Monday, November 19, 2012

So what have I been up to lately!

Well, riding every mat that I currently own in a sort of rotation in various combinations with the Duck Feet and UDT fins. This ranges from when the waves are a little fat and taking out the Tracker with a pair of UDTs to using the 5GF and the Duck Feet if the waves are cranking. For conditions inbetween those two extremes I will alternate between the MT5 and Standard with fin choice depending on what the waves are like. I have really enjoyed this process of experimenting with matching the equipment I choose to use with the prevailing conditions on the day.
I am also slightly surprised at how readily I am able to switch from one style of mat to another without really thinking about it. For instance, not so long ago I needed half a session or so before I felt comfortable riding the MT5 if I had been riding canvas deck mats for awhile. Not anymore!
I have given up using the Shark Shield and have resigned myself to the possibility of getting torn asunder by a Great White Shark. Mat riding is such a finely nuanced activity that I started to get pissed off with it hanging off my ankle as I felt like it upset the overall balance of the ride. Especially so lately, as I have been particularly trying to get further up on the face. The balance issue further exacerbated by a bit of drag and a little more effort required to get my fin out of the face when I wanted to. So that is that.
Interestingly, in view of this recent excellent post of PG's, I have been thinking of experimenting by applying some Vulkem stripping to the deck of one of my MT5s ala the Blue Streaks. I have been using wax quite happily but, when wearing a standard nylon wetsuit, the MT5 can still get away from me unexpectedly. Ironically, yesterday I took to the water in a rashie and board shorts and the waxed deck was so sticky I could barely pull myself on to the mat on the take off. So now I am thinking that I will just put a rashie over my current wetsuit until I can get one with a rubber chest section and I think that will resolve the MT5 grip issue for both summer and winter.
It has been a far better Spring surfing season for me this year than it was last year as I have had quite a few great sessions. This is a relief as summer is just around the corner and the conditions for surfing are about to go to shit!!!!

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