Wednesday, October 1, 2008

Hurricane Kyle

It had been raining since Friday, I can’t get too jazzed about surfing in the rain, and I’m definitely not happy about surfing in runoff. One trip to the ER is enough, thanks very much.

Saturday: Discretion is the better part of valour

Saturday was I took a pass with sheets of rain. But loads of locals around here scored if they chose the right spot. I passed, "live to fight another day" being my philosophy.

But on Sunday I promised friends I’d meet them down in Nahant.

Sunday: Nahant 101

Nahant is one of Boston’s oldest Summer colonies, and has a very cool old timey beach. More importantly, the beach is actually a fun break when there’s swell, with log friendly lefts and rights. A nice surprise indeedy.

With the rain still coming down I loaded up the Tyler 777 and headed south around 8:00. It looked so-so here anyway. It’s close, and I slid into a bunch of satisfying rights & lefts some as big as stomach high.

The mellow vibe alone will bring me back. And making the scene at other breaks? Whatever, friends, this is Massachusetts. OK, nothing epic, but new spots are always a rush.

Monday: Viva Maine!

The rain FINALLY cleared, and the swell actually peaked around here. Bad Harbour looked good at about shoulder high. All my favorite folks were there, Rich, John O, Jay, Karen & Jon, Diamond Dave, etc. But I’m so weary of ear infections, and a damn easterly wind was coming up. Phooey!

What to do? The 777 was still in the car. Higgins Beach it was, a gamble that paid off in spades. Arriving at the beach, the conditions were perfect. No wind, overcast skies, low crowds, and head high waves. The beach faces south and is far enough north that it picks up southeast swells (like Kyle) nicely.

What a wave! The 777 was amazing, I started off with a powerful left, and then another. That board catches the wave early, which is a big help at Higgins. The wave of the day had to be a right that took me straight to the rocks that surface on the dropping tide.

So a head high plus rightie comes through, all for me. It was a later take-off, but after cranking my turn I started to accelerate and accelerate and accelerate. I was freaking’ flying. Flying towards to rocks. Not to worry 777 was so loose I made the most stylish of pullouts. Talk about feeling like a Mack! That was one of the biggest buzzes in surfing I’ve ever had, straight up.

A few more gorgeous waves and I was done for the day. Have you ever known that super satisfied feeling? That feeling that you’re ten feet tall. That’s how I was. Just don’t tell your friends who have to work about it for a few days! Don't worry, at least y'all have regular work.

I wanted to scope out a surf shop in Portland, just 2 more exits up 95. Portland is such a pretty town. There’s a good mix of business and culture. Loads of funky little craft shops, yoga studios, bike shops, even a record store (yay!). But the objective was Corduroy Surf Co. and the adjacent Sebago Brewing Company. Corduroy is my kinda place, a surf shop for adults, artsy & designy but not pretentious. He sells clothes that I’d actually wear too. No Volcom, Quickie, etc. It’s the anti Ron Jon’s. Jim, the proprietor is a nice guy, into logs, single fins & fish. Corduroy: great shop that supports local artists with shows and receptions. I’ll be back there too.

Sebago Brewing Company is a fabulous brew pup with possibly the best burger in the world, as well as a full dinner menu with fish, steaks, and lobster.

Tuesday: Back to da Creek
After Monday almost anything would be a let down. All I had time for was a peek at the creek. That stupid easterly flow had come up yet again. But rather than being disappointed, my sense of satisfaction of going to Maine was reinforced. Viva Maine.