Saturday, December 11, 2004

Session 237: Nice!

Contrary to yesterday in the afternoon, this morning provided us with a lot of excitement. Waves were going at good overhead size, but mostly possible to make them. As usual, though, I prefer a bit mushier reforms after huge close-outs. Taking off on them are much more predictable and also not much initial paddling is needed. On big days like today, there usually is a plenty of face to surf on the reforms. I usually wait to see other surfers wipe out on the outside close outs and then I get to keep the entire reform to myself. Especially on very crowded days, it is very helpful for me to capture many rides. Only tricky part is that I still need to get up rather quickly as the waves can continue to be rather turbulent and still the chance of messing up the take-off is rather high.

A typical successful reform rides goes something like this:
The outside wave crushes down, bringing several surfers down and a few boards shooting up in the sky. If this is happening then I am in for a good ride. The waves start to reform with a bunch of white water still coming down from the top.

I just wait until the very last moment when white water is about to hit me. I quickly turn the board around and push it down deep in the water. As the board starts to float back, I use that force of the board shooting up to aid me in getting started. If I can feel the white water on my feet, I paddle really strong and try to out run the reforming wave. Sometimes the wave crumbles right then and then I will be in for a wash cycle, then sometimes, it is crumbling but I continue to paddle out of the white water and I can re-emerge out of the water and the board starts to take off. If I do not stand up quickly then I will be put into the wash cycle again. Or, if I try to stand up, the board is too wobbly and I wipe out. But more often, when I take off I descend straight out, pick up some speed and find a good turning spot to climb back on the wave. If that works, it is really satisfying, especially with shorter boards this works really well as I don't have to paddle as long or hard, and the turning radius of shorter boards helps me with harder turn around, as there is a lot of power in these reforms. One of the problems though is that I start out inside so if I there is no wall or mess up the turn; I?d be hitting the beach in a short order, and start paddling back again.
So that's my version of reform rides.

The weather was really nice and with the offshore wind blowing the condition today was really great. You can check out the pictures from today's session at:

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