Rock Solid (Screw the Forecasts)
Howe Sound Squamish (Spit)
I was torn about where to go when I saw Centennial teasing, but I took the 'sure thing' on the hope of getting to use smaller gear (as the last time CNL teased on August 29, Squamish delivered).
I grabbed the 85 litre board as an afterthought to supplement my Squamish quiver (110/6.7/6.0/5.2) - good thing as it got wet today too!
Once at the spit with gear left in the rigging area, I used my ‘car door’ rule to test for 5.0 wind - if the wind slams the open passenger door closed without prompting (nose of the car pointed into the wind) , then I know I can get my 5.0 going on my 110. Well the test was positive at 12:45 pm - so it was time to try to the new-to-me 5.2!
Used my new-to-me sail (a 5.2, 2009 Ezzy Panther 1) the whole session and was quite pleased. I really liked my 2001 Ezzy Wave SE 5.0. I paid $50 for the SE at the beginning of last season and have used it 28 times since then for a cost per session of $1.79 - I think Alton would be pleased with a ROI like that. My new-to-me 5.2 was powerful yet supple, had good range and yet could still be depowered when needed (a big step up from the 2001 SE) - I can hardly wait to press this one into service at Centennial this fall!
Quote of the day:
Igor (during a board meeting at the sand bar while reflecting on what a great afternoon it was): "Screw the forecasts!" Igor called this one (again).
The wind was 20 (gusting 25), building to 25 (gusting 30) and was rock solid everywhere - the only exception (in a good way) was approaching ‘the wall’ on port and feeling the wind ‘boost’ into turbo. Nice! Although the wind increased during the afternoon is was pretty gradual and allowed you time to react and tune your gear.
The tide was about 2 m at 1 pm (bank was waist deep water and the sand bar only partial under water, partially above water) flooding to about 3 m by 3:30 pm (sand bar was waist deep and bank was over head high). The wind swell as actually organized by Squamish standards (but tightly spaced as always) and could be used for short playful little backside rides.
There were jumps a plenty in the potato patch (just off the mouth of the river) on starboard once the wind started to pump. Jumps could also be had on port (approaching ‘the wall’, but you had to pinch to get them off of very small ramps).
Stoke was medium-high as it looked to be a solid day from the beginning – everyone was all smiles (before, during and after). Those out looked to be savouring the moment with the knowledge that this might be ‘last good one’ at Squamish. Once again knifing kites and lost kiteboards did keep you on your toes at times (but not enough to turn the smile upside-down).