We went windsurfing today and last Friday, 4-5 hours each day. The averages today were 15-17 mph in the first two hours, with gusts to 20. On Friday, averages where around 8-10, gusts did not exceed 12. Both days were fun, but one day was at least 5 x more fun - guess which one?
It was Friday, the day with less wind. Today, conditions were marginal for our equipment (we don't have any formula boards or very large sails). We tried to plane using largish sails (8.5 m & 6.2m), with some success until the wind went down. On Friday, the wind was so low that planing clearly was not an option, so we just did light wind freestyle: heli tacks, clew first heli tacks, light wind water starts, back to the sail sailing, sail-, sail body-, and upwind 360s, boomerangs, back wind tacks, and a few more. We were busy, fell into the water a lot, and got a great workout.
In contrast, we barely played around with some heli tacks today, since we did not want to pull out the big sails more than necessary. Yes, there was some planing and a few nice jibes - but overall, Friday was a lot more fun. We learned a lot more on Friday, too - for example, the sail 360s are a great way to learn sail handling for duck jibes and sail flips for regular planing jibes. Our success rates for most tricks improved quite a bit from the first hour to the last.
Last Friday, there were about 4 other windsurfers in Fogland. Two of them did freestyle on decidedly old-school equipment, the other two rigged big sails and hoped for the wind to pick up (it did not). A few years ago, I would have been in the second group, and the day would have been somewhat frustrating. After 4 ABK camps, I was in the freestyle group instead, and had an awful lot of fun.
Thanks again, Andy! Looking forward to the next camps - hopefully several this fall!
Dahab: Freestyle, Friendliness, Cats and Sun
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