Boat to Move from Bluefin for Molokai Challenge

8 years 8 months ago #24780 by Joshrosenthal1
I read these posts all the time. I love this sport. Its new to me. I bought a Fenn Bluefin as a Xmas present, and now have completed a bunch of 18mile /10mile races in it and feel like I could take it in any condition anywhere.

But the sad truth is i probably need to move up to a faster ski. I have a crazy idea of doing Molokai - but want to do it in something that will feel the way I feel in that baby Bluefin!

Today I paddled the Swordfish - no problem in the flat. EXCEPT my legs went completely numb and to sleep. Not a good thing when you are off the coast. Very VERY painful.

Im 6ft 210lbs and wide hips (size 35 pants).

I have also paddled the Steller SR - stable and good.v Do people do Molokai in boats like XT / Bluefin / SR / etc? BUT what boat do I move to be stable and fast enough not to burn time becoming stable and that I can do Molokai with? Everyone says something different from Huki to Think...


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8 years 8 months ago #24781 by photofr
Before purchasing anything new, there are a few things you can do:
1. Place 1 to 4 cm of foam under your butt, and paddle flats and rough.
2. Try a friend's boat in flat and rough waters - like Epic V10 Sport or similar.
3. Have others double check your paddling technique: there's a lot more speed to be had with better technique than with a faster boat.

Have you spent a lot of time on downwind runs?

Molokai is a great (fantastic) goal to have, but take it easy!
The Molokai Channel isn't the most prestige race because the wind and swells are perfectly aligned. It's an unreal channel crossing because of the slap in the face it and challenges it brings. Read: No wind, strong winds, huge swells, cross swells, backwash, etc… It basically will test everything you know, including extreme endurance while powering through.

You could very well keep the same boat (for another year). You could paddle some 40, 50 and 60km with a Bluefin. You could raise your seat some… you could take it on lots of DW runs. You could take dedicated surfski courses, and then think about changing boats.

For for thoughts… right ?

(Brittany, France)

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8 years 8 months ago #24782 by Fath2o
Josh, first of all I have to agree with everything Photofr had to say.
I see your in Marina del Rey. In my experience the conditions down there tend to be very benign the majority of the time and tend to make it difficult to get much rough water experience. I actually got a good laugh coming in the harbor during the Malibu to Marina del Rey race when I saw the flag pole on the breakwater, that thing would turn into a pretzel after a season or two up here in Ventura. I did that race in a Fenn Elite and realized that I would have been faster in my Fenn XT. As far as conditions go, Hawaii is a whole different ball game.
I think any good intermediate boat that you are comfortable in would be fine for the Molakai. Elite boats are for Elite paddlers and I pretty much guarantee you will be slower in one.

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8 years 8 months ago #24783 by Joshrosenthal1
Thanks. Very good point. Some of the downwinders I have done have been fantastic 35kt gusts and so much fun. The Point Mugu to Leo Carillo is great. Any other spots? So where is a good place in Ventura to get in the rough (not SoCal bay chop / real rough).
Are their groups / clubs / etc. MDR is benign at the best of times.

I guess one of the thoughts in hearing is to make my bluefin as tippy as possible / raise the seat - what about swapping the gigantic elliptical rudder for a smaller one often found on say the swordfish?

The endurance and distance training I am beginning / along with a ton of interval / but I have no idea about clinics and everyone seems to be on Sup's and OC's here.

Thanks for your thoughts.

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8 years 8 months ago #24785 by Fath2o
Josh looks like you are "hooked". 35 Knot downwinds are good experience!
The Mugu rock to Leo is a great run/race. The wind tends to parrallel the Malibu coast and the water is relatively deep and makes for very user friendly downwind conditions.
As you probably already know the the conditions tend to deteriorate dramatically as you move up the coast. Particularly between Point Mugu and Rincon.
Due to convenience, my typical downcoast run is from Pitas point "Mondos" to Ventura Harbor about 8 miles. Conditions can be quite challenging especially during the spring. 30 - 40 knots, 8' - 15' seas at very close intervals of 7 -9 seconds. Unfortunately it is not a true downwind run as the wind is on your starboard quarter. the water is quite shallow and the seas and wind really tend to stack up as you get closer to the harbor with backwash and counter currents. Of course you can go farther up the coast for longer runs that will tend to improve the wind angle a little, but, you can end up several miles offshore and the beach launches can be more challenging. Just depends on conditions. I paddle the original Think EVO kevlar on these runs with an enlarged venturi drain and 9"
elliptical rudder. The EVO works fine, but, I would prefer a boat with more rocker and similar length/volume. Yeah guys I know, probably an EVO II.
I personally don't paddle with any groups, but, there are some and there's always the outrigger clubs.
I don't think changing the rudder will give the results your looking for.
We're coming into the least windy season of the year and the surf will be picking up.
Kind of end of ski season for me, I'll be surfing more. Come the beginning of the year/early spring, look me up here if your interested in coming up for some serious downcoast paddle.
I can also provide transportation to the Channel Islands for some of the best downwind
runs on the planet.
Good luck! Captain Kirk.

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8 years 8 months ago #24786 by Joshrosenthal1
Thanks! I would LOVE to get in to some big downwinders - I will def look you up and try back here to catch up for those Channel Islands and other Ventura runs! Can't wait!

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8 years 8 months ago #24787 by Joshrosenthal1
You can reach out and friend me on FB. I'm dedicated to doing Molokai - so any support and additional experience i can get would be amazing / even if I do it on the bluefin I will!:) ha!!

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8 years 8 months ago #24791 by Fuyang Guy
A couple of points:
Firstly, make sure the boat you want to paddle is available for hire in HI.
There is no point deciding what you want to paddle, getting comfortable in it, only to find out that it is not available.

Secondly, if there is even a shadow of a doubt as to which boat, chose the more stable option.
Km 42-52 are the hardest of the race; from as much as 10km from diamond head you start getting rebound waves, that require a lot of core, energy and stability to paddle through with purpose.
if you have been burning your core keeping yourself upright to that point, you will really struggle.
4+ hours in, the last thing you want to be doing is testing your remount.

Try a V10S. It is a great boat with a wide bucket, and I know they are available for rent in HI.

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