Will & Christine’s Monster Road Trip
2011 World Surf Kayak Championships, Outer Banks, North Carolina
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Road Trip Home Page – links to monthly Photo Albums on this page
Final Post - Fri Oct 7th/Sat Oct 8th
4073 km on my rental car and I am safe back in Canada. I have been delaying this final post as I wanted to share with Will my recognition at the Awards Ceremony first, then everyone else!
Friday morning we did finally get to the beach. The "Iron Wave" contest was going on in windy, choppy conditions similar to yesterday but was very interesting to watch. The format was: put your name in a hat - 2 competitors were pulled at random and went out for 10-15 minutes heats in whatever craft they wished - the winner was decided by "WOW" factor. If you won, your name stayed in the hat; if you lost you were done for the day. There were waveskis, short boats and long boats all jumbled up together. Our friend Jorge, from Argentina, managed to win this event, much to the delight of everyone on the beach, by managing to get more air time than all the other competitors - even a waveski!!! Luke and Kye headed out for a last free surf (Luke tried out the Fluid Element WW playboat, Kye tried my new boat). Then we had to get off the beach as we wanted to make sure we saw the Wright Brothers Memorial AND there was a growing line of paddlers really wanting to try my Evolution. (I haven't surfed it yet - needs foot pegs 'cause I am NOT wearing the lap-belt!)
The Memorial was really cool - we started by listening to an oral presentation that outlined the brother's personalities, family supports and community supports that lead them to be able to "invent" powered, heavier-than-air flight. The presenter was very good - but I was wishing that Kye had not shaved off his beard the night before 'cause the Civil War goatee that our presenter wore would have gone right along with Kye's newly adopted American drawl. LOL! Then we walked all over the grounds where the actual flights took place.
The evening awards ceremony was held in a room next to a pool (there is a pool tradition) but thankfully it was too chilly (pool & air) for the mandatory jump-in-the-pool-if-you-get-an-award tradition. I had been commenting to Anthony earlier in the week that I would be sending a representative other than myself if there was recognition of Canada's role at this Worlds, like there had been in Portugal when we sent Brent up, and Anthony had mysteriously replied "You'd better bring a change of clothes...". The award ceremony started with some "special" awards - like winner of the Iron Wave (Jorge, yah!) , most sportsmanlike, biggest air, most commitment and such. When Joey mentioned the candidate for "Most Improved" had swum 12 to 17 times in Portugal (I'm sure it wasn't THAT many times) and then advanced to the 2nd round at this event, I knew I was going up AND I was very happy I had brought extra clothes 'cause I wasn't sure what celebration my teammates would deem appropriate. (I did not get wet.)
The Canadian flag was waved enthusiastically to celebrate Ted's 4th place finish at these Worlds, as well. The beautiful, handmade trophies (Russ B of USA East) represent the iconic lighthouse at Cape Hatteras - unfortunately we did not get to see it as the temporary bridge between Nag's Head and the island of Hatteras is still not complete, but this is a lovely (if touristy) place to visit if you like miles and miles and miles of beach!
The hall was rented until 11 pm and the staff had a hard time moving us all out - so many friendships & memories have been made and no one wanted to leave and have it all end. I know that I leave this Worlds with a much more positive outlook - after the beating we took in Portugal (physical and mental) I had told Will that if one needed to surf every day in any kind of miserable conditions, that would suck the joy out of the sport and I was not in for that. However, the event in North Carolina was run amazingly well - especially when you consider that Joey and Spencer really had only 2 weeks to get this one done - and a positive, joyful vibe was ever-present. All of the Canadians here really want to make Australia in 2013!
Saturday morning we faced the daunting task of 1) removing the sand 2) loading 5 boats on the rental car 3) cramming all our gear in the rental car 4) getting to Norfolk Airport without losing one of the boats. Luke's WW expertise came in handy with layering and tying down the boats - but the "free rope" (ie: twine) I had taken from the competition site was not up for the task (we didn't trust it) so we limped down to the local hardware store and did a couple of extra wraps around the whole thing - boats and car -with some vastly superior rope.
Some sweet talking by Kye & Luke at the airport and the fee for Kevin and Luke to bring 2 of the boats home via plane was halved (haven't heard what happened in Seattle with Air Canada) - then we reorganize the 3 remaining boats and Kye and I head to the bus depot to drop him off. Reorganize the boats AGAIN so I have 2 in the car with me and only the light IC boat on the roof and I am off, headed back to Canada.
