Saturday, September 3, 2011

Wind for the ABK Camp Hyannis!

It looks like the wind is returning just in time for the ABK Camp in Hyannis next week (Friday 9-9 to Sunday 9-11):
I know that a lot of windsurfers hesitate to sign up for the camp because they only want to do the camp if it's windy. Well, it looks like the fall winds are back - sign up quickly! Last year, the camp was full, and I think some windsurfers who had wanted to sign up late had to be turned away. If all of you who have been waiting for a wind forecast sign up now instead of waiting until a couple of days before the camp, this also gives Andy the chance to expand the camp if necessary: he can ask an additional local ABK instructor to come to teach, and let additional windsurfers join the camp. He cannot really do this if the camp fills up just a day before. And a larger camp is actually a good thing, since it gives campers more options to choose what to learn (and you meet more local windsurfers).

The predicted wind direction for the first day is northeast, which is a great wind direction in Kalmus. In NE winds, we will be sailing in Lewis Bay - either near the small beach at the Lewis Bay side, or across from the channel at Egg Island:
We have sailed these spots during the last 2 camps, too. They have a good fetch across Lewis Bay, so the winds are surprisingly good for northerlies on the south side of the Cape. Spot 1 has plenty of shallow water for beginners and to work on waterstarts; spot 2 also has shallow areas that are great for instruction. We have had at least one day with plenty of wind to work on planing jibes, duck jibes, and other planing tricks the last 2 years.

Of course, it is possible that we'll have one or two days with less wind. I actually hope that we do! We'll be working on light wind tricks like helicopter tacks, push tacks, 360s, geckos, loop exercises, and more. There's a lot of things that can be learned in light wind which really translate into better high-wind sailing. That includes sail control and board control; I have seen many examples of windsurfers who practiced a lot in light winds, and improved way more than others who shunned light wind practice. In our  6 weeks in Maui, the only thing I really learned was how to deal with chop and high winds better; so far, I have always learned more new things in 2 days of light wind practice during ABK camps. Nina, who  often chooses to work on light wind freestyle in marginal conditions when I try to plane, has improved a lot more than I have in the past year. That has paid off even in the high winds on Maui: during our last few sessions there, she generally had the better jibes, both with respect to success rate and to minimum speed. But most importantly, learning light wind freestyle (and getting over the initial hump) means an end to the dreaded "no wind" days! There's almost always enough wind for light wind freestyle, and it can be a lot of fun. Don't just take my word for it - look at what other campers had to say after the ABK Camp in Bonaire this January:

So, what are you waiting for? If you windsurf and live anywhere close to Cape Cod, sign up for the ABK Camp! See you there!

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