One day I also made the one-and-a-half-hour trip to Sanary for another Mistral day which delivered an ok (sort of) wave-sailing session in strong winds that I unfortunately had to finish after only an hour as the wind once again became too strong for my smallest sail. At least one still could trust the Mistral whipping up the Mediterranean Sea on a regular basis once summer was over. Some things haven´t changed during the three decades since I came to this area the first time. What had changed though, was the role that windsurfing plays here. Back in the Eighties and Nineties it was THE water sport but now surfing definitively has moved into number one despite surfing here often means battling low frequency wind-swell in combination with howling onshores.
This development was clearly visible at the (former) windsurfing epicentre Sanary too. While there were just 5 windsurfers sailing in this strong Mistral, there were up to about 20 surfers out in the less then optimal waves. It used to be different a few decades ago. Kitesurfing and SUP-surfing are also challenging windsurfing but Kites are difficult too handle at the narrow beaches in between rocky cliffs and SUPs do not really work in the standard onshore surf conditions but are a good thing to stay fit during the calm summer months.
All in all the two weeks with the family in this area were an ok compromise but to be honest, I was ready to leave for other parts of the Med. So, when the end of October came I dropped the girls off at Nice airport and from there headed straight east.
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