Finally the summer-like wind swell condition has settled in this past week or so on our area. I like this type of condition because waves can still be challenging for my skill level and at the same time it is not as threatening like when there is south 20 seconds class swells. Summer swells are easier to handle when I mess up, whereas longer period swells can really pull you down!
It was nice, sunny and not much wind at the shore, and Jocelyn, who has been a devoted StokeMaster member offered me to ride her Mini Magic.
It is a 6'8 length board. Not much longer than what I usually ride which is between 6'4 and 6'5. But Mini Magic is a mini-long board. I also have the full Walden Magic 9'0 so it was even more interesting to try this one out.
The condition was about shoulder level, summer mushier beach beak in a popular beach in Northern San Mateo county, and it was very crowded with even a surf competition going at the middle of the beach.
Jocelyn also asked me to help her learn how to duck dive so I handed her my Xanadu Rockhold 5'6 model board and we paddled out. Initially I could not duck dive the Mini Magic, as the nose was so full of the area and foam, but after 4th or 5th paddle back, I got a hang of it and I could perfectly duck dive through it. It does require a bit more effort in the initial front push. The back push is just about as easy (or hard) as my other "more conventional" short boards.
Taking off on this board was significantly easier than on my short boards, and I actually ended up scoring quite a few waves both from the outside and inside, one time the wave was closing on in faster but I made it and so it was good there as well. Taking off on this board does really feel like you are on a long board, mainly from that glidy feeling you get. Once the board starts going, it is actually going, as you get that feeling of the paddling resistance suddenly gone. It is a nice feeling that I know I am going to catch the wave. Whereas, on my short boards, I sometimes need to make sure that they are going, by adding a bit more paddling strokes, and push the front of the board down.
I have caught both lefts and rights, and it was really fun to ride this board. The turning does need some getting used to, and like the Haut Egg 7'6 egg board that I tried before, it does seem to require a bit more weight towards the front to maintain the speed. It was a bit confusing at first as the board did not feel "loose" enough to turn, it does require more long board style turning with more dramatic weight shifting. Or at least that's what I think was happening.
The board comes with 3 fins. But like all of my long boards, I would take the sides off, put a longer fin in the middle and give it another shot.