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Ideal downwind conditions

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Created by Thanksfortheride 1 month ago, 15 Sep 2021
15 Sep 2021 2:06PM
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Hi,
I'm a surfer but my downwind experience is from semi-sheltered waters and waves below kneehigh. Bigger waves are better but like always they also create challenges. How do you see ideal conditions (for a 14 feet allwater board)? Wind force, wave size? Do you prefer conditions where all the waves are made by the local wind or with some swell running? Sheltered waters like in lakes or having the wind blowing a long fetch before the place where you start? Where does it get really difficult and when it's the most rewarding?

DavidJohn
VIC, 16836 posts
15 Sep 2021 10:47PM
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From the 2.45 mark in this vid.. This is Port Philip Bay starting from zero fetch and following the shoreline in wind around the 25-35 knot range.. Not that difficult and very rewarding.

16 Sep 2021 12:37AM
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Cool! That Valentino Rossi t-shirt too :D How long was the fetch until that point 2:45? How was your camera mounted?

breathofmaggot
24 posts
17 Sep 2021 4:23PM
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DavidJohn said..
From the 2.45 mark in this vid.. This is Port Philip Bay starting from zero fetch and following the shoreline in wind around the 25-35 knot range.. Not that difficult and very rewarding.




**** that looked fun. At the 2:58 mark, are you riding the waves that go on to break on the shore or the wind chop that goes sideways across the ocean , if that makes sense?

Rosscoe
VIC, 497 posts
17 Sep 2021 8:01PM
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On this downwind run you can be more than a kilometre offshore, so the waves can build up to a reasonable size when you have enough wind and fetch. In this video the wind was pretty much directly behind, so there was little cross-chop. This was in the Bay, so no ocean swells, but David was surfing the wind generated swell.

DJ's video reminds me of what a great run that was. What downwinding is all about.

Smokyonthewater
VIC, 4 posts
17 Sep 2021 8:36PM
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The video looks great. Was that a Nth Wester in the bay and where did you start ?

DavidJohn
VIC, 16836 posts
17 Sep 2021 11:34PM
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Smokyonthewater said..
The video looks great. Was that a Nth Wester in the bay and where did you start ?






St Kilda to Sandy (Sandringham) and it was a true northerly.. The start is on the west end of St Kilda.. almost Middle Park.. The bumps become surfable from about 500 meters from shore and those larger bumps at around 2.45 are about 2 kilometres from the start.. Ross was with me on that run and we did a car shuffle together.

I think the total distance is about 8-10 kilometres and it takes us about 45min to an hour depending on conditions and how hard we want to go.. I love to sit every now and then.. Relax and recharge.. and smell the roses.

You can see my camera mount at the start of this vid.. It's a mix of pvc pipes.. Duct tape.. and old GoPro's..

Helmy
VIC, 775 posts
18 Sep 2021 12:14PM
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Rosscoe said..
On this downwind run you can be more than a kilometre offshore, so the waves can build up to a reasonable size when you have enough wind and fetch. In this video the wind was pretty much directly behind, so there was little cross-chop. This was in the Bay, so no ocean swells, but David was surfing the wind generated swell.

DJ's video reminds me of what a great run that was. What downwinding is all about.


Ahh those were the days...freedom...FREEDOM!!!

backbeach
NSW, 61 posts
20 Sep 2021 8:28AM
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Hey DJ that looks like a lot fun, I'm about to venture into the downwind world as soon as my board arrives and am very excited.
Could you give us the drum on your paddle pls, and does it help with shoulder pain cos apparently kialoa are good in that regard and mine are copping a bit of grief through the traps, scapula, deltoids etc. Cheers and keep the stoke coming

DavidJohn
VIC, 16836 posts
20 Sep 2021 6:21PM
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backbeach said..
Hey DJ that looks like a lot fun, I'm about to venture into the downwind world as soon as my board arrives and am very excited.
Could you give us the drum on your paddle pls, and does it help with shoulder pain cos apparently kialoa are good in that regard and mine are copping a bit of grief through the traps, scapula, deltoids etc. Cheers and keep the stoke coming


Thanks.. My favorite paddle is the Kialoa Hulu Small.. but Kialoa are not an easy brand to get your hands on here in Oz and that's a shame but I think most shops can order directly from Kialoa in the US.

