Author Topic: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP  (Read 2324 times)

RideTheGlide

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Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« on: December 13, 2018, 04:14:09 PM »
Next spring through fall, I will be doing some offshore fishing 1-3 miles out and some nearshore touring. In some cases when touring I may have a stretch of a few miles where landing will be difficult if waves kick up. For those who know NC, one place in particular is AB to CLO paddling in front of Shackleford banks, which is very popular with shell collectors because of the pounding shore breaks it gets when the waves kick up. So I could get caught in a pop up squall and have some distance left to cover before I can get to land. I got a board that is supposed to be able to handle it (within reason), a 2016 Naish Glide 14x30. Naish says:

The Glide 14’0” X30 GTW is the ideal choice for riders who want exceptional stability for touring, enjoying downwind ocean runs, recreational racing and fitness training. Its newly developed rocker and bottom shape easily adapt to flatwater conditions while the tail rocker still allows for outstanding open ocean performance. It features a penetrating V nose and a flat rocker for phenomenal gliding performance and has ample thickness and width for stability and early planing on the open ocean in any conditions.

No, I don't take the part at the end - "in any condition" - literally, but I think the board is capable of dealing with a hell of a lot more than I am (yet). I am really looking forward to gliding phenomenally. I would think that most of the time I will either be going with them or sideways to them though in some rare circumstances I might be trying to go into them. By them I mean big swell/rollers, possibly breaking on top, probably wind driven. Any tips and/or links to videos/blogs/articles would be appreciated.
« Last Edit: December 13, 2018, 04:19:26 PM by RideTheGlide »
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

addapost

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #1 on: December 13, 2018, 04:47:05 PM »
In those conditions your problem isn't going to be the swell, it's going to be the wind. You basically have one choice- you will be paddling with it at your back. Plan launch and landings (primary and emergency) accordingly.
Bunch of old shit

RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #2 on: December 13, 2018, 05:06:56 PM »
So I need to learn to DW, but also to know when the waves are too big/rough for that and what to do then. Looking forward to learning to DW and it is easy to find info on that.
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

PonoBill

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #3 on: December 13, 2018, 08:39:00 PM »
The hardest thing to learn, I think, is that when conditions get tough you have to charge into them. Timidity is what screws you up. Today's downwinder was a good example. Strong winds--30 to 40 mph and very crossed up with big swells and little stuff coming from every direction. the wind was generally a bit offshore, but the gusts (some probably up to 50mph) were strongly offshore. If you're standing in 30 mph wind and resultant swell just trying to stay upright, being tentative and going slow, you'll be hit by 30 mph wind and 15 mph waves--full force. If you paddle hard for every wave and maximize your speed, ignoring the conditions, you minimize the effect they have on you. If you're going 15 mph and a 30 mph wind hits you, it's a 15 mph wind. If a 15 mph wave hits you it's going the same speed you are.

You need practice and water time. Your board will handle that. Now you just need to learn to let it do all it can.
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RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #4 on: December 14, 2018, 06:29:24 AM »
I ran a lot of whitewater when I was younger. A lot younger; I was a professional raft guide and kayaked the Grand Canyon in the 80s. Powering through holes was a lot like that; if you commit to a line that takes you through a hole then accelerate as much as you can down the tongue and don't slow up until you are through it. I made a similar choice in water craft back then; I paddled a Prijon T Slalom, which was known as one of the more stable whitewater kayaks. But it was actively stable, not passively. If you drifted into a hole without a blade in the water pulling hard when you hit the wall you were done for. I am not quite as fearless as I was in my late 20s. That's not true - I am not nearly as fearless. I guess I need to get out there a few times and learn to fear what's behind me more than what's in front of me.

If the swell gets really big, do you always keep paddling with it? I know it probably won't really be as big as I will think it is, but i will still think it is. Do you start quartering instead of going down the face if the waves get steeper?
« Last Edit: December 14, 2018, 06:31:38 AM by RideTheGlide »
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

PonoBill

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #5 on: December 14, 2018, 11:29:46 AM »
Quartering is fine, but realize that it will make your speed even higher. That's how we go fast on a downwinder.