It is a bittersweet ending - I feel like I have gained a whole new family of brothers but I know that Kye will be on the island in the new year and Luke will be heading down to Vancouver once this year's course work is done so it won't be 2 whole years before I see them again...and we're planning to go to southern Ontario on our way home so Will can meet Ed, Mariola, Barry and Dave. And, as many of you know, Will wants to trade in our trusty RV for a sailboat when we eventually go home but I want one more season to go to northern BC - we now know some surfers on Haida Gwaii!!!!
The Monster Road Trip blog will continue on my regular website - www.kvarnoguesthouse.ca/roadtrip.htm - feel free to follow along as we head back home! I also will continue to add photos to the Worlds Album as I need time to sort through the best of Dave's and Ed's photos - check back near the end of October to see what has changed. :)
The link to our CBC radio interview is HERE we start around the 18 minute mark.
Thurs Oct 6th
Today we were introduced to what the "normal" conditions are here at Nag's Head - very strong on-shore wind that brings the warm water back but also creates choppy, confused wind-swell rather than the longer-period hurricane swell we've enjoyed (ha!?!?!) all week. It was truly a test of the "best in the world" for the finals as there was no one place to catch a good ride on any tide level and competitors frequently got stuck inside for the better part of 10 minutes trying to get out if their rides took them far away from the pier. (We get these conditions in Ucluelet and I'll go home and garden or something, rather than surf!!)
In recognition of the tough conditions, the heats went to 25 minutes with a 5 minute paddle out (Team Event was 15 minutes and Individual had been 20 minutes to this point). There were 10 heats of finals today - 5 hours on the beach in the warm wind and sand, soaking every last ray in as, apparently, there is slush in northern New Brunswick this morning. (yuck!)
Ted's GrandMaster Short Boat final was the 4th heat of the day...I've never seen anyone give it more effort! Ted successfully caught 2 waves and grabbed a ride back outside on a small rip that Kevin and he had checked out from the beach. Unfortunately, his 3rd wave took him past that point and Ted spent at least 7 minutes trying to break out - finally crossing the entire competition zone to go down to the pier in order to get out. 2 of his other competitors also got stuck in the same position, and from that heat on we didn't see a single paddler try that spot again - they all crossed to the pier - until the very last heat which was Men's Short Boat. We cheered his "4th in the World" standing mightily when he came in - you try solid paddling for 30 minutes into strong wind with waves pounding down & flipping you over - it was an AMAZING effort! This is an improvement for Ted as he advanced to the semi finals in Portugual before being eliminated; Australia 2013 here he comes!!!
The rest of the day was very exciting as new champions were made every half an hour (There was some distraction from the event during the Men's Long heat as the surf-rescue guard's girlfriend showed up in a teeny-tiny bikini that she wore well. I was starting to wonder if some of the young men on the Basque team were going to purposely go drown themselves....) The woman's long boat event was very close with the top 3 spots being separated by only 0.55 at one point and everyone waited with bated breath for the final results to be announced after the heat was done. (Lindsay - you put in a GREAT effort!!) The woman's short boat was also quite competitive - and a heat where I knew most of the competitors very well (of course, it's my category, too)
The evening was quite busy - there was an open WSKA meeting to discuss rule changes and proposals for 2015 (Argentina?) and then a presentation by Australia highlighting their plans so far for 2013 (July?). We had to get up part way through to take the call from All Points West - they have told me they will send a link if you didn't hear it live.
Then we were going to go home and try to stay awake to watch the Canuck's season opener...but the karaoke bragging Luke and I had been doing got "called" and we ended up at "Port'O Call" with 2 USA paddlers. Way, way, way toooo much fun - especially when Carlise pulled out his harmonica and ROCKED the place down. (Luke is an amazing karaoke singer...my performance suffered from too much screaming/cheering on the beach all week and the unusual downing of something that starts with b and ends with r.) It was 3 when I went to bed.....don't know when the boys finally hit the sack... (and I hear the Canucks lost, too)
So, we're supposed to participate in some experimental "Iron Wave" demonstration competition this morning but it is 8 (I've been up for an hour) and there is NO stirring in Canada house. There are also the closing ceremonies tonight.....
Canoe & Kayak has posted a series of 3 articles on the event from the broader perspective HERE.
I'm still working on more pictures in the album as I now have access to Dave's camera files (THANK YOU!!!) Once I get back to Canada and wrest some computer time from Will I will still be adding to the folder....
