Sunday, January 31, 2010

back in the water

Well, surfing sucked (still relatively speaking), but light wind wave sailing at Kanaha was quite a lot of fun.

It's really great to see Matt Pritchard back in the water after that gnarly accident he had.

As soon as I saw him sailing, I had a moment of extreme happiness. "Wow", I thought, "that must feel really good"...
And then my thought went to Baptiste. I don't have any updates on his conditions, but I keep sending him all my best wishes.

The lifeguards went to rescue a windsurfer. Evidently, his racing gear was so big, that they couldn't carry it with them. So, listen to this, one of the lifeguards stayed with the gear in the water, just outside the big surf, while the other was taking the sailor in. Then the jet ski driver (his name is Rick and he's a super nice guy... quite funny too!), went out again and picked up his colleague (whom I don't know) and the gear.

There goes several hundred bucks...

Looks like the Volcom pro saw a pretty good day of competition. Too bad I was out surfing and sailing and couldn't watch it... but I'm going to watch the heats on the demand! Cool stuff, uh?

Surfing should be good tomorrow.

PS. Just watched the heats on demand of day 3 of the Pipe contest. It looked more like The Wedge than Pipeline... very, very gnarly.
Kuau resident Ian Walsh is the last of the Maui boys (who did pretty damn good overall) still in. Tomorrow he's in a super tough semifinal against Anthony Walsh (from Australia), and two of the best Pipeline specialist: Jamie O'Brien and 17 y.o. John John Florence, who is my bet as a winner.

Mmm... what to do tomorrow morning... go surf or watch the contest... what a dilemma!


Anonymous said...

OMG what decisions you have to make GP - a bit like me really shall I pay my bills or not?


Andy said...

I know you're rooting for the Maui boys, but you've gotta give at least one cheer for Brett Barley (from Cape Hatteras)!!! Whoop!!

Good on Matt for getting out there- that must have been a REALLY long year...

cammar said...

Absolutely! Brett Barley has been a sensation throughout the whole contest. And his semi is doable...

Matt still has plenty screws in is ankle, but he's out there.

Windwiner said...

Aloha GP,
With all of the surfing you've been doing lately how's the progress on your short board coming along?

Bernd Roediger said...

what did you think of the sail GP?

cammar said...

it's going extremely well and extremely slow at the same time. More than any other sport, in surfing the better I get, the more I understand how much more I have to learn.
Lately I had the opportunity to test a bunch of Surftech boards, the smallest of which was 6.2. Still testing, having a blast doing it.

The key for progressing in surfing is consistency. You got to pretty much surf every day and that is the biggest gift that this very non windy winter has brought me. I'm trying to dawn patrol every day and that is a fantastic way of starting a day.

I'm still quite far from throwing spray in the turns, but my paddling, timing and positioning have got a lot better.
Quite impressed by what shortboard surfing is doing to my body too. I've never been stronger in my whole life and that, at age 47, feels pretty damn good. Yoga and stretching are helping a lot too to keep a bit of flexibility, otherwise I'd be strong but stiff as a brick.

In the end, I still consider myself pretty much kind of kook on a shortboard, but I'm as stoked as ever and very, very excited every time I paddle out.
Thanks for asking!

Bernd, nice.

Krippe said...

A month ago I watched the lifeguards bring an old man back to shore at Kanaha. Then they got back out to bring his gear in. They were towing the gear at full speed and the rig got trashed.

Michael said...


I'm 46 and just want to say that you said it all. What a pain in the butt to stretch all the time but there's just no go without it. You are an inspiration especially to those of us who wear wetsuits instead of Armani suits. Hoorah for middle age men becoming short boarders!

I just hope we can stay on short boards for as long as we work at it.


cammar said...

Now, after having said all I said, this morning Middles was chest to shoulder high and light offshore. Seen the small size (and the fact that I have a new 9.0... can't resist a good deal!), I decided to use that instead.
I had a blast.

Not giving up the hard training on the shortboard, but it's good to be able to do everything. Short, long, a little bit of SUP, one man canoe, doors, you name it... I want to be able to ride waves in all possible ways. I really need to get some fins and try bodysurfing.

Anonymous said...

Hi GP,
sorry for the change in the subject but I remember your previous discussion on top turn versus cut back in windsurfing...have you seen this video from Fabrice beaux:

could the turn at about 5:05 be called a proper cut back????

cammar said...

Hi Marcos,
IMO it's not.
But the very next turn at 5.10 is clearly a cutback. With the difference that he didn't choose to do it, but he just couldn't go more down the line, because the wave was closing out.

Cutbacks are mainly a surfing manouvre that surfers do to maintain the speed in particular sections of the wave: they go a bit further down the line and cut back to catch up with the steep and peeling section.
Let's say that the wave is slow or not particularly steep. If a surfer does a cut back 3 meters ahead of him, then cuts back 1 meter and then cuts back again towards the direction the wave is peeling, in the end he would have ridden for a total of 5 meters in a space of 3 meters. If we assume that the time that it took him to cover that section was -let's say- 2 seconds, he would come out of that section at a speed of 2.5 m/s.
If he would have not done a cut back, but just stalled to wait for the wave to get steep again, he would have covered only 3 meters in those same 2 seconds, hence he would have come out of the same section at a lower speed of 1.5 m/s.

Windsurfers can stall the sail in those section and just wait for the wave to get steep again. And when that happens, they just sheet in and regain their speed. Don't forget that windsurf boards are also way floatier than surfboards, so it's easier to keep the balance when stalling at low speed.
In other words, IMO, side shore wave riding windsurfers very rarely do cutbacks because:
1) they don't need to
2) they would feel awkward, since they would be going upwind and that's not where the sail takes them.

I didn't read this anywhere. This is 100% my thoughts. I'm not saying that I'm right and everyone should agree. This is just how I see it...

BTW, the lame incompleted top turn at second 39, after KP's beautiful sliding top turn and Elena's nice ass sailing out, is me.
Maybe I should just shut up and learn how to sail better...
Thanks for the link, it's always fun to watch the good sailors rip your home break.