Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Treasure Island Paddle

Yesterday morning I made the paddle from Berkeley out to Treasure Island, around it and back.  The planning was perfect, as was the weather.  What I was looking for, however, was the 15-25 kt wind from the west that was forecasted but never materialized.  The idea was to get out to the far side of TI as the winds picked up and then ride the wind swell back home with some surfing excitement.  Unbelievably, the wind was stronger at 9am when I launched than it was at noon on my return.  Oh well, it was a nice paddle nonetheless and one I've been wanting to do on a standup board for awhile.

It's been quite fun re-paddling many of the San Francisco Bay routes that I've done previously in sea kayaks.  Planning for tides and currents is a bit more important on a board since I can't quite sprint as fast as I can in a kayak.  On this paddle the crux move was paddling up current just north of the Bay Bridge where it hits the west side of Yerba Buena island.  With a bit of swell crashing on the rocks at YB I couldn't quite stay in the eddy and was forced into the main current for a few minutes.  Even though the flood was racing through, it was barely 2 kts and quite manageable.

As I look out across the bay today, it's whitecaps as usual.  The typical scene that we get almost everyday.  I'm still baffled that the one day I'm really hoping for strong wind, I get ignored and find glassy conditions at noontime.

the route

approaching the east side of treasure island

the gear:  Naish Glide 17, Werner Grand Prix S1000

Bay Bridge construction from Clipper Cove

Coast Guard base on Yerba Buena Island

Rounding the southern tip of YB Island, SF in the background

Bay Bridge and San Fran

flat conditions on the return

Looking back to Treasure Island and Yerba Buena - unbelievably flat!