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Driving out of Los Angeles is an experience. There are really two routes east - take the main highways south of the San Gabriel mountains or take Newhall Pass, that separates the San Gabriels from the Santa Susana Mountains, and take the route north of the mountains. The former guarantees bumper-to-bumper traffic for 2 hours while the latter adds an 50 miles to the route but empty roads. We take the high-road. @atypicalcontent Sunset over the Prado in Taos, New Mexico. After a week of storms where over 40” fell, the sky cleared and gave us a show. We made our way to the mountain and checked in with ski patrol for the required backcountry passes. The mountain has a couple of high speed chairs and a nice gondola that takes 15 minutes to the top. Tom was leading the way and made the call to take some of the lower chairs, this netted us first tracks on most of the aspects we hit. The morning went by in a flash of powder. Deep and steep pitches, tight trees, and endless possibilities everywhere. There is so much sidecountry that earning our turns was unnecessary. Lap after lap we found first or second tracks on most everything. Kiroro was great. Kiroro is one of the special places in a special place. It is a backcountry focused area with lift access, tons of snow, a consistent fall line, and endless features to ride. With time being precious, our Aussie host, Liam, hooked us up with a 22 year old "volunteer" from the States to take us around the mountain. Tomahawk Tom had been riding Kiroro everyday for the past two months and knew the ins and outs. @ridealldamnday A story about a Yuki Ona is being written. @hopihillsfarm My morning started unlike any other. Snorting, scratching, clapping, and weezing kept on popping into my sleep and I could not understand why. Oh, that's right, I'm sleeping in a barn... someone hit the snooze button on the goats. Read on in the Blog! @atypicalcontent

Our Other Stories

A trip to the Lencois Maranhenses

Looking for wind atop Sunset Dune, Jericoacoara

I had never been to Brazil. For unknown reasons I had always minimized its greatness. Maybe it was because of my learned anglo-centrism or natural insularism. That finally changed during this year’s dry season when we decided to downwind in northeast Brazil and this experience again confirmed that all my prejudices are ill formed and unnecessary.

Brazil

For most of my life I’ve lived in the equinoctial latitudes where winds are from the east- most days – and the weather doesn’t require much forethought.  But I had never been to a place that defined these characteristics fully until now. The Brazilian states of Ceara, Piaui, Maranhao, and Pará lie in Northeast Brazil bookended by the colonial cities of Fortaleza and Sao Luis. This 1000 km coast is unlike any I have ever seen for its sheer size. Palm trees, warm water, rivers, villages, little infrastructure, white sand beaches, and consistent 25 knot winds.

Downwind in northeast brazil
Sunset over Jericoacoara

Off We Go: Downwind in Northeast Brazil

Downwind in northeast brazil
Hungover in Rio after one too many Caipirinhas

My first memories of Brazil’s northeast where inspired about fifteen years ago during my re-birth into wind sports. I have windsurfed for most of my life, having learned at 13, but had not committing to the choices necessary to pursue good wind until later in life. Those greenish hued pictures of Brazil were not the best and the hyperbolic descriptions were enough to immediately turn me off. I have been burned by the fickleness of nature too many times- stuck on a cloudy sandy outcrop on a windless week being constantly bombarded by beach vendors (Cabarete). That seemed closer to reality than the promises of 25 knot winds and a perfectly spaced 4 foot sand break. But as the years went by, every once in a while someone would say: “it’s always windy there” or “I know a guy that went and said it was great”.

Downwind in northeast brazil
Lagoon in the Lencois Maranhenses, our Downwind Destination in Northeast Brazil
Downwind in northeast brazil
Jesus Looks Over Rio at Corcovado

On to Part I

AC / Lencois Maranhenses / A Trip to the Lencois - Intro

3 comments on “On Downwinding from Fortaleza to São Luis – Intro

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