Monday, April 11, 2016

4 11 16 morning call

Sorry for the late call this morning, after 3 sessions and 5 hours in the water yesterday, my body was slow at getting out of bed this morning.

As you saw from yesterday's updates, I started my day at dawn at Honolua bay. The reason is that I had a surf guide customer who wanted to surf it uncrowded, so we took a chance to check if the swell was already there. Unfortunately it wasn't, but rule #1 of a surf guide is to have a good backup plan, so we ended up surfing a break in Lahaina that offered knee to waist high perfect glassy waves. We were by ourselves for most of the time. We had 3-4 chest high sets in 2 hours, and one shoulder high one that unfortunately caught us while we were paddling back out in the channel. Now that I think about it, it wasn't too bad to miss it, since the vision of those perfect waves going by unridden was one of the highlights of the session. The water had a Tahitiesque quality and you could see the bottom through the face of the wave while you were riding it. My customer was stoked.

Afterwards I went back to the bay and even though the swell was slowly picking up, but there were more people than waves. That means that when a set came, pretty much the whole lineup was paddling for it. I caught a couple of decent ones, but I had to pull back because someone was on it already at least 10 times. What a difference with the previous session. Unfortunately the crowd in surfing counts more than the conditions. I took photos afterwards, and here are some.

Check the damage to the lip done by the guy who paddled down the line. In an ideal world, if someone is already on it or looks like he's gonna catch it, you shouldn't paddle for the same wave. But in a crowded lineup like yesterday's, that's the least you can expect. As I just mentioned, I must have done it myself at least 10 times and those couple of good ones I caught were because the guy who caught it either fell in the takeoff or got closed out. In other words, paddling for a wave that someone had caught already was pretty much the only way to catch a wave.

Another example of that.

A rare undisturbed one.

This instead is a blatant drop in. He did not kick out and totally stole the wave from the kid that caught it deeper. This is not acceptable, no matter how crowded it is. Well, unless you're at Malibu, I guess...

Someone may object that by publishing photos of Honolua and posting reports will contribute to make it even more crowded.
My answer to that is that in this day and age what I post won't make much difference. I'd love to know how many pictures of Honolua were posted yesterday on the social media websites. I bet at least a hundred. In my case, at least I try to inspire good etiquette behavior.

Since we're talking etiquette rules and since below is the windsurfing photo of the day by Jimmie Hepp, I received a kind request from a reader to clarify something.
Couple of days ago I said that the guy sailing out has priority over the guy on the wave. OF COURSE, if the guy sailing out is facing a not too big white water upwind of the guy riding the wave, and he thinks he came make it over it without falling and putting his gear at risk, he should most definitely take on the white water and leave the wave rider undisturbed.

In other words, the fact that the guy sailing out has priority, doesn't mean that he can always choose to go downwind of the wave rider and ruin his wave just because he can.
Just like SUP surfers shouldn't catch all the waves over regular surfers just because they can, for example.
Safety comes first, but mutual respect is right behind. The most important thing is that the guy sailing out assesses the situation quickly, chooses his line and doesn't change it at the last moment.
You're sailing out and you think you can take on the white water upwind of the wave rider? You aim there with no hesitation.
You think you can't or don't want to take a chance? You aim downwind with no hesitation.

6am buoy readings
6.9ft @ 13s from 314° (NW)
3.7ft @ 10s from 319° (NW)

8.1ft @ 14s from 322° (NW)
2.9ft @ 11s from 319° (NW)
In the graphs below I put two arrows to show how this swell had a medium period component that rose well before the long period one. Sitting in the water at the bay, I can confirm you that the long period ones were pretty much the only ones that were able to wrap around Molokai (the direction was from around 320 and the Molokai shadow line at the Bay is 335) and make it there.
The swell has clearly peaked (you can shift the Waimea graph by 4h and have an idea of what the Maui one would be, just a bit smaller), but there will be plenty waves all day. If you remember the evolution of the fetch (and if you don't, just scroll down to the previous posts), you'll know that this is a long lasting swell with a reinforcement pulse due tomorrow.

MC2km map at noon shows strong wind in the 20 to 25 knots range.

Wind map doesn't show much today. A far away and very west fetch, a tiny insignificant north one and windswell one. That probably means a day smaller waves sometimes later this week. Can't tell you if that is confirmed by the Surfline forecast, since they did some updates during the night and my favorite "offshore swells" tab is not showing properly. Hopefully they'll fix it soon.

South pacific wind map shows the tasman fetch that is now south of New Zealand and as such won't make much for us and the SE one that is now shooting too east.

Couple of announcements to end.
This Saturday April 16th there will be the annual Butterfly Effect organized by Tatiana Howard. Here's the facebook page.

This instead is an interesting workshop that Chistian Pacifico has setup. I'm seriously thinking about it. I don't see myself starting to shape (not enough time, I'd rather be surfing when I'm not working at Hi-Tech), but I wouldn't mind learning how to design my own boards on the computer and then passing on the file to someone who can build the board. And I'm sure there'll be plenty things to learn about surfboards in general.
Flyer is below, here's the facebook page and here's more details.

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