Weather Talk For BC no matter what you ride

Gorge August 2019

Weather talk and On Site Reports (604)800-2770

by C36 » Tue Aug 06, 2019 10:06 am

G1 – kiteboard + windsurf – Jones Beach (2019 Aug 4)

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First stop. First stop on Ethan’s first trip to the Gorge – Jones Beach. First for me too. Nice wide-open sand beach. Locals were saying wind was “flaky” today (more NW making it more onshore and puffy), but we would gladly take it. Ethan on 12m/TT and me on 6.9/116/34cm. It had been a while since I had been on a sail that big so took some time to get things dialed in. Sailed the peak of the wind. Had enough power to shadow Ethan with the Go Pro. Even with the slack tide the wind angle and puffs made for a bit of pointfest, but the locals looked like they were having fun in “nuclear alley” beyond the island. Ethan was surprised by how large the sand dunes on the island were, how warm the water was, how large the passing ships were, and how friendly the people were (thanks to the guy who anchored Ethan’s harness while he launched). Funny part was Ethan said, “I like this part of Washington State.”, not realizing we were in Oregon. Osprey on the water and deer on the side of Hwy 84. Dinner at the Field Edge Power House and slept under the stars riverside at Memaloose. Full day!

Gallery (for slideshow click on the “slideshow” button)

G2 – windsurf – Swell City (2019 Aug 4)

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Hair Dryer. Chilled in the morning shade. Checked out the kite launch at the sandbar (Markus said 2 gusting 40) – no Bueno. Quick session for me at Swell City on big gear (5.3/116/24) – no pictures (my photographer was more interested in YouTube). Shorty, but could have/should have gone board shorts/rash guard. Deep lullage started about 4 pm, as forecast, just as I left the water. Afternoon high of 37. Swim and lakeside dinner of Korean meatballs and sesame rice at Lawrence Lake, ice creams from Mike’s and sunset view from Panarama Point.

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Last edited by C36 on Wed Aug 28, 2019 1:19 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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by C36 » Wed Aug 07, 2019 9:06 am

G3 - windsurf - Event Site (2019 Aug 6)

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Boardshorts and Back Loops. Swell City/Hatch look-see from the bluff at the Columbia River Gorge Hotel. Also checked Lyle but decided on The Event Site (more wind). WG GFS and iWindsurf were both off – WAY OFF. The corridor cranked and kept amping up all afternoon. Felt bad for Ethan as he was grounded with 7 m being his smallest kite and none of the shops in town rent kites (odd). Got a fun session in up at White Salmon Bridge in some beefy swell. Back loop attempts (with height) in both directions and a few memorable swell rides. 4.0/74 in board shorts and rashy in big swell and ramps – that was fun!!! There were even a few surfing the wind swell at the beach on longboards. Saw Lubo, Tony and Mandy. Packed up to head back out to Lyle so Ethan could get wet after the wind got silly at the Event Site.

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G4 – kiteboard + windsurf - Lyle (2019 Aug 6)

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Twilight. Kites out were 11’s and 12’s when we arrived, but the wind seemed to be building and local kiter from Lyle decided on his 8 m. 9 m/TT for Ethan and 5.3/116 for me. Interesting spot with the big shallow water shelf to the west of the launch (and we needed it to stand and wait during the lulls). Ethan got wet, but left wanting more. Another kiter said it was the gustiest session he has ever seen there. At least Ethan got wet and got some rides in. Dinner at Pietro’s and ice creams at Mike’s.

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Last edited by C36 on Wed Aug 14, 2019 4:40 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by LeopardSkin » Wed Aug 07, 2019 1:27 pm

Hatchery OSR. About 40 knots. Maybe windier. 3.4 is a little big. Decent swell. Sunny. Warm. Come on out!
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by C36 » Thu Aug 08, 2019 12:16 pm

G5 - windsurfing - Swell City (2019 Aug 7)

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Beefy (again)! Mid-morning session and more wind than expected (flat 3.4/74/20). Tried a new-to-me MFC TF 20 (main tri-fin used as single) and liked how the smaller fin freed the board on the swell. One local exiting said it was a little hectic as I took to the water. Steady wind. Ramps and swell - one the locals said, “… biggest swell in a while.” Big swell on the far side (for the far side) and main channel had some swell trains roll through. Closely packed on the north side of the channel and steep ramps on the south side of the channel. Solid offering. Great way to start the day!

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G6 – kiteboarding + windsurfing – Event Site (2019 Aug 7)

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7m Sunset Glass Off. Looked more like Pozo than the Event Site. Too much wind again for Ethan’s smallest kite (7m) so waited and waited. There was a line-up of surfers at the Event Site break – longboards, shortboards, foil surf (who knew?). Brief cameo by Dale Cook (Lubo’s stunt double). Pumped Ethan's 7m and stood on the sandbar getting sand/gravel blasted by the gusts until his window opened. Saw one big guy break his bar landing a big boost on 7m, so waited a few more minutes. Then we decided it was a “go”! Wind was punchy, but he did well. Looked to me like his turns are improving, carrying more speed on his reaches, and controlled the kite well during the puffs. Launched, kited, landed without drama. Jones, Lyle, and The Sandbar – three for three - mission accomplished. Into the bonus round now! Dinner at 6th Street. Flattened tents (not ours) and lanterns blown off tables back at the camp.

