Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Gary's World

I recently got back in touch with a friend of mine from high school. Gary, one of the homies I used to skateboard with back in the day, decided to become a world traveler and now keeps a blog of his exploits. So far he's traveled throughout Europe and the Caribbean and is heading out to San Fran in a couple of weeks.
He was interested in some of the windsurfing travels I've done an decided to make a post about it.
Check it out, along with some others at Gary Misner.com.
(I'd like to point out that he did make one very flattering mistake. I don't know who started the rumor in my home town, but I'll have to put an end to it. Eventually.)
Keep it up Gary, I'll see you soon.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Weekend Summary: an Explaination of Why I Missed the Lost Series Finale

After getting blown off the water at Sherman Friday evening, Amy and I decided to make a break for the coast on Saturday to meet up with Alex, who was staying with some friends in Santa Cruz.
During the drive we got a call saying that the winds were backing off by the ocean, so we jumped on the San Mateo bridge and crossed over to third for a quick freestyle session.
The wind was really up and down and the chop was coming from all different directions, so I only sailed for a short time before packing it up.
Amy found a band playing in Santa Cruz, so we headed south and found a camp ground near by, pitched a tent, and then went into town for the night. It ended up being a Samba band, who absolutely rocked. Everybody in the place was moving, and by the end of the night my hips were so soar I had no idea how I was going to sail the next moring.
We woke up Sunday, grabbed a bite to eat in town and then headed out to Daveport. The swell was messy, but the winds were picking up so I rigged up my new Duke 5.4 and got out.
They say it's a bad idea to sail new gear in the surf, but that's what I bought the sail for so I figured might as well use it. Anyway, I jibed out of my first wave only to find myself face to face with a big meat eater section of a wave. I wanted to try to pop over it but I had absolutely no power in my sail; needless to say I got run over but the logo high freight train without a chance of getting out of the way. 
When I popped up there was another wave coming so tactfully sunk my sail. Luckly, it didn't break. I then water started and made it to the beach. The sail was fine, but my head was throbbing a bit from something hitting me during the wipeout.  
Alex then went out on his 5.8, but was over powered. We both rerigged to 5.0 and sailed until we couldn't hold on anymore.
It was hard to find good rides, though the regulars seemed to know where the waves would pop up pretty well. Some of the guys were shooting for a break right next to the cliff where the wind was really light. This of course made for some interesting situations as we watched rigs wash up on the rocks. One of the locals said it was a pretty messy day in terms of swell, and that normally the waves are much cleaner and more consistant. I'm looking forward to getting back there for another day sometime in the near future, but for right now I'm hoping to get some freestyle in on my new Rodeo which is due to arrive this week. 


Saturday, May 22, 2010

5.4 Test-postponed

Well, I finally broke down and purchased a 5.4 Duke this week. I really thought my 5.0 would be more than enough as my "big" sail for the Delta this season, but El Nino patterns have created some weird wind and 5.0 has been marginal on too many days.
Below: Amy 3.7 and 84ltr
Going into a Kono on the 76ltr

Anyway, I was really excited to try out the new Duke but winds were, well, strong. Figures. Amy was on her 3.7 and I sailed 4.2. Maybe I'll get to try the 5.4 out today, but then again hopefully not.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Pictures from today

Here are a couple of pics of Alex and myself from todays session at Sherman. Winds were low to mid 20's today, with warm air temps and a favorable current. What a great day to be on the water! Thanks Amy for the sweet shots!

Monday, May 10, 2010

Delta Force

Amy and I arrived at Sherman around 5 O'clock to find Alex lit up on his 4.0. This was a pleasant surprise, as I was sure the strong winds would die off by the time we got to there. Fortunately, I was wrong. The wind was still very strong and I was surprised to see Amy pull out her 4.2 and not 3.7, but since she started sailing a smaller board I shrugged it off. She hit the water and took off like a bat out of hell, and she stuck it out for a while until the gusts started reaching into the mid 30's. By the time she got into the beach she was exhausted, but a huge smile stretched across her face.
I was blasting around on my wave board and eventually managed to pull in front of Alex on starboard. I figured since I told him I landed a loop while he was stuck in class the other day, I'd better come through with a solid rotation for him to see. I accelerated off the wind, head on into a meaty knee high ramp with way more speed than I would have liked. The board turned down and the sail loaded with power. I really really did not want to do it, but with an audience I did not want to chicken out. I sheeted in and spun. The nose of the board pointed down toward the water in that scary 'about to die' way that only fowards do, I looked for a second then closed my eyes and tucked. This was way too fast for me to be comfortable considering I just landed my first loop on startboard two days ago and I knew a crash would be bone jarring. Fortunately, the rig spun through all the way and I sailed out of it, but my heart was pounding the inside of my chest like it might pop through my ribs.
This inspired Alex who then decided to try a few fowards also, all of which were very close. Infact, as close as one could possibly get without actually sailing away. By my count, he's right around ten tries total, and on track to land a loop within the next two sessions. Not bad, not at all.
After about 2 hours the wind backed off and we packed it up for the day. On the way out we ran into the Dereks who had just sailed powerlines. They both agreed it was epic, and that Amy and I would need to join them next time it's ebbing and nuking.Tomorrow has some promise, but the rest of the week is predicted to fade. We'll see how that plays out since today was forcast for 18-22. Hope everyone else got some.

