Saturday, March 27, 2010

Fear & Loathing in Chapin Beach

I'm standing on Chapin Beach, not far from the spot where, 2 months ago, I self-launched my 12m kite into the greedy kite-eating beach grass. The grass looks scenic, innocently waving it's arms in the breeze, but I know the sharp fangs that are waiting below those tendrils to suck the life out of any kite that gets too close. My faithful kite struggled in vain against these evil spikes of death. It's still out for repair.

Should I launch a kite? It's high tide and there is almost no beach left. Some driftwood stands guard at the edge of the beach. I don't want to give in to my fear of killer beach grass. My mouth is dry, my palms sweaty. The dunes are waiting, watching...

I windsurf. The grass wins this time but I'll be back. And next time I'm bringing friends.

The windsurfing conditions were very good.

Windsurfed, Chapin, NE, 10-25, 5.2/ Realwind 85, 32 to 34 temp, Solo.

Sunday, March 21, 2010

Kalmus or Carribean?

Kalmus/ Lagoon

Kalmus- E wind was side-off but it was low tide, shallow, super smooth water, about as gusty as Wack Bay, pretty safe. With my sunglasses on, the water had a turquoise color with a few brown spots of seaweed growth, looked like a beautiful tropical lagoon.

Stupidly Underpowered- I was on my 10M kite because my big kites have disappeared into the Bermuda triangle of kite repair. I was on my smallest board because it was blowing 18 to 28 when I pumped up and I was too stupid to get my larger boards out just in case. The wind was slowly decaying. So I did mini downwinders, then 1 long one, landing at the next dock over from what I think was the Kennedy compound. It was about a 1/2 hour walk back but it was such a nice day that I enjoyed that too.

First Carve to Toeside- I actually like these conditions for trying stuff. I've been scared to try carving because I keep picturing myself catching an edge and doing a jarring face plant like the one I did wakeboarding last Fall. It took a few months for my neck and shoulder to recover from that one. So I tried to sneak up on myself and do a carve without thinking about it. The carve didn't seem too hard! Pumping to keep myself on plane on toeside was hard, and not successful.

First Jump Transitions (on purpose)- I waited for a gust, sheeted out, sent the kite the other way, pulled in hard and told my brain to jump. It worked! I got 1 inch off the water! I did a few of these baby jump turns.

Windsurfing and Kiting canceled on the Cape- They'll still let you do it. They just won't let you leave. Bridge work has resumed until about Memorial Day. I spent 1 1/2 hours waiting in line to cross the bridge in the early afternoon.

Kitesurfed, Kalmus, E 14-23, 10M Bularoo/ 132 Ply board, Solo.

Saturday, March 13, 2010

Windsurfing is Back!

So is my golfer's elbow but I had fun until my arms locked up.

This was my first planing windsurfing session in 6 months. The main reason I've been doing so much kiting- it's a lot easier on my forearms. I've been trying to lose this tendonitis.

The Cut- was pretty good. I was on my smallest gear, 3.5 & 85 liters, sometimes a little underpowered, sometimes super wound up. Jerry E & Peter were out there getting the best of it with 4.2's. The waves were pretty friendly, not too big, probably because it was high tide. The tide changed during the session and the outgoing tide would have made me nervous except that Jerry and Peter were usually further out than I was. With the E wind you could do 1 long run and make it all the way into the bay to the point by Scatteree Landing. On the outside end, the waves on the S point sandbar were really fun because you could just go into the edge of them and look for 1 to play with but by the time I discovered that my arm strength was about gone.

Waterman in Training- It was nice to meet Jason, "Shook". He started kiting in October but is already kiting The Cut on the outgoing tide, dead onshore wind, high tide shorebreak, close to 40 MPH wind. He's got the waterman in his genes!

The Cut, Windsurfed, 23-37+, E, RealWind 85/ 3.5 sail, Jerry, Peter, Shook (on kite)

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Sunday River Skiing Weekend

Yeee haw we had great conditions at Sunday River!

We skied pretty hard at times, a lot of fantastic bump runs. On Sunday my legs felt like string beans and I thought that my right knee cap was going to pop off like a cork from a champagne bottle.

I think the only reason I could somewhat keep up with Al was because kiting exercises some of the same lower body muscles.

Josh joined us with his blades for a half day on Saturday, breezing effortlessly thru the bumps and tree runs. We missed Barbara, Ben, Lee.

Thanks to Andrzej and Enya for a great Thai dinner Sat night and the balcony view of the Sunday River fireworks.

Photo- Good snow puts a constant smile on Al's face.