Tropical-Like SE Wavesailing Saturday!

UPDATE (10/27/2008): Excellent video of the Cove Action Saturday at LIH!

Yesterday we had a rare SE wind event on the OBX! The forecast came true with strong SE to SSE wind all day. Anytime there is SE wind in the forecast, the Cove is the call! I arrived at the Cove around noon and as I rounded Cape Point on the sand, the skies around the Cove were filled with kites! It was a kiteboarders extravaganza with everyone hitting the conditions out there. On the windsurfing side, there were only a few of us who sailed it, but it was fun given the unique conditions offered at the Cove. Yesterday, the strong south element of the wind provided a side-onshore wavesailing session. However, side-on at the Cove is very different as compared to the other beaches around the island. The Cove wave is always a big long wall with very distinguishable lines and spacing between the whitewater. Its the closest we get to a Hookipa wave in Hatteras, and perhaps on the East Coast! Yesterday, the surf was BIG with easily 8 to 10 foot outside lines. Diamond Shoals swell meter was reading 10 to 17ft! Even though the surf was big, it was easy to navigate around the critical sections once out past the heavy whitewatered inside.

Following the Cove session, I trekked north to search for side-off conditions as the wind turned more southerly. I found a big clean wave on the North end of Oregon Inlet. The weather was horrible when I launched with spitting rain and low visibility. The shorepound was huge and it was pure timing to make it out. Luckily, I timed right and shot out with no problems. I sailed solo in the big outside surf for about 6 runs before getting tagged a little inside, downwind, and in a weird current zone. No power in the sail, so I brought it back to the beach. Keith, Caleb, and Jim were there, and later Dan arrived. Jim and Dan gave it a go and after being denied a few times, both made it out. All in all, the Oregon Inlet session would have been fun if there were clear skies and sunshine, but the ominous weather made the water look that much more uninviting.

For me though, it was great to catch side-on big surf at the Cove in the morning, and side-off big surf at Oregon Inlet during the afternoon. Two completely different sessions on the same day! The beauty of wavesailing on the Outer Banks!

Some Cove photos submitted by Roland Zueger:

Keith M in the foreground coming in with Bill B in the background launching a back side wave aerial in the big stuff!

Keith M dropping in frontside on the inside!

Bill B challenging the whitewater! Made it out too!

One of the kite crew catching a wave!

Bill B floating over a lot of whitewater on the way to the outside.

Keith M with a nice floater!

Here is some video of the day's Atlantic Ocean action: