This is the final version of this post.
I surfed a total of five hours today: 2h SUP, 1h shortboard, 2h longboard.
Thanks to my trusty gopro I got plenty clips and photos, but I'm so tired that I will only post a photo tonight. Plus if I get up early I may go surf again tomorrow morning...
This is me on my resuscitated best board ever 8.6 Rapoza. It had been in two pieces since last winter, but now I finally put it back together.
No, it's not the same board anymore. But if it got me in this kind of situation, it was definitely worth fixing.
Here's three clips that document the intensive use of all the three boards I had with me.
I started on the 7.4 SUP. What a fun board that is!
Here's session 2 on the shortboard. You can tell how I still ride a 6.6 too much like a longboard. Plenty improvement ahead. Cool!
And, after a lunch and ukulele playing break, here's session 3 on the longboard.
Now, compare the SUP clip to the longboard one. See how I use the paddle constantly on the wave? That HUGE advantage of having a prolongation of your arm to touch the water is teaching me to try to stay low and lean towards the water at every turn also on a regular board. In other words, SUP surfing is making my regular surfing better. It's also making me a weaker surfer though, since I don't exercise the lay down paddling muscles. That's why it's good to mix it up a bit.
AND, believe it or not, because of the characteristic of that wave that is a perfect match for my awesome 7.4 Starboard, the SUP one was by far the most fun session of the three. Now, that's something unusual for me!
So unusual that that little magic board (AKA the flying saucer) deserves a few photos of its own.
Going over waves is not the easiest thing in the world, but not as bad as you could imagine. Beautiful hawaiian background.
Women staring at my muscles: please don't come all over your keyboard.
Lil sequence of take off setup turn,
getting some speed down the line,
setting up the top turn.
You can even nose ride it.
This is one of the features I like best. To turn the board 180 degrees, all you have to do is an extremely wide (starting on the opposite side) stroke...
...et voila'. 2 seconds later, at the end of the same stroke, the board is now turned towards the beach and ready to catch the incoming wave.
Loading the springs (read: legs) for a back side bottom turn. I was all inspired by Kai Lenny (who was in the lineup) and tried to imitate him... he's sooo good.
He was doing a MASSIVE use of the paddle, moving it at each turn on the inside of the turn. The quickest paddle switch I've ever seen. Looked sick!
The reason for this picture is to show why I regretted putting an off the shelf back foot pad. Those ones have a ridge in the middle. On a regular board, that feels good because it ends up under the arch of your foot. On a standup (way wider tail), you have to move your back foot so much that the ridge often ends up under the heel! Not too bad, but I may want to change it... the problem will be to find one without that ridge.
More on the back pad. For this board, this is a perfect position for small waves. Any place further back would slow down the board or make it bounce too much. Might be different for big waves, but my feeling is that this is a board for waves up to head high.
So far I've been riding it as a quad or as a 2+1.
As a quad is super loose and slashy, I like it up to waist high. For waist to shoulder high, I like it as a 2+1 with a 6 inches center fin and 4.5 side bites. For head high, I should try a bigger center fin (like 7.5), but I haven't done it yet. Better get one soon... bigger swell coming up!!!
Ok, one more photo. I started this post with a longboard photo and I'm going to end it with one from the day before.
Actually, now that I think about it, I'm going to end it with a photo that describes the equally important resting/ukulele playing mid day session. Thanks Chico for the photo and the caption that pretty much sums up what I feel about surfing these days.
Wow, it took me 4 days to complete this post.
In the meantime I caught an enormous amount of waves surfing every single day. After a rather slow start, this summer has picked up a notch and this week (I'm writing Tuesday morning) will see plenty more action, before going flat next week for a little while.
I'll see you guys in the water.