I love Tri-City summers and I love boating, but let’s face it, the boating scene here is like a white trash version of Lake Havasu. Watching guys try to pull 19-year-old homie hopping tail gets old after a week. None of my boating friends wake up early to get the good water. It’s more about the party scene than the wakeboard scene. It drives me nuts. When my friend Jordan invited me to his parents cabin in Chelan Falls I jumped at the opportunity.
I drove to Chelan Falls Friday after work. It’s a three hour drive, which is quite far when you’re by yourself. Jordan lives in Seattle, so he and his friends arrived about the same time I did. We kicked off the weekend with some drinks and hot tubbing, but I didn’t make it very far. Exhausted from driving, I fell asleep on the couch after thirty minutes. What a party animal!
Saturday morning we woke up to ideal wakeboard conditions. The sun was shining and the water was glass. Time to ride! We rallied the troops. It took a while for everyone to get up, organized and ready to hit the water. Someone jinxed us by talking about the wind. Go figure, as soon as we got on the water the wind picked up. A few of us rode, but choppy water is no fun for trying tricks. Right before my wake to wake 180 I thought, “This will not be good.” It wasn’t. I caught my edge and slapped my head against the water. I was done for the day.
We took it easy for a bit and hoped the wind might die down. Jordan has an Inland Surfer Blue Loogie board that is great for surfers of all ages and abilities. The nice thing about wake surfing is you don’t need ideal conditions. Once my head felt better, I grabbed the board and took a few runs. I don’t usually surf because I love the feeling of catching air behind the boat. Plus I’m not very good at surfing. Years ago when I learned to ride, my ex-boyfriend told me I wouldn’t be able to surf because I “don’t understand the concept of pressure.” Let’s just say I understand the concept of pressure and have no problem getting up or riding without the rope, so stick it buddy. My surf set rocked.
Jordan’s friend Bryce loves taking pictures as much as I do. This is great because at home I’m usually the only one with a camera. As a result, everyone gets great pictures of themselves and the pictures taken of me suck. Bryce shoots with a Canon SLR. I’m not sure what his lens is, but it has a good zoom. Bryce and I worked out a deal where when he rode, I took pictures of him using his camera and vice versa. Props to Bryce for taking such amazing surf pictures. Thank you so much, you have no idea how bad I’ve wanted pictures this summer!
We rode, tanned and relaxed for a few more hours before everyone started to get hungry. Jordan cruised back to the cabin, everyone threw on clothes and we drove to Lake Chelan to pick up food. We ate at a really good hamburger stand, then went to Red Apple to buy food for dinner. We bought steaks, marinades, potato salad and lots of corn (22 ears!).
The sun was still shining so everyone went outside to catch a few more rays. Jordan and I took the scooter up to Chelan Falls. There is a huge bridge connecting these crazy rock formations. Ever since taking geology in college, I’ve been really interested in rocks and rock formations. Chelan Falls is a waterfall from Lake Chelan and the water is the most crystal clear blue. It’s surreal. It looks like something from the tropics. When we got back to the cabin everyone was asleep. The water was too calm to not be on it. We woke everyone up and hit the water for round two.
Austin, Bryce, Pat and myself all took another surf set. The light couldn’t have been better for pictures. The gold of the sunset reflected off the hills surrounding the river. The water conditions were ideal. As the sun started to set Jordan suggested I take one more wakeboard run. Well… Ok, I’m never one to turn down wakeboarding. I threw on my shorts, vest, knee brace and helmet. I needed to make this fast, because the sun was quickly setting. Just as I got up and accustomed to the massive Centurion wake, the sun had set. If you’ve ever tried wakeboarding in the dark you’ll understand how difficult this is. It is really sketchy to cut in hard when you cannot see the wake. It’s like a guessing game and it doesn’t go over well. I gave in. No point in getting hurt night riding when we’ve got all day tomorrow.
We got back to the cabin and got to work. The boys took their position at the grill while the ladies prepared salad, side dishes and drinks in the kitchen. I don’t know if it was the sun, the board sports, the cabin or a combination of the three, but the food was exceptionally delicious that night. It tasted extra American. I better enjoy American food while I can, because I will be eating only Chinese food for the next three months. After dinner we cleaned up, played cards and went to sleep. I think everyone was exhausted after such a long day.
Sunday morning we woke up to another glorious day. Mother nature really liked us this weekend. Everyone was eager to get on the water, so we woke up relatively early for a weekend. Bryce and Austin wanted to try the wake kite. The wake kite is like wakeboarding, but with a kite on the rope handle. You get a lot more air on your tricks. The only downside is you can’t let go of the handle and inverts are obviously out of the question. I passed on the wake kite after yesterdays crash. Looking back at it, I don’t know why. I’m still kicking myself for passing up such an opportunity.
I surfed first after the boys played with the wake kite. Wow, what a surf set! The wake literally came up to my waist. It perfectly curled, giving me a good sweet spot to ride. I would drop back on the wake, then cruise forward. Occasionally I would cut up the wave or feel it with my hand. Halfway through my set one of the boys tossed me a beer. I cracked it open, drank and surfed. I rode until my thighs and calves cramped up. I couldn’t go any farther and jumped in the water. This was by far my best surf session ever.
Bryce, Austin, Jared, Jamie and Pat also took surf sets, but we weren’t ready to head home just yet. The boys brought out the tubes for some extreme tubing. Three people jumped on one tube and two people jumped on the other. I usually enjoy tubing, but this was just nuts. Jordan spun doughnuts causing one tube to fly over the other. At one point my tube hit a double up and I caught ten to fifteen feet of air. Somewhere along the line my knee brace broke. I hope extreme tubing is covered in the warranty!
Around 6 pm we headed back to the cabin. We all had work Monday and a long drive ahead of us. The boys cleaned up the boat and the girls cleaned up the house. This weekend went entirely too fast. We said our goodbyes and went our separate ways.
I couldn’t have asked for a better weekend. I am so happy I got out of the Tri-Cities. It is a nice change to hang out with respectable 20-somethings that don’t just care about getting wasted and laid (no offense to all the boys in the Tri-Cities boating scene). I will undoubtedly take these memories with me to China. When I get homesick I can look back at my pictures of sunshine and friends, and feel a little closer to home. Thank you again Jordan for your hospitality. I’m already counting down the days to summer 2010!