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National Windsurfing Championships 2018
Iona receiving her trophy from Guy Cribb having come first in her fleet (4.5m)


Vulcan attempt # 1
My first proper vulcan attempt...

Diary summary statistics

By Board
By Sail
By Board/sail
VenuesBoard sizeTotal
Weymouth     1    1           2  4
Morocco     3  3        4  1    11
Poole          2              2
Christchurch 1 1 1  1 2     2        8
Lepe & Calshot     3    4   1 2      1 11
Lee on Solent, Hillhead & Stokes Bay1814227  3 27   2 6     2  83
Hayling Island 8114611  19 32   16       1  108
The Witterings and Bracklesham   1 1  7                9
Dahab          7 3 22 1 1 1  118
Lanzarote   13  151163214  11  1   40
Isle of Wight    11  1 3              6
Pagham     1                   1
Waterville, Ireland        2     2          4
Isle of Wight        2                2
Brandon Bay  11  115 9   2       1  21
South Devon (Bigbury)   1 1                1  3

Each cell shows number of sessions, click on a cell for more details.

The Witterings and Bracklesham on 10/02/19

Rating:2 star rating
Board:95 litres

I hoped to catch the tail end of Erik but I think he was long gone. That said, 5.3m was plenty in the NW and I launched from J-Road in the Witterings. Wasn't too bad - small wind shadow on the inside as the direction was cross off, but not bad further out. Unfortunately the only waves worth talking about were close to the beach, right in the wind shadow but got a few jumps on the way out. Fairly short session as the wind swung further offshore and hence dropped, just as the tide came in - which made for a fairly undignified return to the beach :(

The Witterings and Bracklesham on 13/01/19

West Wittering Winter Sunset
Rating:3 star rating
Board:95 litres

First sail of the year but thought I had missed it. Got down to a balmy West Wittering to find the wind very light - partly as I think there was a quite a lot of North West in it. Rigged my big board and sail and floated out for a bit of freestyle practice. I did find a bit more wind right out the back. I wished there were a few guys on big slalom boards out there in case anything happened - as I didn't fancy sailing so offshore on my own, in an offshore wind.
Happily the wind then turned back on again and I was stacked. Quickly changed from my 110 to my 95 and was contemplating changing down sail but given how fickle the wind was, I decided to hang on as long as I could - which turned out to be a good shout as after 45 minutes very well powered up the wind dropped off again. Mustn't grumble, the 45 mins made the session and the thermometer read 15 degrees as a I pulled out of the car park!

Hayling Island on 23/12/18

Hayling without Huts
Rating:2 star rating
Board:110 litres

Somewhat disappointing, was expecting F5 but got no wind to speak of. Lightwind freestyle was the best I could do and annoyingly the wind seemed to be picking up just as it got dark. Bit weird seeing no beach huts at Hayling but made beach access easier!
Balmy weather for December - had to put the a/c on the way home..

The Witterings and Bracklesham on 08/12/18

West Wittering 08/12/18
Jonathan at West Wittering, high tide by Mike Pringuer
Rating:3 star rating
Board:84 litres

Fairly gnarly session at West Wittering.
Rigged a 4.2m but probably should have used my 4.7m and/or a bigger board - as it was pretty onshore at times and with a lot of white water.
The waves were the antithesis of "clean" but had an annoying habit of appearing out of nowhere when you were waterstarting, I was glad i had my impact vest on.
Pretty gusty which meant a bit of wobbling on my small board. However in the steep waves i got my best backloop attempts to date. The problem is that when you start to properly rotate them, you then start landing on top of your kit - which is not ideal. Also, because you need a steep ramp you tend to take off in the waves with the result that the next wave in the set lands on you when you inevitably crash.
I noticed even Peter Hart didn't stay out long today..

Hayling Island on 02/12/18

Rating:2 star rating
Board:110 litres

A very rare 2-session weekend.
Unfortunately today didn't live up to either the forecast or yesterday. 5.9m was ok but no waves to speak of ,and with most of the car park closed you had to launch from east of the Inn on the Beach. Maybe I am just getting too fussy...

