Above photo taken by Steve Domjan at the Bowl. Thank you Steve, you could have been sailing you

  • Above photo taken by Steve Domjan at the Bowl. Thank you Steve, you could have been sailing yourself instead of taking photos of me.

Monday, December 27, 2010

This is my first attempt at a video

CIB.12.26.2010.edited from drysuit2 on Vimeo.

This is my first attempt at a video. While I got my ass kicked…I have a feeling there were more guys out sailing in that Blizzard than just Pete, Florian and myself. Let’s see em’. Thanks to Joe for the recommendation on Machete Video Editor lite.

While it seemed cold, [the snow is a dead giveaway] the temp’s were in the mid to high 30’s. Once the rig starts icing, I just don’t sail. I’m glad we sailed Sunday the 26th because it was in the high 20’s today; great if you’re a skier, not a sailor. We were hoping that the outgoing tide against the incoming Nor East wind would kick up some nice swell. But as you can see, the shore break sucked, and I kept getting swept west: not the direction I wanted to be going.

I tried to come ashore: rest and re-adjust my rig. But that was not a good idea. There was no shore just concrete seawalls. I smacked up my rail pretty badly attempting an ungraceful exit. Plus, I have a hole in my new 5.0. I’m not sure exactly how I did that. I don't remember taking any unusually bad crashes.

Friday, December 24, 2010

Brook finally has a December session

Brook finally had a December session. December; as you know, has been a  pretty good month for wind. Unfortunately, most of those days have been during the week.And for Brook, on every weekend, someone in his family has been ill. So instead of carving hard, he's been wiping runny noses. In fact he recently lamented that this will probably be the first December he has missed sailing for like 12 years.

Until yesterday; when we all got an early Christmas present. We sailed West Neck in 4.2 to 5.5 conditions during an outgoing tide. Just beautiful. All the photo's are by Brook so he isn't in any of them. And I am still in search of a simple Windows based video editing program for my GoPro. Not that it would have mattered any way. Visibility was zero during the frequent snow squalls that would blast through. But it was warm enough that we didn't have to contend with ice. In attendance were Rich, Florian, George, Brook, Mustang, and myself. Dommer showed up: but too late for a safe session.
 That is one ugly board

Florian on the way out. I'm the tiny orange sail on the other side. I think the red one is Rich.

Flo goes for air

George, carving hard

I'm the tiny sail on the left. George is on the right.

Friday, December 17, 2010

And the word for the day is Microburst.

Can you say Microburst? See; I knew you could.
I have not been sleeping well. As a result my body is not healing like it should.
I need a lot more time to heal between sessions then I did even five weeks ago. [I think the holidays are getting to me.]
So Sunday morning I woke up from my three hour sleep in a good deal of pain.
I had spent the day before, outside; pulling moorings at my club. It was a glorious day; no wind, cloudy, quiet…many of the reasons I love to spend time on the water in the Winter.  There was about a half inch layer of skim ice on the surface. The sound of chain breaking through this “soft” ice was the most wonderful sound.  You could both hear, and see your breath. It was perfect. Even the sound of Vic the Club Stewart yelling at me because I couldn’t anticipate his every move was comforting. It sent me back to my 20’s; when I did this kind of work for a living.
Buy I’m NOT in my 20’s; I’m pushing 50. And I spend the majority of my day sitting on my ass. Atrophy is a bitch!
I was excited about sailing on Sunday. The forecast was for 20 to 57 MPH out of the South East. And it was expected to be warm. [relatively, anyway]. High 40’s. My new drysuit had arrived on Friday, and I probably would not end up needing gloves.
The plan was to put the finishing touches on my “Go Pro” camera mast mount, and then head for the “Bowl” at Shinecock inlet. Somehow time got the best of me. [Read about the guys that did sail "The Bowl"] or cut and paste http://www.peconicpuffin.com/the_peconic_puffin/2010/12/new-guys-early-birds-and-good-times-in-the-rain.html
I spent hours more fiddling with my old boom attachment then I thought I would. It is just as well. As I waited patiently for my Celebrex and Viconine cocktail to take effect.  It didn’t. At least not until 11:00. I knew that there was a crew sailing from West Neck, [about 2 hours closer], so I decided to join them.
When I arrived it was Nukin’. Most guys were getting hammered with 4.2’s in the gusts; but others were hanging on to 4.5’s for the inevitable lulls.  But I knew it was supposed to back off as the day progressed. So I rigged a 4.7, my 90 ltr. I used my old reliable True Aimes slotted 8 incher.
I spent the rest of that day on that set up or my 110 and my 6.3. No matter what I rigged…It was either over, or under, powered sailing. It didn't matter what you rigged.
You would get to spend 15 minutes, up to your knees, doing the underpowered limbo.  Then a microburst would come down and just flatten, or backwind you. Sure, I had a few perfectly blissful runs. [That's really all you need. Isn't it?]
In hindsight, I should have taken the trek to the East End. But you never leave wind to find wind. And while it wasn’t the best session I’ve ever had…it wasn’t the worst either.  My shoulder is still sore; but I didn’t have to wear gloves.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Da Meadow twice, once with Mustang

