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Tuesday, November 28, 2017

11.28.17 Sunset Sesh at Colorado

In my quest to get the best conditions dialed, I've been paddling out, or at least looking at it, during different tides to see how it reacts.  This can take a long time, as there are so many variables involved.  The most efficient way to do it would be to take a little reporter's notebook and make a notation of the wind direction/speed, swell direction/size, and tide then rate it qualitatively on a 1-5 scale.  After enough reps, you can get a rough idea as to the ideal set-up.

Unfortunately, this doesn't take into account the most important aspect of wave quality, bathymetry.  What's on the bottom dictates, more than anything, how a wave breaks.  However, if you look at it enough times during a short window, you can take this variable out of the equation so long as nothing drastic happens to change it (a big storm and/or swell can change sandbars drastically). 

Just as on land, there is an erosion issue with sandbars though...

I've been watching some videos to diagnose my issues and I think I've narrowed it down to two things. 

The first is wanting to 'keep my eye on the ball' and watch board contact the wave on snaps' which is a no-no; one is to look (first with the head/neck, then shoulders, then upper torso/arms) to the destination and the body is to follow.

The second is to keep one's arm over each rail the vast majority of the time.  This one I'd never heard before though I'd noticed back in my GoPro days I was swinging both arms back on frontside top turns.  I'd noticed you don't see rippers doing that on video and chances are it wasn't because I'd blazed a new style trail (I did that with the crab grab).

After paddling out into close-out central in an attempt to get lucky on a random corner, I paddled into the thin-ish and mostly mellow crowd.  I caught a left and a right with a similar result, which was getting to the bottom and then jumping over the folding section.

I finally got a look at a left and was really excited to try out what I thought was the answer to my cancer.  Though I did a strong bottom turn and looked down to the trough (and slightly behind me), I fell back on swinging arms back.

I saw a wave breaking north of me with no one on it and paddled to greet it.  The highlight was a right I caught late and was able to squeeze one mini-pump.  This bought me some time and the wave and I was racing with me slightly losing.  Not sure what I was thinking, I tried to turn into the barrelling wave in order to get on the slightly slopier trough section. I immediately got slammed and while underwater wondered how long I could've been in the barrel before the inevitable drubbing.

I'm still dealing with the arch of my foot cramping up but hopefully if I keep surfing it will work itself out.

I walked back and saw some of our neighbors on the sand, said hi then undertook the long walk back to our condo.  Towards the end of the walk, it was moonlight which lit my way back through the trees.

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