Just back from Tybee!

Discussion in 'General Paddling Discussions' started by pawsplus, Mar 12, 2019.

  1. pawsplus

    pawsplus Paddler

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    My friend Joel and I just returned from a 4 day trip to Tybee Island, GA. 2 travel days, 2 paddling days. We did private training w/ Ronnie and Marsha, who own Sea Kayak GA, on both days.

    The weather was AMAZING. 70F, sunny, water comfy in a dry suit. The first day we had a neat little tiderace --almost a standing wave--during outgoing tide that was not too big and so really perfect to practice surfing on without getting rattled (which I do when I hear the wave bearing down on me LOL!). I was able to adjust the boat and concentrate on finesse stuff instead of just trying to stay upright. Also plenty of "real" surfing. I avoid the big stuff. My goal is to be safe when I need to make a surf landing, not to barrel along as fast as I can. :) Worked on low brace turn into the wave when I broached and got pretty good at that--except for one time when I wasn't fast enough and the wave got the bottom of my boat and dumped me. And DAMMITALL but I blew my roll. I can do 5 different GL rolls now in all kinds of situations, but apparently NOT when the surf is pounding me into the sand. BUT I did re-enter and roll so I got credit for that.

    After that, Marsha got in the water with me (poor her, getting battered by the surf and having to hold onto my boat!) and I practiced. Even knowing I was going in, I found I got confused with all the activity above me and blew a few to start with. But then I made myself relax and take the time to get set up and get the paddle to the surface, and I was able to roll then, both sides. That made me feel better!

    Also worked on some rescues in rougher water, and in a quiet cove, worked on my Norsaq roll. I hadn't had a chance to work on that since late Oct. -- I can only use a WW boat in the pool classes and I can't for the life of me roll those flat boats w/out a real paddle. But I did some really great ones the other day, with no extra "swipe" at the end--very clean and precise. That made me happy.

    Didn't get any pix b/c everyone was too busy DOING stuff! I wish I had made someone get some vid of me surfing, but when you're doing it you don't think about it!

    We camped out at the RV campground on Tybee where we have camped before. It's lovely and clean, with nice bathrooms and private showers, but man do they take advantage of their "only game in town" status. $70 a night for a tent site b/c there was an Irish parade last weekend! Highway robbery!
     
  2. JohnAbercrombie

    JohnAbercrombie Paddler

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    SHHHHH!! Don't give folks out here any more ideas!
    :)
     
  3. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    Paws, kudos for sticking it out in that rambunctious, confusing surf. For the record, despite an entire childhood as a body surfer and surfboarder through my teens, up to 8 foot surf, when I did a little kayak surfing in three foot waves, I was fully disoriented and bailed numerous times. The dynamics of controlling a long floating log (aka sea kayak) are not intuitive.

    West Coast surf is kinder and gentler, I believe. Something about the Coriolis effect I think. ;);)
     
    chodups likes this.
  4. AndyM

    AndyM Paddler

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    I think I will beg to differ (a bit). Maybe it is in the summer, not so much in the winter.
    I'm in Jacksonville, FL, a few miles south of Tybee (Savannah GA).
    I've not been there (yet), but the Tybee area has a reputation for being a fine spot for playing in conditions created by the currents & tides.
    I 'LEARNED' surf when living in Kirkland, WA ('94->'06).
    I would head over to Westport or Ocean Shores (on coast, due west of Olympia, WA) on weekends.
    The 'winter' surf was predictably rough. When I would arrive, if it was TOO big, I would just play in the 'foam' near shore, otherwise, would go out and get 'beat up' by the surf.
    Other than Hurricane season, on this coast (FL), typically we get very little (compared to the WA winter surf).
     
  5. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    AndyM, perhaps you missed the emoticons after my tongue in cheek reference to the Coriolis effect.

    Did you ever surf the Cove at Seaside, OR? Great rip, almost an escalator effect to avoid a thrashing on the paddle out, and plenty of space to avoid conflicts with surfers and the (few) SUP folks.
     
  6. AndyM

    AndyM Paddler

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    sorry, I did have an inkling that it might be joking, so I did look around for the tipoff, did not notice the 'mojies (not to up on them).
    I did take a trip to Seaside once. Surf was way up, I decided to stay on shore.
    The jetty at Westport also has a 'path' out.

    After spending some time there, I started using a whitewater kayak instead of a seakayak because it was 'safer'.
    In a seakayak, one is able to get through some dangerous surf (with the potential of a bad surf back in).
    In a ww boat, you won't be able to get through the (severe) surf in the first place (before being beaten back in). Kind of a 'fuse' that won't allow you through surf that's too much.
     
  7. Astoriadave

    Astoriadave Paddler

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    AndyM, no offense meant or taken. Sounds like you have been having some fun with real surf. I see kayak surfers around here very rarely, and most are in WW boats.

    The Cove is often overhead on the point (smaller closer in) and sometimes twice that. No place for composite boats. Don't blame you for holding back. The break there has become less well defined, seems to me, last six months, with the first point break suffering the most. I would not take a kayak there, anyway, too crowded and plungy.

    OTOH, the takeoffs on the less well defined breaks closer in and well to the N of the rip are generally better suited for kayaks and the SUP crowd. If you decide to try it again, call Cleanline Surf in Seaside and ask about conditions. Pretty much strictly boardheads, but very nice people, and they will lay out the local etiquette for you.

    https://www.cleanlinesurf.com