 The Tri-Fins were coming out.

The Cell phone pics are not the greatest; but they capture the spirit of the day.
Saturday, 11/25/10: It was the first "glove Day" for me. Cold, short and sweet at West Meadow. The wind came up hard; so the kiters called it a day. I hung on for as long as I could. But in the end, only managed two hours before my forearms gave out. I hung onto my 5.5 overpowered, and over downhauled for as long as I could, because I was too lazy to come in and rig down. It was interesting: the wind had a lot of west in it. So the south east corner,[notorious for clean waves with light wind], was actually the breeziest spot that day. WM was definitely the call. I was going to try RM5 again. But Mustang convinced me otherwise. Good call by Steve.



Mustang Steve, catching air at Da Meadow. Photo by Steve Domjan.
We still call him Mustang. Although for years, his preferred mode of transportation was a tricked out red Mustang.  Now he drives one of those boxy Honda Elements that look small, but you can still fit all your gear inside. {it helps that most boards are shorter today than they were in the 90’s]. He’s married with two kids, but he still has that Mustang; with a NOS system and ready to race. He is a high school teacher living in Long Beach now. So he surfs nearly every day it’s good. When we get together to surf at his local break, we refer to it as Camp Mustang. It’s not just that we are paying homage to the various Maui breaks. It’s because sailing, or surfing with Mustang; makes you better. He is always dishing out helpful, useful advice. Maybe he’s just a born Teacher. But every surf, or sailing session I have with Steve, I come back better then I was before. It’s like having your own private coach. If it was not for Steve, I would not be half the windsurfer I am today.
Steve at West Neck. Photo Pete Roesch

Going for air at the Gorge

One more West Neck Pic, by Pete Roesch.

 Saturday 12/04/10: I was going to drive all the way out to Tiana. But heard from Jon that he and Mike B. were lit up on their 5. somethings.
I pulled off the LIE at exit 62 and went north to Da meadow. I arrived to a disappointing sailor, alternating  up and down between fully powered, and under powered on his 6.2. He was on the outside.

In the flats Jon & Mike were planing on their 5 inch fins, big flat freestyle boards and high 5 sails. I wanted to sail; so I rigged my 6.9 Ezzy, and the 125 ltr Angullo. I was powered from the start. Then as the sun moved closer and closer to the horizon; the wind speed increased. [I am getting just too much practice sailing overpowered!]. Again, we only had about one hour of sunlight left as the wind went ballistic. Not enough time to walk all the way back in, [yes, walk]; I don't feel like breaking another board on the sand bars; thank you. As it was; I did hit bottom once, and was treated to a ride over the handlebars. And that was WITH a weed fin. The only kind you should use at WM, unless you have an unlimited bank account.

So, I down, and out, hauled my 6.9 till the leach was so lose, David Ezzy would have had a coronary...and I sailed till I could see no more.

God, I love this time of year. My only complaint would be Sunset  at 4:28. If it wasn't for the short early days...Steve and I would be sailing right now.