This is a diary so to speak. Documenting the outdoor activities I enjoy. Currently I'm trying to master windsurfing so that subject will be covered extensively. If you read this don't expect award winning writing as it was never really a strong point for me. You may however find a cool photo or two.

Most photos can be enlarged by clicking and feel free to leave a comment.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

OBX 'it's like a.....

box of chocolates you never know what you are gonna get"

I just got back from a 3 day trip to the OBX. I love that place!! We had a family reunion of sorts. Several members of my wife's family rent a house for the week then invite the rest to show up and stay a couple days. It's a fun trip and we always have a good time. This year I decided to bring my gear even though the forecast was terrible as far as the wind was concerned.

One of the great things about the OBX is the unpredictable nature of the weather. If you ever ask for advice on what gear you should bring when traveling to the OBX the only two words you should ever hear are "Bring Everything". If someone tells you different then they have never actually been there.

On this trip each day ended up being sailable, nothing epic but still shortboard conditions. Sunday the first full day started off light out of the east and ended up SSW 6.7 conditions at Windmill point in Nags Head. Monday in Salvo it made it to powered 5.8 conditions for an hour or two then backed off to 7.8 till dark. On Tuesday there was supposed to be a very light breeze out of the NE and it was for a couple hours in the morning. Then it ramped up to a steady NE at 18, ocean side. Could have been another 5.8 day but I was already packed up to head home plus I've never sailed in the ocean. With the wind swell and chop combining with the swell from Hurricane/TS Bertha the conditions were well beyond my skill level. I'm sure I would have sacrificed some gear just trying to get out through the shore pound. There were a couple kiters out enjoying it though.
I'm already counting the days till the next trip at the end of August.

No photos this time. Left the camera at home. It's to bad, the photo ops were plentiful. I could have had numerous shots like these on Andy's blog.

Wednesday, July 9, 2008

I'm not a wind jinx

The wind was holding in the upper teens most of the day on Monday at my normal launch so I decided to get in an evening session. I touched base with James to see if he was sailing and found him just arriving at the launch. I jumped in the car and 45 min later I was rigging my 6.7. James was already out blasting away on his 6.6 looked like he was buzzing some sailboats and Navy Destroyer coming in for resupply at the weapons station.
I figured I'd sail way out there where he was to see what it was like. I've never ventured out more than about 3/4's of a mile, he was probably two miles out in the deep water channel.
I hit the water, cleared the sea grass beds and jumped right up on plane. Passed the small boat channel marker and figured I'd use the crab pot buoys as visual aids to judge my upwind/downwind performance. Just after I passed the first buoy the wind dropped to around 10 mph. I figured it would come back so I kept on slogging out. 5 min later and still no significant increase in the wind speed so I headed back toward shore. All the while that term "wind jinx" repeated in my mind.
James first words to me were "You missed it". Those dreadful words that no windsurfer wants to hear and that no windsurfer is immune to. James packed up his gear and I decided to stay out and play around in the light wind. As he was derigging the wind increased slightly. I was beginning to plane again for short distances. After James left my persistence paid off. The wind came back enough for a couple planing runs.
I was nice being out there. The warm water, clear skies and the sun dropping low in the sky. It made for a picture perfect evening, unfortunately no camera. There was one other guy out in a sailing kayak that seemed to be enjoying it as much as I was.