wind tolerance

We have been having 15+ winds nearly everyday since march…sometimes 20+ with 30mph gusts. It is highly unusual weather for us. As everyone here knows, wind is not the most welcome weather development for kayakers. I have been paddling in it, against it and with it for all this time and I find myself cutting my paddle time in half to about 2 hours sometimes out of fatigue.Maybe I was just spoiled by good conditions last fall and this winter. How many of you paddle in this kind of wind on a regular basis? What is your usual cut off point as far as wind speed?

If the forecast is solid 25 I’m looking
for sheltered waters or playing on shore. NO doubt! Even at 20 I’m thinking what I kow about local effects which can sometimes be far more than forecast at somee places. 15 I’m going out.

As you should know by now there are much better paddlers than I on this board.

Re Winds
Down here in S.E. Texas along the gulf, the winds are always around with the exception of early morning typically. This time of year they are typically SSE at 15 to 20 along the coast it seems. The winds rarely cause us to cut a trip short unless we have new or inexperienced paddlers in the group. Winds really don’t typically bother me until they are steady 20 mph or so in my kayak, yes in can be a slog into the wind, but hopefully we have tail wind on the way back, but my usual luck is a head wind going out then no wind on the way back. Now in my canoes it is a different story, typically seek out shelter water ways or get out early, I have had a few real struggles trying to get back in my canoe. I will also try to paddle up wind first to have a tail wind coming back, but not always. The wind is fairly constant here, good for sailing though.

15 MPH
(which is less than 15 knots) is when you start having fun with nice chops and waves. It’s exhilarating. Unfortunatley, it’s the coming back around that stinks, though one can get into a groove for that as well. :smiley:

I find it okay to go out at 20 knots sustained (which mean gusts of 5-10 knots more) but I am careful to paddle waters I know. I won’t pick a 20 knot day to go exploring new waters.

If the projection is for 25 knots sustained, only reason I am going out is to surf. I wouldn’t go touring in that.


not unusual winds
every year all the commercial fisherman anticipate the “40 days of wind” here in fla, and we go to the boatyard to refit our it came a little early this year…no big deal, gives us a little break, we all know to save our money and plan onshore projects…those who forget the past are doomed to repeat it.usually by the third week in may there won’t be a puff of air and summer will abruptly be here.enjoy the breeze while you can.

My crazy husband
goes out in all kinds of conditions. He likes big waves and strong winds. You would figure he would learn something by losing a boat on the rocks but he still regularly paddles in 25-30 knot winds. At least he has good insurance!

Everyone does NOT know that
Wind can be a very good thing when it’s behind you. A good downwind run on a 20-25 knot day is one of life’s great pleasures. Headwinds are a different story, but it’s still good training.

No reason to be exposed if you don’t want to be - and still be able to paddle on any day in S FL (except in hurricanes). The 40 (now 80) days of wind is a good season to check out all the canals and other waterways S FL has to offer. Rest of the ICW is a bit more sheltered than Biscayne/Atlantic (but traffic/wakes are more concentrated/reflected off seawalls) - the rivers much more sheltered still.

Once the wind stops -you’ll be so hot you’ll wish it hadn’t! My 100oz CamelBack lasts me 3-4 hours now - next month I’ll be needing to bring more fluid along. Heat stroke and sunburn hazard gets real.

Sunday was close to 20 mph most of the afternoon (according to NWS - I saw a bit less but some gusts too) and with the lower humidity we’ve been having and the cooling breeze it made for a great paddle. I tend to get out late - you morning types can paddle in a little calmer part of the day.

Gee, That Sounds Like Someone I Know…
That lost boat wasn’t a Eddyline Falcon was it?

I sometimes like to go out in extreme winds to play, but only if they are onshore winds. I stay close to shore.

Out Against the Wind
I always try and go out against the wind and come back with it.

I will got out in pretty crazy stuff as long as it is an onshore wind.

Got caught once in 40mph winds
with gusts to 50 during a crossing. The last 5 miles was a wild ride with winds coming from the stern. I go out in 25-30 knot winds on Tahoe regularly to get some wave action and do rescue practice. It is kind of fun to surf fresh water. I do enjoy a long paddle surfing down smaller wave crests.

Remember Eagle Point?
Remember that day I got caught in those strong gusts off Eagle Point coming out of Emerald Bay in the Shearwater?

That was certainly one of the breeziest days I ever had.

Check out my pics from last month

click on North Lake Tahoe

Chuck, Fun, Chuck!

– Last Updated: May-12-04 4:40 PM EST –

Lake Tahoe looks great with the waves! Yeahaw!!! My wife and I backpacked up there for a week for our honeymoon.

I am still jealous of your Reno Waterpark. But maybe not for too, too long. Proposals for a waterpark in Connecticutt, one in Fitchburg/MA and one maybe even below the Waltham Dam on the Charles. YeeHaw!


Well it’s a total workout
trying to get back to shore when the winds are gusting to 42 knots with an offshore wind-that’s paddle flyin’ paddling! I’ve done that one before- not easy when ya have hardware in your shoulder that’s trying to come out at every stroke! Not something I’ll repeat!

kayaking in 20+kt is a terrible
waste of good sailboard weather.

The Park is great
I do a couple of hours getting worked and working out. Really helps develop sea kayaking skills too…

Bite your tongue!
And quit tacking right in front of me when I’m on a wave. :wink:

wind this year

– Last Updated: May-12-04 5:32 PM EST –

The wind has been driving me batty since I moved to central florida. It's also been really fun. I've been trying to learn to paddle a sprint kayak in it. On a lake that is 1km wide and 3km long with boat traffic. ESE winds are on beam if I head down the lake. Shaky. I usually end up in the Dead River where I can get some shelter. The wind really only bothers me if I'm really trying to stick to a nice fluid technique and have wind on beam making me throw half strokes and such.

Some days I've been doing mornings in the K1 when it's calm and using my surfski when it's blowing. I also paddle surf ski on the ocean and find that a brisk E to SE wind makes for a super fun chop. The other day the bouy was ticking 5feet and 6seconds which is super steep stuff. Crappy surf but awesome downwind paddling. My personnal limit is about 20-25kts sustained (usually means gusts to 30+) if I've got to go into it for a great distance. I'm pretty fit but when it's blowing 25 in my face I'm lucky to make 4mph. Then again, on the ocean, paddling 4-5miles into the wind and then surfing home in half the time or less is pretty fun.

Edit to add: Actually, the seabreaze is pretty nice. The afternoon temps in the low 80s/upper 70s with a breeze and sunshine.... I'll save me weather complaint for when near daily afternoon storms start interupting my workout regiment.

well, lees…
I am looking at next week’s forcast and I still see strong winds…into the fourth week of May.

This should have stopped in mid april, not mid may.