One day in Minnesota


  Who is that crazy guy ?
  We met Tim in March 2002
  in El Yaque, where he was
  known as the GPS-man, since
  he was always using this GPS

  He was one of the fastest on the
  water and jumped like crazy
  through the choppy water.

what´s that shadow
  suddenly appearing behind me ?
  And......what about this 
  smacking sound ?
  One of these pretty big pelicans
  diving into the water and trying
  to catch some fish ?  

  I turned my head and saw Tim
  flying over the water partly
  intentionally partly not.

  He had chosen a small wave
  to initiate a jump.

  When he just went off, one of
  these monster gusts hit his
  sail, catapulting him high into
  the air and separating him from
  board & sail.
  Both Tim and his material made
  a quite hard landing on the
  water, before he disappeared in
  the dark water.

  Passing Tim after jibing around
  and heading back to the beach
  he just smiled and formed
  the hang-loose sign to indicate
  `I am o.k´....

Thanks Tim, for this
  great story


It's been a very breezy spring, but the summer has the usual dead periods, haven't sailed since June 30th, although I just got lucky today and caught some frontal winds at a lake here in Minnesota!  It's about a 2 hour drive to get to the lake, but well worth it as the lake is 14-19 miles in diameter!  It's so  big, you cannot see the shore on the other side!  This makes for very steady winds when they blow across the length of the lake, and form huge waves as they get to the far shore! 
Heres my story on today's fun!


What a day!!!
Got to Father Henn state park at 12:15, and saw that Scott C. and Chris B. were out already. It was 5.5 for those guys, so being 220lbs, I rigged the 6.5! Hit the water with the Maui Project style 'L' board. Got out about 200yds and hit a submerged log, cleanly removing my fin!

Worked my way back to shore and just grabbed my other board; a Mistral Shredder, 298cm/120lt. Fully powered on the 6.5, I sped out to meet the huge swell!

The ramps were as good as the D.R., Margarita or the Gorge! 6-10ft huge well spaced rollers, with the random rouge wave near 12-15ft! What a moving mogul field to play on!!!

Sweet, white topped crests, sprinkled with spray and foam, as far as the eye could see!! So easy to pick and chose the perfect ramp, turn off this one, down the back of that one, ride the next from the top to the trough!! What a blast!

Then the rouge wave starts to form ahead!! Oh! Yeah! It's gonna be perfect timing, OK... carve out, turn back into the wind, and BAMMM! UP! UP! Into the sky!

The juicy ramp had to be at least 12 ft from trough to peak, and with the cranking speed of the launch, I added at least another 10-12 ft before apogee!

A HUGE 22-25 Footer!!! I thought I wouldn't come down!! Then finally, the board and I touched down to mother Mille Lacs, with a planning landing!! SOOOO SWEET!!! I couldn't believe I was sailing huge waves, in July, and was in Minnesota!!

I ripped about 5-8 more 10 -15 ft jumps, before another huge wave setup in front of me! Time for some frequent flyer miles!  Again the ramp was like a huge wall, and I blasted off the lip like I was Robby! Another 22-25 Footer!! Could life get any better!! The landing was smooth, and I was off to chase Kevin O., and Chris B.!

I was heading back towards the beach, flying along in the speed seat, almost catching up to the others, and KRAACK! SPLAAASH! the mast snapped in half, and I am slammed into the drink, still holding the boom and the top 2/3rds of the mast!
WHOA!! Lucky for me I am only about 1.5 miles from the beach, and it's almost straight downwind. I performed the Self-rescue, and told my concerned fellow sailors I should be fine to swim it all back.

An hour to an hour and a half later, I am back at the beach, and Chris was there to give me a hand carrying it all back to the launch spot. Thanks again Chris!!
I re-rigged, with a much newer mast, and headed back out for more! Another 1-2 hour session full on rides and jumps, with lots of wave rides and wave face playin'!!!

Then all the folks on the water finnally ended up heading the same direction, east accross the bay, so the pseudo-race was on!! We were all flying along, I was a bit more up-wind of everyone else: Scott C., Kevin O., Chris B., and put the feet into hyper-drive to push the top end!!

As I am pulling away from the pack, SNAAAPPPP!! The harness line breaks at the adjustment buckle!!! SPROOOING! The boom flys out of my hands and the sail and I go our seperate ways, it lands softly on the water surface, while I am actually going fast enough to do at least one summer-sault on top the water before I effectively use the face-brake and nostril parachute to come to a stop! 

It was a good show for all. Judging by the amount of shouts I heard as I wiped, it must've been good!

I just flipped the sail and sailed back to shore on the good side, for a new boom with new lines. Again, I got back on the water for at least another couple hours, before the body could go no more!!

It was supposed to die off by 7:00pm!?!? It was still blowing 6.5 for me and 5.5 for the avg sailor at 7:30!! The crew of us packed up and went for supper at Trophies restauraunt, at the junction of hwy 27 and 169. Great food, great fellow surfers, great stories of the 'best time at Mille Lacs yet!', and general relaxing after an epic day!
It doesn't get any better!!

Topped it off with a beautiful sunset ride home, with the near full moon rising to greet the happy surfers with a warm yellow-cheery smile, as if to wink at us for being so lucky to have such a great time, for all our trouble!

Thank you mistress wind! You're absence has only made your sweet/speed kiss all the sweeter; and sneaking away on a weekday, just a little bit naughty, for even more satisfaction!!


Written by Tim W. from Minnesota in July 2002


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