Author Topic: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging  (Read 2967 times)

Beasho

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Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« on: March 23, 2021, 06:38:51 AM »
I returned to my roots last weekend.  24 years ago I spent the summer working in San Francisco and windsurfing both days every weekend.  I never realized there would be a place that I could both work and play at the same 'time.'  I had been working, and trying to windsurf, in New York, Philly and Boston.  The next year I moved to San Francisco.

In San Francisco there is wind every day in Summer.  Summer can extend from the middle of February to October.  There is a little patch of grass between Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz with access to open ocean swell.  I had been taking my medicine, learning to fly, and decided it was time to take the wing ding in the open ocean vs. protected harbor, bay or sound body of water. 

OMG my eyes are wide open!

I can NOT reliably jibe, I am only 30 sessions into the sport BUT, BUT, BUT I could see all the potential. 

The wind was FULLY 5.0.  Between powered and WAY overpowered.  The ocean was up to 10 foot worth of swell and I went from being terrified to jibe to learning, by the end of the session, to treat the jibe like getting towed into a swell on a foil board . . .  and it worked!!!!

Mind blown.  A whole new sport.  A renaissance of windsurfing.  Stoked like a little kid. 
« Last Edit: March 23, 2021, 06:54:32 AM by Beasho »

Beasho

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #1 on: March 23, 2021, 06:39:11 AM »
Better than good!

I was setting new world records riding downwind, using the crack-head stance, and NOT switching my feet.  2.4 miles unfettered without falling.

IF I can learn to point up wind like a true crack-head then I might be able to sail forever!

I am goofy foot, started at the top Bullet ended at the bottom.  Then had to switch my feet, and use my harness to scoot back upwind and start over.

PS: I do have to THANK MANY on this forum for getting me to this point.  Starting with DW - He basically ordered me to buy my Duotone Echo 5.0 and use a harness.  The harness helps (ed) to focus on flying the wing rather than managing the sail.  As Pono says you can kick back and eat a sandwich when flying in the harness. 
« Last Edit: March 23, 2021, 07:04:15 AM by Beasho »

juandesooka

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #2 on: March 23, 2021, 10:41:05 AM »
Awesome.  Winging gets a fair amount of scorn, coming from kiting world.  Slower, less efficient use of wind, etc.  And for the most part they are right.  Flat water winging...meh...something to do, but not WOW. 

The WOW is in using the wing as an add-on on to surf foiling ... it is basically a personal tow-in, endless swell riding with no more paddling.  I am amazed at how you can catch unformed swells, luff the wing and just ride and ride.  Recently switching to higher aspect foil wings has been a game changer.

Stoked.

The next level will be to learn smaller boards, to better emulate the surf foil feel -- as adding in effective pumping will open up a world of possibilities.  However my initial experiments are mixed.  It is easy enough to get up and ride a smaller board (knee startable) but it comes at a cost, especially for lower end of wind range.  So far, the costs haven't outweighed benefits, but it remains a hope and plan.

bigmtn

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #3 on: March 23, 2021, 01:18:21 PM »
Yup! Wait till you start riding waves. This was last night's session. There were 5 of us out, all hooting and hollering. Its like having your own private jetski that tows you right back out and into the next wave. 2 hrs, 26 miles. Didn't switch feet once. Strong side going out, then turn tweaked into a wave and surf it down, repeat. Wave after wave after wave!

Hdip

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #4 on: March 23, 2021, 02:20:02 PM »
Bigmtnbill got a new crayon color I see. Your drawing skills haven't improved though.

Califoilia

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #5 on: March 23, 2021, 02:51:47 PM »
Man, you guys make it sound like so much fun! Now if I can only figure how to it without all the pesky miserable wind. ;) ;D
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bigmtn

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #6 on: March 23, 2021, 02:55:23 PM »
Man, you guys make it sound like so much fun! Now if I can only figure how to it without all the pesky miserable wind. ;) ;D

Ha! Wind was basically offshore, what's not to like about that??

Thatspec

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #7 on: March 23, 2021, 06:18:53 PM »
There is a little patch of grass between Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz with access to open ocean swell.


