Here in Norway it is really hard to progress in wave sailing. It begs me believe it`s been five months since last time my body has felt the white power. There are so many aspects of this sport that you can not control, like the wind, waves, directions, lights and temperature. Even if all these things are aligned, your boss calls you and your stuck at work, or you`re bound to some other commitments you can`t escape.
In the winter time is pretty close to impossible to get these things aligned without prioritizing really hard. Let me give you an example of the many thoughts that runs through my mind ahead of a session like this.
The water temperature is forecast to be approx. 5-6 degrees, but the fjords are completely frozen solid. If it`s 5 degrees or more my fingers will endure for one intensive session, but if it`s 4-3 degrees the fingers will last only for 15 minutes. Can I trust the forecast?
The air temperature is forecast to be approx. 4 degrees, but the thermometer is crawling down to 2 degrees. The golden 5 degree rule applies for both air and water, and it`s a good reason why it`s not called the 2 degree rule. If the water by chance is 7 degrees my fingers will endure.
Only twenty four hours earlier the buoy measured max wave height over 17 meters. Today it`s 4 meters, but will the swell curl around and break like normal? If not our back up place will have no escape and be dangerous in conditions like these. Will the 1.5 hour trip be wasted?
The wind direction is NWN. This means it`s cross of shore, making it a bit difficult charging a decent bottom turn, and if you break your gear both the wind and current will drag you to Scotland. Is it safe enough today? The wind is forecast to be 15 m/s, but the wind gauge is showing 5 m/s. Again, will the 1.5 hour trip be wasted?
On top of this you have your doubts about your priorities at home and work. Taking a whole day of because the light is gone by 17:00 is a though priority.
But than you reach even deeper down through your feelings, and you start remembering the last time you went out and how your body and mind was totally amazed by this place and these conditions. A really exclusive experience. One of your mates are calling bearing a lot of energy and motivation making the choice as easy as going for that second kiss with your high school girl friend.
The sun came through pumping the 4.5 Black Tip up to max power. The first wave was perfect and glassy, a mast high green monster sending you down the line. 4 degrees in the air and 6 in the water made for quite a perfect little work out. My new C-skin wet suit and open palm gloves from SrfSnoSk8 exceed my expectations by far. Sadly one of the waves wanted to land on my head after a couple of hours and broke the 8 month old Simmer mast in half. Gladly just a 15 minutes swim from the rocky beach.
When your dancing on the fine line between this very real but healthy fear of the certainly present consequences and the “just go for it, you have done all possible preparations” mentality the rewards are sky high! Even though the conditions were difficult Tim Remkes (yellow Black Tip), Filip Gustavsen (orange Ezzy), Terje Tuft (blue North) and me (blue Black Tip) had a blast this day!
Luckily we managed to get in contact with Magne Storøy ahead of this session. He`s an local hobby photographer that happily joined in. For us out at sea having at least one guy back on shore watching out for us puts our minds at ease. Thanks for the crazy good pics! For more pics check out “Vakre Lista” on Facebook.
Cheers, and lets hope for more waves this winter!
For the all geeks like my self out there. Here is the print from my GPS watch Polar M400:
Speed and distance.