29 April 2007

Waddell Creek, 28 Apr 2007

Swell direction: WNW
Tide: Rising, just past -0.9 low
Wind: Windy
Air/Water Temp: 60/52 degrees

Waddell kicked my ass this afternoon. When D & S and I arrived, it was borderline too windy; the kiteboarders were getting ready to go out. But as it was a gorgeous warm sunny Saturday, all the more sheltered town spots were packed wall-to-wall, so we went out anyway. No one else was out, so it was hard to judge the size from the beach, and it turned out to be bigger and stronger than it looked. I gave it my best shot several times trying to get out and damn near made it once before another short-period head-high wave broke in front of me and laughed at my attempt to duck-dive under it. I ended up being pushed far south, gave up and paddled back to the beach, then walked north again, to where newbie S was practicing in the whitewater. Defeated, I caught a few broken waves too, just to get up on the shortboard. At least D got in a few decent rides, but for me, it totally sucked and left me unsatisfied. I still want to go surf...

24 April 2007

Pleasure Point, 24 Apr 2007

Lots like yesterday (even down to the friendly sea otter) but the tide was an hour closer to the earlier high, so it was a bit swamped when D and I arrived for dawn patrol. It was also annoyingly more crowded, and I had a couple near misses. D and I shared my 5'8" and his 7'0" funshape, since I put his shortboard in the repair shop on Saturday, but we both had trouble finding waves to ourselves in the pack. On the way back in, I popped up in the whitewater and rode my shortboard a little longer this time, even managing some little turns.

23 April 2007

38th Ave, 23 Apr 2007

Swell direction: WNW
Tide: Falling, between 4.8' and -0.5
Wind: Calm to light
Air/Water Temp: 45/52 degrees
Wildlife: An unshy sea otter

D had some lame excuse about needing sleep, so I headed to SC alone in the dark predawn. The sun rose in a clear sky and the ocean was glassy. Where I went out around 38th, the waves were 4' and a little inconsistent, but it was overhead nearer to Pleasure Point. I almost caught a few waves on my shortboard, and practiced duck-diving while waiting for sets (score against the one actual wave attempted: 0). On the way in, I popped up for a few second ride in the whitewash, but fell when I oversteered into a turn. A glorious morning to be in the water - what a terrific way to start the week! And the great thing is I get to do it again tomorrow morning.

I followed a sea otter's underwater bubbles and got his picture up close.

21 April 2007

Four Mile, 21 April 2007

Swell direction: NW
Tide: Rising, 3 hours past -0.9' low
Wind: Light
Air/Water Temp: 52/52 degrees
Wildlife: Aggro guys

By the time we reached the coast in the late morning, Davenport looked like it was on its way to being blow out, so D and I didn't bother checking Waddell and headed back to Four Mile. It's a pretty spot, and the waves were 4-5' and near glassy. Unfortunately the sesh was marred by the handful of mean guys already in the water who were sending out a ugly vibe and owning the peak. Even paddling out, they'd cut right in front of me like I was invisible, forcing me to stop paddling to let them pass. People like that should just join a fight club and stay out of the water; that's not what surfing's supposed to be about.

D and I traded boards so he could try my new 5'8", and he had fun on it. Unfortunately, while I was on his fairly new 6'3" Lost, I wasn't able to get out of the way of a mean blond guy who was trying to catch a wave. I attempted to paddle out around him on the right, but didn't quite make it over before the wave started to break. What pissed me off is that he kept coming straight ahead without even trying to avoid me. Asshole. The wave tumbled me hard and in the process his fin apparently impacted the board, making a linear blue dent in the deck. Shit! I felt really bad and of course am paying for the repairs, but D's without his board for about a week, so I'll be sharing my shortboard with him.

On the bright side, after we switched back, I caught a wave on my new board and rode it for a split second! Luckily D was on the same wave because my leash came off (maybe I didn't lock it down sufficiently?) and my board headed in toward the reef without me, but he was nearby and able to grab it. So stoked to have caught/ridden a wave, however briefly, on my shortboard! Woo hoo!

Surfline forecast is for "Good" conditions in Santa Cruz all week. (Although interestingly, after the fact, they revised today from "Poor-Fair" to "Good." Hmmm.) Hope to get in a few sessions!

20 April 2007

Linda Mar, 20 Apr 2007

Swell direction: NW
Tide: At 4.6 high and fallling
Wind: Breezy onshore
Air/Water Temp: 58/51 degrees

Choppy, sloppy, rolly, mushy, disorganized, about 4' where I was hanging with the shortboarders in front of the bathhouse, dropping to 2' on the south end. Probably 40 people out; you're never lonely at Lindy. It did look like the longboarders were having more fun. But I just needed to get wet, even though I knew going in I wouldn't have a chance of catching anything. So my modest goal for the sesh was to sit on my tippy little 5'8", hands free, without falling off into the water. Stop laughing! I did mention it was very choppy, so this was not so easy. I think I may have taken a lot of pictures of the sky, however, as attempting a shot usually off-balanced me into the drink.

16 April 2007

Pleasure Point, 16 Apr 2007

Swell direction: WNW
Tide: Rising, 3 hours past -0.2 low
Wind: Very light
Air/Water Temp: 45/50 degrees
Wildlife: Otters

Yesterday afternoon D and I shopped for my first shortboard. We looked at Wise but I ended up buying a Surftech at Aqua, a red/gray 5'8" (really a 5'10") Xanadu Rocky, and D got some cool-looking high tech fins. So of course we had to try them out first thing this morning. Pleasure Point was disorganized, 4-5', with a handful of guys out. I didn't catch anything, although I popped up and fell a couple times in the whitewash on the way in. But I started to get a feel for the board and worked on duck diving, for which there was ample opportunity since I got washed far inside on my unsuccessful attempts. Still, I managed to duck dive once, so it can be done. Yay! It'll be so nice not to get pounded on the way out anymore. On the downside it seems much colder sitting down in the water, and it's a lot more work paddling; my shoulder muscles were sore when I got to work.

Now on to learning to catch waves on my pretty little board.

13 April 2007

Capitola, 13 Apr 2007

Swell direction: WNW
Tide: around 4.4' high
Wind: Very light
Air/Water Temp: 43/52 degrees
Wildlife: One shy seal

It was cooold when D and I got to Capitola for dawn patrol. Since it was high tide, which would make it tricky to get out of the water at PP or the other cliffside spots, we headed out there even though it looked small and mushy from the beach. Fortunately D had dusted the spiderwebs from his LB, 'cause his SB would not have worked at all. And it was bigger than it looked, about 3-4', with only 2 other people out. So nice not to be crowded! We caught a lot of waves, with some good long rides. An excellent way to start the day, watching the sunrise from atop a surfboard.

08 April 2007

38th Ave, 8 Apr 2007

Swell direction: WNW
Tide: 0.25' low and rising
Wind: Light with bursts of breezy
Air/Water Temp: 55/53 degrees

Lately it's been blown out north and mostly flat south, so today was my first surf in two loooong weeks. I found a perfect parking spot for my ding-free MINI Cooper in the 41st lot and walked west a little. It was a beautiful sunny day and the waves were 2-4', so as the guy who parked next to me said, "everybody and their dog" was out. All fighting for inconsistent and mostly mushy waves. Still, it was a beautiful sunny day, and I was surfing, so all was right with the world, at least for a little while. From the leftovers, I pulled 3 short but decent rides, and one dammit-I-popped-up-with-my-feet-too-close-together. I want to go again!

Check out this tree clinging to a beach cliff near the Hook. I would not want to live in that house.