Last Thursday afternoon Lynn and I wanted to get out on the water so we grabbed our boards and loaded them on the car. Once mine was loaded I noticed that my main fin had been snapped off from its anchors and was barely hanging on by one screw. Usually this happens when someone steps on the board while it is on the beach. I pulled it the rest of the way off as there was no way it would survive the outing and I didn’t want to litter the ocean with it.
But why let a little thing like a broken main paddle board fin stop a couple of guys from playing on the water, right? So we strapped down the boards, tossed the paddles inside the car and headed toward the bay. I was not really convinced that this small little plastic fin really did anything anyway. I still had the two small fins so I was confident I would not notice anything at all. Wrong!
I learn new things all of the time but deep down I am still a dumb ass island transplant from a landlocked city on the mainland. Fins on a paddle board or any other kind of surfboard are definitely there for a reason. There is science behind them and they contribute to everything from the stability of the board to helping you go straight or steer. Without my main fin it was a little like there was a single wheel under the center of my board and every time I paddled the board would pivot on that wheel. The main fin is literally what keeps the board from just spinning in circles (among over things).
We only stayed on the water about 45 minutes this time because it was exhausting for me to try and stay on the squirrelly thing and try to keep it going where I wanted it to go. The surf was fairly high and choppy that day as well which added to the fun!
I’m told that taking off a fin is good training but I might be a more causal boarder than that. Anyway we stopped and saw my buddy Ian Foo at Hypr Nalu and he was able to hook me up with a new fin so everything is good as new. We spent a few hours on the bay on Sunday morning and had a great time and got in some good exercise.