04 August 2011

Dolphins! (Hook/38th)

There were already half a dozen surfers out at the Hook in the dim light of pre-dawn and only a few at 38th. After I suited up, I watched a sweet set roll through the Hook. I paddled out there and took up station near where I surfed with Barry last week, away from the tight pack on the main peak. Returning to the lineup after a short ride, a pair of dolphins crossed my path, surfacing sinuously to exhale before sliding underneath the glassy sea, travelling east. It's been quite a long time since I've been in the water near free dolphins and it made my day. If you look closely just left of center at 5 seconds into this video, you'll see one moving away:
I think it's true that I have more fun surfing when my expectations are low. Then I'm not disappointed if conditions aren't good, and can be pleasantly surprised if the waves turn out to be fun. This morning unfortunately I had in mind another really good Santa Cruz session like last Thursday's, but the reality didn't measure up. Objectively, I have nothing to complain about; I got a few nice rides and some other middling ones. It was a decent surf, but felt disappointing because I went in anticipating more. Conversely, I was expecting Sunday's Half Moon Bay session to be kind of crappy like a week earlier, but had fun because it wasn't as bad. I need to do a better job of managing my expectations.
I was also disappointed in my performance this morning. Early on I blew the drops on a couple of nice shoulder-high waves. I redeemed myself on another, but those missed waves were gone forever and the break was clotting up with even more surfers, making for scarce new opportunities.

After more than half an hour, I paddled away from the growing crowd and over toward 38th, where a woman on a cheap Costco WaveStorm was surfing in only a bikini. Crazy. Under overcast skies, with air and water temperatures both below 60F (15C) and a hint of breeze, I was a bit chilly in my 4/3 wetsuit with 1.5mm gloves and 3mm booties, but she had more, shall we say, natural insulation than me.
The lulls were interminable, and I had trouble finding a good place to be when the waves did come through. Too far inside, I snagged a couple from the whitewater, including a left, but couldn't make it over to the shoulder. A few minutes before I needed to start looking for my last wave, I started from the proper place and rode a nice long right, though a section closed out in front of me and left me riding whitewater. It turned out that was my last wave. After waiting 15 more minutes for something, anything, to ride in, I had to paddle to shore so I wouldn't be too late for work.

More south swells are coming. I'll hope for good waves but won't expect them, and just have fun!

Surfline: Inconsistent SW (200-220) groundswell builds further and peaks today as minimal NW windswell mixes in. Most breaks remain fairly small scale this morning as top Southern Hemi exposures pull in some waist-chest high+ waves. The tide bottoms out just after 8am, so expect a lot of spots to be a little drained through the first half of the morning. Light winds keep conditions nice and clean early on. Buoy 46012: (Wave) SWELL: 3.3 ft at 14.8 s S 62 / WIND WAVE: 4.3 ft at 6.7 s NW / WVHT: 5.6 ft / APD: 5.5 s / MWD: 317° (Met) WSPD: 12 kts / GST: 14 kts / WVHT: 5.6 ft / DPD: 7.0 s / WDIR: 310° / ATMP: 56.8° F / WTMP: 57.6° F. Tide: 2' falling to 1.'

1 comment:

  1. Ah good old expectation. It takes a few years of life to learn about that one!