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Best windsurf destination for Christmas ?
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 18973

PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 8:50 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

When I Google lake arenal costa rica windsurfing, I get scores of pages of info such as WSing videos, travel info, lodging, food, gear rental, flights, the nearby ocean, the volcano, the rain forest, the wind, and on and on. Keep clicking and you will find tons of info.

You bet your favorite board there is wind at Conchas. It blows like holy hell much of the spring and early summer, and the fishermen and jet skiers curse the place because it whitecaps most summer afternoons. We left work in Albuquerque mid-to-late morning, drove to Conchas (or Elephant Butte or Morgan), sailed 5-8 hours, and staggered home towards midnight countless times in the 17 years I lived there. It's what a WSer stuck in NM does once he graduates from Cochiti Lake.

Conchas gets too cold for barefoot sailing some time in December, but warms up adequately sometime in March or April to start the new season. Albuquerque can be 50 degrees, overcast, and dead calm all day while at Conchas it's 80 degrees, blue skies, and >30 kts all day due to the Chinook winds. When I managed to beat the other guys out there, I was often the only person in sight on land or water; every non-WSer was hunkered down indoors somewhere to escape the wind. The typical SW-W Chinook wind just roars right up the main body of the lake, and the best launch sites are on the south shore. Hook up with the NM Windsurfing Association (Google it) for details. NM offers a LOT of windsurfing for those with large and small gear, a good wetsuit, flexible work hours or lots of vacation time, and the will to drive a lot chasing forecasts. The first thing people in the Air Force comment on about New Mexico is its "damned wind". Windsurfers comment more on the "damned driving" (to the lakes).

Mike \m/
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jim_hollis



Joined: 16 Apr 2011
Posts: 1

PostPosted: Sun Oct 23, 2011 8:52 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

WA (Western Australia). Mind the pointers by making your jybes.... In December Geraldton is going off and has some great side-shore wave sailing sites. Perth is going off as well but you will have to sail out to the reef to get some good wave. Lancelin is ok though lot's of kelp..
www.seabreeze.com.au Smile
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bolronck



Joined: 27 Jun 2011
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Tue Oct 25, 2011 10:47 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

isobars wrote:
When I Google lake arenal costa rica windsurfing, I get scores of pages of info such as WSing videos, travel info, lodging, food, gear rental, flights, the nearby ocean, the volcano, the rain forest, the wind, and on and on. Keep clicking and you will find tons of info.
I want to find objective information like this http://www.windfinder.com/windstats/windstatistic_silver_sands.htm ... by the way I think that Barbados can be not to bad but it's look tricky to find a place to stay at this period, a lot of hotel are already booked for chrismas holiday.
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combs



Joined: 01 Apr 1997
Posts: 104

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 10:35 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

Lake Arenal is the place. I have gone there the last 3 years for xmas/nye and always found good wind.

No windmeters anywhere...you're in the jungle now, baby!

Peter at Tico winds is the man...brand new equipment every year. He can also set you up with lodging, etc.

http://www.ticowind.com/

To attest to the windiness of the place...locals typically only have 2 sets of gear: 85 litre board and 65 litre board, paired with a 4.5 and a 3.5
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 18973

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 11:29 am    Post subject: Reply with quote

bolronck wrote:
a lot of hotel are already booked for chrismas holiday.


You must be a student, a teacher, or an employee of Sandia Labs. Almost anybody else in NM would try to avoid Christmas vacation trips to tropical destinations. Given that constraint, you might consider doing two things today IF the sailing conditions there (tons of wind but negligible organized swell or waves) will fulfill your needs:
1. Check on availability of lodging at Arenal and flights to Costa Rich.
2. Try to find out if there's any known reason to suspect its wind may be systemically messed up this winter. If not, it will blow you away.

You might also consider watching the conditions and forecasts at Padre Island (or WTH ... at Morgan Lake) as Christmas approaches. You might get lucky within driving distance. Much depends on your own chosen balance of hassle, risk, expense, waves, wind, temps, etc. I gave up many years ago on putting many eggs into any one-week, pre-scheduled basket anywhere, but Arenal seems to be about as reliable as standard WS destinations get ... much more than July in the Gorge.

Mike \m/
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bolronck



Joined: 27 Jun 2011
Posts: 16

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 2:49 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

combs wrote:
No windmeters anywhere...you're in the jungle now, baby!
You just need a weather station, an internet connection and share the data on windfinder or windalert, not that complicated.
isobars wrote:
You must be a student, a teacher, or an employee of Sandia Labs.
You are not to far from the reality ... I'm not so free for my holiday.
isobars wrote:
You might also consider watching the conditions and forecasts at Padre Island (or WTH ... at Morgan Lake) as Christmas approaches.
Yeah but it's look polluted (red tide) actually.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 18973

PostPosted: Wed Oct 26, 2011 3:46 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Polluted, schmolluted! Wink
Within reason, if I can't see any turds or condoms floating in it, I'm going windsurfing. As I explained to an inquiring TV news crew while I was stepping over rows of unexplained dead fish with my rig, "If I get an infection I'll go see the doctor". What I got for that was a 50-sq mile windy lake to myself (this was neither Padre Island nor official red tide). Any place you go will have agricultural waste and chemicals, sewage, shipyard sludge, radioactive waste, fish crap, and/or Jimmy Hoffa in it. Dirty water is what showers are for. The solution to pollution is dilution.

Red tide is usually short-lived, but as this one seems to be related to the drought, it may last. So far it's focused on South PI, not Corpus. By far the bigger threat at North Padre Island was explained by Thombiz or someone there recently here: skunks ... as in driving 900 miles to Corpus Christi for naught.

I'm retired. If I knew of a place with a sufficiently high ratio of sailing conditions to hassles -- all very personal choices -- I'd go there in the winter and tell you about it. I haven't found it yet, by my criteria. It's not a no-brainer.

Mike \m/
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