile. Crap! The online review of this hike didn't mention this stuff. C'mon hiking boots. Do your thing. I do a rock scramble.

Rock Scramble

The rest of the walk is easy. I'm running out of gas by the end but that's what I like. That stupid tired feeling is my pay off. It anesthetizes my brain.  Doing this hike at high tide wasn't so smart. It turned out to be fun though.

Yeah, the Cape gave me what I came for. It was a great day of losing myself in sun, sand, and the quiet laughter of the sea.

Friday, May 1, 2015

Hatt Trick

View from our hovel
Back in Hatteras. Oh yeah. Wonderful OBX. We have 15 crazed kiters packed into a little 12 bedroom/12 bathroom hovel. If we're too exhausted from kiting, we can ride the elevator up to the 4th floor where we can watch kiters skimming across the sound as we sip our wine laced with Advil. We're roughing it here.

Crazy Paul

As I write this it's nighttime. The wind is gusting to over 40 MPH. It's howling! I can feel the whole house shaking. I love a good ocean storm. It's fun to see the water in the toilet bowl sloshing around from the movement of the house.

Crazy Colleen

Weather- This is what kiters come here for. The beautiful OBX weather, which means windy. Solid N/NNW/NNE wind every day except Wed. Oceanside has been mostly side off and dirty. We kited Buxton Slicks and Frisco Turnout all week, one aborted attempt at an oceanside downwinder.

Crazy jump. I'm not saying I stuck the landing.
Cold Enough? Yeah it's been frigid but it's worth it. I never get tired of hearing the howls of pain from people stripping off their wetsuits in the icy wind chill before making a mad dive into the hot tub to soak for a few hours. Getting out of the hot tub is another adventure that's worth a few chuckles. These are the hardships that kiters endure in pursuit of their passion.

Hatteras Magic

Surf & Turf- I stopped at Shenandoah National Park to hike in the Blue Ridge Mountains on my way down, camped there. Loved it. The Skyline Drive was spectacular.

This is why they're called The Blue Ridge Mountains
I'm planning on camping and hiking in Rickets Glen State Park in Penns on my way home. The hike goes past 23 watefalls in about 5 miles. Leaving kite mecca to go camping/hiking proves that I'm more than just a crazed obsessive kiter. I'm a well rounded crazed obsessive kiter.

Rickets Glen

 Credit to Chris L for the photo of my board off attempt. Thanks Chris!!!