Sunday, October 14, 2007

What's SUP?

**UPDATE- Check out this post for more info and a local SUP video**

I had so much fun camping in the Outer Banks last month that I couldn't resist another excursion. This time I went with a new windsurfing buddy named John Gelinne. We planned the trip a week ago when the forecast called for 25 knots of wind. Unfortunately, the meteorologists' early prediction was 100% wrong (see below).

We turned lemons to lemonade, though, finding Saturday morning's eerie calm perfect for "Stand Up Paddleboarding". I used my Kona windsurf board and a long paddle borrowed from Jim Perry. The Pamlico Sound was a mirror merging with the sky, and gliding across it felt like floating on air. Looking down I could see fish of all sorts darting amongst the seagrass patches. The only other people on the water were a kid and his mom fishing from a kayak . The boy caught a few little fish and was ecstatic. It's nice when parents do natural, outdoors stuff with their kids.

My paddling excursion didn't tempt the wind to blow, but when John went out after me, a dark "wind-line" appeared far away on the water, and moved gradually closer. By the time he came to shore the flags were rustling and we had sufficient breeze for mellow windsurfing. Later in the afternoon the wind picked up enough for some planing runs with my big 8.5 sail, capping off of the slow crescendo of the day. John snapped this nice shot of the sunset from the campground.

Sunday wasn't totally glassy in the morning, but the wind never picked up much at all. Nevertheless, John and I got our thrill by challenging the Atlantic Ocean at "Ego Beach", where we comically struggled to sail out through the waves and ride them back to shore.


Mac said...

James, Good stuff....inspiring to get out there and have fun even if there's no to little wind. I'm going to OBX this weekend with a hope and prayer of some wind but will have fun no matter what...maybe even some SUP! Mac

James Douglass said...

Yeah, man! I think you might actually score quite a bit of wind this weekend. Let me know how it goes.