Weather prevents Auntie at SOC, Ripples and Deals, Foils are Bright and Henfield awash!

Weather prevents Auntie at SOC, Ripples and Deals, Foils are Bright and Henfield awash!

It’s the Friday before the first May Bank Holiday Weekend of 2024 and the wind has been blowing all day, which is rather frustrating for those who’ve been stuck at work and not been able to head to the beach to get out and play. Sadly, that appears to be it for the foreseeable future, so it’s another weekend of finding something else to keep us entertained.. could be worse, could be raining.. hmmm.  

The forecasts have been rather ‘flakey’ this week, to say the least, and have caused events to be cancelled because of it. The Shoreham Outrigger Club have a Four Person boat crew going out to Hawaii this summer to take part in the World Championship and the BBC were coming along to do an interview with the Famous Four at around 4pm last Wednesday. The SOC Team intended to take the journalist for a trip up the river in an outrigger but when we (Jon Ellman-Brown, who is one of the Four and myself) looked at the forecast at just after 1pm, there was a Yellow warning for heavy rain around the time they would be out on the water, so quite rightly it had to be cancelled (not sure if the BBC saw their own forecast and pulled out or if SOC aired on the side of safety and called it off) . And did it rain? NO, not a drop and as most will know, the storm actually arrived at around 2am Thursday morning. So, a good opportunity lost and frustration all round, as SOC are fund raising to help with the cost of the trip and a BBC  local News item could have helped. Maybe a plug from us will not be quite as good as one from ‘Auntie’ but we are always willing to try, so here’s the link to their fundraising page 

Please pass it on, as it would be good to send our LOCAL Team out to the Worlds properly funded. 

I’m sure the BBC will return soon and do their bit.. weather forecast permitting. 

It’s been a rough winter period for the Watersports industry as a whole and although we all smile and try and stay positively charged (well, not me obviously but generally speaking) it has been the worst since we took over Surfladle’s reins back in 1994. Earlier in the year, one of the largest shops in Germany folded and now a well-known one in the UK has hit financial difficulties, creating ‘ripples’ throughout the industry. Thankfully all of our stock is owned by us and we can keep clear of the crippling interest rate rises on loans etc. that many others are trying to contend with. Due to this, there are continuing ‘dire deals’ to be had on the net and as always we try and match those offers, as and when we come across them, so please don’t be scared to ask if there is something you have seen cheaper elsewhere! Many of you will know that we do check the online prices before we sell an item in the shop, so you genuinely will get the best price (even if it makes us cringe) from your local shop. Why does Royston Vassey always come to mind when I write that.. moving on!   

Shoreham was busy today, with over thirty windsurfers sailing off of Widewater, which was a good thing to hear (we were told by one of the lucky thirty.. Chris) as it has been pretty quiet for most of the year , due to the wind directions and high tide times having suited Worthing on most of the recent ‘blows’.

Saying that, when I left the shop last Sunday I noted that there were seven Wings out and not a single Kite or Windsurfer, even though there was just enough wind for a big Kite or a 7.5m Slalom rig, so it felt like I was viewing a glimpse of things to come. Foils are offering new light wind opportunities for fun and that feeling of learning something new, whereas most Kitesurfers and Windsurfers have now lost the will to mow the grass or to go a waddling whilst waiting for a gust to get you onto the plane, hence they will only come out to play when we hit the ‘fun’ wind speeds.  So, that’s another thing in favour of the foils and why so many have spent more time on the water, as the windspeeds needed to learn foiling have arrived time after time this winter. As I ‘ve mentioned many times, it’s not an expensive sport to participate in, with complete packages starting off from just £1399.00, which I guess should be seen as one ‘plus’ of such a quiet sales period during the past year. You can see the offers on our website, should you now be getting interested...the futures bright. 

OK, what of the Bank Holidays weekend weather and Tide times.

Saturday, SUN with a sprinkling of cloud, 10kt breeze from the South and a top temp of 14°C (better than it has been). Tide hits High at 08.51hrs on a 5.3m, so be up early if you want to go river paddling (Henfield’s Eastern flood plain might still be flooded, as the river broke its bank just to the south of the village.. I know this as I had to pedal through it on Monday evening,, but do ask the farmers permission to paddle over his fields). Not a bad start to the weekend!

Sunday, starts off Sunny but by around 10am the ‘opinion’ is that cloud cover will block out the big bright ball and increase during the day. No rain shown and top temp of 15°C. Wind is Sou’Sou’East 8-15kt. Tide hits High at 9.48hrs on a 5.7m… it’s still looking OK! 

Monday, well, it is a Bank Holiday and of course it is currently forecast to be a wet one, but only at times during the afternoon and early evening (there goes the BBQ) and not downpours (so it will rain all day..). Wind is all over the place with Northerly in the morning 7-14kt and then backing to the South'ish, then Sou‘West during the afternoon 9 -16kt. Tide hits High at 10.39hrs on a 6.0m. Good tide for River paddling but guess you will have to contend with the North wind.. foiling may be possible.

James is on his own Saturday 9.30am to 5.30pm and Sunday 10.00am to 4.00pm, as I have a Wedding to attend but I will be back in to assist on Bank Holiday Monday, 10.00am to 4.00pm.

Fingers crossed the weather forecast holds good and we all get a little May weather for a change… cannot help but think back to the spring and summer we had back in 2020, when locked down!

 Have a great Friday evening and a superb long weekend everyone.