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kr 1/28/08 Some cool tr’s lately, so I thought I’d add mine for today...

This week’s surf forecast was all over the place, with Tuesday, at least as of a few days ago, calling for some absolutely super conditions. I planned on developing a cough.

But things shifted around this morning and I had to end up getting sick very quickly today.

Made it to the beach by 3. Air and sea temp both about 41. Windy. Waves coming in from the NE, which isn’t good, cause they tend to push you into the jetty, especially as you’re paddling out. Neither of my buddies wanted to get in their boats.

But that’s one thing about Jersey Shore ocean surfing. There’s not a lot of hidden danger. No rocks. No trees. And the current will eventually push you back in. So while Nate watched, I paddled into the rip current along the jetty and fought my way out.

I’m telling you, the feeling of being back in the boat after more than 2 weeks, it was great. Pulling on the paddle, leaning into the dips and rolls, shifting my hips to keep a quiet upper body. It felt so effing great.

The biggest waves were head high. And unfortunately, closing out unpredictably, which means you’re riding along on the smooth green water then bam, the white just crashes over you, leaving you with nothing to do except ride straight in in front of the foam.

And that’s what happened. First ride was a style zero, but a new first for beginner me anyway. I took off late, meaning the wave was already steeply pitched and starting to break before I got on. And a second later, it was pouring down from over my head, in front of my eyes. Tubed, dude.

Only, when the cool surrfers are in the tube, they’re travelling along parallel to the beach, running for the opening. I was perpendicular to the beach, with nowhere really to turn. I leaned back hard, to keep the bow from diving under, and shot out, through the cascading curtain of white, out in front of the wave—man, that was neat!--where I was able to catch my bearings, get my balance, and ride her in, buffeted by the cross-wise reflecting waves off the jetty.

The work of getting out, the just-barely sense of control on the way in, the nippy temps that made me not too interested in rolling... Only got two, count ‘em, two rides all day, and by the end of those felt I’d be pushing my luck to do a third. But those two left a buzz I hadn’t felt in way too long.

--an

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