December 22, 2013
by Christopher Parker (@wheresbossman)

Extreme Downwinder: Here’s What It Looks Like When You Go Paddling In A 60 Knot Wind Storm


These three grainy images just landed in our inbox courtesy of French paddling stalwart Greg Closier. When 50-60 knot winds battered the north-west coast of France this week, what did the locals do? A downwinder of course.

These photos aren’t the clearest paddling pics we’ve ever seen, though I think that only adds to the mystique of the situation…¬†Paddling in 50-60 knot winds. In the open ocean. In the dark, freezing cold water of French winter. In a country where SUP is still a young, developing sport. With just you and your mate… That’s a serious downwinder.

RELATED: What (And Where) Is The Fastest Downwind Run?

Just how strong was it blowing? Well 60 knots = 69 mph = 111 kmh. That’s strong. When the wind is blowing less than half that speed, most paddlers start frothing at the downwind potential. In short: This day was WINDY.

Or in Greg’s words:

“Hello Chris, I think we will need to get proper DW boards if we want to break the downwind speed record; 12’6 is fun but with 50/60 knot winds we need more nose rocker haha! Crazy weather here in northwest of France!”

Crazy yes. But also a whole lotta fun…

(all photos © Sylvie Beekandt Photographies)

Extreme downwinder

Extreme SUP Downwinder

Extreme Stand Up Paddle downwinder