The other big tip is to keep your feet closer together than you are comfortable with--and get used to that in flatwater and chop. If your feet are braced wide your weight is tossed around with every bump. If your feet are close to the centerline the board can move around without tossing you. Keep your head up and look where you want to go. Back straight, bend from the knees, not the hips. All the things people do automatically--slowing down, looking down at the water, leaning forward and hanging your head out like a big pendulum, and trying to hold the board still by bracing your feet on the edge--all work against stability and successfully transiting tough conditions.
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Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #6 on: December 14, 2018, 12:37:37 PM »
I was thinking that quartering might keep from burying the nose in the trough if the wave is steep, but I am likely overthinking it and won't see anything that steep.

I am going to have to get out there and get tossed around some. If I find someone to paddle with in Fernandina Beach (FL) around New Years, I may get a chance. I may end up just paddling around with kayakers and fishing on that trip though. Then likely waiting until spring as I have some surgery/recovery coming up from mid January until some time in April before I can do something with this much exertion. I hope to about it hard and often through the summer.
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #7 on: December 14, 2018, 06:01:27 PM »
I found one downwinding video that makes me feel better about what I may run into. It's big rough water. The guy narrating was on a 30" board and was talking about the stability and glide you get on the wider planing hull. Don't get me wrong; it doesn't look easy at all. I could end up kneeling in conditions like that, but it's plenty survivable.


2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #8 on: December 14, 2018, 10:09:02 PM »
Watch what the paddlers are doing here to handle the drops, check your weather forecasts carefully, and then just get out there and start learning.



RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #9 on: December 15, 2018, 05:34:21 AM »
I will definitely watch the weather, but I have been out on boats on forecast good days and had a squall kick up. My brother is a yacht delivery skipper and I went along as mate on a trip. He took the direct route from JAX, FL to Charleston, SC. The coast curves in there, so you get pretty far out. I saw it go from sunny with smallish cop to very large rollers with limited visibility in the space of about 20 minutes. That was probably the roughest seas I have been in. It was bigger than the rough stuff in the video I link a couple of posts up.

I won't go that far out. i will fish some artificial reefs that are ~2 miles out and I hope to do this touring route for overnights a few times:

https://drive.google.com/open?id=1AZ_tgA48sF41RQe35PenUPrbfiVKN_Cc&usp=sharing

If waves kick up, Shackleford Banks gets really bad shore break. Continuing on or turning back, depending on where you are, are the best options if it gets messy. If I saw it coming and reacted quickly, Shackleford landing would be doable. then either wait it out or hike down the beach or over the hill.

I also plan to do some paddling out past the breakers just for grins and to learn technique. Probably a trip or two to one of the sounds first.
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #10 on: December 15, 2018, 05:55:34 AM »
There is nothing as good as learning to surf your 14ft board for confidence-building if you know there might be shorebreak or large swell. So, if you can, find somewhere with small waves to start off with, and learn to surf your Naish. Itís amazing what you can do on these boards if you have enough practice.




RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #11 on: December 15, 2018, 08:20:09 AM »
I will absolutely do in and out practice in small surf before I do anything else.

I did some regular/prone surfing (which I don't really do; I took a lesson and then a beating trying to do it without the instructor helping) and I have been out on my little iSUP. Both times I got stuck inside a lot. The waves weren't all that big the time I took the iSUP, but they were when I was prone surfing. I did actually do a little paddling in the rollers beyond the breakers. I also went straight down the face of a wave and pole vaulted. I tried prone surfing 4 days before Florence made landfall about 20 miles away and the waves were already building ahead of it. Years ago, I paddled out and surfed back in using a whitewater kayak (I have decades of experience in kayaks) and had no problems at all. I expected those skills to quickly make me a competent surfer. Didn't work out that way.  8)

I am still confident that with a board designed to handle paddling in rough conditions I will progress quickly. I am a strong paddler, logging over 150 miles last summer, with a few trips over 10 miles on an iSUP that has the glide profile of a tennis ball.
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #12 on: December 31, 2018, 06:38:59 PM »
I did my intro to open ocean yesterday. I paddled through breakers out into the swells and back in several times. Nothing nasty; maybe a few 5' breakers at worst. Swells were mostly gentle with only a couple of steep(ish) ones breaking (slightly) on top that I paddled through. I paddled parallel to the beach through the swells a while getting used to the idea that the big mounds of water are almost inconsequential when you are moving. These weren't giant and/or violent, which I expect would make things very different. They weren't tiny; I didn't see any small boats out and I would have hated to be in one. That was an interesting revelation; I was comfortable on the board in conditions like that.

