Long spring bank hols in Westward Ho!
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Last updated: 10/06/12 11:00 By: Andrew
Arrived down on saturday morning after attending the wedding of Richard B to Jane w on the friday at Salisbury. Not much wind about & just a load of strong current warning signs all the way down the beach ( humm not normal!). My mate chris L arrived in his new BMW estate with no kit, the bolt for the roof rack broke at 5am that morning, then there was a number of messages coming in from the normal Nth Devon crowd, van, car, health problems people were dropping like flies, this just left george & family (surfers) Chris no kit & me, Ok the show goes on,and its a great place, then i get a message about a problem at my mothers house, (something is going on here).
Sunday it was windy cross/on, very few surfers & kite surfers & no other windsurfers out, I rigged up & went down the beach for a blast, fell in and found out why only a few people were out, the current swept my legs away & sucked the sail stright down & waves breaking over me, (I need this like a hole in the head) once I poped the sail up I came in & called it a day, just proves those current signs were right! I had to leave on monday to sort out the problem at my mothers house.
I apologize to anyone who arrived after this.
Arrived down at Westward Ho on Monday after a serious bout of man flu over the weekend. Beautiful sunny day but no-one about. So given I appeared to be nobby no-mates, decided to go round to Saunton for a surf where it would be a bit more sheltered from the northerly breeze. Surfed under the cliffs with the locals on a lovely clean right hander. Sooooo nice being back in proper ground swell waves rather than wind waves we normally get on the south coast. Tuesday was wet and miserable so toured the surf shops in Braunton looking for a new board and then went for a surf on a test board at Saunton. Really old skool so changed back to my own board.
Wednesday the sun came out again and there was a light onshore breeze so sailed at the Ho - no-one else out but some locals came down for a look and ended up getting the low down on where they all go in a SW'ly. All of them were talking about the car park on the other side which was where Nigel told me about. Friday was going to be the day.
Enjoyable day floating about in the waves trying to pick some off. A Wind SUP would have been great today.
Thursday was cross offshore and super gusty. Anything from a 7.0 down to a 3.0 would have been good at some point during the day. So went with a 4.7 to avoid getting seriously mullered and a 95 for the float.
I'd been surfing in the morning and there was some great ground swell which was being held up by the offshore winds. The wind coming up the face made it a struggle to paddle on to the wave but once on the wave you got some amazingly long rides.
Switched to windsurfing in the afternoon and a few of the locals turned up. We were sailing up towards to town end of the beach, picking up the set waves and riding them back to the lifeguard hut. They were epic rides, I counted 11 bottom turns on one wave. They just went on and on and on. It was like being in a movie, looking down the line of this totally green wave stretching away into the distance - just epic conditions.
The quality of the waves gets this my best ever rating.
Well the wind that had been talked about all week really came in today. The main beach was totally unsailable today - closing out up and down the beach with white water as far as you could see. Went round to the other car park that the locals had been talking about. Definitely a great option although it can only be sailed either side of high tide and there is some serious tidal flow running through the estuary mouth. Effectively in a south westerly, you sail out from the south side of the estuary mouth across really smooth swell lines to the bar on the north side of the mouth where the waves are really ramping up. Definitely see the benefit in sailing from there but to be honest it was just too much survival conditions to enjoy. The wind was just mental making it a challenge just getting to the waters edge.