Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Surfing Leftovers

Ocean City at dawn (my pic).
This Pic by Mike Becker

Swell - 2.5-3.2' ESE @ 13sec
Wind - 0-5kt SW
Tide - Low incoming
Water - 67 or so
Air - 88, climbing to 96

Had a morning meeting down by the beach, so I took the opportunity to get out there a little early and play in the surf. The leftover swell from TS Cristobal was still around but getting weaker and more disorganized by the hour. The forecast held true - 2.5 - 3.2 feet at 13 seconds, from the ESE. Unfortunately, a cross-current - 1' SSE @ 3sec, chopped up the surface a little bit.

The groundswell - on the east coast, we call anything over 9 seconds "groundswell" - was fading fast, so Maryland or New Jersey were the call. I decided to surf in Ocean City, Maryland, which has a general ESE exposure and decent sandbars. Delaware, sandwiched between MD and NJ, used to have great sandbars, but these have been repeatedly destroyed by frequent "beach replenishment" projects. Delaware's ENE aspect means that any south swells must be strong enough to wrap into the coast.

By 6 am, about 20 people were out at an area called "The Castle", trying to jump into thigh-waist thumpers with pretty minimal shoulders. It was probably the best mannered crowd (of that size) that I have ever surfed with in OCMD or Delaware, ever....people were all relaxed and enjoying themselves.

The waves rarely stopped, and there were endless opportunities to pull into mini-barrels (guilty as charged!). The water was a little shallow (2-4' deep inside), but certainly not as shallow as it gets here. Only real frustrations were:

1) a rip current right near the sandbar I was targeting for awhile, and

2) the fact that the shoulders on the set waves seemed to disappear as you were taking your last stroke into the wave. At least twice I dropped into the mini-pit, thinking I had a nice shoulder to work with, and watched the wave close out on me (left and right), as I dropped in....

Enjoyed some lulls and some really fun drops and tuck-ins....out by 9am and back to work.

Anyway, great conditions "tropical leftovers."

1 comment:

tugboatdude said...

oh yeah Dolly has got the gulf all churned up to i'm just glad i'm not out in it