Author Topic: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!  (Read 7507 times)

SouthCounty

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First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« on: July 28, 2019, 06:51:04 PM »
 After several months of practicing in the harbor and doing pretty well on buoy turns, and feeling comfortable on my 14x27 blackfish I decided to go out to the first buoy today (I think its the red one)  as I struggled to keep my balance I became very disappointed, had to drop to my knees to keep my balance ;(   As I was paddling, I did notice that there was a swell along with boat traffic  and I was paddling sideways against it? Not sure that was the problem. The kicker was my wife was on her 12six x 27 blackfish and she was doing awesome (WTF)  she was on the upside of me if that make any sense, meaning I was on the inside towards the shore. Anyhow the whole experience left a sour taste for me in open ocean. Now the wifes all cocky and shit ;) Maybe Talldude will help me ;)
« Last Edit: July 28, 2019, 06:54:01 PM by SouthCounty »
14' x 27" Infinity blackfish
10'4 Infinity wide aquatic

TallDude

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #1 on: July 28, 2019, 10:03:31 PM »
Your first experience SUP in open ocean was very similar to mine a long time ago. That first red buoy is the goal. Your only a few 100 yards outside the harbor, but you feel how big the ocean is for sure. You hit the deep ocean swell and you experience something you don't get in lakes and protected harbors, elevator up and down. Sometimes it's only 3' or so, but other times you drop down in a trough and the horizon disappears. Combine that with moving in all directions as you go up and down and having to contend with wind chop, boat wakes, jetty refraction bump makes it very unnerving your first few times. Trust me, you'll get used to it.
First thing to understand is the harbor mouth area is the worst of it. The further you get out of the harbor away from all the boats large and small (really bad on the weekends) the smoother it gets. Once you get a couple thousand yards away from the jetty it usually smooths out. So your goal is not the red buoy, it's smoother water further out. Next thing to think about is the wind direction. My paddles generally are dictated by which way the wind is blowing. I want to paddle into it, and hopefully get a little downwinding on the way back. It doesn't always work out that way because the wind direction WILL CHANGE. The longer you're out, the more likely it is to change. Not much you can do but do your best to predict the change based on what it recent pattern has been and looking at weather/ wind direction reports. Our typical pattern is calm in the morning then building winds from the North West by 11 am. If the winds are blowing from the South in the morning, just stay in the harbor. The South wind causes a 'sea sick' mess that I would struggle in and wonder why the hell I was even out there?
Hang in there Dude.
PM me and I'll do an ocean paddle with you. Sometimes it helps to have someone get you into the groove ;)   

Area 10

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #2 on: July 29, 2019, 06:53:43 AM »
TallDude has it covered. Plus, women very often have better balance than men. Their centre of gravity tends to be lower down, which helps enormously, and they may have more sensitive proprioception. Plus, if you wife is lighter and shorter than you, 27Ē wide for her may be much more stable than 27Ē wide is for you.

So, put your big boy pants on because she might be kicking your ass in messy conditions for quite some time.

Or find an excuse to buy her a really superb new board.. that is 24Ē wide :)

hbsteve

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #3 on: July 29, 2019, 07:55:52 AM »
Sometimes a direct line isnít the easiest.  Head out a little, so you arenít taking the swell directly on the rail.  A small change in course can make a difference.

SouthCounty

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #4 on: July 29, 2019, 04:55:12 PM »
Your first experience SUP in open ocean was very similar to mine a long time ago. That first red buoy is the goal. Your only a few 100 yards outside the harbor, but you feel how big the ocean is for sure. You hit the deep ocean swell and you experience something you don't get in lakes and protected harbors, elevator up and down. Sometimes it's only 3' or so, but other times you drop down in a trough and the horizon disappears. Combine that with moving in all directions as you go up and down and having to contend with wind chop, boat wakes, jetty refraction bump makes it very unnerving your first few times. Trust me, you'll get used to it.
First thing to understand is the harbor mouth area is the worst of it. The further you get out of the harbor away from all the boats large and small (really bad on the weekends) the smoother it gets. Once you get a couple thousand yards away from the jetty it usually smooths out. So your goal is not the red buoy, it's smoother water further out. Next thing to think about is the wind direction. My paddles generally are dictated by which way the wind is blowing. I want to paddle into it, and hopefully get a little downwinding on the way back. It doesn't always work out that way because the wind direction WILL CHANGE. The longer you're out, the more likely it is to change. Not much you can do but do your best to predict the change based on what it recent pattern has been and looking at weather/ wind direction reports. Our typical pattern is calm in the morning then building winds from the North West by 11 am. If the winds are blowing from the South in the morning, just stay in the harbor. The South wind causes a 'sea sick' mess that I would struggle in and wonder why the hell I was even out there?
Hang in there Dude.
PM me and I'll do an ocean paddle with you. Sometimes it helps to have someone get you into the groove ;)



