I've been loving the 9'6" Ninja Bump that Stamps sent my way... here's a little break down of a fun surf I had on it last week.
This one's got a nice glide to it. The board is a couple pounds heavier than my usual ride but that doesn't take away from the board's overall performance. In fact, in some situations, the extra heft feels just right. For example, beefier boards allow you to build up a nice head of steam making wave catching a bit easier. Here I am on a small, glassy day powering in early and thinking about what the waves going to do and how I'll handle it...
I like coming off the bottom as hard as I can. Even if it's small, I'll work on getting a little "zing" out of that first turn. A flexy fin helps. The most important part, though, is the timing. You've got to wait for the wave to develop some curve before you hammer down on it. Josh Farberow has this turn perfected. I can still remember watching him slingshot off the bottom of two foot waves on a crappy day at County Line. The guy could develop un-natural speed off that first turn, just body torquing out of it and launching himself down the line. A sweet turn, I can see it clearly in my mind.
I've seen a couple articles about walking the nose. It's a tricky little bit of footwork if you haven't worked on moving your feet on the board. Start by just lifting a foot up and then putting it down as you're surfing along. This will get your mind to start believing that your paws aren't stapled to the deck. A big part of the act is knowing when your board is ready for you to make your move. In this shot, my board's just starting to stall up the face and I've got most of my weight on my forward foot. In order to keep the board in trim, I've got to move forward- here comes the cross step...
I'm a clunky cross stepper. Ever see those shoes that Frankenstein wears? I swear I'm sporting a pair of those monster mashers when I go for my nose walk. What ever it takes, get yourself up there.
Cross-stepping, nose riding and trimming big boards for speed is super fun. Once I was back on a fuller nosed board I remembered what I'd been missing. I'm stoked on the 9'6" it's much more of a high performance longboard shape than a big heavy point and pray 12'er, it's a great all around stand up board.
Check back for the last five frames of this fun little wave!