Saturday, May 8, 2010

Behold: The Ambi Looper

Yesterday, four years after landing my first loop on port, I became a looper on both tacks. Only this time, it took a mere 8 tries from my first attempt to actually landing a foward.
Learning to loop starboard confirmed what I already knew, that the loop is not technichally difficult but a mental manuvour. By controlling my thoughts and committing to the move from the start, I was able to quickly overcome the challenge with an extremely short learning curve.
Now it's time to complete my experiment with loops and see if I can transfer this advice to someone who has never looped before and get them to land one as quickly. I know it's possible, especially since I've met people who can loop but not jibe. Just remember, it's all in your head. Commit.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Tease winds, new gear update, and some wind?

The last week of April we sailed 5 out of 7 days, but now a week into May we've seen about one good day out here in the Delta. Mean while the Bay Area has been on fire. Time to drive I guess...
The biggest tease, however, is that for most sailors, 4 of the past 7 afternoons might have be sailable if not for the ultra strong flood tide. Drifting down wind trying to pump on a plane to throw a flaka and then having to rock climb out of the water and walk a half mile up wind to your car just isn't as fun as I'd thought it'd be. Ok, so zero good days so far this month.
For this week a series of strong afternoon Ebs will make for some great afternoon sessions, so with a bit of wind the Delta could be the place.
On the gear front, I finally used the production freestyle fin I got for Christmas. I'll admit, I was hesitant. I mean, I can take just about any old fin and turn it into a custom freestyle stub for little to no cost, so why spend over $100 bucks to get one at the shop? Well, after replacing my custom freestyle/weed fin with a brand new 16cm MFC production freestyle fin, I was sold.
The production fin cuts through the water with so much more efficiency that I now plane quicker and find greater top end speed. Not to mention the thing virtually disappears while I'm spinning.
Conclusion: Worth it!!!
Dakine finally filled in the gaps of their beloved Mono lines and I was able to pick up a set of 26's. What a huge difference from my 24's interms of ability to get the mast upright, and yet I didn't get the stretched out monkey arm feeling like I do from 28's; so much more comfortable. (Delta Windsurfing just got a truck load of fins and lines in, FYI.)
Also, by the end of next week, I should be the proud owner of a brand new F2 Rodeo 98 and a Rebel 75. From what I've heard, the Rodeo could be best production freestyle board of 2010, but I won't get ahead of myself. What I will say is that the only real way to get them is through special order with Ocean Air, and supplies are limited, so I will review them quickly for any interested parties (I over estimate the interest of my fan base). Otherwise purewindsurfing.blogspot.com posted a helpful review on the Rodeo and is currently the only North American to have one.

Thursday, May 6, 2010

Euro Trax

I love windsurfing and I love watching windsurfing videos, however the music in the back ground of some of these clips for the last couple of years has been terrible. Italian rapping, German techno, Euro trance; come on, really? There's certainly some great music out there, why isn't it in your videos?
I mean, I play a clip; the action is great and the video quality is professional, but then I'm racing to find the mute button because some slightly syncopated, synthesized beat is raping my ears. I really can't remember the last time I saw something from a windsurfer on youtube or vimeo and said "Hey, great song, I must immediately download it and listen to it over and over."(Actually,  I can. Kasabien "Club Foot" about 4 years ago)
All I'm trying to say is that you super talented freestyle and wave guys looking to post your footage from your latest sailing adventures and trips, before you upload that track into your time line ask your friendly Chachis World Media Consultant about your choice of tunes. It's free, and apparently necessary.

Sunday, May 2, 2010

April Summary

Both March and April were sad months for wind out here in the Delta. Most days barely reached low teens, while the stronger days were gusty and shifty. The last week of April saw some better wind, which leads me to believe that May will be much better.
My new loop goal is end of May.