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

Saturday, November 7, 2009

Significant NW Swell But A Bit Too Steep

I've been watching this storm and coming swell since spotting it on the satellite late Monday evening. It was putting up some impressive winds and fetch that eventually stretched hundreds of miles across the North Pacific. It wasn't long before everyone was jumping on the band wagon, touting 20 foot waves banging the coast. Early in the week I was very pumped, but as the week wore on, and I studied it a lot more, it looked like the swell direction was going to be a bit too steep for us to get an epic swell. Pretty big, yes. Epic, no. Turned out I was right.

I paddled out on the 6-10 Ward Coffey Power Biscuit at 0630 and into a clean and color filled morning, where I witnessed two long and beautiful rides. John got the first one and Jamie got the second which was the longer ride of the two. All the usual suspects were out, along with some early bird weekenders. It was actually kinda crowded already. Because the swell angle was a little too steep, wave heights were smaller than they could have been, had there been more west in the swell. The tide was 3.2 and rising, and takeoffs were fat at Sarge's, with a lot of water moving through.

Even though it was fairly consistent, there weren't a lot of waves per set. Fact is, there weren't enough waves for the number of people surfing. It would get worse as the late comers began arriving. I moved over to Red House where Barry was surfing. Early on it wasn't too crowded so I stayed there most of the session and pulled down a number of short rides off a steeply angled peak. Nice drop, short ride. I did manage to hook into one nice long ride that lined up just right. It turned into about a 250 yard ride with a couple nice sections after a fun takeoff. After that wave, everything else was gravy.

Sam and his bro's were out on their high performance PSH SUPs, surfing wide at Sarges. Will from SLO was up and out on his 9'3" C4 Sub-Vector. Good to meet you bro...if you read this, email me at and we'll hook-up for a surf. Andy and Dave were out on their very hot new Angulo SUPs....short and fat, the new wave.

Since my 10' Angulo SUP surfs like a longboard, and I didn't want to longboard this morning, I took out the bigger of my two "short"boards, the 6-10 WC Power Biscuit. I haven't ridden this great board all that much 'cause I've been so excited about surfing the 5-11 Ghostbuster2. I also really wanted to ride it with the quad fins installed. Since I knew there would be some overhead waves, the 6-10 quad was a good call. Ward shaped this board exactly like I wanted it. It fits me perfectly. The beauty of a custom board and a great shaper is that if you know what you want, you can get it. A custom board can be built to your specs including most importantly your skill level, and how you want (and like) to surf. Support your local shaper, you wont' be sorry you did.

Wore my new Quiksilver heated vest this morning with my O'Neill 4/3 Mutant, 3 mil booties and neoprene hood. I never got cold even though there was a fairly strong offshore blowing early. Surfline did a review of the vest that I pretty much agree with. After I wear it a few more sessions I'll review it myself. It's a little pricey at $200.00, but appears to be well made and thought out. If you like to stay warm, this specialized piece of equipment might be what you're looking for.

Lot's of people hanging out in the park and the lot this morning. Lot's of socializing and chit-chatting with everyone stoked about the good waves. Herby surfed down reef early and was jazzed. All in all a good morning, albeit a little too heavily populated in the line-up for the quantity of waves Ma Nature was providing.

November 7, 2009 (Sa)
In: 0635
Out: 0805
AT= 45.6-52F
WT= 57F
Wx: Partly cloudy
Tide: 3.2' Rising to 3.5'
Wind: Light to moderate offshores
Sea Surface: Glassy in the kelp to light wind ripples
6-10 Ward Coffey EPS (Marko Styrolite)/Epoxy Custom
Fin set-up: Quad with Rainbow Speedwing fronts and SB1 rear.
Bathymetry: Rock reefs
Deep Water Swell and Wave Face Heights CDIP Archive
Buoy: NWS (Farshore #1-Nearshore-Farshore #2)
Time-NDBC Data-CDIP Data (Primary Swell Dir.)(Local Wave Ht. Avg.)
0600: 18 feet @ 19 NW - 7.5 feet @ 13.3 WNW (no data) (4-8 ft. faces)
0700: 17.7 feet @ 19 NW - 7.2 feet @ 12.5 WNW (305) (4-8 ft. faces)
0800: 19 feet @ 17.4 WNW - 7.5 feet @ 13.3 WNW (305) (4-8 ft. faces)
0900: 16.7 feet @ 17.4 WNW - 7.2 feet @ 14.3 WNW (305) (4-8 ft. faces)
1000: 15.4 feet @ 19 NW - 7.2 feet @ 12.5 WNW (305) (4-8 ft. faces)


  1. PM wind and fat tide made a pretty good mess of things on my side of town today. You may see me in the water tomorrow morning, usual spot.

  2. I'll be on it early. See ya then.