Wed Oct 5th
All Points West - CBC local radio - will be interviewing Luke and other members of Canada's Surf Kayak team on Thurs Oct 6th at 8:45pm NC time (minus 3 hours makes it 5:45pm at home). Thanks to Jenny for making that happen!
We spent a leisurely day at the beach today as the rest of the semi finals wrapped up and the Team Event finished up - Canada is 5th in the World so we got to soak up the sun as the top 3 duked it out for top spot. There was a heightened level of excitement on the beach during the team event as teams were wearing their shirts and waving their national flags with pride. Basque and Great Britain were quite far in the lead but the USA West ladies really showed their grit and pulled some first place finishes. (I wore my USA West shirt from Portugal with my Canadian bikini bottoms all day - let the locals try to figure that out!!)
As the event is starting to finish up, the boat garage sale has begun. Members of Canada's team are eager to take advantage of anyone who flew to this event who does not want the hassle of flying their boat home. Last count, Ted and I have both bought 2 boats, and Luke and Kye have each bought one with another possibly for Kevin. It may seem crazy to folks back home but there is no other venue for us to try so many different types of boats and to buy them at such discounted rates. I just hope we'll be able to send 2 home via Delta Air with Kevin and Luke or I am going to have a VERY slow drive up the eastern seaboard with them all on the rental! Our Dodge Ram is going to be higher than our RV if they all get piled up on top! :) It's a great problem to have. I really look forward to the advancement both Kye (not in a plastic boat anymore) and Luke (it's love at first surf with his Revolution) are going to make in current, high performance designs that fit them like a glove. Watch out - we'll have 3 paddlers in the finals in Australia!!!
Tomorrow will be Individual finals and we'll be cheering Ted on loudly!
Tues Oct 4th
Oh my, where does the time go?! I hear that "folks back home" are anxious for the updates - and I want to write them while I remember what's going on..but there is never enough time! I've got to run down to the beach to check what's going on today - if it is team event (we're not in Round 3) I'll be back to add one yesterday's events - Ted is heading into the Finals in his category!!!!!
2 bits of info from our previous days - on Monday morning we had a local board surfer deliberately head out into the competition zone, finger the judges when asked to get out of the water and the police had to make an appearance on the beach before he moved on. He surfed one wave to the beach - we were all cheering him - then he needed to make some body motions to display his contempt - we all jeered him. This wave has been tied up quite constantly with surf competitions of one stripe or another for the last month as groups have come here due to Irene, I guess the locals really want back on this wave!
Our team dinner was lovely - we were looking at everyone's photos and we're going to come up with a photo sharing web site of some kind. Kevin made a touching presentation and gave me a totem carving from Haida Gwaii as team manager - it is very beautiful. Jorge (Argentina) BBQ'd all kinds of yummy meat, we all were visiting so much that Mariola had to really work to get our attention when the food was ready. I dragged Luke and Kye away from a very detailed discussion of boats and boat design/construction with Jorge...they are both looking to buy boats while we are here and Jorge is a wealth of information...around 1030 as both Kevin and I were going to be up in competition on the next day.
Tuesday morning dawned with small(ish) surf and the sunrise streaming through the waves, turning them green. There was a fair amount of scrambling at the judges tower, causing Kevin and I a lot of stress, wondering who was up first. Turns out, Kevin's semi-final (Master's Long) was up first and he was in the first heat. After some running around to get a bib, he was in the water and all was good. (for us on the beach, I don't know that Kevin would agree with this statement!) There were only 2 heats of Masters, so Kevin did not get the learning experience the boys had of several heats to get comfortable. He did catch 4 very nice waves on the outside - the waves were a little hard to catch due to wind/slow sets and we're very proud of him. His last one was a nice, long run and they gave him a 2 for it - a combined score of 3.25.
Next up was Ted in the second round of Grand Master's Short Boat. It was a bit of a nail-biter as Ted had first place for a big chunk of the heat, but finally some decent waves came in and the 3rd placed competitor was in place to catch the best of the bunch and he leapt into 1st place. Ted was struggling to get back outside to catch another wave while the largest waves of the day pounded into him. Kevin and I then spot the 3rd placed competitor catch a nice wave....and the end horn is blowing. There were a few tense moments until the announcer let us know that Ted still had 2nd place....and he advances to the FINALS!!!! We will see Ted and his Florida surf buddy Tom in the finals...Thursday, we think. It will be a very competitive heat!