The Hulu Sm has a small'ish blade size but the shaft is on the stiff side.. I'd rather a small blade on a stiff shaft than a bigger blade on a flexy shaft because catching runners requires a sprint-like technique.

What paddle are you using now that's brought on your shoulder pain/injury?.. It could be a paddle length or paddle technique thing that's brought it on rather than the paddle itself.

DW paddling in great conditions is the best type of stand up paddling IMO..

backbeach
NSW, 61 posts
20 Sep 2021 10:11PM
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DJ I suspect my shoulder issues stem from all of the above so probably a process of addressing and improving everything. My paddle is a surfboard warehouse one which ain't a patch on more designed shapes like yours and yeah I've googled kialoa and there's no action here in Oz. Still waiting on a response from Kenalu also! Noticed your sprints and the rich rewards for effort which has definitely got me excited to explore this aspect of sup and yeah with a smaller blade. Definitely must make Melbourne living more palatable.
TFTR I'm just going to tackle downwinding by suck it and see method but keeping it safe by monitoring weather and conditions (easier with 45 +years of surf/weather gazing), learn my board and small steps. Where I live we cann get swells from different directions and 1/2 metre seas so I'm thinking make sure there's not too much going on until I work out what works best here. Enjoy the journey methinks DJ is onto something

finsup
WA, 113 posts
21 Sep 2021 5:34AM
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I think Kenalu is a good option for a custom make up (not that I've tried a lot ??). A range of varying flex options to couple with heaps of shapes and sizes blades. Check out some long distance threads on other forums they talk about paddles heaps, and long discussions re kenalu.
I was doing damage to my shoulder with a cheap 2 piece paddle that was very stiff with quite a large scoopy blade, that always used it extended about 6 inches longer than my height. It got to the stage where my aching shoulder was keeping me from sleep.
Now i use a kenalu 'xtuf-s' shaft, the second flexiest option. 'Xtuf' is the flexiest, and there are 2 or three stiffer that i think are more for racing, but they must be pretty stiff as really the xtuf-s is quite stiff. There is flex there but its certainly not one of those spaghetti paddles that look like they're going to snap any second. Have paired with a Mana 82 blade which seems a bit smaller in area than the Sunova blades which are also advertised as 82 sq in, although haven't actually lined the two up to compare closely, it may be an illusion though as the mana is a different narrower shape with sort of bent winglet edges.
I have made the overall paddle length 1 inch over head.
Has done wonders for the shoulder. Its light as a feather. I can get carried away sprinting for waves and never get pinged or sore anymore. Shorter length forces a different paddle technique where you bend the knees more and that helps the balance heaps.
Very fast delivery too! That could've been lucky tho.
Gotta find a heat gun to assemble. They come with a small bag of hot glue pellets but I also ended up getting a pack of hot glue sticks from spotlight because after the first time i put it together there was a clicking movement between the blade and shaft. Reassembled with ****eloads more glue and the proper twist and push in and out to get the glue well spread. Solid now.

DaveSandan
VIC, 1116 posts
21 Sep 2021 9:35AM
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I have the KeNalu Mana and Wiki and the Mana is great for DW as Finsup mentioned but I also have the VMG Orca with a longer shaft and it has good glide through the water and is very light. I wanted a longer shaft because when DWing you get troughs in the water and sometimes I did not have enough blade in the water so could not get enough catch.
This was a measurement thing not a paddle fault so now I have more options to suit conditions.




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"Ideal downwind conditions" started by Thanksfortheride