Thanks TallDudue i will definitely be taking you up on that. Gotta admit it was nothing like I thought it would be, very intimidating. Guess I still have lots to learn.

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SouthCounty

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #5 on: July 29, 2019, 04:59:31 PM »
Sometimes a direct line isnít the easiest.  Head out a little, so you arenít taking the swell directly on the rail.  A small change in course can make a difference.

Good tip and thats exactly how I was taking it right on my rail. Like TallDude said, The first buoy is about 100 yards from the mouth of the harbor, then you look back at shore and it seems  another 200 yards out, Lots of ocean which gets a lil scary fast, really didn't want to fall in.  :o
14' x 27" Infinity blackfish
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surfcowboy

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #6 on: July 29, 2019, 08:43:15 PM »
Man, I remember going 100 ft and it whipping my butt. Stay with it.

Only 31.99 miles til you can do the M2O race. ;)

mik911

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #7 on: July 29, 2019, 09:17:19 PM »
My thoughts: There's no shame in going wider. 
A wider board, or a cruising/surfing shape would be much more stable than a 14x27 race board. (you're not racing anyone anyway)
Perhaps just to get the feel of the chop, etc.  Once you feel comfortable, you can always move down in width, or a racier shape.
I'd rather have fun NOW, not suffer/fall/curse for a season.
I have multiple boards for what the conditions call for.  Not going to flail on my 14x28 Bark in heavy chop/swell, when I can go to my 12'6"x30 Fanatic, or even my 12'6" x 30 Cruiser planing hull, and have a good time.

Have FUN!
Mike

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SanoSlatchSup

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #8 on: July 30, 2019, 06:23:00 AM »
What TD and hbsteve said, and ...
PM me and I'll do an ocean paddle with you. Sometimes it helps to have someone get you into the groove ;)
TD, text me if/when you guys decide to head out, and I'll dust off the ol' Lahui Kai and see if I can join y'all.

Been a long while since I've been out, but was thinking about it the other day...but never really enjoyed the paddle alone, so it'd be great to get together what youze guyz for a buoy run...and I can keep SouthCounty company while we watch you paddle off away from us. ;) :D
« Last Edit: July 30, 2019, 06:25:30 AM by SanoSlatchSup »
Me: 6'1"/200...6'0" Chelu Foil Boards...9'6" Bob Pearson "Laird Noserider"...9'6" Costa Azul Wide Body...14' Lahui Kai "Manta"...8'0" WaveStorm for when proning urges still hit, and 7'3" Chuck Glynn foil board backup.

PonoBill

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Re: First time out in open ocean Dana Point red buoy , I suck!
« Reply #9 on: July 30, 2019, 08:26:42 AM »
The Blackfish is a fast board, but not exactly stable. Mine was 25" and I struggled on it more than once. I'm thinning the herd and was going to sell it but my daughter snatched it up first.

You need to get your sea legs, and doing that while you're constantly falling isn't the best recipe. Borrow or rent a more stable board. SIC 14' Bullets or F14s, even skinny ones, are a lot more stable than a Blackfish IMO. Once you've done some open ocean paddling and are comfortable you can return to the Blackfish, gain some confidence in it, and in short order you'll wonder what all the fuss was about.

I see people downwinding all the time that are falling off their boards because they lack confidence. They aren't really falling, they're bailing out. They get unstable, maybe get the board up on the rail a little, and they hop off. If you're not recovering from most of the unstable situations then it means you aren't confident that you and the board will recover. Bend your knees, relax, paddle hard, and don't just let yourself fall when things go bad. Try to recover until the last microsecond when you just slide off the board.
« Last Edit: July 30, 2019, 08:30:05 AM by PonoBill »
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.