February bores 2009

I had some good rides last month on the Severn bore in the mid horseshoe bend, including a good solo ride. It’s a rare event nowadays to get a wave to yourself and even rarer to get a good wave, so a ride of over a mile on the Severn bore without anyone else out brings a lot of stoke. There’s nothing better though than to surf uncluttered waves with your buddies. To do that in the UK the spot has got to be just far enough away so that people can’t realistically get there in numbers and you’ve got to surf at 1st light.
The Thursday bore was the day after the new moon and although the three day prediction was the same, this was the one most likely to be the most powerful and so it proved to be. A few guys turned out to surf the Saturday bore but it had none of the size or power of Thursday’s and did’nt connect through for a long ride.

Showing the after effects of the bore

Severn bore whirlpool
Don’t get caught in one of these after the bore has gone through. This whirlpool was after an 8.3 metre tide. I’ve seen them with 4ft holes after 10 metre plus tides!

I paddled downstream for a mile or so to meet the bore head on below boats. I cut it a bit fine and could have probably got a couple of hundred yards more, but then I might have been too far down and not caught the wave building of the sandbank. As it was I got a good waist to chest high wave to the mixer and proned through to the channel with constant fin dragging in the super low water, which you can sometimes get in February. The old saying “February fill dyke” does not read as generally understood full dyke, but fill the dyke and despite the rain and snow this month the river was really low and had dropped off 2 feet since the main february tides two weeks earlier. Getting back to my feet I finished the ride with a good 100 yards of clean wave to allow a fair bit of board walking. It was a memorable ride.

Early February Bore

A medium sized severn bore through the Newnham channel.check out this http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wpbSIbH6dKA&fmt=18

The main tides of the month were fun with a large turnout of bore riders at Boats all coming in from the east bank. I concentrated my efforts in the Newnham channel and had two good rides on consecutive days. The first day when Mark Humpage’s microlight was flying above was a reasonably powerful wave, and I got caught on camera. Steve was dropped from the boat for the shoulder and a couple of guys came through from lower down including Ben, who told me the next day that he had ridden to Epney, one of the long rides in the upper horseshoe. Tom did this ride a few years ago at some four and a half miles. I caught a rail in the turbulence at the ford, which did’nt really matter as I was about to bail anyway to avoid too long a walk back. The next day I had a good mile ride from the fish house upto the lower end of the strand ending with a lovely clean section when I managed to get a real nice 10 nose ride with the eleven six locked in steady as a rock. A great end to a good ride but a pretty long walk back. I reckon there were 8 rideable days this month in the horseshoe bend for local guys with plenty of time to spare, but man you have got to be really fit. Stay stoked, Donny.

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