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Last edited by C36 on Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:36 pm, edited 3 times in total.
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by C36 » Fri Aug 09, 2019 10:18 am

G7 – kiteboarding + windsurfing – Event Site (2019 Aug 8)

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Third. Third day in a row gusting to 40+ mph at the Event Site. Sounds like 5 m kites were selling well in town. Finally got Ethan out on a 5 m and he was sailing well! Local chatter was wind today was more 'normal'. Wind was gusty but I could keep my smallish gear moving (4.0/74). Ethan was looking smooth and comfortable sailing up to the White Salmon Bridge and back (even in the gusts and big choppy swell). Even a few jumps (one about 5’ high according the visual Woo – me). Ethan said, “You can tell when you are in the channel because the swell goes from waist-high to shoulder-high!” [with a big smile] Dinner from the Thai food truck eating overlooking the river at sunset and ice creams from Mike’s. It’s all good in the Hood.

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Last edited by C36 on Wed Sep 11, 2019 2:39 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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by Slappy » Fri Aug 09, 2019 12:45 pm

Those first two shots of the sandbar are crazy, looks almost coastal.
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by tweegster » Fri Aug 09, 2019 6:17 pm

Good shots c36. James, Christine and Sean have been down from WR too, looks like you guys picked a decent week.
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by C36 » Sat Aug 10, 2019 8:44 am

Slappy wrote:Those first two shots of the sandbar are crazy, looks almost coastal.

Exactly. Strange, but true.

tweegster wrote:Good shots c36. James, Christine and Sean have been down from WR too, looks like you guys picked a decent week.

Glad you enjoyed the photos. Timing us us was random (planned last winter). Conditions have been great - very grateful. Hope they have some small kites and have been enjoying themselves too.

G8 – windsurfing – Swell City (2019 Aug 9)

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Good morning. Got a quick session in before heading into town and bike ride the old highway between Hood River and Mosier. Looked to be on the light side for 4.5/92 but amped up on the water. Some solid swell down at Cheap Beach and some ramps on offer at Swell City. Came in to flatten the sail out when the high clouds ‘compressed’ the wind, according to one local. Ethan choose bike ride over kite and that was fine with me because I wanted him to see the old highway – he thought the tunnels and the inscription from the people snow bound for eight days were both pretty amazing. Mexican dinner at the Taqueria. Thunder, lightening show, and some minor flooding at the campground. Glad the rain held off through the day and our patio dinner!

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by C36 » Tue Aug 13, 2019 4:56 pm

G9 – windsurfing – Swell City (2019 Aug 10)

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Tic Tac. Morning session that was workable on medium gear (4.5/92) except for the bottom repeatedly falling out of the wind. Sailed down to the point at the Hatchery and practiced my tacks on the way back - some dry on the way out (starboard) and all wet with some swimming on the way in (port) – might have been the flat water on the far side versus the swell on the near side. Two barges passed each other right in front of Swell City leaving me to pause on the south side of the river. Some jumping in the puffs but a pretty modest offering all around. Then off to get out Ethan out on kite.

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G10 – kiteboarding – Event Site (2019 Aug 10)

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Cable Park. Seems the wind decided to shoulder off faster than we could rig. 7m then 9m. Ethan took to the water on 9m and worked the channel off the end of the sandbar until he was below the red channel marker. He them took a couple of short rides in the knee deep wakeboarding-cable-park-like-flat-water to the lee of the sandbar. He seemed happy to get out, but wanting more.

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G11 – kiteboarding + windsurfing – Lyle (2019 Aug 11)

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Near East. Left Memaloose about 8:30 am (miracles do happen) but the Event Site was still ramping up and Ethan wasn’t in the mood for 12m so off to Lyle we went (much to my surprise) for a 9m session in the sun. At just over 77’ the sandbar was only about one third left. Ethan used the ‘reconstructed’ surfboard (many thanks to DavidM at Murray Fin Works for all of his coaching and hands on help with the repair). Ethan went from dropping in the water and spinning the board, to trying to carve turns, to carving to exit switch and sailing across the width of river switch toe side and carving back to heel side all in one session – oh to be 16 again. Super fun to shadow him and shout encouragement as he stepped up the learning curve! Fun to catch Ethan’s fly-by-high-five!

Lyle left a much better impression on both of the us this time (more wind and weeds fins for me helped). It reminded me of the north half of Doug’s beach – flat water over the shallows and then some roll to the shipping channel, but at Lyle there is giant cliff right about where the centre of the channel is at Doug’s. There was some playful swell in the shipping channel and some playful roll to windward if you sailed up far enough into the slightly deeper water above the sandbar. There was also an interesting ramp to port on the edge of the bank when sailing back in. The wind was unsettled in the shipping channel when we were out so you had to choose your moments to windsurf out there, but this spot has lots of potential for variety in a small space. Left Lyle at 1 pm and was home by 10:30 pm with two stops and traffic south of Tacoma. I think Ethan had fun and will likely return to the Gorge in future!

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Last edited by C36 on Wed Aug 14, 2019 5:23 pm, edited 2 times in total.
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by Slappy » Tue Aug 13, 2019 5:45 pm

Were you guys parking on the Highway and walking over the tracks to get to Lyle or going via water?
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