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Old 11-24-2008, 06:35 PM   #1
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Tanker surfing!!!!!

Well, growing up in Texas and being a surfer in Texas can get frustrating at times.* We go thru long periods of flat spells where we don't surf for months.* Usually, Fall is a good time for surf but I think God had mercy on us this year in the wake of Hurricane Ike.* We had no significant weather gradient for about 6 weeks....when usually the weather gradient begins to pump up around this time.* Anyway, without further adeu, desperate times cll for desperate measures.* Remember, these waves are inland on Galveston Bay!!!!
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Old 11-24-2008, 06:39 PM   #2
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

This is Captain Hill.* He is a Houston Pilot and a good friend of mine.* His "resources" come in quite handy when doing a little tanker surfing.* It pays* to know the type of ship, their weight, hull shape, and how much power they have.* Most ships do not make waves like this.* Only certain ones do.

Capt. Hill getting his groove on!
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Old 11-24-2008, 06:41 PM   #3
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Just to give you an idea, this wave we are riding....we rode for 19 MINUTES!!!!!* 19 FRIGGIN' MINUTES!!!!!

I am the bald dude in the wetsuit.* This is about 15 minutes into the wave.* You start trying to figure out how to work out cramps and other parts of your body that is starting to lock up....
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Old 11-24-2008, 06:45 PM   #4
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Misc wave riding....
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Old 11-24-2008, 07:02 PM   #5
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Being the arrogant humans that we are, we thought WE were the locals!!!!

Not to toot my own horn, but these are quite possible the best dolphin pics I have ever seen.* You gotta see them in full resolution to appreciate....

-- Edited by Baker at 20:03, 2008-11-24
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Old 11-25-2008, 05:03 AM   #6
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

I've seen video of Jimmy Buffett surfing in the same general area of Galveston Bay. Also saw some news stories on one of the local stations. Cool!
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Old 11-25-2008, 12:57 PM   #7
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

John:

Great pics! I had no idea that a tanker wake was that big......you're not pulling our legs are you?

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Old 11-25-2008, 01:49 PM   #8
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

They're big enough out in the 50+' of water in the ship channel. It's when they pile up in 3-8' depth that they make the great waves and even breakers. I see them every time I'm in that area and a tanker (or even offshore workboats) passes.
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Old 11-25-2008, 03:06 PM   #9
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

The great part of those wakes is you can see the cause of them, giving you warning that something is coming your way. The Trident Submarines here in PS throw a wave that is not as sharp on top, but is a 3' high "lump" of water coming at you. If you aren't paying attention the lump will throw you around and you won't know why. Since most of the sub is submerged you will only see the tower and a couple feet of the top of the hull. When they are a mile away you won't see much, but you will feel their wake.

Ken
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Old 11-25-2008, 03:10 PM   #10
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Hiya,
** Those have got to be the most amazing dolphin pictures I have ever seen.* Did you take them yourself?
** Thanks!
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Old 11-25-2008, 07:55 PM   #11
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Walt, not pullin' your leg. We are actually surfing the ''replacement'' of the water after it has been displaced. It is not a wake. It is a bulge of water that occurs abeam the ship...not behind it.
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Old 11-25-2008, 07:59 PM   #12
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

RTF, I took the pics. I got luck I guess. The light was great, we were close and the camera was set up properly from the get go...very fast shutter speed gives great clarity. Again,light was perfect.
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Old 11-25-2008, 08:14 PM   #13
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Quote:
Baker wrote:

Walt, not pullin' your leg. We are actually surfing the ''replacement'' of the water after it has been displaced. It is not a wake. It is a bulge of water that occurs abeam the ship...not behind it.
So is the "wave" moving toward the ship's path or away from it?
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Old 11-25-2008, 10:46 PM   #14
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Relative to Marin's question.........I can only assume that the wave is moving toward the ship's path...right toward the wave on the other side!!!!* J---s C----s! When they meet what does it look like?

On second thought...if you rode that wave for 19 minutes, it wasn't going toward the ship's path. Man! That's hard to swallow but I believe you!

-- Edited by SeaHorse II at 23:55, 2008-11-25
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Old 11-26-2008, 03:06 AM   #15
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Okay so I guess I don't know exactly waht I am talking about. I do know that it is not the boats wake as we are surfing ABEAM the ship. As it approaches, water is being sucked out at a very rapid rate to join up with this bulge. Part of that bulge is a cross wave that is in fact moving towards the ship and it is a combination of these 2 waves that form a "bowl"....especially when you are surfing along the islands...you can see the initial wave "reflect/rebound" off of the island and the subsequent combination of waves it what causes the surfable wave. ANyway, still not totally sure. All I know is that they are there and they are surfable.

RTF, my "default" setting to shoot surfing is a "sport" mode on my camera. I guess you would call it a semi-auto mode in that it's main priority is highest shutter speed and then it adjusts aperture based on highest shutter speed. That is the setting I had it in for the dolphin shots and it turned out to be perfect. They are EXTREMELY impressive in full resolution. I honestly had no clue. My wife was over my shoulder when I was uploading them and both of our jaws dropped. Anyway, I have not looked at the .exif data to see the exact settings but it would be interesting. I am sure the shutter speed is well into the 1/xxxx.
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Old 11-26-2008, 11:03 AM   #16
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Boats and ships put out a bow "wake" as well as a stern wake, particularly if they are light and the bulbous bow is slightly out of the water. Perhaps that is what you are experiencing?

I know that when running narrowboats in the canals of England that if you watch the water against the bank, you see it rise a bit as the boat approaches, then drop a lot and fast as the boat passes, then it rises again as the stern of the boat passes, and then it drops back to the normal level aways behind the boat. As it was explained to me, this is the result of three things--- the hull pushing water ahead of it in the narrow and shallow canal and then the prop (which is quite large) pulling water out from under and around the boat and "piling it up" behind the boat.
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Old 11-26-2008, 08:26 PM   #17
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

Nope, Marin, the heavier the better. It is about displacement and not about wake. Speed is important as well. When the ships are really "hooked up" they actually have a stern high/bow low profile....or it appears that way due to the bulge of water at the front of the boat.
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Old 11-26-2008, 08:30 PM   #18
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

And I was shooting the dolphin pics with a 50x200mm f2.8 zoom lens. The .exif data shows I shot them at a focal length of 50mm!!!!! Imagine if I woulda "choked up" a little on the lens. It just goes to show you how close we were to them. I do wish I woulda had a little more zoom in there. Shutter speed was 1/1000 with f3.5....which also helped with the clarity.
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Old 11-27-2008, 02:46 PM   #19
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RE: Tanker surfing!!!!!

So is it the result of the interaction between the bulk and weight of the ship and the relatively shallow bottom under the ship? This is the way it is with the narrowboats which in our case is 60 feet long, weighs some 20 tons, draws about 4 feet and is usually running in a canal that's about 5 feet deep.
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