This place sucks!
An unexpected, unplanned fantastic week in Hatteras. This is how it went down:
Saturday 26: After the usual long drive I ended up with a super stiff neck. Still, we went down to the Bath house and windSUP'd in side off conditions and smallish waves. Couldn't get dialed in with the waves but still had a blast especially when the dolphins came out.
Sunday 27: Sup'd right out of Avon. Much lighter winds but bigger waves with a pounding shorebreak. Not much success in riding but getting comfortable in the ocean and dealing with the shorebreak and currents.
Mon 28, Tue 29: Mostly light rain, and light winds. We could see some kites and big rigs out. Decided to do the shops, hang out and measured and compared rocker lines from a bunch of boards. Neat stuff and a great learning experience.
Wed 30: Ocean not looking great. Visited Bicker at their sound front pad and sailed out of there. (Thanks Jim). Was interesting to use a Chopper(L) (which is a full on down the line wave sail) in flat water! OK, so maybe not the most efficient sail for those conditions but still damn fast and super fun. Winds were pretty much side off with a huge wind shaddow. Decided on the 115 Naish freestyle board and a short freestyle fin so that I could work on my foot pressure etc.. (I do not do freestyle!) worked on my upwind performance which I thought I was doing well until my buddy decided to push his limit and left me a mile behind! At one time we traded boards and I rode his Tabou freestyle. Holy crap how skatey that thing is! My board doesn't even feel like a freestyle board compared to that thing! Also worked on my fast tack and am getting pretty damn close. Fun flat water day!
Thursday 1: Winds shift SW. Ocean in Avon look gnarly. Buddy exchanges texts with a couple of locals and the call was to go North and hit Nags Head. Met up with Craig (another great Lakes board head). The 2 locals went out with Sea Lions (which was interesting to see since I just bought one). Winds were light side off, but they made it out through the break and were nailing some very sweet rides. My buddy threw his back out while putting his wet suit on but still went out on his 120L wind sup, caught a couple rides and came back in. Craig and myself struggled with the shore break which had absolutely no wind. Craig, a little more persistent, just drifted with the current before giving up. I gave it quite a few attempts but gave up while my gear was still intact. Lesson of the day: Volume rules...rig small!! On the way down, my buddy stopped us at Boilers (which he is familiar with) and suggested we try again there. Quite intimidating with such a huge shore line, pounding shore break and absolutely no one in site. My buddy sat this out due to his back, but Craig and I rigged. Again not enough wind in the break, got trashed and drifted with the current. Up for a breather, buddy gives us some pointers and we go for another shot. I managed to punch through most of the break, but the very last one had to claim me! once down could not make it back up. Craig got trashed and drifted again. Not Much of windsurfing for me, but a terrific experience. The break is so much more powerful than anything I've experienced anywhere!
Friday 2: Another day at the Bath House SUPing. Did try the sail but winds way too light. Starting to get used to the waves!
Saturday 3: Hung over from way too much good rum. Dragged our bodies to the ocean in Avon in front of the Sail House. Smallish shore break with a head high glassy breaking wave on the sand bar. Managed to nail my best down the line wave rides ever with the big bamboo and paddle. For me, best day of the trip!