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Hood River July 4th week- advice needed
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fitek



Joined: 31 Jan 2013
Posts: 46

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 12:08 pm    Post subject: Hood River July 4th week- advice needed Reply with quote

The client I'm working at is shutting down the entire week of July 4th so I'm driving up to Hood River w/ wife and kid from the SF Bay Area.

First off, I looked at VRBO and there's very little left to rent within our budget. We have a van, so we can just camp somewhere. Would be nice to have access to a shower. Any recommendations?

Second, I either need to leave some gear or the wife behind. But the gear doesn't hold grudges. I have 4.0, 4.2, 5.0, 5.8, 6.5. I'm going to guess I don't need to bother taking the 5.8 and 6.5 and associated longer masts and extensions with me. Am I going to need smaller sails? I figure if so I can pick it up at Windance or something (but I'll probably need a 370 mast...)

Thanks!
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johnl



Joined: 05 Jun 1994
Posts: 1195
Location: Hood River OR

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 12:30 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There is lots of camping. Viento State Park, Tucker Park, Memaloose State Park, all have possibilities with showers but are not free. The down side is that they are first come first served (I believe). So you would want to come here early. I wish I could give you more info, but my camping days were all after the 4th weekend.

As to gear. Tough call. I would leave the 6.5 behind. If the wind is that light then I would go hiking, or whitewater rafting over on the White Salmon. BUT a 5.8 (assuming you are close to my 185 pounds) could very well get used. A 4.0 will get you though a lot. I have a 3.7 that I use a lot (similar to your 4.0) and a 3.2 but my 3.2 only gets used a few times a year at most.

Despite what you may have heard the gorge is NOT nuking all the time. I've sailed everything from a 3.2 to a 6.2 here (although the 6.2 getting used is REAL rare). Depends on how much you want to sail and WHERE you want to sail (based on difficulty and ability).

If you are looking to buy while you are up here, Windance has a consignment section with a lot of used gear at good prices. I don't believe they rent. Big Winds does rent. HOWEVER their rentals has reservations which would have priority over walk ins. And the 4th is a busy weekend up here....
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 1333
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 12:39 pm    Post subject: Re: Hood River July 4th week- advice needed Reply with quote

That's some tight sail spacing you have there on the low end, fitek.

Depends on your weight, but it's hard to imagine you couldn't rig your 4.2,
like it was a 4.0. So, I'd bring the 4.2, the 5.0, and the 5.8, just because the spacing is reasonable. You can always rent a 3.7.

Memaloose has showers, so does Mary Hill, but it's a lot further out.

There are showers at the old Hood River Sail park also (but you're not
supposed to camp there).

I weight 185 lbs, and my most used sails are 4.7 and 4.2.

The July 4th week tends more toward a crowd, but it's all still good.

-Craig

fitek wrote:
The client I'm working at is shutting down the entire week of July 4th so I'm driving up to Hood River w/ wife and kid from the SF Bay Area.

First off, I looked at VRBO and there's very little left to rent within our budget. We have a van, so we can just camp somewhere. Would be nice to have access to a shower. Any recommendations?

Second, I either need to leave some gear or the wife behind. But the gear doesn't hold grudges. I have 4.0, 4.2, 5.0, 5.8, 6.5. I'm going to guess I don't need to bother taking the 5.8 and 6.5 and associated longer masts and extensions with me. Am I going to need smaller sails? I figure if so I can pick it up at Windance or something (but I'll probably need a 370 mast...)

Thanks!
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14635

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 1:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

There's no possible way to know in advance what gear you will need. Early July can be 112 or 60 degrees, windy or dead calm, wet or dry; the only guarantee is crowds. Considering your skill level, I'd suggest planning on bringing the 4, the 5, the 5.8, the 112L, and the 86L ... with reservations about the latter because this year's current will flush you down the toilet until you've mastered its straps AND have a flawless, 100% waterstart in any conditions.

You can rent any gear you really need (if the crowds haven't gobbled it up), but renting wives is not legal here. Odds are that in any July week you will, on one day or another, wish you had brought all your gear. More important than what gear you schlep is how fast you learn to find suitable wind and launch sites; this place is huge (hundreds of miles long) and has extremely complex wind and weather patterns; pick a shop you like and pick their brains for each day's fun.

