Windsurfing & Stand-Up Paddleboarding in Michigan
July 6, 2018 – Lake Michigan, Bic Techno II 135L, 6.8m sail
Knocked out a bunch of odd jobs and small projects around the house yesterday (no wind). Forecast was calling for 15-25 knot winds in the afternoon starting around 3pm, waves building to 3-5ft. Knocked off a few more in the morning, then went down to help my Aunt with some yardwork. Pulled weeds, trimmed shrubs, raked, killed a bunch of ivy, all while keeping one eye on the wind in the trees. Nothing happening. . .
I had pretty much given up, so I went down to see if my brother needed help installing an air conditioner for my Aunt. Helped him put the finishing touches on that job and Glory Be and Begorah! The wind started picking up! Nothing to get too excited about, but if it keeps building . . .
45 minutes later I am down on the beach rigging up the Bic Techno and 6.8 sail. This time I get the harness lines approximately right and lower the boom a little vs. last time. First run is about a ¾ mile out and back. Solidly powered the whole way. Stop to make a quick fine-tuning of the harness lines and for the next few hours I am in heaven! Twenty minutes of sailing followed by a quick rest/recovery on the beach, and repeat. Very dialed in.
Sailing conditions were just short of epic! Lots of ramps to hit on the way out on the starboard tack. I landed more starboard tack jumps that day than a year in the gorge. Starboard jumping usually feels awkward to me, but these waves lined up in such a way that it I felt quite comfortable going for big jumps (big for me, anyway). Jibing was solid on the inside and out. 135L of float really makes the jibes easier. The swell beyond about ½ mile off shore was occasionally huge and super fun to play in. The breaking waves weren’t quite big enough to ride. They were breaking quite close to shore and without a whole lot of power, but still I got a little sensation of surfing the waves on the way in. The board handled great for its size and the sail was perfect. Could use a new coat of non-skid. If the wind would have picked up just a bit I could have switched to a smaller sail and smaller board. Getting in and out past the impact zone was easy at first, but as the waves built I started having some trouble. The darn rocks near shore are treacherous to the toes and fins. I really need to find a place to launch where it’s sand all the way so I can sail right up to the shore and jump off the board. Otherwise the breaking waves wreak havoc with the big gear.
I am happy! And I can’t wait for a big south wind day so I can hit the ramps on the port tack and really launch some airs!
But for now I am back in Oregon and back to work on Monday.
Another pic from Jul 6, 2018
Wow, Jim, thanks for the session report. Looks like an awesome day!
Nice pictures! Who took them? Next time - take some video!
Here is some video my brother shot.
There's a video's tab. You can post that here too.