There was a bit of a delay as one of the Juniors who should have been up next hurt himself practising and the judges chose to scrap the heat for the day so he could get checked out and come back on another day. They were going to run a Master's heat..but several Masters were off -site and had to be recalled. Finally all was back on with a new schedule that had me headed in the water for semifinals later in the day. I was really glad about this because the waves are supposed to build for the rest of the week.
Finally, I'm in the water for the last heat of the day. The waves are smaller than the other day but they are very carved up by the wind. I don't want to get in the way of the other girls - one being Devon from USA who I know/hope/wish to charge into the finals. While on the beach, I had checked out a set that would come in on the side, away from most of the others (and the pier) but every time I went for one, it would double up and I'd either catch an edge or bury my bow. (I should have spray-painted a maple leaf on the bottom of my boat Peter Devries-style 'cause that was the most visible part of my boat and NOT because I was pulling aerials!!) So, I'm a little disappointed that I didn't catch one good wave BUT I am very encouraged by my progress from the last Worlds - Portugal was 8 swims in 20 minutes; North Carolina was 8 rolls in 20 minutes and NO SWIMS!!!! (One of my best waves, I rolled to discover I was still surfing...but in the time it takes to think "cool, I'll get points for this" I caught my OTHER edge and that was it....) I've bought a Evolution - it is very technical boat and Ted doesn't want me to get discouraged if I can't roll it right away, but this gives me hope that I'm getting better!!!!
And now, I can have a sleep-in tomorrow!!!!
I've added some more pics to our album but give me another day or two and hopefully I'll get them all on... :)
Mon Oct 3
We left Luke (get some homework done) and Kye (serious sleep catch-up) at home in the morning and headed out to cheer on Barry and Ted. ( It turns out Kevin's category only has 2 heats so it won't run until we're into all the semi- finals.)
Thankfully, the waves were MUCH nicer, the wind less and the sun uncovered so it was a much more comfortable and WARM day at the beach and on the water. Barry led the day in the first heat and once again used his experienced eye to pick off some set waves in a different section of the beach, scoring a combined 4.5 and coming in 3rd place. Ted was up next, and from his 3rd wave (a beaut that scored 4.75) had first place tied up the rest of the way. It was so cool to see Ted surfing to the max of his potential and just ripping it UP!!!! His last wave, a lovely one rode all the way across the competition zone with a cutback and numerous rail to rail twitches, scored a 4.90, giving him a combined score of 9.65 and new Canadian record and a 4th paddler into the next round!!! I don't have much voice left, I must admit!
We watched some of the long boat heats, soaked up some sun and then it was time to retrieve Luke and Kye as the quarter finals of Men Short were running today (I was VERY happy Women's Short didn't go - I needed the rest!) These heats are all very competitive - Kye and Luke are now up against guys who are common names in water-sport magazines and videos as most are multidisciplinary and also compete in kite board, WW paddling, freestyle paddling, waveski or board surfing.
Kye was up first, and waited a little further out to beach right for a set and it paid off - his first wave scored 5.65, which kicked the butt out of his combined score for the previous day. A couple more waves right across the competition zone, a spin and his second score was a 5.45, giving him a combined score of 10.9. WOW!!!! To show how difficult his heat was, he only placed 4th, but his score would have landed him in 2nd place in 3 of the other heats (6 heats in the quarter finals) . Numerous people from the other teams have approached both of us, wanting to know when he's gonna get a "real" boat because there will be no holding him back!!!!!
Luke, also in a very difficult heat (one of the guys pulled 2 aerials yesterday) had the unfortunate experience of the swell just flattening out. Like Kye, he was able to spot an outside set coming in and get in position for 2 amazing drops, but all the waves seemed to mostly just close out. There was also the issue of not wanting to "hurt" his boat any more as Valley is going to charge us $150 to do the repair - we are cynical that they will do a repair as several other boat builders we have talked to say the damage is merely cosmetic and probably a result of not properly prepping the seam. Luke scored a combined 6.35 (I think, my paper is smudged) but that was only a fraction of a decimal behind the 3rd placed competitor (who threw a helix in his long boat earlier in the day) He also showed composure by holding onto a wave when he had priority and not backing off when another paddler was fighting for it right beside him (possibly hoping to physc him off it?)
The Canadian/Argentina/USA team dinner was hosted by Ed and Mariola and I have many more pictures to load as well as telling about Jorge's amazing heat (2 barrels and a lost paddle) but it is time to rush off to the beach as we do not know the order or who out of myself, Ted or Kevin will be up first.
