Demolition Derby -- 4/26/03

It started getting bigger as the morning progressed

Date: April 26, 2003
Time: 0545--0900
Spot(s): Rocky Point Rights
Conditions: Fairly light winds, mostly cloudy skies, typical Rockies crowd
Swell: Rising wnw swell
Surf: 2-3'+ Haw'n

Words: Every year or so, I get the urge to jump on a shortboard, vice a bodyboard or longboard. Well, a friend from work let me borrow his backup board, a 6'6", 18.25" Terry Chung. I found an old, stretched out leash and was rarin' to go.

Seeemed like the swell was a carbon copy of last week (except this time from the wnw), with it peaking Saturday afternoon. Rather than repeat the same error, I decided that a Saturday session might reap more rewards.

Driving out to the North Shore, I found the waves to be disappointing and smallish. Bad call again? Ended up at Rocky Point, which looked a bit more promising than other spots. At least the wind was pretty light. Maybe the smallish size would be better for this novice shortboarder.

Entering the water, I was immediately bowled over by a set that dragged me across the shallow reef on the inside. Well, maybe it wasn't so small after all.

As with any new board, it takes a while to find the sweet spot for both paddling and riding. My first few attempts at catching waves were quite futile, but I eventually dialed into a couple of walls. The waves were a bit quick and sectiony for a beginner, but I wasn't complaining. Forced me to try harder and commit.

Well, commit I did, wiping out a lot. Most of the time, I just couldn't get into the wave fast enough or was out of position on the takeoff. Must've looked pretty comical watching me go over the falls time and time again. But to improve, you gotta pay your dues.

I remember standing up on the takeoffs and just waiting for the board to gain trim speed. Completely forgot (or maybe it's not instinctive yet) that I have to pump from rail to rail to gain speed. It'll come (I hope) with more practice.

Soon enough, the lineup got fairly crowded (as Rockies always does). A bunch of guys from New Zealand came around and I got to talking to a couple of them. Really cool guys with a lot of stoke. One of them actually recognized me from my website (actually from Buddy's site).

Despite some lulls, the surf actually got progressively better as the morning wore on. There were some well-overhead waves grinding through, but you had to pick wisely since most of them closed out quickly.

After a while, I was getting worried about my friend's board. I wiped out so much, both on the takeoff and during the closeout rides, that I was afraid I would damage the board (didn't help when one of the Kiwis came up with a snapped board). I started noticing pressure dings on the board that I (thought) I never saw before. Didn't want to demolish the board.

After an extra-long lull, I decided to call it a morning. After drying up, I took some photos and noticed the surf was getting bigger (typical). Headed home with achy shoulders.

Woke up Sunday morn to check the surf cams. Found that the waves were smaller and had poorer form than the previous day. Hey! Got it right this time!

Laks, stalling on a smaller one

Another Kiwi basks in the morning rays

It started getting quite big

Sweet faces

Fun waves could be had

Another day in paradise!

Aloha from Paradise,