I have already admitted to being slightly 'scared' of the C4 - so it's sat for a week in the board store - waiting. My options are to just go for it on the Starboard where I'm now comfortable and confident enough to paddle out in just about anything or take the C4 and endure a few iffy sessions while getting used to it. Another fin change and a forecast of two decent offshore days made up my mind. Tuesday was going to be small, clean and perfect with an evening high tide - Wednesday was going to crank four and a half feet at 11 seconds - perfect breaking in scenario for the BK.
Gavin opted out of Tuesday to earn brownie points for 'BIG wednesday'. I pulled up at Gwithian after work to see waist to shoulder high sets rolling in under the car park - rolling through the crowds. Quick change - boardies and rash vest and jogged off to Pete's point. It was much smaller but still waist high (just) with the tide pushing up hard.
The clean conditions were kind to me allowing me to settle reasonably on the narrow deck of the C4 - slowly I got into my stride and began to score waves the length of the break - as the tide pushed up the size of the swell - swelled. Faces got steeper and I got braver - the board tracks straighter than my Starboard and the last paddle stroke into the wave does not send the board sideways causing it to stall. In fact even getting lazy and sometimes dropping in sideways the board would catch, accelerate and take off. Once on the wave I found that I could easily turn hard into the breaking wave and then back away from the curl - it felt very very good - I managed a nice floater and after that wave managed to get tucked in backhand under the lip so tight the sun shone green through the wave. BUT what I could not do easily was paddle turn in front of an oncoming wave as easily as on the Starboard. My feet just seem superglued to the deck until the board was moving faster than paddle speed. I'm sure it will come but for now slow turns are the order of the day.
Bursting through wash the nose of the board is like a scalpel - just got to work on balance and planting the sweet spot a bit easier.
I surfed until I was knackered slipped the paddle through the deck loops and toddled off up the cliff and back to the car feeling very pleased with myself - confident that I can drop down a fin size - I actually think that the big centre fin may be adversely affecting stability as the board was sensitive to current,rip and backwash.
Next day I fitted the Smaller Starboard centre fin and met Gavin at Gwithian. The swell had died!! We paddled down to Pete's catching a few waist high waves and back again to Godrevy - The board was not happy - neither was I - Gavin was picking waves off at will on the 9' Starboard - I was having a mare. To be honest I would have been ok on the JL but wanted to get some time in clean, non challenging conditions on the C4. Th smaller fin was fine - next stop - try Quadding it so I sent a mail to C4 for suggestions.
Forecast looking a bit iffy for the rest of the week but scaling up a bit for next week.
One effect of the new board is the agony in my calfs - the extra work in balancing the board has made itself felt.
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4 years ago