Waves

Posted by Ken Campbell December 6, 2008 0 Comment 448 views

I like Public Radio. Really, I do. But as much as I may admire the quality of the content on public radio, they don’t know how to do the weather. They are always wrong. Predictably so. If they say it’s going to be clear, expect fog and drizzle. If the forecast calls for rain, you can be pretty sure that the sky will be blue.

Blue like it is today, that deep, weightless blue that fills up the senses. The road rises to meet the tires on the way out to the coast, another day on the water, coming up.

The waves are big at Westhaven, not overlarge, but winter-big anyway. There’s a dozen surfers out there, and a few of them are actually catching some rides. The tide is still rising, and I pick a portion of the beach over near the jetty where the waves look the most promising.

There are a million little side washes here though. When a wave breaks, it picks up residual energy from the one that broke before it, which is now running seaward at an angle to the shore. The next wave, in turn, sets up almost like a wedge, each face with its own separate trajectory.

Not great rides, but I get some. They aren’t as long and consistent as they were last week in California, but they are still a kick in the butt. After a while, as the waves get less rideable, I come in and haul over to the other side of the jetty, where the water is like glass. I paddle out onto the calm bay, over to where the waves are pounding on the Westport breakwater, a half-mile away. As I go, I can feel the rising and falling of the swell, like the steady breathing of a watery planet. I manage a few more short rides in the beach break, and then head back to the beach. The drive home is a fast one, and uncomplicated.

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