Author Topic: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions  (Read 1405 times)

stoneaxe

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #15 on: March 16, 2017, 10:19:55 PM »
I've had some terrible days downwinding....addapost was there for the very worst...:). My best experiences have been relatively short in near shore conditions. You say you want a workout....15-20 kn onshore on shallow flat beach....paddle out a 1/2 mile or so against the wind and chop...repeat until you can't. Only a 1/2 mile but the glides and some actual surfing if there are bars or shoals (my local is perfect for this) are immediate once you turn. I can guarantee you won't find a tougher workout on the water. i've had days where I had to wait 20 mins before I could lift my board. You could go with a shorter board for that too...at 170 lbs and in good shape a surfy 12-6 would probably do it,
« Last Edit: March 16, 2017, 10:23:20 PM by stoneaxe »
Bob

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APPST_Paddle

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #16 on: March 17, 2017, 06:09:25 AM »
^ good idea!

Foil kite on low wind days and downwind Sup when it's honking.

Best of both worlds.

Ha, I was actually thinking SUP foil on low wind days, kite when it's honking. There's something about foils with a kite I don't like, if you breakdown, you have to try and drag that whole contraption back in.
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APPST_Paddle

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #17 on: March 17, 2017, 06:11:40 AM »
I've had some terrible days downwinding....addapost was there for the very worst...:). My best experiences have been relatively short in near shore conditions. You say you want a workout....15-20 kn onshore on shallow flat beach....paddle out a 1/2 mile or so against the wind and chop...repeat until you can't. Only a 1/2 mile but the glides and some actual surfing if there are bars or shoals (my local is perfect for this) are immediate once you turn. I can guarantee you won't find a tougher workout on the water. i've had days where I had to wait 20 mins before I could lift my board. You could go with a shorter board for that too...at 170 lbs and in good shape a surfy 12-6 would probably do it,

Ha, I do some upwind paddles behind my house - 15 to 20 knots sounds hellish. I'm fighting the tidal current and like 8-10 knots generally for a mile or so, and that's enough. I think I'm going to hold out for SUP foil.
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stoneaxe

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #18 on: March 17, 2017, 06:32:11 AM »
Foil sounds good too...on my list as well.

Not sure if it would be the same for all but for me it almost seems like it gets easier...at least mentally...when the wind gets cranking. When I get my paddle frequency matching the frequency of the chop I find I lose track of time. I'll get some heavy metal or other hard core pumping song into my head and match the tempo. I have to focus so hard on reading the water and fighting that I'll sometime suddenly find myself further out than I intended. 1/2 hour of hard head down paddling for only 5 minutes (at best) of downwind but an amazing workout. Of course that's not about having fun downwinding but I attribute that workout more than anything else to the physical and vestibular benefits I've seen from SUP.....but that's a different subject.
« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 06:37:30 AM by stoneaxe »
Bob

8-4 Vec, 9-0 SouthCounty, 9-8 Starboard, 10-4 Foote Triton, 10-6 C4, 12-6 Starboard, 14-0 Vec (babysitting the 18-0 Speedboard) Ke Nalu Molokai, Ke Nalu Maliko, Ke Nalu Wiki Ke Nalu Konihi

yugi

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #19 on: March 17, 2017, 07:35:45 AM »
SUP foil not going to make you faster upwind, mate.


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Bean

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #20 on: March 17, 2017, 07:41:50 AM »
One of the issues we have at the Jersey shore is the inshore water is pretty shallow (20-30').  So on a south swell with a south wind, the inshore swell is refracted toward the shore and we end up crossed up, our S swell becomes ESE.  The only antidote is to go out further, into deeper water.  About 1 mile gets us into 60 feet, but also into major boat traffic (in the summer).
« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 07:44:28 AM by Bean »

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #21 on: March 17, 2017, 07:53:19 AM »
I'm in Charleston, SC - pretty tame in terms of wind/large open ocean swells, etc.

Lake Marion and Lake Moultrie look like good downwind spots.


Looks good but what about gators?


Probably no worse than sharks in the ocean.



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PonoBill

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #22 on: March 17, 2017, 08:24:49 AM »
I like either a 12' surfboard or an unlimited for downwind. I'm not a fan of 14's. For big guys (235) they don't do enough to justify the expense or clumsiness in the water, and the racing designs are for jockeys--180# and less. Even the more touring-oriented models distribute buoyancy for light people. Big guys wind up standing on the edge of the pad. At 170 you'll fit that category just fine, but you'll also do well on a flatish rocker, straight rail surfboard with the thrusters taken off. I enjoy how the little boards feel on a big downwinder, and if you've got some head-sized swells (as we often do) then they surf instead of just bump ride.

You don't need a special board to downwind--just do it. The rack full of special boards comes after you're hooked.
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CLTSUP

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #23 on: March 17, 2017, 09:03:28 AM »
I'm in Charleston, SC - pretty tame in terms of wind/large open ocean swells, etc.

I may pick a few spring days/mornings when the wind is in the low teens to try it instead of mowing the grass kiting, or I'll just wait until foils become reasonably priced and go that route.

Thanks for all the replies.

