Tuesday, July 20, 2010

60: Day 11 – Waves at Ho'okipa!

The non summer-like weather continues and despite experiencing a little more cloud and less wind that normal we have been consistently treated to above trend surf for July. Today was the best day in July so far with waist to overhead surf at Ho’okipa out of the North East. The beach looked more like late spring than mid summer and with many of the travelling pros away wave selection was rather easier. I must give a shout out to Bernd Roediger and Graham Ezzy who were killing it today more than others especially considering the tradish nature of the swell. Sorry no GoPro video or pics today, I was concentrating on sailing today but was gutted that I missed a great shot when my buddy Phil and I were riding the same overhead wave, he went first, I followed and hit a nice vertical aerial and looking down all I could see was him in the bowl, was a super cool moment, just as I landed super vertical I caught the nose and wiped out inches from him (which was rather funny), would have been a nice piece of video or pics. I think that I have solved the fogging issue, after getting the stuff my friend Dave suggested I chatted to Bart who told me that the HD cameras were especially liable to fogging and GoPro have made special re-useable inserts that set me back $16 which soak up any moisture I will see how that works out.

I was testing another board today because I wasn’t convinced about the starboard, this time it was a 78ltr custom (ex Diony Guadagnino) logo’d as Mistral but made in the Nelson factory (they make super strong boards – which is good for me!). This board is a super short and wide nosed with twin fins, on this board the fins seem to be set further apart. This board is set up to turn and turn it does and while testing it was clear that it needs to be driven hard, extremely hard all the time. On the wave it great on the bottom turn but the wide and short nose without much lift made it rather sketchy when coming off the vertical lip and landing aerials in the pocket. I think that a board like this should be in my van and I think that it would be much better for the winter with smoother waves and more offshore wind with more loaded up top turn. As an all round wave machine this is not right for me at the moment (I am kinda disappointed because I do really like it but I must use my head not my heart). More breakages today as my rather old harness exploaded, (I thought that I had heard a few creaks earlier in the day) it is amazing how hard it is to sail without a harness.

You can clearly see how wide/short the nose is on this board.

The search goes on, I will be back on my Tabou tomorrow and look forward to the under foot comfort. I know that I am no spring chicken (33) and have been abusing my feet, ankles and knees for many years and the extra padding on the Tabou boards combined with my super soft and comfy Hot Sails straps are like my Nike Air Max which have reduced the pain in my knee although I hear that some feel that they are too soft. Given the saturation of Quads at Ho’okipa I must try a couple before I decide to stay with a Twin.

What’s up next? Waves are set to continue for another day. Keen to get back on my Tabou it was a funny sight last night at my house with me laminating in my back yard with my headlights on, I couldn’t see much and I will see in the morning how clean my glassing was. Got an email to say that my GPS unit has arrived so I will be able to post some speed tracks and it will be great for my slalom training over the coming days. I will be testing some new fins which are about to hit the market in the coming days which will be interesting and will let you know how that goes.

On review in the light it seems that I did an okay job in the dark, I guess I have had rather alot of practice! Time now for the sander so that it is fit for the water today then it'll be filler and paint tonight although the forecast is for rain so that might have to wait.

More to follow…


  1. Hey Chris, was good to meet you the other day at Kanaha Kai. Wish I was still on Maui!
    Have you tried out Exocet boards? They have very comfy footpads that absorb alot of the shock. I didn't see many Exocets when I was there though.

  2. Andrew, Great to meet you and the guys too. Thanks for the tip, I have an Exocet slalom board so will check out their wave boards. When is the windy season in Cayman?

  3. Yeah I used to have an Exocet Cross freestyle/wave board and really liked it - comfortable ride.

    Windy season starts November and runs through to April with usually 15-25 knots NE. More info on the website www.caymanwindsurf.ky.

  4. Looking forward to seeing some video and pic from your windy season.