Wednesday, August 18, 2010


caught the first real wave I paddled for on Tuesday,
a nice clean longish left, it opened up a little for a nice little ride. but it was a left, so I didn't make much of it
I got a few more like that during our best go-out so far.

north swell & light winds in Buxton, no swell reaching around the corner at the house.
it was clean, like yesterday at the 1st groin, maybe cleaner, and less crowded,
I could grab some of the shoulders of the peak waves that the original riders had either kicked out of or closed out of. Leftovers were all I could muster. The 8-10 guys & gals dominating the peak were catching them at the groin and riding them 100-150 yds. I'd jump on when they were done or on those they skipped.

Next day was smaller and cleaner and we got there well after dead-low tide. All of the better surfers must've been on it earlier in the tide cycle as the peak was only about 5 or 6 mostly longboarders, and from a quick look at the lineup, I thought it looked mostly like a bunch of guys like me, plus one girl who was totally killing everyone. She caught anything she paddled for and rode most of them 100 yds. Thick strong body, blond hair, black bikini, symmetric art covering much of her tanned skin. She easily dominated the lineup, catching4-5 good waves to everyone else's one. I kept getting in her way the first few waves I paddled for, even though I had position on a couple of them. She gave no quarter and expected none as she paddled around us and caught whatever she desired. She kept staring at the beach while waiting on the sets, as if she's keeping her eye on her kids or something. After schooling us for a while, she paddled in and went to play with her friends in the shorebreak. They were an odd looking bunch on this beach. Pale, skinny, inked, learning how to bodysurf the shorebreak. Looked like it could be their first time to a beach. Then she dropped her longboard down and grabbed a cig. Not that I was staring at her or anything..... I was on the beach by then letting Andy have a paddle-out.

Barry arrived late in the week as the winds picked up out of the wrong direction,
Tom & Julie brought their Stand-Up Paddleboards, which were a lot different, and not easy.

the kids all got plenty of water time in, and often were literally and figuratively in way over their heads. they all got their scare on a few times, and were all thoroughly entertained by Tom on the SUP ocean tours. a lot of kids can fit on one of those things.

you could hardly say that we surfed our brains out all week. we had 2-3 marginally decent sessions at best. Andy did well for his first time and got himself into decent position at the 1st groin peak and paddled for a few waves. he took a board to the lip, but managed not to put anyone else in danger. Barry/Tom/Julie got skunked on surfing, but brought other water toys to use instead. It's a tough sport, and a tough place. Swell, wind, and tide all need to coincide to produce the great conditions. If there were no wind, you could at least have ridable surf every day of the year around Buxton. But, Hatteras Island without wind? There would not even be an island if there were no constantly opposing winds.

Todd's annual guys trip in October is a possibility if I still wanna get my surf on back there, and if I can motivate some driving partner(s). anyone?? It's a long way to go to drink beer at a campfire. If there's surf is the only way I'd decide at the last minute to go.

the Sound was pretty tame on an east winds day

Andy gets the fam ready for an epic lunch run, or, as Oliver called it, the Wild 100 of kayaking

oh yea, and the Wild 100 if anyone or I still care....
it was harder/longer than usual
rained for a few hours after checkpoint-1
it got cold, we took it easy, no show-off moves.
didn't know where 6 was going to be until we got to 5 at the top of Props. we knew all the non-Plus racers were heading straight down Props Run to the finish. we didn't know how far we'd get sent to find 6.
lots of comments at the post-race party about the length. Andy and I were out for 11:19 I think. We were about 20 minutes behind the winners of the 2-man Plus. Those 20 minutes could've been from my map reading failure, a failure to notice the extra pink-highlighted line indicating a legal stretch of pavement we could've taken. A stretch that's never been legal to use before, and when we got on the parallel singletrack, it was so overgrown, unused, and filled with blowdowns, we wondered what was going on. It pays to look closely at the map, even when you think you know everything already.
Even though we did an extra checkpoint, we still got in before most of the non-Plus racers. Most of them were well over 12 hours. Many finished in the dark. Many had rides of woe, of missed turns, extra climbs, bad choices. Looking at the map in the morning, I thought it again looked like a simple straightforward course like last year. That everyone would take essentially the same routes. I was certainly proved wrong on that, which is why many of them finished in the dark. Knowing Gil, we expect next year to be shorter again. Will I be there??


Todd said...

Sorry to hear the waves weren't better. Still, sounds like a great trip. October huh?

andy said...

"if anyone or I still care..if you'll be back" ?
I thought it was the best Wild yet. After this summer I'll soak in a 55 deg day, anyday, even if it's wet. I thought the trails were in fine shape, even the extra trails. With the great food, volunteers, and atmosphere and classic mtb experience.. I'll be back.
Surfing.. eh.