Sun Oct 2
An amazing day for Canada at the Worlds!!!!!!! Everyone is looking so much more comfortable with the competition scene and their boats, improving their scores and THREE are advancing the 2nd round of individual heats (3 more to compete) WOW!!!!!
The morning started with Jenny pampering us with eggs and bacon, then we hit the beach for the last 2 rounds of Team Event. I was up first, to finish the heat that had been cancelled the day before (a bit of a scramble as the washroom doors were locked until 10 minutes before the start - Emma from GBR and I were coming back from the washroom to hear the announcer say we should be in the water!!!) The morning conditions were windy and cold (yes, when the Canadian team is layering all the bits and pieces of clothing they brought with to the beach, it is COLD) with large, lumpy surf breaking right on the beach. NOT my favourite conditions. The strategy was "get 2 waves and come back alive" 2 waves - one scored as a 2.0 - and 2 swims later (ejected from seat on the first dump) and I have improved on the previous day's score to get a combined score of 3.75. Yeah!
The Men's short was up next and Luke was in his element - seemly not afraid of the big nasty "munch" on the shoreline and catching some amazing rides - his combined score came to 8.25 - a huge improvement over the 3-something the day before. Kye was ready to rip it up, but his skirt kept imploding on the break-out and a boat full of water doesn't really want to surf all that well. He did get some good rides and a 3.5 - then Ed/Dave/Jorge went to work to solve the skirt issue.
The waves were really starting to pound in when Barry headed out, he played it conservative and waited for "his" wave to come in and scored an amazing 5.5 (with only 3 waves caught, not 12 like the day before) Kevin has an utterly crazy shot of the bottom of his boat as he was charging on one!!! The danger of the pier was made very apparent as, while trying to come in at the end of his heat, the swell started to change direction and the current started dragging unwilling paddlers into it - the Canadian cheering squad quickly became the "rescue Barry's boat so he can rescue himself" squad.
The biggest, dumpiest waves of the day came, in my opinion, during the heats of the Women's individual competition. (It was really amazing to see how much the conditions did change throughout the day!!!) I like the big, green ones on the outside - but I do like an exit strategy on the inside and there wasn't one. There were 3 women in my heat - Devon from USA being the most experienced - and after watching 2 women in the heat before us get tangled up under the pier (they are okay but one boat is not), we decided as a group that we didn't care where the competition flags were, we're surfing way over here and the judges can find us there (they did move the flags while we were out). Thankfully, I had Barry's example to follow and Ted's keen eye and we worked out a strategy that might bring me back in one piece (2 waves and get out of there!!!) It took me about 10 minutes to catch my first wave but it was a doozy - I scored 3.0 on it AND I was able to roll up with 2 attempts. That ride had taken me most of the way across the competition zone so I "bossed" my crew into hiking my boat all the way down away from the pier so I could go catch another one - what a rush!!!!! I ended up with a combined score of 4.2 and I advance to the next round!!! (I sure hope they are smaller OR less dumpy.)
Kye was up next, in a round of 3 as well. In a new skirt provided from Argentina, Kye was determined to show everyone what he could do - and he did! On one of his first waves he was able to spin 360 and moved into first place - then he caught a beautiful, long ride and rode it all the way across the competition zone! (Ed has a 8 frame shot of it so MORE pictures to come) He scored a combined score of 6.5 for 1st place and also advances to the next round.
For Luke's heat, the tide had gone out and left and right rides were available closer to the pier. Anthony Bell, from USA East, who has an uncanny ability to pick out awesome rides was in this heat so Luke and Anthony scored some sweet rides near the pier. It has been really great to watch Luke's "surfing" improve in just 3 days - he is a very confident freestyle WW paddler and the adjustment to trusting the fins really seemed complete in this heat. At one point, Luke went right to the pier but made the smart decision to just go all the way to the other side to break-out, then re-enter the competition zone. We were hooting and hollering as he continued to hold 2nd spot throughout the heat - a combined score of 8.00, the highest for a Canadian yet in this competition and ONLY 0.55 behind 1st place Anthony because Anthony had an interference called on him. So Luke is our 3rd paddler to advance to the 2nd round.
GrandMaster's Short boat (Barry & Ted) was supposed to run this day, but thankfully at 6pm they called it a day and we exhaustedly started to pack up. (10 hours on the beach, most of them COLD). To our utter dismay, we discover that the nose of Luke's demo Valley Rush has begun to de laminate - even though he has not hit anything. When we talk to the rep, they refuse to believe the problem is with the boat - claiming he must have hit something and not known it. In my opinion, if you hit something and don't know it, then it shouldn't damage the boat!!!! They are going to call the boss tonight and see what he says. Right now we don't know if Luke will use it tomorrow for the second round. We find out that the other Valley demo boat (IC used by Jersey) got its nose pinched on the bottom and has sustained even more serious damage.
