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Who wants some swell surfing lessons in the Gorge?
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 20085

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2015 11:49 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

biffmalibu wrote:
it's obviously not the Gorge ..

Until you pointed that out and I looked more closely and spotted the bridge on the horizon, I assumed it was the Gorge, because the water state looks like just another good thermal (i.e., steady) day on the river and fisheyes flatten the shoreline. Makes no matter; the techniques vary more with the venue's shape and the power available than with the local license plate colors.

However, it's not clear to me why one would need to change "Rigging for riding swell; Techniques for surfing swell (includes harness lines, feet position, footstrap usage, walking the board, sweet spot location, etc.) unless maybe they're sailing a point-to-point downwinder or racing in an organized event. Otherwise, downwind is just another point of sail, interspersed with pinching back upwind, mowing some grass, pulling off a few Stupid Pet Tricks, trying to catch the fast guys, jumps in ALL points of sail, an endless string of linked off-the-lips and bottom turns ... you know ... WINDSURFING.

Maybe if more people considered running before the wind simply another routine point of sail and a VERY useful skill rather than a "merit badge" or a unique trick ... e.g., "prowess" ... , their sailing would be greatly enhanced. A classic example I've mentioned before is in the usual fast spring runoff in the Hood River or Maryhill-Rufus corridors when the wind gets holey; sometimes the only way to stay in sight of your parked van is to sail dead upriver. It's fun, you have several miles to work with, and it beats the walk of shame or even abandoning your gear, as has been done.

IMO, it ranks just below waterstarting and well above planing jibes in the useful skills list, and is far easier to learn than either. It also replaces exhausting, overpowered, beam reach survival sailing with relaxing cruising, presuming you don't REALLYREALLY need to be somewhere upwind in a big hurry.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 20085

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2015 11:53 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

And notice that the swell Craig is riding in this video is puny and irregular; it doesn't take monster sine waves to do this. Also notice how relaxed Craig looks; he could hook in and all but take a nap if he wanted ... very useful if overpowered otherwise or fun just for its own sake.
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kevinkan



Joined: 07 Jun 2001
Posts: 1641
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2015 4:27 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Biff,

Imagine my disappointment when I clicked on the video link expecting to experience vicariously some clean gorge swell only to find a vid of myself sailing in the bay Sad

The spot in the vid is called 3rd Ave... sailed there yesterday after hearing stories of how good the swell was two days ago... of course yesterday was crap!

You guys have it good up there (as do we down here) and very nice of you to share the stoke of swell riding. I learned by watching local guru Kenny Hartz (Bic rep back in the day)... the guy couldn't sail straight for more than 20 ft without turning or jumping. John Birhani (NP rep) was also a guy whose sailing inspired me.... always flowing.

Anyway, 3rd Ave on a good day gets as close to Gorge-like of any spot here, but it's no substitute. Will be in the Gorge the first week of July hoping to ride some good swell out east! Where do you normally sail?

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starfish



Joined: 14 Apr 1996
Posts: 199

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2015 6:59 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

You know kevin if you come to town the wind will die. So bring your mt bike and golf clubs. Oh maybe a wake board. I have the boat.
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philodog



Joined: 28 Apr 2000
Posts: 196

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2015 8:41 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

isobars, there is a big difference between surfing swell and sailing on a swell. If you`re hooked in you are not surfing swell, you`re just another backside rider getting in the way.
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mogunn



Joined: 03 Apr 2006
Posts: 1307
Location: SF Bay

PostPosted: Tue Jun 16, 2015 9:28 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kevin, today made up for yesterday's disappointment. Best day in weeks at 3rd.

Cheers,
Mo

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kevinkan



Joined: 07 Jun 2001
Posts: 1641
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2015 12:55 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

mogunn wrote:
Kevin, today made up for yesterday's disappointment. Best day in weeks at 3rd.

Cheers,
Mo


le sigh

my hand has been bothering me since two 4.0 days at TI this weekend... I didn't want to sail on Monday, but I was showing Caesar Finies from Bonaire around, so had to sail yesterday... woke up this morning and had trouble moving my middle and ring fingers. I vowed not to sail today unless it was going off 4.0... it didn't (up here at least until very late)... so watched the Warriors game instead. Hoping my hand feels better tomorrow!

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kevinkan



Joined: 07 Jun 2001
Posts: 1641
Location: San Francisco

PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2015 12:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

starfish wrote:
You know kevin if you come to town the wind will die. So bring your mt bike and golf clubs. Oh maybe a wake board. I have the boat.


I've had very good luck with wind in all my trips to the Gorge... plus this time is for a bachelors party, so I'm pretty sure I'll have a good time regardless. That said, I hope it's blowing stink while I'm there!

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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 20085

PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2015 8:57 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

philodog wrote:
isobars, there is a big difference between surfing swell and sailing on a swell. If you`re hooked in you are not surfing swell, you`re just another backside rider getting in the way.

A. What ees thees "backside"?

B. The difference is in maneuverability, and when running before the wind -- the topic of this thread -- the only time I always unhook is when significantly switchstance and powered up; that feels risky to ankles and knees when it's gusty. Otherwise I'm in and out of the harness intuitively and very frequently. Once ya get used to it, the harness becomes just another tool we can use or not use at will as an innate and dynamic part of riding swell.

C. If we need power to plane or use it to boost planing, again as in this thread, where is it written that we must unhook and use muscles instead of hardware? Again ... very few hard and fast rules in this sport. I do more slashing/off-the-lips/cutbacks on the faces/bottom turns/running downwind hooked in than I see anyone else doing hooked OR unhooked where I usually sail, simply because it's less work that way (thus longer sessions and/or longer downwind riffs) and it's easy to learn and do.
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brettn



Joined: 22 Nov 2000
Posts: 114

PostPosted: Wed Jun 17, 2015 11:01 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Kevin, make a cameo at the ABK clinic if you can. It would be fun to meet, and/or buy you a beer.

Biff, my wife Nicole would like to take some Gorge windsurfing lessons the week of 7/6-7/11. She's in the straps and hooked in, and decent at tacks, and turning on swell a little bit. She'd love to add gibing and wave riding to her arsenal.

Is anyone participating in the ABK freestyle clinic? Interest from my windsurfing friends not on this channel has been zero, and a couple of threads on this forum have produced only slightly more enthusiasm. Rumors of a cute Russian skateboarder coming to town made for 15 pages of banter from this group. If she asked for directions to the clinic, would that get more of you dorks to turn out?

360-920-6919.
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