Saturday, May 3, 2014

Slim Pickin's ... a week's difference

It's pretty remarkable the difference that a week can make.  Other than the water temperature struggling to get back up into the 60's, today could have been a page from August's book.  Instead of sizable, crossing south and northwest swells throwing overhead peaks and churning the water sandy brown, a small and lazy south swell presented blue-green peelers while the beach filled in with seekers of a summer preview.

We planned a late (8:30) arrival, to allow the tide to fill in from a negative low at 7:00, but, as the photo (taken after our session) below shows, even after 10:30 it was still very low.  It was already warm as we suited up, making the 60-degree water refreshingly cool. 

Expectations were low, but a nice day beckoned, and there were ride-able "smallies."  Only a few surfers were out, at the main peak, as Mark Ghattas and I swam out to the north and lazed our way down to the rocks south of Main Peak.  Further south, in front of the 1st lifeguard tower - "LG 1" - the junior guards program was commencing.  Throughout the session, they were on the shore, running up & down the beach, occasionally entering the cold water with poorly suppressed gasps.

It was a good day for a beginner to practice:

Meanwhile, the real pros trolled just outside the break (below - click for full screen).

Me? I decided to practice an alternative mount for the GoPro.  Previously, I have only used a wrist mount that allowed me to surf and then access it when I wanted.  This time, I used a small, floating post that permitted me to aim where I want, but required a hand to hold it throughout.  Harder to surf and shoot, but it allowed some different shots - better forward-looking angles showing the bodysurfer's view.  The results are below:

It was a lazy, low-key session, stretch 90 minutes as the day warmed and the beach filled.  Although the waves were small, there were still some decent rides to be had, evidenced in one clip in the video of Mark on a long left.  Also, there were sparkling mini-tubes, a few of which are also captured in the video (click below for full screen). 

I'm off for a couple of weeks, traveling, so it was nice to get some beach time to send me off.

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