Help Support The Blog by Clicking Through to

Friday, November 25, 2011

11.18.2011 Playa Larga, Bocas del Toro, Panamá: Round TWO

Today we got on the same boat with the same people, plus a new arrival from Western Australia named Daf. The wind was a little better, but the swell was a little down from yesterday.

This time I was on a Sharp Eye Board. I believe it was a 6'2" and a little thicker than I'm used to.

From l-r: Andrew, Chato, Eddie, Jaime, Scott, Daf

We stopped to get gas. The side of the building said "Gasolina No se Fia" (No credit given):

We threw our boards in to the water once we arrived at the break. I was the first one in the water this time. I set up to the right of the big dead tree just as I had yesterday, but quickly discovered it just wasn't working.

I paddled east a bit and found some juice. The first wave I caught was a left. I rode it ok, but stalled on a floater. Had I made that floater, it would've been a more complete ride with a finishing stamp. I decided to forgo the lefts in favor of the barreling rights.

I caught a right that was a screamer. I grabbed my outside rail with my left hand and stuffed my right hand in the wall to slow me down. The lip threw over me and I was threading it. Unfortunately, the wave decided to explode all at once just after my entry inside it. I was rewarded with a nice view but punished with water up the nose.

I had a couple of similar waves, none of which I made.

The wind switched from side-offshore to side-onshore and I caught a slightly more open right. I pumped up and down trying to figure out the sweet spot on this new board (third board in two sessions). I semi-succeeded, made it around a small section and went up to hit it. I over-estimated the steepness of the section and over-committed to the turn. I completed the turn, but never recovered.

So, what went wrong? First off, the turn I committed to requires more speed and/or a steeper wave face. Also, I didn't set my shoulders right. Your shoulders should almost always be facing where you're looking to go and this isn't the case in the above sequence.

With the wind coming up, the wave was being sliced up a bit. I managed to be in position for a tall sliver of wave. I tucked into it and while I don't think I got barreled, I had quite the sensation going down. It felt like I was dropping in sideways down the vertical section of a halfpipe. I made it, but there was no reward.

About twenty minutes later, I was in position for the biggest wave I rode that day. I caught it and tucked into my stance. The wave was close to twice the size of the waves I'd caught all session. The wave steepened up and I locked in my line. The lip pitched over me squarely and I made it quite a ways before getting smashed by the wave. My shoulder hit the sand with enough force to rub some sunscreen off my shoulder, but nothing more.

Check out how artsy this cropped close-up of me in the barrel is:

The wind kept coming while the waves remained inconsistent. The surf forecast isn't good, but I hope the beginning of next week will have something in store...

No comments:

Post a Comment