Mike \m/


Last edited by isobars on Fri May 30, 2014 1:46 pm; edited 1 time in total
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biffmalibu



Joined: 30 May 2008
Posts: 215

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 1:45 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Bring the big sails; the most commonly SOLD (not necessarily SAILED) size in the Gorge is 6.5m. It must be for a few good reasons. If you are commited to windsurfing, you must bring your big stuff. Also, like somebody else said, the 4.0 is a waste of space as it is comparable to your 4.2. I don't know your or your wife's/ kid's weight or abilities, by you will likely need a a 3.7 or 3.5. And you will need a small board for strong wind. Don't try and sail your big board in strong winds; it's not fun and you could get hurt (exploded) trying.

Check your private messages...
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14635

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 2:44 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

In another thread, fitek wrote:
Ok, maybe I shouldn't worry so much about the straps. I just remember using them fairly often with the beginner board and now I never use them. Half the time I fall off a plane wrestling to get into them.

Then you are not anywhere near ready for an 86L board on an average windy day in the Gorge (your other current thread, in the NW section). Take your big gear, find modest winds (if it's blowing at all), get your butt upriver fast so the current doesn't eat you, and be ready and willing to get ashore wherever you can if need be. With that approach to straps, I've got to wonder how instantly and effortlessly you can pop into a waterstart in four feet of chop and very gusty winds with a barge coming at you.

Don't let me discourage you from coming; every skill level can have fun here in the right spot on the right days. DO, however, believe that aggression and confidence -- both good traits in this sport -- will not necessarily overcome the challenges this place can throw at you.
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fitek



Joined: 31 Jan 2013
Posts: 46

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 2:53 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Hah, sounds like I need everything but the 4.0 (not a huge fan of that sail anyway). Maybe I just need to DIY a roof rack, especially in case of an unexpected purchase while up there. My two favorite sails have come from Windance (4.2 Ezzy and 5.0 Goya) and they were super cheap (relative to SF Bay Area) so you know I wouldn't complain too much if I had to get more gear...

I'm 145lbs dry though 155 with a sopping wetsuit and other gear. Wife doesn't WS and son can't even stand up yet.

Will look into those parks and also Mosier.
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cgoudie1



Joined: 10 Apr 2006
Posts: 1333
Location: Killer Sturgeon Cove

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 3:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

At your weight, you really need to consider saving enough
room in your vehicle to purchase and carry a 3.5. Your 6.5
would be pure low wind desperation, and while I've seen that
happen during the July 4th week, odds are more likely you'll
need a 3.5, than a 6.5.

I'm also going to suggest, that at your skill level (and your
description of strapless sailing on your high wind board), that
you start somewhere like between Wells Island and the Hook,
or The Dalles River Front Park (a nice place for your family BTW),
or the Hood River Sail Park (if the sand bar hasn't wiped that
out, as I haven't been down there in many years).

I haven't seen you mention your waterstart, but surely you've got
that wired if you're sailing the 86 ltr out of the straps ;*) .
So get a couple of days under your belt where the current
won't get ya, and get comfortable with those straps, then move on
to the Event Site, The Hood River River Front Park (also a great
place for the fam) Stevenson, or even Roweena.

You'll be getting some serious adrenaline.

Stay safe enough to survive.

Good luck.

-Craig


fitek wrote:
Hah, sounds like I need everything but the 4.0 (not a huge fan of that sail anyway). Maybe I just need to DIY a roof rack, especially in case of an unexpected purchase while up there. My two favorite sails have come from Windance (4.2 Ezzy and 5.0 Goya) and they were super cheap (relative to SF Bay Area) so you know I wouldn't complain too much if I had to get more gear...

I'm 145lbs dry though 155 with a sopping wetsuit and other gear. Wife doesn't WS and son can't even stand up yet.

Will look into those parks and also Mosier.
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fitek



Joined: 31 Jan 2013
Posts: 46

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 4:58 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

Thanks Craig. I will pick up a 3.5 or 3.6.

I feel pretty comfortable water starting. Given how much I was falling over earlier in the year I would have given up on the sport if I hadn't sorted it out.

I was in HR a couple years ago and snuck out of the hook beginner area on a 220L with a 2.7L sail. That got the adrenaline going once I got to the middle as it hardly had any go and the swell was tossing the board around.
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isobars



Joined: 12 Dec 1999
Posts: 14635

PostPosted: Fri May 30, 2014 6:19 pm    Post subject: Reply with quote

fitek wrote:
I was in HR a couple years ago and snuck out of the hook beginner area on a 220L with a 2.7L sail. That got the adrenaline going once I got to the middle as it hardly had any go and the swell was tossing the board around.

My initiation to the Gorge was on a 3.8 and a 12' Equipe at the Hatchery. Never had so much fun getting my butt kicked.
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