I know, I've been saying "this is the last one" for a month now. It's just that I don't want to leave this place. On Tuesday we had yet another awesome day at Montrose, straight North, 19 knots at the crib, I spent all day on 6.5 and 105. The morning was foggy and the wind was just beginning to pick up, so I went for a mini kiting session. An hour later the wind picked up enough to put up the 6.5, and stayed up until I left at 5. Andrew, Matt, Steve, Alan and a bunch of kiters kept riding until well past 6.
Just as I thought my windsurfing days in the Midwest were over, I ended up on a last road trip to Michigan with Matt, Andrew and Mike. This time it was Weko Beach. The guys had heard of this place South of St. Joseph from some local riders at Little Sable Point. The place is supposed to work like St. Joe, on any North with a little bit of West in it. So last week we decided to check it out. When we got there the wind must have been in the high teens, North to NNW. The beach is beautiful, and the waves were about 5-7 feet. The issue with Weko is the same with St. Joe: at the beach on sunny days the breeze is stronger, and it drops once you get out past 100 yards. So on a NNW or NW, if you try to go downwind to get on a plane, you end up loosing a lot of ground, which you can never recover because the wind does not pick up the farthest you go. This leads to massive downwinders, and painful walks up the beach.
Everybody rigged 5s, I put up my 6.5 and 105. I was able to stay fairly upwind and catch some waves. But the wind kept dying on me and on the last run I slogged by way back, and had a massive walk of shame.
By then the wind was almost gone, so we called it a day. The sun was starting to set in one of those perfect Michigan sunsets. It turns out the wind picked up right before sunset, but we were all gone by then.
So in conclusion: Weko is a very nice spot. It works on NNW to NW, which provides side-shore conditions. On sunny days the breeze at the beach may be stronger than out on the lake, so rig bigger than you would. If you notice decreasing wind after 100 yards, don't try to go further out in search for a puff. It just doesn't happen. Just turn back and rig bigger. After the sesh, you can stop by Pablo's for some awesome Mexican food. One more thing, apparently the spot shuts down if the wind shifts East, so be aware.
It's time to start saying god bye to Chicago, and in order to celebrate three years of awesome windsurfing we gathered at Andrew's house and threw a hell of a party. Mike, Steve, Brian, Matt and Andrew showed up, so the whole Cult was there.
I'm going to miss Chicago, I'm going to miss waking up in a frigid and windy morning, looking over my window and seeing Montrose go off. I'll miss Wolf Lake, polluted as it is, with its 30 hard core windsurfers. I'll miss 12th Street Beach, jibing outside and coming back with the Chicago skyline as a backdrop. But over all I'll miss this bunch of nuts that call themselves my friends.
Perfect day to shake the rust of my old Liquid Force. 12-15 mph at Montrose, straight North, sunny and relatively warm. I pumped the 12m and tooled around for an hour or so. It was great to see that after almost a year the kite still holds air...
I started windsurfing as an excuse to visit my brother in Tarifa, Gibraltar, his usual windsurfing spot. The moment I stepped on a board I was hooked. I love windsurfing because it's fun, it took me to amazing places, and because I met wonderful people through the sport.
This is my story, I hope you enjoy it...