25 October 2012

Almost Nothing Fits (Linda Mar)

I'm on the small end of women's sizes, so I hate to shop for clothes. Sometimes I'll bring an armload of possibilities into a changing room only to find that nothing fits, and leave the store frustrated. That's kind of how I felt at Linda Mar this morning.
Rainbow over Pacifica on the drive in
When I arrived, a dripping dude was just placing his longboard on top of the car next to me. I asked "How was it?" and he said, "Pretty fun earlier, but it's a little windy now." Oh, yeah, the usual "You should've been here earlier!"
First I tried toward the north end, where I spied some lefts rolling through. Alas, that breeze was blowing straight at me as I tried to take off, catching the wide nose of the fish and stalling the board while the waves passed me by. (Based on the report from Surflie - "n" omitted intentionally - the fish had seemed the best choice, but I should've put Rocket in the car too as I surely would've swapped boards, especially as the waves got steeper on the falling tide.) I must confess I'm still mystified as to why, as a surfer, I'm supposed to love offshores. I know the theory, that the help to hold the wave shape. Yet so many times they inhibit rather than enhance my surfing experience; they're such a rare occurrence around here that I haven't figured out the trick to taking off against the wind.

After missing a batch of green waves while settling for some whitewater rides, and having to back off more for the more-skilled competition on the peak, I stopped fighting the wind and looked for a right. The wind quieted slightly as I paddled, and I made the wave for a short ride on the section. Small victory!
Since the north end wasn't giving me much joy, I hit the beach and walked south a ways. But that wasn't a good fit either. Boatdocks on the far south was next to flat, and in between was mostly closing out as the tide dropped, so I took up station north of Taco Bell. Then it seemed an eternity before I caught another right.
Arrgh, methinks the north end was better. This time I walked the beach father, closer to the rocky cliff that bookended the strip of sand, before re-entering the water a small distance from a tight pack of a dozen surfers guarding the northernmost peak. The inconsistent set waves were bigger here, up to head-high, and I found myself dealing with a little fear that kept me from making the final commitment to push over the edge as the lip crumbled. On the next one, you Go For It! I told myself. I resolved to throw over that lip next time no matter what, and I did, getting to my feet before wiping out. A long lull later, I found a right that let me drop in and took me halfway to the beach. I watched a surf coach video on laybacks yesterday and surprised myself by making a part of that move (which is beyond my abilities), crouched low and leaning back over the turbulence, sure I would fall, yet somehow pulling myself over the board to upright. Whitewater belly rides got me the rest of the way to the sand, a little frustrated that nothing much seemed to fit but glad of my few short rides and incremental steps on the path to being a better surfer.

Surfline: 2-3 ft occ. 4 ft, fair conditions. Really clean, but fairly small and the big high tide seems to be swamping out the small swell at the moment. Very rideable, but overall surf quality is pretty average. Overcast, drizzly skies with light offshore wind. NW wind/groundswell mix is fading today, but is still our primary source of surf, with well secondary SW Southern Hemi swell (210-220) slowly building. Many breaks are seeing waves in the 2-4' range, with sets running a little larger at standouts. Buoy 46026: (Wave) SWELL: 3.0 ft at 9.1 s WNW 93 / WIND WAVE: 2.3 ft at 3.3 s E / WVHT: 3.6 ft / APD: 5.2 s / MWD: 297° (Met) WSPD: 12 kn / GST: 16 kn / WVHT: 3.6 ft / DPD: 9.0 s / ATMP: 55° F / WTMP: 56° F. Tide: 4.5' falling to 2'.
Shark at the south end of Linda Mar

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