Monday, July 25, 2016

Gorge Windsurfing Continues To Be Epic: Doug's Beach

This is the rigging area with a few yards of grass and sand and three picnic tables. Other than a vault toilet, no other development at the site besides the train tracks.
Windsurfing the Columbia Gorge is an excellent experience made even better by the sheer awesomeness of sites like Doug's Beach. But why is Doug's such an excellent place?

To qualify for true awesomeness a site has to perform well in winds averaging 30 mph -- this is considered epic by gorge standards. At Doug's the current is strongest in the center of the river and usually pushes almost perpendicular to the prevailing west wind which delivers the power. The result is big, powerful river swell that can be surfed and jumped and enjoyed to a heart's content.

This picture is from The Hatchery and illustrates the size of Gorge river swell.
The beauty of sailing at Doug's, for me, centers on the lack of development around the site, the large fetch of river, and how when one is sailing there are so many views of only river, sky, and the high canyon walls that make up the Gorge. There are highways and trains nearby, but such are minimized from the center of the river.

I usually drive to Doug's from Hood River, crossing the Columbia River into Bingen and traveling through Lyle -- small towns reminding me that other kinds of lives are being lived beyond my experience in Portland.

Also, there are sand shallows at the launch so sailing without booties is easy on the feet.

When I have a good summer's sail at Doug I am exhilarated and happy to have arrived at the right place and time, becoming effusive that life in the Northwest continues to be so beautiful.

Yet again I proclaim stoke for all the blessings!

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