Finally, the wind is back at sea! On September 25, 2018, Bordighera (Liguria, Italy) gave us a morning with great conditions, and allowed us to enjoy a good session, full of wind, sun and waves, with a surprising end!
Windsurf, session report: Bordighera (Liguria, Italy), Caranca
The first idea was to head to Cannes (France), a spot that, personally, I really appreciate. But, both some friends who made me think, and the wind forecast in Cannes, which predicted very onshore wind (and likely beyond 40 knots), as well as the possibility of driving a shorter way to the spot, made me reconsider the choice, to point to the nearest Ligurian spots of the west coast. With me my friend Max, also from Milan.
Driving along the highway, we have some phone calls with other friends in the area, some of them at La Rabina (Imperia), others at Arma di Taggia, but the idea that most appeals to us is going to Caranca, in Bordighera (read the spot review), because when it works, that is a unique spot. In April, I've already tried it (read the report), with even too tough conditions!
So, we decide to go and check the conditions that the spot offers, and when we arrive, around at 11.00, we remain open-mouthed: strong wind, well blowing over the spot, with side direction, and a rough sea, with large waves (more than 2 meters), rather regular, and really glassy, near the shore. There is no doubt, this is the right spot for today.
On the spot, there are already several local riders (including Andrea Franchini, owner of the local school No Stress Team), who jump and give a show, pictured by the professional photographer Stefano Brugnola (I thought about doing some photos also to those who don't jump..., see slidegallery at the end of the article).
Having measured, on the breakwater pier upwind to the spot, some bursts at 40 knots ....., without doubts, I (70 kgs) decide to rig the Ezzy Elite 2016 3.7, which I match with the Fanatic Quad 87 TE 2013, in a Quad fins set up. Max, who left home his 3.8 sail, rigs the 4.2, and prepares a Novenove style pro 102 board (he is heavier than me).
Forecasts had predicted a temperature drop because of the arrival of the East wind.... On the contrary, in Bordighera, we feel really warm: there is a nice dry warm climate (about 24-26 Celsius degrees), and the sun shines bright. The landscape, as usual, is wonderful, with the turquoise sea of Liguria dominating the scene! The water is still warm, and some even go out with the shorty suit.
At about 12.00, we enter the water, and immediately I realize how beautiful the conditions are. My sail is really full, and I can explore the whole spot, as I please. But above all, waves are magnificent. Before going out, I see some riders surfing the waves, for a long time near the shore, disappearing behind them, with only the sail tip popping out behind the lip.
I try to surf some waves, too. They are so smooth and regular, that I can easily catch some of them. The problem, as usual, for me is to keep speed during the bottom-turn to arrive fast at the top turn. Instead, I often arrive on the lip almost with no speed.... I still have to work on this. Even Max has fun.
Going out, here, you jump on port tack, and it's not my best favourite side, but anyway I try not to loose control in the air, during jumps. But the best jumps are those that I perform on my way back, as it is easy to meet, just offshore of the breakwater upwind to the spot, some beautiful steep waves of more than 2 meters.
I keep riding for a full and intense beautiful hour, and then I go out to take a breath, and eat something, since the forecast gives wind all day long. In retrospect, I can say that it will be a mistake, because the best at Bordighera, on this occasion, will be in the morning, about until 2.00 pm. Then, the wind will turn from NE, and become more unstable, and even the sea, due to the gusts, will get messed up, offshore (with unpleasant crossed waves), while the beautiful waves almost completely will disappear.
Once out of the water, I eat and start taking pictures and videos to other riders in the water, among whom some I envy for the smoothness of their way of tacking on small boards ...
At 2.00 pm, I go back to the water, but having measured a wind drop (wind on average at 30 kts, with some lulls at 25 knots), I switch to the Ezzy Elite 4.2 2018.
Although the conditions are no longer exceptional as in the morning, I make another hour and a half in water, rather funny, in which I devote more than anything else to practise the maneuvers. Outside, I try to jibe with a tight radius (cause the water surface is pretty rough), anticipating the passage of the sail and coming out with a switch stance.
I go out again, from the water at 15.30, because the wind starts to be too unstable.
I stay a bit on the beach, but after about twenty minutes, still seeing some nice blast over the sea, I make the mistake of going back to the water again ....
But the wind, now, is of poor quality, and in fact, there is almost no one in the water.
While I'm about 100 meters from the shore, and I'm making a waterstart to return, I notice some seagulls that seem to push away something that is underwater. I look better, and I notice a dark shape of about 3 meters, which moves slowly just below the sea surface. I confess a few moments of worry..., also because I spent the last days to speak with friends about the presence of sharks in South Africa, where I will go next January .... But then, since the beast just seems to do its business, I tell myself that it is better to keep calm, and think to make the most of the last gusts to make this blessed waterstart, and start again.
The end of the day is very pleasant, because the occasion of the alleged shark sighting (but certainly it was a bunch of anchovies ....), allows me to start a pleasant chat with Lorenzo, a rider from Milan, who wisely moved to live in Rapallo (on the coast), who definitely convinces me to go to South Africa, with a long and passionate story about how good the conditions are for windsurfing, and how fascinating the country is. Even if it was a shark, as we say in Italy, ... not all the evils come to harm ....
Once said bye to Lorenzo, with Max we enjoy the wonder of the late afternoon, lit by the warm light of the sun that is about to set. And even this time, I would like to relax myself on a deckchair with a beer, stopping the time. And instead, we have to drive three hours to go back to Milan.
Hey Max, are we wrong with our lives?
Click here, for the beautiful slidegallery of the day.
The nice video of the day