I've made the run from Sullivan's Island , across Breach Inlet (where everyone kites) and in on IOP around 41 st , before Wild Dunes. There is a group who paddle that route fairly regularly on a SW wind I believe. It was fun and very challenging that day due to a more S wind which is more onshore and one side paddling than a true SW. I'd do it again as the swell through Breach was fun as hell. One sided paddling that distance , was a bit of a bummer. 

That's all I got , good luck.
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APPST_Paddle

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #24 on: March 17, 2017, 01:08:35 PM »
SUP foil not going to make you faster upwind, mate.


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Yeah, I don't care about going upwind, I'm just saying I want to try it.
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APPST_Paddle

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #25 on: March 17, 2017, 01:09:56 PM »
I'm in Charleston, SC - pretty tame in terms of wind/large open ocean swells, etc.

I may pick a few spring days/mornings when the wind is in the low teens to try it instead of mowing the grass kiting, or I'll just wait until foils become reasonably priced and go that route.

Thanks for all the replies.

I've made the run from Sullivan's Island , across Breach Inlet (where everyone kites) and in on IOP around 41 st , before Wild Dunes. There is a group who paddle that route fairly regularly on a SW wind I believe. It was fun and very challenging that day due to a more S wind which is more onshore and one side paddling than a true SW. I'd do it again as the swell through Breach was fun as hell. One sided paddling that distance , was a bit of a bummer. 

That's all I got , good luck.

Yeah, I think I know who you are talking about, may try it more this summer.
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nalu-sup

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #26 on: March 17, 2017, 04:52:29 PM »
Some input from another newbie with a somewhat similar background. SUS is how I try to spend most mornings before the wind picks up on Maui, and then windsurfing just about every summer day there for the past 30 years. Downwinding had not interested me until I decided to try it last summer. The first couple of times on 14's were okay, but the third time out I got on a SIC 16' unlimited, and instantly I was hooked. It was like catching waves non-stop for over an hour, with long rides. The non-stop action and the mental challenge of catching and connecting the bumps is addictive. Yeah, its not top to bottom surfing on a shortboard, but it is still a rush. At least for me at this point, it is not worth going out unless it is blowing 20 to 30. Yes, you could paddle downwind in less wind, but to get good bumps and good glides that make it fun and exciting, 20 to 30 is where its at for me. At least for me, it does not create much of a conflict with windsurfing. Unless the surf is way up for performance wavesailing, I am very happy these days with a nice two or three hour sailing session. Doing a downwinder either before or after that seems like a perfect mid-day switch on a windy afternoon.
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PonoBill

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #27 on: March 17, 2017, 07:02:50 PM »
The easiest way to try downwinding is to go someplace where it is well supported, with gear, lots of people doing it, and a shuttle. Currently that's Hood River and Maui. Maui has the best runs, Hood River has the best support and the greatest consistency.  It's a challenge to do two runs in a day on Maui, in Hood River I occasionally do three, often do two, and almost every day do at least one.

On Maui you can rent a board, but the selection will be limited, and you need a guide for your first run. For sure if it's a Maliko run and probably even for Southside so you know where to come in.

Hood river, you have your choice from a huge assortment of boards, you can take a guided trip, or just go. It's a river. You'll get there. But you can also take lessons from some of the world's best.

Either way, it's the easiest way to see if it's for you. Only problem is that if you get REALLY hooked, they are both pretty expensive places to live.
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Off-Shore

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #28 on: March 17, 2017, 07:07:21 PM »
Being an ex-windsurfer I echo what Nalu-SUP says. There is something very enticing about only having a board and a paddle and particularly in 20-30mph winds catching not only wind-blown swell but also open ocean swells / ground swells. It is a total rush, and will get your heart rate up above 160bpm (unless you are Pono) for extended periods of time. There is something magical about being out in really rough seas and just dancing along. I also am of the opinion that going out in lesser winds (downbreezing for instance) is an awesome workout and if you really want to push it, doing loops upwind and downwind in those conditions will build balance, speed and endurance in a low impact way. Better than any workout I do in a gym and way much more fun.

I do also SUS, but we don't get many waves here and I am sure that if I lived closer to a break I would be doing that anytime it did not blow hard enough to downwind or downbreeze. For me flatwater paddling is only to keep fit for downwinding.. And if downwinding did not exist, I think the lure of SUP would not be so strong for me.

On boards I would look for something good 2nd hand that works in downwind and regular training / flat water. The two I have are the Starboard Ace 14 x 27" and the SIC Bullet 14TWCv1. If I could only have one board it would probably be the Ace as it is better all round and upwind, but failing that it would be a SIC Bullet 14v2 or a Blue Planet Bump Rider 14 x 27".

Pono's suggestion to get to Hood River and try before you buy is a great idea. Within 3-4 days you will improve dramatically and be able to tell which boards you like and which you don't
« Last Edit: March 17, 2017, 07:15:00 PM by Off-Shore »
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stoneaxe

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Re: Thinking about getting into Downwinding - Questions
« Reply #29 on: March 18, 2017, 07:14:24 AM »
I need to get out to the Hood so I can do a bunch of runs in a week or two. I do real downwind runs so infrequently that I never get better. Downwind is by far the toughest discipline for me. I'm fine when I can see what to expect but the constant bumping from the rear/quarter keeps me so unstable I have a hard time moving around and trimming which is really critical. I always feel like a newbie.
Bob

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