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Sauvie Light 13
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Sauvie Island windsurfing/kiteboarding happens at the northern end of Walton Beach on the Columbia River. Sauvie usually blows in the afternoons on warm summer days. The wind will blow from the North, while the river current is from the south.
Typically not a very windy spot. Kiters are usually on 12m kites or larger. Sometimes it can get to 9m kite range. Windsurfers will be on 6m+ sails typically, with 5m possible on a good day.
The water state is flat with some small chop when it gets windy. Watch for barge and freighter traffic on the river. Freighters are huge, move fast, and create a big wind shadow. Stay far away from them!
There's an excellent long sandy beach for launching/landing. You park on the left side of the road, then walk across the road, and up over the levee, then down to the beach.
Weekdays are mellow at Sauvie, but it gets very crowded on weekends with families and other beachgoers. Parking can be very tight on weekends. Kiters should be respectful of other beach users so we can retain our kiting privileges at this spot.
There are tidal effects at Sauvie. Best is from high tide to low tide - when the current opposes the wind. From low tide to high tide, the current will be slightly with the direction of the wind so you will have to point harder to stay in one place. Look for the tide at St Helens, OR or Knapps Landing, WA.
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 Season: Summer 
 Water: Flat to mild chop 
 Ability Level: Beginner to Intermediate 
 Wetsuit: 4/3 fullsuit to boardshorts 
 Familiness: Good, not much shade, port-a-potties 
 Parking: Lots of parking, crowded on weekends 
 Launch: Sandy beach 

From Portland, head west on US-30 towards St Helens, OR for 12 miles until you reach the Sauvie Island bridge. If you don't have a parking pass, get one at the convenience store right after you cross the bridge. You can go either way around the island - the distance is exactly the same. It's 6 miles to the junction of NW Gillihan Rd and NW Reeder Rd. Then head north on NW Reeder Rd for another 6 miles. You will see parking on the left and stairs on the right going up the levee to the beach. Go to the very last set of stair and park at the far northern end of the parking area. If you hit gravel road, you've gone too far (that's Collins Beach which is clothing optional and has a wind shadow near shore).

The sensor is located on a navigation marker on the WA side about one mile north of the launch spot. The sensor reads a bit low compared to most iWindsurf sensors. I find a reading of 13mph average means 12m kite or 6m sail. A reading of 10mph average means 15m kite.


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