Offshore Lesson Today

I had signed up for an offshore lesson today in preparation for a race early next month. We were to paddle the course and talk about racing points of interest along the way. And we were going to do a surf landing and launch as this would be our safety valve if things got bad on race day.

The wind blew 20-25 all day yesterday and all night long acording to NWS. The forcast called for 25-30 today and it was whipping pretty good this morning. I packed up and drove down to the put in expecting to hear that things were postponed due to weather. But we went off with the understanding that we would turn around if things got too rough.

Things were rough, to me, even in Banks Channel which is on the lee side of Wrightsville Beach. The Inlet was a bit confused and had some three and four foot rollers comming in. But, when we turned out of the protected Inlet with breakwaters on either side it got rough. The highest swells I have ever paddled and a cross chop of breaking and spraying water. We got to the race halfway point where we will turn around race day. The waves on the beach were much smaller than the swell but were between waist and head height. We did our landings one at a time. I almost made it all the way in but was turned over but managed to get back up without falling out and side surfed the rest of the way in. It took me two trys to get out but was happy when I did.

This was the roughest water I had paddled and maybe a bit above my competance level but was very happy to have attended the class.

Happy Paddling,


Keep That Up…
you’ll turn into a rough water addict. Downside is that you will become totally bored when winds and/or sea ain’t kicking.


I think I will ask for a refund…
on that race, or at least make sure my will is in order!

I don’t worry about a beach landing in surf. The breakers should throw both the yak and myself in the right direction even though we will probably be parted.

It is that washing machine in the inlet that bothers me.

I guess the other option is to pray to the paddling gods that we have a windless day.



Sounds like you were well accompanied, with appropriate safety measures in place. While not an answer for everything, having people along with the skills and experience slightly higher than yours makes for a more reassuring paddle. Glad you got out of it ok. All experiences that you walk away from intact are good. You should be feeling pretty good right about now.


Our wind during the past two or three days is really unusual. We typically don’t get much at night or during the mornings without a storm or front. On the other hand, maybe a word or two to the paddling gods would help.

I woke up with a stiff neck this morning. I figure that continually turning around to see how high the next one comming must have streached something.

Happy Paddling,


You da Man!
I’da been scared… and seasick.

Paddling Related Post !
Thanks for posting something actually related to paddling and being on the water. It seems like a lot of the posts lately really don’t have much to do actually spending time on the water. I like to hear when people have had an “Ah ha!” experience and broadened their horizons. I think what keeps a lot of us interested in kayaking is learning to handle new situations that once seemed scary or impossible until it becomes the situation that you really love to spend time in, and gives you a sense of accomplishment and existing in the moment that you just don’t get in your daily life otherwise.

Nice Job

– Last Updated: Apr-16-06 11:40 AM EST –

and congrats on a successful recovery.

Hey Mark
On that roll coming in; did you recover it yourself, or was it the wave itself that saved you?

I have been in that sideways position on different occasions , and just by luck surfed sideways all the way in, all the time just waiting to get dumped.



Bored? Never! :slight_smile:
I love it when conditions get lively in the ocean, and do much of my paddling in these conditions, but I still love just as much meandering silently through calm wetlands, and spending time on quiet rivers and lakes. Where I live, I get to enjoy all of these, and in nine years of paddling, I can’t recall even a moment of boredom. Whenever and wherever I’m in my boat, I’m in one of my favorite “happy places”, so how can I become bored? :slight_smile:


I’m Sure Luck Was Involved

– Last Updated: Apr-18-06 6:59 AM EST –

In my case somehow I got dunked while perpendicular to the breaking wave face. I got up in-between waves, and somehow found myself in a good position to brace over the next incomming wave. Needless to say I need a lot of practice. I will practice but on a calmer day at least until I get all the techniques working.

Happy Paddling,


Okay, Speaking For Myself…

– Last Updated: Apr-17-06 5:44 AM EST –

as a self professed adrenaline junky, I am largely bored on flatwater. These days, if nothing is happening on the ocean, I would rather look for a white water run or go out with my kid on a skateboard. :)


Don’t Sell Yourself Short…

– Last Updated: Apr-17-06 5:48 AM EST –

you came back up in situation that a lot folks would just panick and bail. A sign of mind/body integration is when you do something without even thinking about it.


Great point