We were VERY grateful for the dinner leftovers left by Jenny’s dinner the night before and everyone hit the sheets much earlier than usual.
Sat Oct 1
We arrived at the beach for 8 am check in to find that the heats were postponed until 1 pm. We had a nice visit with friends of Kevin's, then some quiet downtime before returning to the beach in the afternoon.
Round 2 of the Team Event began with the heats reversed so Kevin got to lead for Canada. He looked much more comfortable and with some "coaching" (screaming, really) from the beach dropped into 2 very nice waves and improved his score from yesterday. We had a bit of a wait before Ted headed in for his heat - all 5 paddlers really struggled to catch waves in softening conditions and a strong off-shore wind. However, Kevin got some great photos of Ted ripping it up. I head out for my heat, and no sooner than we 3 women move into position, then they announce the heats are cancelled for the day due to conditions. I HAD to catch one wave - it was great! Then Kye, Luke and I headed out for some free surf.
Dinner was organized by Jenny and we turned in early as it is 730am start tomorrow morning to finish off Round 2 of the Team Event and then individual heats will begin.
More pictures in our album and a youtube video of our Argentina friend (I don't know how to spell his name!) HERE and thank goodness I did not see this video before coming here - the footage is not of this break....
Fri Sept 30
The TEAM EVENT is ON!!! All 7 of Canada's paddlers hit the water today in team heats. Barry lead the charge in the first heat of the day; with Dave, Luke and Kye following right behind. Kevin had the longest wait as the Master's Long was the very last heat of the day. I am very proud of how everyone went out, determined to do their best and have fun! I am very excited by my personal best - 2.50 combined score and NO swims!! Yeah! Ted managed to get a combined 7 in a very competitive heat with 5 competitors scrambling for a few, small waves. The waves were quite small and got smaller throughout the day - it is going to have to pick up for tomorrow. We should have some hurricane swell for the weekend. We all get in the water tomorrow, again, for Round 2 of the Team Event. The next stage of the team event is the top 3 (out of 5) teams have round 3. We think that 5th in the World sounds pretty good - morale is high.
Thurs Sept 29
Kye looks much more comfortable - some nice rides in crowded surf. After boat check in, we've now got Luke in a demo Valley Rush (yah, Valley!) that he can outfit to his hearts content. (He may have a case of Reaction-addiction, though)
Did some creative teamwork to get all our boats through check-in - Dave had webbing and we pooled our float bags.
I've got some nice pictures from our evening parade but we're rushing out the door this morning for first heats - team event - and Kevin hasn't even sat in the Murky Water Swurd that we installed the seat in yesterday afternoon! Check out the Worlds website for their updates and photos.
Wed Sept 28
Some good/fun surfing today at the pier. Kye and Luke headed off quickly and Kevin got some great pics - click on the link above for our photo album.
Very nice to hook up with folks we had met in Portugal as well as meet new paddlers from New Zealand, Australia, USA and our team mates from Canada.
The most fun I've had surfing in a long time - but my back is still tender from all the driving down so I didn't push it. (2 successful rolls!!!) Kye ended up under the pier on one of his rides.
Tomorrow is gear check and opening ceremonies....heats start 8 am sharp Friday morning.
And, we know folks back home do NOT want us to brag...but it is WARM here. I surfed in my bikini (and have a lovely sunburn in the middle of my back) the guys in their t-shirts/shorts. No way, if temperatures stay where they are, are we putting on wet suits!!! (During a storm burst we ran down to the hot tub to soak in the pouring rain - rain was same temp as the swimming pool.)
Check out the Worlds website for photos/updates.
And an awesome video from the Australian team.
Tues Sept 27
Yah! I made it! A couple of very long days of driving and too many states to remember and I'm here. (big yoga stretching session today before surfing, I think!)
Kye, Luke, Kevin and I are very cosy at the Croatan Surf Club and the boys are anxious to hit the water soon! There are lots of boats on trailers and in vehicles...we arrived around 10 pm last night so there was only a swim in the Atlantic, a beer to drink in the muggy air and cockroach chasing on the deck, then off to bed.
The organizers have posted some pics of practice surf HERE
And I hope to have some pics of my own to post soon, too.