I got out there earlier than yesterday, hoping my timing would mitigate the crowds a bit.
At first, I didn't see much of anything a I came around the bend, but then I saw a good-sized wave break, and not all at the same time.
I paddled out right at Wisconsin Street and endured a set on the head. I had timed it so my chest would hit my board just as the last wave of the set broke. This gives one the most chance for a dry hair paddle-out. Unfortunately, a sneaker set detonated and ruined my chances of that.
I looked behind me and was awestruck at how far removed I was from my taking-off point.
I perched next to another hippy-looking dude, but different from yesterday afternoon's session, unless this guy had spawned a massive beard overnight. He too was on a Firewire Vanguard, marking the first time I'd ever seen someone else on that board.
I finally got a look at a nice wave, but there was an older guy on a log paddling furiously inside of me. I sensed a snake, so I went right. I dropped down somewhat brusquely, did a sweet-feeling drawn-out bottom turn and smacked the lip GLORIOUSLY. The wave then fizzled, as though I'd slayed it. I paddled back out and saw an extended foam trail from my spray, or blood from its jugular if you prefer.
After this wave I was caught in a nasty rip. I didn't realize it right away, as it had been months since the last time this had happened. I'd almost forgotten about them!
I was slowly drifting away when I saw a guy with a shaved head struggle to catch a wave, get barreled and swallowed up in the whitewash, and make it out. I complimented him on it and he wasn't sure he was in the barrel. Looked like it to me.
The rip took a solid grip of me and I'd grown wise to it when I noticed waves breaking elsewhere, but not where I was. In hindsight, I wish I'd paddled with it, but I spent the next half-hour or so paddling against it, then perching and trying for a wave that did roll through that was choppy because of the rip.
I tired myself out and was over it, especially as the tide hit its peak and slowed the waves WAY down. Maybe tomorrow will be my chance...?