Why Opposite End Windsurfing?

Long Island, NY
I really,really like to windsurf. It is my favorite thing to do, except for teaching kids about physics, that is. The only problem is that I am not so great at windsurfing, at least right now. Several people in my area have created windsurfing blogs, but they are really, really good at windsurfing (and not too shabby at blogging). So, I've decided to give a perspective from the opposite end of the windsurfing skill spectrum, hence the name Opposite End Windsurfing for my blog. In it, I will share the experiences of someone who is trying to become a really good windsurfer.

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Great Day......

not a good ending, for some.

so, I got up this morning thinking I was just going to drive out to WH and pick up a Fanatic Allwave 9'6" (not 9'2" as I am apparently not athletic). Anyway, since there was supposed to be (and was) a morning N/NW, I threw my boardshorts and top in the van and put in my contacts, just in case.

I got to WH a half hour later than planned, but picked up the SUP and all was good. However, I did notice that there were whitecaps on the bay going over the bridge before WH, and so I casually asked Jon if there was a good place to sail, or at least try out the new SUP, nearby. He directed me to the end of Cold Spring Rd. I was the only one there, and there was wind. I did notice a kiter out in the bay about halfway across as I started to rig my 7.5/130.
I rigged up, got the board ready, changed, and moved the van. When I got back to the beach, there was a kite on it. The guy (Rob) said that he had just finished a downwinder and was supposed to have hooked up with Jon Ford to do it, but Jon hadn't showed. I told him it was my fault, as I was late getting to his shop. At any rate, he derigged (or whatever they call it) and wished me luck. Out I went, and planed, and planed, and planed. At first, the water was fairly flat as the tide was coming in. super fun.

After a while, I noticed this guy Rob was laying on the beach, apparently with no way to get home. I came in after a while, for a drink and a granola bar (the only food I had in the van) and let him use my phone to call a taxi. I then went out again. This time it was choppier, I think the tide had started to go out against the wind, but the wind showed no sign of abating. I planed, and planed, and planed somemore. So nice to be in cleaner water, and not having to use a weed fin. I was easily able to rail the board up a bit and it was absolutely flying. It's pretty well impossible for me to rail it up with a weed fin. Made some nice jibes, and almost, almost completed 2 full planing jibes. It's fun running down the swell and that helps with the jibes too. Some of the swell was pretty big, at least logo high (well, the logo on my board shorts anyway - however, that is twice the actual amplitude, but that's another story).

I also had set up the board a bit differently last night, moving the mast base back about 1 cm or a bit less. Seems to get the nose up just a little bit and the board was great in the swell. I am used to chop or flat water and the last time I sailed it (Monday), the nose hit the back of chops several times so I thought this might cure that and make it go a bit faster. Seems to have worked, although I can't really say for sure as other important variables also changed (non-weed fin and swell instead of chop or flat water).

As fun as it was, at one point, I was flying along and all of a sudden, I was in the water, head on top of sail. Happy I was wearing a helmet. I don't know what the crash looked like to the birds and fish, but it was an interesting moment. Laughed it off and kept going. Hey, even the pros crash from time to time.

Anyway, I got in 3 - 4 hours of beautiful, completely unexpected sailing time on a gorgeous day in a very nice spot. Just what I've been looking for. Thanks, Jon.

another guy showed up with a JP board and a 7.5 sail, did one run back and forth with me and then pulled in to the beach. When I came in later, he said he was exhausted and neeeded a rest.
a great day, except on the way home I drove by two horrendous accidents on Montauk Hwy about 1/2 mile apart. The first one already had ambulances and such there, but had recently happened as more ambulances were pulling up as I got by. The second probably happened after the first, as no police or ambulances had showed up yet, but there were people helping the injured and cops and ambulances were just about there. I'd guess the second one (on the other side of the road) happened as a result of the first, but who knows. Be careful out there. What's really ridiculous is the way people were driving, even after passing two accidents, tailgating, swerving in and out, that sort of thing. I feel safer on the water, at least in a bay. Just hope everyone involved is still alive.

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