Yes, I'm another of those windsurfing fanatics that gets all excited when the wind starts blowing. Below I've got some details about where I go windsurfing and a bit about my phobia of sharks. The maps I've borrowed from the Telstra Yellow Pages site, its a pretty good site. Sydney is not the best place in the world for windsurfing, but it can be pretty good. In summer you'll usually be sailing in north easterly which is good when it gets in the 15-25 knot range. The other good wind direction is when a southerly comes through and you'll get 15-30 knots, but they don't usually last very long.
Check out (Windsurfing Resources) to see details on wind and weather conditions in Sydney and NSW, to search for secondhand boards, and to find windsurfing shops in NSW. You'll also find links to other windsurfing sites in Australia. If you don't have frames support then the old version is here.
|Botany Bay is probably the best place in Sydney for flat water windsurfing. If the wind is blowing then it will be blowing in Botany Bay. I usually go between the airport and Brighton Le Sands. Its pretty exhilarating going out near the runway and hearing the Jumbos take off. One trouble with Botany Bay is the number of jelly fish, there are thousands (per cubic meter of water) and they're big, but they don't seem to sting. Another worry about Botany Bay is the shark warning signs which suggest you should swim in the netted off areas. Actually the shark signs could be my imagination, but I'm pretty sure they exist. I'll get some pictures of Botany Bay. Ones that show the shark signs... Ok so I was born in the country, that's my excuse for my shark phobia.|
The Drain at the southern end of the golf course at Palm beach is the place where I've done the most windsurfing in the last couple of years. It's quite a good place to sail in a north easterly and the water is pretty clean. The hills around Pittwater are quite high so wind consistency is pretty poor, and it can get pretty gusty. Where I now live is closer to Botany Bay, so I'll probably go out there most of the time now.
I've tried Balmoral a number of times, but got pissed off with trying to get out through the moored yachts. As far as I know you can only get in at the south western end of the beach, and I spend half my time going backwards and forwards between the island and all the boats. If you know a better way to get out let me know and I might try going out there again. Still,if you can get out it's probably not bad since there are often people out there. It's probably only any good in north easterlies, since it is fairly hilly around Balmoral. Something else worth noting is that Middle Harbour becomes pretty polluted after heavy rains, the water becomes very thick brown from all the storm water drains and the overflow from the sewerage system. Middle harbour is another good area for sharks - or it was once upon a time..
I've never been out at Collary / Long Reef. You can get a bit of surf there so I should try it some time. It a pretty popular place for ocean going sailors.
|Narrabeen lakes is a good place to learn. It's pretty much a closed area of water and one side of the lake is shallow enough to stand in for a long way out. The problem with Narrabeen is that it's probably only 200-300 metres across, and it can get pretty crowded with people half out of control. Also the water quality is not the best, you may have a cold for the following week, but plenty of people seem to brave it. Anyway it's good place to learn.|
|I've been out a couple of times at Rose Bay. It's ok, pretty good in northerlies, and north easterlies, but being in the main harbour it can be a bit dirty. A lot of the bay isn't too deep and you can stand quite a long way out. I stood on an electric eel or fish there one time. I wouldn't really recommend going there unless you live close by, but Neilsen park up the road is probably better.|
Myall lakes is about three and half hours north of Sydney and a pretty pleasant place to camp. I've been going windsurfing there for about four years. Usually I've gone to Legges Point on the Bombora Broadwater. The last couple of times the wind has been pretty disappointing and the weed has been building up in the lake for the last couple of years. It isn't much fun falling into thick weed. Check out one of the photos in my gallery of the sun setting at Myall lakes.
Recently I've been up to Smith lakes a number of times. It's a bit further than Myall lakes, from Sydney, but a much nice place to sail, and I think the winds are probably better as well. The lake has a sandy bottom and you can stand in quite a number of places. Great place for smooth water sailing, and practicing your gybes, although the last couple of times I've been there, the wind hasn't.
Jelle, a friend from Berry, has kept me coming to this brilliant location. Just at the top of Seven Mile beach, two hours south of Sydney, this is a great place for learning to wave sail. I've only been in the surf a couple of times, and each time it has been at Geroa. It adds a whole new dimension to the sport and also a new hole in my bank account when I get a shorter wave board. Being in the ocean my fear of sharks raises it head, but so far the real thing hasn't.
Geroa seems to get very good winds, usually five knots more than the surrounding places. Jelle's theory is that the north easterlies in summer get compressed by the mountains behind Shell Harbour, Kiama, and Geroa, so that it acts like a funnel with Geroa as the outlet.