I rarely say ‘its too big’. People call me crazy on a day I just consider ‘good fun’. But yesterday…yesterday was something else. I’ve paddled many time in conditions close to this, but I just got a GoPro and wanted to record a couple-times-a-year wind/wave event. Sunday was 8’ and 20kts and a rippin good time. Monday was a whole nother’ beast.
6-12’ @ 7-12 seconds swell
25kt gusting to 35 at 315° (thats knots, not mph!)
Upwind progress was ~1kt
I made it about 100 yards past the harbor breakwall, saw what I came to see and called it a day.
I would have paddled more yesterday but the wind direction of NW/NNW meant being blown quickly into a line of jetties which didnt sound fun, the wind was blowing me away from the harbor entrance, and upwind progress was very hard and slow, even at full effort. If I was not dead parallel to the wind the bow of my boat would get blown 30* south every time I crested a 12 footer.
Normally the strong winds are from the west so the risk of being blown into rocks is low. Fun times though. I was leaning into the wind at 15 or more degrees just to keep myself centered.
One thing I have never seen before - the top 4 feet of a wave break in open water. I have had 2 feet of wave break on me a mile off shore many times, but never 3 or 4 feet. At that point its almost like being hit by shorebreak! The wind was so strong the waves were near critical, everywhere, all the time. Any time a set overlapped or ran into an out-flowing current, it provided just enough more energy to cause the waves to violently break in open water.
I’m still working out the gopro positioning and forgot the RainX, so forgive the water droplets and occasional down angle.
Best shots are from about 3:00 to 7:00.
Before you all call me crazy, I have done this many times, know the area well, limited my exposure, and had several layers of backup plans. I do not recommend anyone but expert level paddlers attempt anything similar. That said, I love an angry ocean and few get to witness such power up close. Its truly amazing.
Closest Buoy to me CDIP summary 203