More rock and ice and water and a whole lot of sunshine. What a gorgeous weekend to be outside, hovering around 0C at mid day. Logged 30 km's on the skis yesterday in preperation for next weekends 50km Sibley Ski Tour and then shredded it free heel at the hill in the evening with the boys. Went for a solid hike today to check out a potential break, all be it, it may have been slightly more evident if there wasn't so much ice in this particular spot. But whatever, just nice to be out.
Feeling pretty bloggy here. Wednesday's lunar eclipse was something else. A perfect cold clear winter night for checking out celestial happenings. We made are way down to Hillcrest Park along with the telescopers and fire dancers. Fun times. The photo of the moon below sure doesn't do it a wink of justice. Hope you got out to check it for your self. Had a look through some high power scopes to get a real idea of what was going on..very cool.
And then yesterday, we finally scored some half decent surf and on my birthday no less. yeah! The high pressure cell that had been holding this cold arctic air over us finally moved to the southeast a bit and brought some 30knot winds from the southwest. Winston and i cruised out for an late afternoon session. Air temp: -8C (16F); water temp (36F); wind chill: -15C to -20C. Pretty rough conditions with head highish set waves and a few open faces; with a super short period. Due to the ridiculous current, we'd catch a wave, ride to shore, clamber over the ice and make our way back up the shoreline to the put in. Did that for 2.5 hours and called er quits at 7pm, thoroughly iced in to our wetters. Couldn't get our suits off without a hammer and chisel, so we just drove home, hoods up and all. fun times.
Ice starting to build
Gave the new Patagonia R4 booties a whirl yesterday and was pleasantly stoked to have warm feet from beginning to end. They definitely have a flexy stretchy feeling to them, but that may have been in part, due to the fact that i probably need the size 9 and not the size 10's. All an all a good first trial.
Talk about tough times. While i read of epic conditions on either coast, the arctic air has kept us surf free for a while now...this, despite our hopes brought on by promising forecasts that change dramatically at the critical hour. Breath.
Chunk of dried cactus, vaguely reminiscent of a curling wave, shot "Strobist" style...with the flash off camera.
photo by Eric Berglund
Photo of a photo ripped out of "The Surfer's Path" December 2004, by David Pu'u. Extraordinary.
"Ready... Set...where's the surf?" (as quoted from a post on Sissyfish). That pretty much summed up this mornings dawn patrol go out. Enjoyed the sun, paddled across to a new spot, saw some ducks and checked whatever waves there were. Better luck tomorrow afternoon. With some NE winds swooping in over night, it could be half decent.
Looking across at what appears to be a breaking wave. Ice and vaseline...together at last. Some big ice.
Not sure what i was thinking on Saturday with regards to checking the surf on Sunday. Winds of biblical proportions pounded us from the northwest Saturday night and all day sunday, making it feel like -45C...yeah, there was no surfing to be had.
Here are a couple from a backpacking trip that Nancy and i did in 06, in the amazingly rugged Pukaskwa National Park on the north east coast of Lake Superior. This park is both spectacular and core. Miles of untouched, raw shoreline. peace.
Shore lapper at Hattie Cove, Pukaskwa National Park Lake Superior 2006
Playter Harbour, Pukaskwa National Park Lake Superior 2006.
Thursday ended up being a new definition for desperado surf. Not enough wind or fetch. However we did paddle out to catch a few on the inside...knee high or so, so it wasn't a complete loss. The upshot was that it was sunny, -4C and not ice covered. Howling northwesterlies this weekend (NOAA is forecasting 24ft on the east end of the lake!), which doesn't usually equate good surf for us on this side of the lake, however there is a very off chance that it might generate some energy on this side worth pursuing tomorrow afternoon.
Small fall day 2007- Lake Superior. (My wife Nancy snapped this one).
Swell for thursday...finally something to help ease the aching desire to be in the water. Bit of a SW blowing up tonight. Being a lake surfer is hard as heck. It almost always seems like forever between go outs. Busy yourself in the mean time and dream i guess. peace.
Read a great little interview with Nathan Oldfield from downunder over on Phoresia.org . I had seen his board building skills on Swaylocks a while back but had no idea that he was such a film maker extrodinare. Anyways, this segment of Alex Knost is from his first film 'Lines From a Poem' and he's currently working on a new piece entitled 'Seaworthy'. Beautifully inspirational. Check it.
Went for a skate ski during my lunch hour yesterday, a fresh layer of snow had fallen over night and it was relatively fast going. As i cruised through the woods, listening to the birds, my breathing and the slice of skis through the snow, i started to think about gliding. Whether it be effortless or not, the act or art of gliding is very satisfying. Gliding down the face of a wave, a mountain, over snow, or down a river, it is a sensation, mostly unto itself that makes you want more. No surf this weekend, but plenty of good snow to enjoy. Here's a scanned in shot from a few years ago on the Churchill River in northern Saskatchewan.