Thursday, August 18, 2005

3 Days on My Fish

With swell scheduled to arrive on Tuesday, I took out my new 6' GH quad on Monday to get a feel for how she paddles, takes off, rides waves, etc. Went out on Tuesday and some of the swell was starting to show, but not too much (too steep for my location). Wednesday was damn fun, with some big waves and the first "outside!" moments I've had in quite some time.

Paddling my new board, I was immediately struck by the width. She's a good 2 inches wider than my thruster (19.5"), and it just felt a bit different. Even though my fish is 4" shorter, she paddled like a dream and I felt comfortable paddling quickly. Duck dives like a... duck, I guess. No problems there (easier than the 6'5" CI MSF, without a doubt).

Taking off and catching waves was comparable to my thruster. I didn't notice it beeing much easier, but I probably need a few more sessions to get dialed in on the board.

On my first wave, I tried a hard turn and dug my backside rail pretty damn deep. Lesson 1 - that thick tail will not respond the same as the thruster. Instead of stomping on the tail, I approached turns with a more "carving" approach, and things got much better. Yesterday I caught a nice left set wave and carved up and down the wave, connecting sections and looking a "drop-in foo" off the wave. I dunno if he didn't see me or if he didn't think I'd make the section, but at least he had the decency to get off the wave.

How about them turbo canard quads? I expected the board to feel a lot more skateboardy-flicky than it was. I never lost the back end on a hard bottom turn, and on steep wave faces she held like a dream.

The low entry rocker is throwing me a bit off, as I've had to "walk off the nose of the board" twice after late/steep takeoffs. Nothing major, it's just something I'll need to work on a bit.

Overall Impressions: Damn fun. I love the carving turns and speed, and didn't once feel like I had too little board. The turbo canards really seem to keep the board in line, and I've fleetingly glimpsed some of the speed of which this board is capable.

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