The first time in Capo Mannu is never forgotten ... Sardinia gave us a week of wind and waves in the height of summer, and so I had the opportunity to finally try what is probably the best wave spot of the Mediterranean sea.
WINDSURFING, REPORT: CAPO MANNU, SARDINIA, 13 JULY 2021
I have to thank Alessio Pears Negrelli for this trip, since the bad boy from Modena, with his enthusiasm, dragged me, busy planting umbrellas in Stintino ...., in this beautiful trip to the Sinis peninsula, to take the swell and the wind of this anomalous disturbance in the height of summer.
Needless to say, it was love at first sight ...
The Oristano area is always very beautiful, with its gentle, green countryside, dotted with ponds, and its wild coast. Two hours drive through Sardinia, and from Stintino I reach Funtana Meiga. But in Funtana, the wind, side / side-off from the North, is gusty and there was no wave.
Meanwhile, Mr Negrelli updates me on the conditions in Putzu Idu. Wind around 20-25 knots, perfectly side, with the first riders already planing in the bay. And a couple of meters waves at the Capo .... Optimal conditions to leave directly and comfortably from the beach of Putzu Idu, without complicating your life from Mini Capo, or from the small beach at the Capo, which remain more covered, and receive only weak wind (see map below for possibile exit points to ride at Capo Mannu).
20 minutes by car, and I'm in Putzu Idu too. I park the car comfortably at the Lepori Restaurant. The beach is not crowded (unlike in Stintino ....). Wonderful sunny day, like those that, in general, the mistral gives. I rig the Ezzy Wave 4.7 2021, and prepare the Tabou 3s 106 LTD 2015, with MFC freewave 25 fin. Supposing only light winds, and zero waves, during my summer holiday here, I made the mistake of bringing only the freestylewave 106 board, and the 93-liter freestyle board, with me. Having discarded the hypothesis of entering the water with freestyle, with which making a bottom would be complicated, I choose the most wave board I have behind .... Shorty wetsuit and go, I enter the water at Putzu Idu; I let myself drift a bit with the wind behind me, and I chase Alessio, who is already flying with his Quatro Pyramid 77.
The Cape promontory quickly spins to my right as I glide to the waves at its southwestern end. Suddenly, all the windsurfers in the area materialize. In the water, there are about ten, plus a few kiters. I try to understand how the spot works. Offshore, and in the middle of the bay, the typical swell waves coming from the sea, about 3 meters and more, generally not breaking. After reversing the route, and I too switch to port tack, I begin to ride and sail upwind, approaching the cliff of the Cape. Already at the first waves, I understand that, today, the Cape is "small", and the waves do not become steep over a hundred meters, downwind from the cliff. They are rights, and to surf the wall that becomes quite steep, you have to throw yourself inside. It doesn't look too dangerous, should you get a wipe out.
Paying attention to the priorities rules, I start to dare a little more, and I float a bit offshore, and then I try to go upwind the waves while gliding, until they become steeper. You also have some luck to get better sets, or must be able to turn in blink of an eye. Furthermore, approaching the cliff, the wind drops a little in intensity due to the coverage of the promontory of Capo Mannu. This is good when you are already on the wave and surfing it, but it makes it more difficult to get close to the best wave area, near the shore.
Around me, the show of the local guys, and the best ones, who throw themselves in, come down from the waves until they begin to break on their left, and then start in a series of bottoms and cut backs, disappearing behind the crest of the wave, from which only their tip sail emerges. On the occasion, the best sets, reach even 3 meters (Capo Mannu can get as high as 5-6 meters, in the best days). Many riders are powered by Ga Sails, and Tabou. In the afternoon, I also see the Enfant prodige on the spot, Niccolò Spanu, ITA 15 (see photo of the slidegallery), who immediately stands out for some Goiters ...
Try and try again, I finally manage to get some good sets too, and I start with bottoms and cut backs. Nothing phenomenal compared to the best, but the feeling of looking back, seeing the wave that becomes steep, and starting with the bottom, and then being pushed again by the wave for the cut back, is always wonderful (see photo) . How lucky are those who can get out here often: how much practice they can do in serious waveriding!
The spot, at least today, gives confidence. Nice waves, without being bad, and I spend two hours in the water, which I would never want to end. Alessio, too, gives in, and Corrado too, in the end, having gained confidence, throws himself in the waves further near the coast. Well done!
I get out of the water, after two hours and more, because of hunger, and because I have to go back to my family in Stintino. In me, the desire to return to the Cape as soon as possible, at the end of the summer, or in the autumn, gets stronger, to try it with a little bigger waves. The impression is that, despite being a demanding spot, at least when it is not huge due to strong wind and wave size, it gives the possibility to safely waveride, looking for the most suitable waves for your level, and without objective dangers downwind (there are no cliffs, such as that of the Spiaggia d'Oro d'Imperia - Italy, or the Coudouliere - France).
Before leaving, I walk the dirt road that leads to the Capo cliff, and take some photos of the riders still in the water. I meet Nemo, globetrotter, surfboard shaper, who "lives" in Portugal, and who, like me, is enthusiastic about the conditions that Capo Mannu is offering today.
I leave the Oristano area with a bit of melancholy, and with the desire to return as soon as possible: a touch of real Sardinia (at least for me), in the middle of summer.
Hang loose. Fabio
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