A fun Outer Banks retreat.
The owner shares some beach experiences.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Happy Thanksgiving!

The family is wrapping up the 2010 beach season with a stay at Relaxation Station.

On Sunday, after a great breakfast at Diamond Shoals restaurant in Buxton, a couple hours were spent regaining the old sea legs Stand Up Paddling (SUP) at Avon pier. There was no wind, small surf and tons of dolphins on the outside. After sunset a beautiful orange full moon came up over the ocean. Just chilly enough tonight for the hot tub to feel really good. Spring and fall are definitely the best time to enjoy a hot tub.

I grabbed a coffee and caught a small wave SUP morning session in front of the Avon cottages via ramp 38. It was fun driving on a new part of the beach but it is narrow and steep there so definitely not for the inexperienced or less capable 4WDs. In the afternoon I surfed near the old lighthouse. It had clouded up making the sky and glassy smooth ocean merge. I was distracted once buy the perfect reflection of a pelican flying overhead. As a tight formation of dolphins passed close buy, I found myself eye-to-eye with one as it swam on its side beneath the nose of my board. Awesome!

A warm and sunny day. I sailed my SUP in a light side-onshore breeze with just enough surf to keep it interesting. Stopped by Indian Town gallery and chatted with Ann the owner about the latest on beach access. This fall, with the beautiful beaches and lack of crowds it's easy to forget that spring and summer are now very different with miles of beach closures, not only to driving but to pedestrians too. Beach house rentals are way off in the spring with local businesses feeling the crunch too. Fishermen can no longer get to the places they and their fathers fished from so many of them no longer come. The relentless expansion and reach of big brother has to be stopped. Please do what you can, vote, write letters, donate to organizations representing beach goer interests. So spring isn't looking good but it's supposed to be windy tomorrow! I'm looking forward to some high wind ocean action!

A strong north wind filled in this morning. I took a few quick runs at lifeguard beach with huge shore break and no surf. A few hours later I sailed at the old lighthouse beach with a fellow named Sasha. Fully powered 5.8 on my 93 liter board with some friendly waves. I got my first true cutbacks today, clew first heading back up the wave and having the white water kick the board back to the beach. Wow! They felt good!

The family is converging tonight. Three form the north and two via the ferries to and from Ocracoke. We have an obscenely big turkey in the fridge. We wonder if we have big enough pans to handle it. Worst case, we have a meat cleaver!

Thursday (Thanksgiving)
Thankful to have a nice beach house and time to spend Thanksgiving with the family. A few of us went to the south side near Frisco to do some paddling (SUP) and catch some rays on a beautifully warm day. Also kind of thankful that the surf and wind are both low today so it is easier to stay at the house and help with the cooking and cleaning.

Friday (Black)
Hooked up with Bill Bell at Ramp 23 and did some light wind surf sailing until the cold front blew in, straight off shore. A little scary getting back to shore which was straight up wind.

Ken caught a 4.6 session at the hole early morning and Dan did a SUP down-winder from the creek in our backyard out to the sound and all the way to Canadian Hole using a strong NW breeze to help his paddling.
Another great week on the Outer Banks is ending. It's time to take down the house sign, winterize the house and hit the busy holiday highway. I'm already looking forward to our next visit.