G. Niblock on the L41 TipSUP Noserider. Photo: J. Chandler

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Surprise! South Makes It In

I've taken notice of a couple sporadic lines of buoy data the last 24 hours showing a 4 feet at 17 seconds south swell. I thought they were aberrations from a buoy that needs some maintenance. But this morning the nearshore buoy reported five solid hours of 4 to 5 foot waves at 16-17 seconds from the south. Worth a look.

I paddled out at 0630 under overcast skies with a light southwest wind blowing already. Conditions weren't great but they did not spoil the somewhat inconsistent three to six foot, four to five wave sets that rolled through all morning long. Low tide rising didn't hurt either. I surfed by myself and caught a dozen waves until 0700 when I was joined by Mash, Luke and MikieB on their SUPs. We surfed for another two hours, joined by John and a couple others. That was the peak of us. We got more than our fair share.

Everyone slept in. No one saw this one coming because the prognosticators and Surfline missed it too. They all thought the south was too steep to get into the Bay. All other spots were empty as well. Second bowl at Scimi's had no riders (this bowl is usually as crowded as first peak). GDubs had four guys riding all the waves they could catch.

MikieB borrowed a 10'3" Takayama Surftech demo SUP and we all got a chance to try it. At 27" wide and 4" thick it was something of a challenge to stand on at first, but I soon got the balance part down. I caught a couple waves, one of which was my best ride of the day on a head high screamer that kept putting up makeable sections in front of me for the entire 150 yard ride. The board surfs like a performance longboard. It feels light and is very responsive. I was pushing some hard bottom turns, coming right back off the top, accelerating and doing it again, and again on down the line. On the down side, I expended a lot of energy paddling and balancing. The board also seems to push water a bit when paddling. Twenty minutes and two waves is hardly enough time to fairly judge a board but my overall summary is that the 10'3" Tak is a high performance surfing board, but not something I'd want to paddle in rougher water. A great surfer, but not the best all-rounder. In choppy conditions or on an uneven sea surface in the line-up there would be no rest and that would give me less quality energy for surfing. I could get used to it though...if I was thirty years younger.

I was so busy paddling wide around the various peaks, and paddling hard to make it over the inside waves, and then catching my own waves that I didn't get many pics. Too bad because there were a lot of good waves ridden.
May 20, 2008 (Tu)
In: 0627
Out: 0900
AT= 52 to 53 degrees
WT= 52.3 degrees at the nearshore buoy
Wx: Overcast
Tide: -0.56 Rising to 1.1
Wind: WSW at 2 mph to 6 mph from ESE
Sea Surface: Light wind rippling to calm to wind rippled
Buoy: NWS
0600: 5.6 feet @ 17.4 SSW
0700: 5.2 feet @ 14.8 S
0800: 5.9 feet @ 14.8 S
0900: 5.2 feet @ 16 SSW
1000: 5.2 feet @ 16 S
10'4" Angulo SUP with Infinity paddle
Fin set-up: Thruster with Bluecoil 5.5" center fin and FCS Occy sides
Bathymetry: Rock reefs
CDIP: 3.6 feet at 11 seconds from 290 degrees and 3.9 feet at 17 seconds from 185 degrees


  1. Hey Gary-

    Looks fun! That south is bombing our town right now - I just got out of the water from another intense session.

    Looks like you guys scored!

  2. I watched Adam Wright's blog post of the kids who taped the Wedge. It definitely was going off so I figured everything else was too, especially your home waves. I was very pleasantly surprised to get what we got. That's Mash pulling hard for a glassy one and gettin' jiggy on the Takayama.

    Tweaked my back riding the Tak though. Missed this morning's clear skies and glassy session. Two out on longboards riding many and letting many go by. Will post a report.

    Join us for the Plasket Creek SUP outing. We'll fish for Whitey...he-he. No worries, Whitey's down south. Isn't he?