Wednesday, July 14, 2010

Going slow is fun, too

A few days ago, we decided to go light wind surfing, and took our Kona Mahalo along. We sailed about 5 hours, without any chance of planing, and had a lot of fun. We did a bit of tandem sailing on the Kona, but most of the time, I used it alone.

It reminded me of the time when I learned windsurfing, when just gliding through the water on an original windsurfer or similar boards in light wind was very fascinating. I have not done to much of this in recent years. But the Kona Mahalo has similar dimensions to the old longboards, and is narrow enough to give this lovely gliding sensation in low winds. I tried to capture some of this with a head-mounted GoPro Hero HD camera:

In our addiction to planing, we often forget that there are other ways to have fun. Board developments in the last 20 years are partially to blame. As boards got wider and shorter, they planed more easily, but they took all the fun out of going slow. My other big boards is a Bic Techno 293, which is not too wide (80 cm) and longer (293 cm) than most other boards out there - but nevertheless, low wind gliding on the narrower and longer Kona Mahalo is a lot more fun.

Another thing that the Kona Mahalo is great for is light wind free style. It's a great platform for sail-oriented tricks, and the soft padding makes scrambling back up a pleasure. It's also great for old-fashioned rail rides, but I have not mastered those yet. Here's a short video of the things we were working on:

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