It feels like event time now that people are starting to arrive from out of town.
The first to show was Patrick Rynne from Florida – I picked him up from the airport last night and we drove right up here to Squamish, to the sound of him saying repeatedly “this is so pretty” about the scenery.
Alex Aguera and his family arrived this morning from Maui, as well as Jessica Sickenger and Chris Butzen from Ontario. We were pleased to see clear sunny skies, which is good for the Squamish thermals.
Everyone all met up at “the Spit” with Myself, Stefano Rista and Colin Ernst to get out on the water for some mellow 11m conditions – slightly lighter than normal for Squamish, but still very smooth and steady winds. I think the nice winds offset the shock of the cold water for the Maui & FL crews.
We ran a few mock races around a temporary set of marks and everyone is starting to get a feel for the place. But us Squamish regulars might still have local knowledge tricks up our sleeves.
Everyone is going fast and everyone is in full race mode. So much so that Colin and Alex ended up in a tangle near the windward mark, which resulted in a boat rescue and a few cut lines for Colin.
Stefano, Pat and I got in to a pretty fun tacking battle, trying to out roll-tack each other up to the windward mark, then flying downwind gybing as many times as possible and trying not to explode.
The kiting spot is right at the mouth of a river. We had a record snowfall winter, and the snowmelt is still pumping. This is the coldest water year I can remember; Normally by August we are in shorty suits, but this year we are still in 4/3’s! This also means that there are a lot of Salmon running, and we were all hunting plenty of fish with our fins today.
Big guns Johnny & Erica Heineken, Adam Koch, Bryan Lake and Adam Vance are all expected to arrive Friday, most opting to stay in the bay area to race the Thursday night series this week as well. They will be followed by a slew of racers from the Gorge, Seattle, Cali and the rest of Canada, meeting up to come do battle with the 10-15 of our local course racers.
As for gear, it’s looking like mostly Aguera, Mikeslab, and Naish boards. For kites, there are a lot of Xbows & Ozone Edges and I’ll be racing a quiver of Naish Chargers.
So far everyone here is on Ristafins!
The forecast for the rest of the week looks awesome and we can expect most people to be racing powered on 11m kites with steady winds.
I’m stoked that Squamish is turning in to a serious racing venue!
I’ll try to post a few more updates as we go, but honestly there is some great racing and good parties planned so I don’t expect to be at my laptop much this weekend.
- Kyle Touhey