I did try some surfing in the breakers. I picked spots carefully where there were not other boards too close by. Most of the waves were ~3'. The most common thing that happened is I wouldn't catch the wave. As an aside, this seems to be a pretty good strategy for coming in through the break zone - paddling hard on the backside of a breaking wave and getting into the whitewater zone before the next one breaks behind you.
I few I caught without being far enough back and buried the nose. The big Glide is pretty forgiving when that happens and I managed to pull it back out a couple of times and ride it the rest of the way in, but most of those went sideways (literally). A few I caught off center and rode sideways into the trough and then got rolled. But a couple of times I dropped in just right on some small ones and rode them almost straight in with a huge grin on my face. It reminds of me of when I used to play golf; I didn't go back to look for all the balls I lost on the hooks and slices; I went back because a couple of times I hit it like I planned and it went 200 yards in the direction I wanted or that one time I hit the pin from off the green...

Anyway, it was a great intro and got me past a lot of the apprehension I had. I am looking forward to my next opportunity, when ever that might be.

ETA - I was at a beach popular with SUPs and there are several others just out of frame. It wasn't as desolate as the picture might make it appear.
« Last Edit: December 31, 2018, 06:44:46 PM by RideTheGlide »
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)

PonoBill

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #13 on: January 24, 2019, 09:06:06 AM »
I found one downwinding video that makes me feel better about what I may run into. It's big rough water. The guy narrating was on a 30" board and was talking about the stability and glide you get on the wider planing hull. Don't get me wrong; it doesn't look easy at all. I could end up kneeling in conditions like that, but it's plenty survivable.



30 inches is very wide for a downwind board. My widest DW board is 28" and my balance sucks. One year I borrowed a wide 14' SIC board because the conditions for the BOP downwinder were ridiculous--I could barely stand on the 14'X24" Blackfish I intended to race. I was able to paddle and never fell while much more agile people around me were knee paddling. Don't forget that length adds stability. A 17' X28" board is as stable as a 14 X 30 in most conditions. The only time that isn't true is when the swells are coming at you and the nose is rising clear of the water.
Ponohouse is for sale: http://www.ponohouse.com
Foote 10'4X34", SIC 17.5 V1 hollow and an EPS one in Hood River. Foote 9'0" x 31", L41 8'8", 18' Speedboard, etc. etc.

RideTheGlide

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Re: Dealing with nasty rollers on a touring SUP
« Reply #14 on: January 24, 2019, 10:44:05 AM »
30 inches is very wide for a downwind board. My widest DW board is 28" and my balance sucks. One year I borrowed a wide 14' SIC board because the conditions for the BOP downwinder were ridiculous--I could barely stand on the 14'X24" Blackfish I intended to race. I was able to paddle and never fell while much more agile people around me were knee paddling. Don't forget that length adds stability. A 17' X28" board is as stable as a 14 X 30 in most conditions. The only time that isn't true is when the swells are coming at you and the nose is rising clear of the water.
DW wasn't a major factor when I was shopping. Offshore fishing, open ocean touring and ferrying people/gear were my primary concerns.  Also, I wanted new but didn't want to spend much over $1000. Th big 2016 Glides were/are heavily discounted and the Naish description makes it sound perfect plus being fast and good for DW. Had I done more research, I would have found that most people who have paddled it and the 28" think there is a bit of a drop off. I wouldn't say Naish was lying, but they were a little careless with the truth.

I have paddled it through the breakers out into swells and back a few times with enough action to be a reasonable test and I was happy with it. I have paddled with other on flat water and it holds its own as far as speed goes unless it's head to head with something that sacrifices a little stability for more speed and we are both pushing it. Naish said it was good for recreational racing, but they never said you will win...

There is a chance that I will get cockeyed to waves at little or no speed if I hook something big while fishing and then the more stability I have the better.

Despite all my justification, I am not too defensive about the choice. It probably isn't the best option. I don't think it is a terrible choice though, just not the best I could have done. I probably should have gotten over my insistence that this one be shiny and new because it was my 60th birthday present. Or maybe upped the ante. But I will RideTheGlide and enjoy fishing, touring and ferrying to deserted beaches without continuously beating myself up for not making the best choice.

EDIT - I did paddle one last summer at a demo day, when I was an even greener SUP paddler and didn't have much to compare to. Stepping off my cheap iSUP that has the glide profile of a tennis ball, it seemed like a rocket.
« Last Edit: January 24, 2019, 10:47:11 AM by RideTheGlide »
2016 Naish Glide 14x30 GTW
2017 GoPlus 9'9" x 6" iSUP (generic low end all around)