Hayling Island on 01/12/18

Rating:4 star rating
Board:95 litres

Team WhatsApp called for an early start - I reckoned the wind would be around all day but it was a good job I left getting the Xmas decorations out until after I had been down to Hayling!
It was slightly chaotic at Hayling as a load of workmen were trying to move the beach huts and were not too pleased that a load of windsurfers had beaten them down and had blocked their access to the huts - they won't make that mistake again.
I rigged 4.7 and an 85 litre board but then noted the wind had dropped so quickly rerigged my floaty board and 5.3 which was a good shout. Had an hour of lovely sailing - good wind, good waves - both for jumping and riding. Crashed a few backloops (now got a stiff neck) and rode a few waves. Nice to see Kyle out, just off the flight from San Francisco. Really nice session, just a shame it was a little short-lived as after 90 mins the wind dropped away and I went back to the Xmas decorations..

Hayling Island on 11/11/18

Rating:4 star rating
Board:95 litres

After a failed attempted to sail Avon on Saturday (wind dropped as I arrived, as it always does for me at Avon) I was desperate to get out on Remembrance Sunday. With a 13:20 high tide and arriving at 10:45 I knew I was cutting it fine at Hayling but I had few options I didn't want to spoil it for everyone at Avon again by turning up there :)

Wind was much lighter than forecast and I hit the water bang on 11am as the sirens in Portsmouth marked the 100th anniversary of the Armistice.

Pretty unusual conditions for Hayling - light, gusty offshore float and ride but with some really nice half mast to logo sets rolling in and very flat between them. Surprisingly, even at high tide the waves were pretty well defined.

I was trying a new impact vest which made me much hotter than I expected but was quite handy when, in gusts, I tried a couple of back loops and crashed them under-rotated.

Definitely one of the more "technical" sessions I have had at Hayling in terms of mega light wind much of the time and reasonably fast waves and I then hung on a little too long, finding myself the only one out (bar someone on a wind SUP) bang on high tide as the wind dropped. I came in a long way upwind at the wrong time and place and got absolutely worked in the shorebreak (again, pleased I had the impact vest). Sail ended up with a couple of holes however I was amazed not to break my mast, so I guess I shouldn't grumble..

Brandon Bay on 04/10/18

Rating:4 star rating
Board:95 litres

Iffy forecast today however the wind rather unexpectedly appeared and we wobbled out. Firstly on my Skate, and that was a real battle to get through the white water. It took 3 attempts to get out the back and then when I did I managed to catapult on flat water and split the nose of my board.. not a good start..
However I switched to my tri wave which was easier to get through the white water (narrower nose) although it was still a challenge - it felt like you either had to wait for a break in the sets of a gust of wind, but waiting for both was being too greedy!
However once out the back, there were great waves to be caught. My selection was poor on a couple of occasions however on the right wave there were plenty of turns to be had. Wind switched off at lunchtime, so good job we got out early!

Brandon Bay on 02/10/18

Rating:3 star rating
Board:110 litres

Wind a bit lighter today and didn?t bring much swell with it so spent the morning foiling at Scragganes on a slightly more wieldy 6.7m sail this time. Learned a valuable lesson: if you fly into the beach you are in a world of trouble as the only way you slow down is to ?land? which of course needs an extra 50cm of depth - doh!
In the afternoon I thought i?d enjoy the sunset on my freestyle set up. Interesting that despite the foils generally having 7m + sails I could enjoy my 5.9m at the same time - and sail back to the beach with my 17cm fin! A good day rounded off by some swift Guinness in the Green Room.

Brandon Bay on 01/10/18

Gowlanes beach scene
Gowlanes beach
Rating:4 star rating
Board:95 litres

Surfed in the morning and then headed to Gowlane. Westerly wind was cross-off and getting out was a real challenge. I reckon I had 2-3 attempts for every successful one. But once out you were rewarded with fantastic rides back in. Down the line, perfect wind angle, clean but slightly choppy faces. I certainly did more turns on a wave than I have before. In the end I had to pull off as my arms lost their strength.

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