 ;D Well that narrows it down to 40+ miles, nothing that isn't big, cold, and sharky. Used to do the downwinder from Gazos to Waddell regularly until I got a ride back upwind from the Aņo Nuevo ranger one day. He said they had done research and any 'thing' down in the water will be 'tested' by a shark within 15 minutes.

Enjoy... and keep moving

Beasho

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #8 on: March 23, 2021, 06:36:57 PM »

 ;D Well that narrows it down to 40+ miles, nothing that isn't big, cold, and sharky. Used to do the downwinder from Gazos to Waddell regularly until I got a ride back upwind from the Aņo Nuevo ranger one day. He said they had done research and any 'thing' down in the water will be 'tested' by a shark within 15 minutes.

Enjoy... and keep moving

Ano Nuevo is surrounded by a 5 mile Red Ring of Death.  That takes out 10 miles.  But then again that ring INCLUDES Gazos and Waddell. 

At one time we were going to tow a fake seal off Ano and then see how long it took to replicate the breaching Great White action from South Africa.  Yes - It would probably take less than 15 minutes. 

PS: I am trying to NOT out the spot but there is only one nice patch of grass where you can rig a windsurfer and have a manageable ocean experience between Half Moon Bay and Santa Cruz. 

PSS: If you haven't seen Ano Nuevo this is what it looks like on Valentines day.  The big bulls weigh 5,000 lbs and are 18 feet long, not pictured, and fight over this harem of little pretty ladies.  That abandoned house is on an island and it would be the stuff of nightmares to cross the channel in the foreground.   
« Last Edit: March 23, 2021, 06:47:56 PM by Beasho »

PonoBill

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #9 on: March 23, 2021, 08:36:07 PM »
Yup, there are a few great whites in that area. I did a few dives there and the great whites weren't a problem, but the elephant seals sure are. Aggressive MFers, and as loopy and slow as they seem on the shore, they are fast, fast, fast in the water. You damned sure don't want to have fish on a stringer there, unless you'd like to try an underwater Nantucket Sleigh Ride. The sharks are after the pups. The bulls can take care of themselves. They take chunks out of the shark's tail and bite the anus out of them. That's got to be a tough way to go.
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.

ninja tuna

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #10 on: August 01, 2021, 08:36:58 PM »
OK, I came here to reply to Beasho with this thread and got sucked in to Pono's world  looking at elephant seals.  I remember a photo from a magazine like Life or National Geographic with  a photographer with his camera on a tripod facing an elephant seal.  If I remember correctly, the camera was about head high and the elephant seal only had his head up and was at eye level with the camera. Cannot find it. But I found some other pics.





Now for the real reason of digging up this post.

For now I am near the southern tip of Lake Michigan and was able to get a day off of work and have the weather actually cooperate. I was riding on the lee side of one of the inlet piers.  Going out, jybe come in, rinse and repeat.  A little swell was wrapping around the end of the pier.  I kept trying to time my jybe with the waves.   Seemed like I was screwing up the hand switch focusing too much on that and not surfing the board.  I was also getting tired too.  Towards one of my last laps, a larger than normal swell ( a little over waist high) made it through and gods made the timing happen.  I was not near where I wanted to turn around, but I was going for this.  I made the turn on the board and switch with my hands and could feel the board was in the wave.  Excitement!  Except now how was I going to get the leash off my back of neck. Yes , the wing made it around but the leash did not.  Tried a couple of head bobbles to release it, but that ended in a face plant breach.  But I had the biggest grin. This is why I have been chasing this and now that I have felt the it, I know what I need to work on more to make it happen. That couple of seconds has lit a fire more now.

juandesooka

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Re: Eyes Wide Open Ocean Winging
« Reply #11 on: August 02, 2021, 02:55:08 PM »
Sharks no bueno! No sharks up here off Van Island...but I did wing with a pod of orcas the other night.
Anyways, winging lately has opened up new spots we've been watching for years but unable to kite. This downwinger yesterday was about 1.5 hour and 30km covered.  One series of swell rides 3 minutes long.  So stoked. I was winging with a buddy who was falling in a bit, so I kept looping back upwind....probably good, extended it, otherwise I bet it would be done in half the time. 

 


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